Kilroy Was Here
December 02, 2004
There's a Bear in the Woods
Kevin Drum recently posted a comparison of the current Islamic fundamentalist movement with fascism of the late 30s, and communism of the late 40s.

What's the point of these historical highlights? Just this: in the five years before 1941, world events made the danger from fascism so clear that when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor even diehard Republican isolationists didn't hesitate to declare war. The argument was over.

Likewise, by 1949 world events had made Soviet aggression clear to all but the farthest reaches of the left. Truman won the debate within his party largely because the threat was so plain that only a small minority could continue to ignore it.

But world events today are nowhere near so clear. 9/11 was a wakeup call, but in the three years since then what's happened that's the equivalent of even a single one of the events described above? There have been some scattered bombings, but barely more than before 9/11. North Korea and Iran appear to be building nuclear bombs, but they've been doing that for over a decade. The Middle East is dominated by brutal totalitarian regimes, but that's been true for as long as there's been a Middle East — and in any case the United States actively supports many of them.

In fact, let me be the first to suggest that the real generational danger to United States peace and security is not Islamic fundamentalism, but Russian nationalism.

Russia is currently becoming more and more anti-Democratic. Russia is backing anti-Democratic measures in the Ukraine. There are lots and lots of small, failing former Soviet States around Russia to invade. The citizenry is souring on capitalism and longs for return to a great nation. Russia has people that really know how to run a police state. Russia, China, and India will all be struggling to be the dominant power in Asia.

Oh yeah, and Russia has nukes.

By 2010, Russia could absorb Eastern Ukraine, Georgia, etc, start building up against China, force the Persian Gulf region to offer up natural resources.

And this time, Russia won't be burdened by a failed economic ideology. They won't be trying to prove that communism is right. They'll just want to win by being the most powerful country in the world.

And with us distracted by a technologically backward, economically weak, idealogically crippled Islamic terrorism, we won't even see this coming.

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