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Guest Editorial (Definitely worth a look-see!)
The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette ^ | July 1, 2005 | Editorial

Posted on 07/01/2005 7:35:19 AM PDT by quidnunc

Every now and again, we like to open up this column to others who, by their experiences, tend to have more of a perspective on the crises that Americans face. After President Bush’s speech the other night, we thought it would be interesting to ask for a few comments from somebody from the other side of the aisle, a good Democrat who can speak on the challenges of a new and different kind of war.

So please, sir, what is your take on the effort? Is there a plan? Why is it taking so long? Is the enemy winning? Or, at least, can the enemy outlast us? And when, oh when, will Americans finally be able to stop sacrificing in this struggle?

• For eight years, General Washington and his Continental Army were faced continually with formidable odds and recurring defeats. Supplies and equipment were lacking. In a sense, every winter was a Valley Forge. Throughout the thirteen states there existed fifth columnists — and selfish men, jealous men, fearful men, who proclaimed that Washington’s cause was hopeless, and that he should ask for a negotiated peace.

Washington’s conduct in those hard times has provided the model for all Americans ever since — a model of moral stamina. He held to his course, as it had been charted in the Declaration of Independence. He and the brave men who served with him knew that no man’s life or fortune was secure without freedom and free institutions.

The present great struggle has taught us increasingly that freedom of person and security of property anywhere in the world depend upon the security of the rights and obligations of liberty and justice everywhere in the world. This war is a new kind of war. It is different from all other wars of the past, not only in its methods and weapons but also in its geography. It is warfare in terms of every continent, every island, every sea, every air-lane in the world… .

We must all understand and face the hard fact that our job now is to fight at distances which extend all the way around the globe.

We fight at these vast distances because that is where our enemies are. Until our flow of supplies gives us clear superiority we must keep on striking our enemies wherever and whenever we can meet them, even if, for a while, we have to yield ground. Actually, though, we are taking a heavy toll of the enemy every day that goes by… .

Those Americans who believed that we could live under the illusion of isolationism wanted the American eagle to imitate the tactics of the ostrich. Now, many of those same people, afraid that we may be sticking our necks out, want our national bird to be turned into a turtle. But we prefer to retain the eagle as it is — flying high and striking hard.

I know I speak for the mass of the American people when I say that we reject the turtle policy and will continue increasingly the policy of carrying the war to the enemy in distant lands and distant waters — as far away as possible from our own home grounds… .

(The enemy’s) theme has been that Americans are admittedly rich, that Americans have considerable industrial power — but that Americans are soft and decadent, that they cannot and will not unite and work and fight.

From Berlin, Rome and Tokyo we have been described as a nation of weaklings — " playboys" — who would hire British soldiers, or Russian soldiers, or Chinese soldiers to do our fighting for us.

Let them repeat that now!

Let them tell that to General MacArthur and his men.

Let them tell that to the sailors who today are hitting hard in the far waters of the Pacific.

Let them tell that to the boys in the Flying Fortresses.

Let them tell that to the Marines! … – President Franklin D. Roosevelt, February 23, 1942

• … It is our determination to restore these conquered peoples to the dignity of human beings, masters of their own fate, entitled to freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom from want, and freedom from fear.

We have started to make good on that promise.

I am sorry if I step on the toes of those Americans who, playing party politics at home, call that kind of foreign policy "crazy altruism" and "starry-eyed dreaming"… .

While concentrating on military victory, we are not neglecting the planning of the things to come, the freedoms which we know will make for more decency and greater justice throughout the world.

I confess that I myself am sometimes bewildered by conflicting statements that I see in the press. One day I read an" authoritative" statement that we will win the war this year, 1943 — and the next day comes another statement equally "authoritative," that the war will still be going on in 1949. Of course, both extremes — of optimism and pessimism — are wrong.

The length of the war will depend upon the uninterrupted continuance of all-out effort on the fighting fronts and here at home, and that effort is all one… .

