MacArthur is still right: 'There is no substitute for victory'

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By Sol Sanders

Sol W. Sanders

August 2, 2006

Imitating American academics often practicing what one writer called social science as voodoo, the Soviets misappropriated from physics the phrase “correlation of forces” to describe the general world scene at a given moment. Others have called it the bandwagon effects, the tendency of people to join a winning side were it not their first choice. Modifying, slightly, Vince Lombardi’s famous sports quip: “winning isn’t everything, it is the only thing [in the short term].”

Looking around the world, the combination of the Americans’ failure to achieve a quick victory in Iraq has emboldened democracy’s enemies. Added now is the result of an Israeli strategic mistake for not immediately using maximum force and its hell-for-leather effort to recoup before the world imposes a truce.

The U.S.’ enemies quite rightly suspect Jerusalem [and Washington] in the face of the feckless Europeans and the hysterical Arab street may have to settle for a temporary clipping of Bizmullah’s wings, in effect rewarding its Svengalis in Iran and their hyenas in Syria.

Years of preparation — and perhaps the luck of the draw — have brought the Bizmullah and their sponsors a propaganda victory in the Arab-Moslem world. If nothing else, they have shown their psychotic”martyrs” can stand up to Western force of arms if at horrendous cost. And, again, they have turned Western humanitarianism into a weapon against it by using civilian victims.

One listens with utter disbelief as a National Public Radio[where else but perhaps the BBC!] commentator — a supposed expert from a major American news magazine – lays out Bzimullah’s project for turning Lebanon into a sanctuary-state for the Ismaofascists and then he promptly calls for an immediate ceasefire as his solution to the crisis – in Israel’s image interests, of course, he explains..

All around the globe, you see the byproducts of this at least temporary setback for U.S. policy:

NATO, taking over efforts to defeat the Islamofascists in Afghanistan, finds a Neo-Taliban invigorated by their fellow [ Sunni-Shia differences can be compromised for a time at least] ideologues’ successes in Lebanon.

Strait of Malacca “Pirates” at a chokepoint in the world’s oil pipeline, attack two UN vessels in daylight in new effrontery, threatening another major crisis while American seapower is diverted to everything from rescuing Lebanese-Americans to stepping up the embargo against North Korean missiles flowing to the Mideast.

The North Koreans, sensing American preoccupations, refuse even to come to the talkfest with the other major powers concerned with WMD weapons in the hands of a regime even its Chinese allies admit privately is somewhat bizarre. But the U.S., with its major commercial ties, only slaps Beijing’s wrists for violating its missile anti-proliferation agreements by selling Mideast customers.

Moscow turns coy toward the Tehran regime inexorably marching toward nuclear armaments after earlier endorsing a united front to block it The Russians refuse, even with terrorists expanding their area of influence beyond Chechnya, to name Hizbullah and Hamas as terrorists. While its newly empowered government oil companies gobble up a Dutch distribution company, it uses gas to try to beat the pro-American Azeri regime back into the Soviet orbit [even though dissidence is rising among Iranian Azeris].

The retread radical, former lackluster Foreign Secretary Jack Straw who for three years thought he could bring the Iranian mullahs around, and the Foreign Office Arabists [those romantics who want to ride off on a camel in their bernoose into the Desert Song night], have try to break Tony Blair’s alliance with George Bush.

Sergeant Hugo Chavez, pipsqeak caudillo from Venezuela, tries to pick up the anti-gringo torch of a dying Fidel Castro in Latin America by traipsing about to sign nonexistent weapons and commercial agreements with Belarus, Russia, Vietnam [to whom the U.S. has just extended more trade concessions!]. Meanwhile Washington acquiesces as China and partners drill for oil in Cuban waters 50 miles from Florida [forbidden to U.S. companies because of environmental concerns].

This is what the Soviets meant by “the correlation of forces”. But what Moscow learned, to Nikita Khruschev’s great chagrin during the Cuban Missiles Crisis, is the correlation of forces can change suddenly in the face of resolve and a relatively isolated victory.

That is what is at issue now in Lebanon.

With a little editing, Gen. Douglas MacArthur’s famous Korean statement fits: “It seems strangely difficult for some to realize that here in Asia [the Mideast] is where the Communist conspirators [Islamofascists terrorists] have elected to make their play for global conquest, and that we have joined the issue thus raised on the battlefield; that here we fight Europe’s war with arms while the diplomats there still fight it with words; that if we lose the war to communism [Islamic terrorists] in Asia [Mideast] the fall of Europe is inevitable, win it and Europe most probably would avoid war and yet preserve freedom. . . . There is no substitute for victory.”

Sol W. Sanders, (, is an Asian specialist with more than 25 years in the region, and a former correspondent for Business Week, U.S. News & World Report and United Press International. He writes weekly for World and

August 4, 2006

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