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Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Ideology of Intolerance and Mass Destruction

At some point soon, Western leaders will have to drop the foolish insistence that the war we are engaged in is an ethereal long-term war on "terror." It is completely plain to see that, instead, our fate is to either endure or fall in a blunt-force clash of civilizations.

The aggressor in this mushrooming reality is an archaic religious ideology, Islam, founded in the 7th century by the prophet Muhammad. Attitudes instilled in its one billion followers demand their submission to the will of Allah. Religion and social or political realms are inseparable, and theological leaders hold tremendous power in their own proclamations, interpretations, and exhortations.

There are multiple Islamic theologies, but today, the most intolerant and violent forms are multiplying unchallenged globally, leading millions of Muslims headlong into direct confrontation with modern cultures of the "infidels."

Ideologies of Aggression

Iran's nuclear ambitions and their unabashed Islamic-justified desire to wipe Israel from the map are front and center in the world's consciousness today. So are the recurring and spreading riots in Europe and elsewhere arising out of Muslims being whipped into a frenzy over western cartoons that depict their holy prophet.

This of course does not even consider the longer-term realities of suicide terrorism and criminal aggression on innocent civilians throughout the world in the name of Allah and in opposition to America, Israel, and anything not endorsed in Islamic tradition.

The threat to our way of life from the passionate opposition and anger nourished in the Muslim world is unprecedented today and is fast reaching explosive levels. The Middle East, and Europe are the front lines today, but America, Indonesia, and Asia are also in the middle of the fight, and there is no neutral ground in this ideological war.

Lines drawn between combatants are not as much along international boundaries as they are along and among intermingled populations everywhere. To-date, few opposing cultures have been able to match the passion and fire of the most radical Muslim warriors. The West has long ago turned in its own motivating faith and moral value sets for soft, self-centered individualistic pursuits that are not only a focus of Islam's wrath, but also our own undoing in being able to mount a defense equal in reason and strength.

By denying the nature of our true enemy in this struggle and confronting our weaknesses in truthfulness, we will not have a chance of holding the line against the enemy.

How to Prepare

On a personal level, the question here is, what should we do?

If you are looking to prepare your family and household for a clash of civilizations, potential dangers that come to mind are almost too overwhelming to consider. But like with any other threat, taking it a piece at a time is probably the way to go. A very brief summary follows ...

First, this type of threat is as much about personal belief and philosophy as about physical survival. Start there by deciding where your most basic loyalties lie. Do you believe in God? Do you pray for guidance in your day to day activities? Do you feel a bond with others in your community and nation? Are you and your family your first and only priority? The questions would be many and only you can create the necessary definition for your philosophical foundation. I suggest devoting time to this now and then building on your answers going forward.

With that understanding established, you might consider that a full-blown lifestyle-threatening clash of civilizations will have obvious impact on the lives of your family. Hardships and challenges may take the form of economic downturns, supply shortages, emotional difficulty and confusion, community strife, and possibly local violence that could take a toll right where you live.

Assuming you are spiritually grounded in your faith, I might suggest that your next important steps to take would be to ensure that your household security against reasonably expected aggression is in place. That can mean a lot of different things, such as hardened shelters, air filtration, employment of your legal right to arm yourself and provide for your own self-defense, home security systems, watchdogs, and on and on. What we are talking about in this regard is as much about peace of mind as anything else.

Last, as with most any other threat we try to prepare for, we want to have in place the ability to provide for the needs of our family for at least a short-term period without having to leave our home. For this threat, stocking up on food, water, medical needs, and supplies for a longer period of time would seem to be prudent--perhaps at least a month's worth, and as much as a year or more. And don't forget to prepare to engage in an economy potentially lacking in the ability to process credit cards or checks for a time in the event basic infrastructure is compromised.

No Limits

Ideologies today know no geographic boundaries. And some ideologies know no limits or fears in terms of their attempts to achieve their goals.

Now is the time to come to grips with that and to start establishing your own personal resolve to do what may become necessary in a world going mad.

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