We shall not settle for less than total victory. That is the determination of every American on the fighting fronts. That must be, and will be, the determination of every American here at home. – FDR, July 28, 1943

• … We have joined with like-minded people in order to defend ourselves in a world that has been gravely threatened with gangster rule.

But I do not think that any of us Americans can be content with mere survival. Sacrifices that we and our Allies are making impose upon us all a sacred obligation to see to it that out of this war we and our children will gain something better than mere survival.

We are united in determination that this war shall not be followed by another interim which leads to new disaster — that we shall not repeat the tragic errors of ostrich isolationism… .

The one supreme objective for the future, which we discussed for each nation individually, and for all the United Nations, can be summed up in one word: Security.

And that means not only physical security which provides safety from attacks by aggressors. It means also economic security, social security, moral security — in a family of nations… .

Returning from my journeying, I must confess to a sense of being let down when I found many evidences of faulty perspectives here in Washington. The faulty perspective consists in over-emphasizing lesser problems and thereby under-emphasizing the first and greatest problem… . – FDR, January 11, 1944

• Yesterday, on June 4th, 1944, Rome fell to American and Allied troops. The first of the Axis capitals is now in our hands. One up and two to go! – FDR, June 5, 1944

Thank you, sir. It was always an inspiration to hear you.

TOPICS: Editorial; Miscellaneous; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: fdr; franklindroosevelt; georgewashington; waronterror; washington; wot; wwiv

1 posted on 07/01/2005 7:35:20 AM PDT by quidnunc
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To: quidnunc

As a former democrat, i enjoyed this and am more sure than ever in my move to the right.

2 posted on 07/01/2005 7:43:55 AM PDT by wildcatf4f3 (whats wrong with a draft?)
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To: quidnunc; Lando Lincoln; .cnI redruM; Valin; yonif; SJackson; dennisw; monkeyshine; Alouette; ...

Brilliant Editorial by The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette !

    This ping list is not author-specific for articles I'd like to share. Some for perfect moral clarity, some for provocative thoughts; or simply interesting articles I'd hate to miss myself. (I don't have to agree with the author 100% to feel the need to share an article.) I will try not to abuse the ping list and not to annoy you too much, but on some days there is more of good stuff that is worthy attention. You can see the list of articles I pinged to lately on my page.

       Besides this one, I keep separate PING lists for my favorite authors Victor Davis Hanson, Orson Scott Card, David Warren and Lee Harris (sometimes). You are welcome in or out, just freepmail me (and note which PING list you are talking about).

3 posted on 07/01/2005 7:45:26 AM PDT by Tolik
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To: quidnunc

Returning from my journeying, I must confess to a sense of being let down when I found many evidences of faulty perspectives here in Washington. The faulty perspective consists in over-emphasizing lesser problems and thereby under-emphasizing the first and greatest problem… . – FDR, January 11, 1944

Clearly out of date for the complex issues of 2005...NOT!

4 posted on 07/01/2005 7:46:47 AM PDT by mad puppy ( "He's with me!" And I'm with W.)
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To: quidnunc
Fight fair (PC too). The mere mention of the worshiped one (FDR) in conjunction with an analogous war time situation causes absolute hysteria on the left. that fair?
5 posted on 07/01/2005 7:51:02 AM PDT by ncountylee (Dead terrorists smell like victory)
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To: quidnunc

Worth the read, Thanks.

6 posted on 07/01/2005 8:05:36 AM PDT by TASMANIANRED (Democrats haven't had a new idea since Karl Marx.)
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To: quidnunc

FDR was a classic Liberal. Today's Democrats are nothing but Socialists.

7 posted on 07/01/2005 8:10:06 AM PDT by BJClinton (I bend the microphone to the furthest point like a Germanic tribesman)
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To: quidnunc

It would be interesting to post this without attribution at one of the Democrat discussion forums. The lib posters would reflexively denounce it as the ravings of a warmongering jingoist. The word fascist would certainly be used. You'd let this go on for a few dozen posts, then post the identity of the writer. I don't know what would happen then, but I'll bet it would be fun to watch.

8 posted on 07/02/2005 10:13:50 AM PDT by Yardstick
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