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"Our Great Strength Is Our Ideals"

During the confirmation hearing for Attorney General nominee Michael Mukasey I blogged about yesterday, John Hutson, former Rear Admiral and Judge Advocate General of the US Navy, testified, not in opposition, but to "highlight some of the concerns" he had. During his remarks, he made the case for upholding our principles in a time of war better than I ever could:

[I]n [the global war on terror], the enemy cannot defeat us militarily. They don't have the lift, they don't have the command and control, communications. They don't have the weapons systems. They can't defeat us militarily.

Winning for the enemy is to cause us to change, to bring us down to his level, to cause us to be something different than what we have been.

Our great strength, the support of human rights and the rule of law. Thomas Paine said that, The cause of America is the cause of all mankind. The great more recent geopolitical commentator Bono said that, America isn't just a country, it's an idea.

We are engaged in an asymmetric war. And in an asymmetric war, the strategy is to pit your strength against the enemy's weakness, unlike World War II, for example, where it was often strength against strength.

Our great strength is our ideals. Thomas Paine and Bono had it right.

The enemy is abjectly devoid of ideals. So the enemy can't defeat us -- certainly can't defeat us militarily, but we can commit national suicide by disarming ourselves of our ideals.


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