The Orlando Shooting and ISIS: How Should We Respond?
As we learn more about the Orlando Nightclub Shooting that occurred in the early hours of June 12, 2016, we now know that Law Enforcement agencies in Florida, and the Federal government report that the shooter, Omar Mateen, pledged allegiance to ISIS/The Islamic State via a call to the 911 operator just before he launched his terrorist attack on a civilian target. ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham, AKA The Islamic State), also has publicly claimed the shooter as one of their “martyrs.”
This makes this attack another part of the radical Jihadist group’s war on America, and on all of Western Civilization. ISIS does not believe in freedom of religion, gender equality, or civil rights of any kind, and they hate anyone not a part of their radical ideology. They behead and often burn alive Christians, secular Muslims, gays, and anyone else they do not like and they celebrate those murders like it is a party. If they could get their hands on Jews, they would do even worse to them! Orlando is not just a “typical” mass shooting, but a part of a war that the U.S. and the rest of the West is only pursuing half-heartedly. Today it was a nightclub in Orlando. Last year it was an attack in San Bernardino. Tomorrow it may be a school, a mall, or a sports stadium packed with more unsuspecting civilian targets, who are just going about their daily lives.
Whoever the next president turns out to be, (and frankly, the thinking voter’s choices are now quite limited), hopefully he or she will realize that United States is actually at war with this radical group, and not be afraid to act like a war-time leader. Calling out the radical ISIS militants is not an attack on Islam, anymore than our destroying the Nazi threat in World War Two was an attack on Germany’ s Christian heritage.
One of the many lessons that looking back on history can teach us, is that militant aggressors, whether they are Fascists like Hitler, Communists like Stalin and Mao, or Islamic Jihadists like al-Qaida and ISIS, are encouraged by weak responses and see the legalistic, reasoned arguments favored by too many Western leaders as an invitation to strike again, and again, and again. This type of attack WILL happen again. The U.S. must respond in an appropriate manner and not show weakness.
Let us hope that our leaders choose bold action over talking and making speeches, and hoping that the bad guys can discern our good intentions and just leave us alone. Again, as history shows, evil is afraid of strength, and fears a strong response. And if they do not fear that strength, then they are fools. Just ask the wartime leaders of Japan what it is like to wake a sleeping giant.