Kidnapped by Japan - How A Mother's Dying Wish Led To A Father's Unimaginable Loss

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Saturday, February 16, 2008

Don't Know Much About History

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If you were to ask the average American where Al-Qaeda came from you'd probably be met with a blank stare; not surprising considering the current quality of American education. If you were to ask a slightly better informed American the same question there's a pretty good likelihood that you'd hear that the US helped create them in Afghanistan in the 1980's. This would be just another example of the success of liberal opinion as propaganda and failure as fact. There's another story out there, a far more inspiring and instructive story and it has the benefit of being true.

Former White House speech writer and 9/11 Commission senior aid Michael Johns has posted a terrific piece, Charlie Wilson's War Was Really America's War, on his blog that clears away much of the fog that has blown in of late, covering the unlikely accomplishments of a relatively small number of visionaries (Charlie Wilson, Ronald Reagan, et al.) in bringing down the Soviet Empire and also in attempting to stop the growth of Al-Qaeda. Using the recent movie, Charlie Wilson's War (based on the eponymous book) as a frame of reference, Johns sets the record straight on the singular importance of US assistance to the Afghan freedom fighters following the 1970's invasion of that country, in the endgame of the Cold War. He also highlights how despite active US concern and intervention Osama bin-Laden and other non-Afghan forces began to emerge. Contrary to the Left's reinvention of this particular historical event, bin-Laden was not a creation of the CIA or the US at all . In fact, the Reagan Administration was aware of and sensitive to the mujahideen's concern over bin-Laden and his nascent movement, often taking direct, if covert action to mitigate its influence.

History often echoes to us here in the present and the events of that time sound eerily familiar to us as we hear the struggles of our current war. Like today, the Democrats of the 80's and 90's did all in their power to block a Republican president's long-range and ambitious plan to confront an implacable enemy. There was nothing sure and certain about the positive result of the final days of the Soviet Union just as there is nothing sure and certain about the results of our current conflict. In retrospect it is easy to see that our failure then would have been a continuing catastrophe for millions of people world-wide. What awful consequences might our failure now bring upon the world? Without remembering the past as it actually happened and learning its lessons it is possible we might just find out to our deep regret.

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