I have been reading a lot about World War II lately, so maybe that's why I thought of Winston Churchill the other day when another terrorist scare surfaced and I heard someone on TV say, "That's just how it's going to be from now on."
No, I thought, that's just how it is right now. Yes, we all know that the inconveniences and precautions of today's world are necessary: taking off our shoes to board an airplane, barricades around the Capitol. But we must never resign ourselves into believing that it has to be that way forever.
In May of 1940, when most Americans wanted no part of the war in Europe and most of Europe believed the Nazis were so powerful there was no alternative but a continent dominated by Germany, and no choice but to appease Hitler, this is what Winston Churchill said.
"You ask what is our policy? I will say, it is to wage war. You ask what is our aim? I can answer in one word: victory at all cost. Victory in spite of terror, victory however long and hard the road may be, for without victory, there is no survival."
We can erect barricades and we can set up surveillance cameras and all the rest. But until we eradicate terrorism, our way of life cannot survive.
If that means re-instituting the draft, so be it. If that means American troops posted in Iraq for as long as they were stationed in Germany, so be it. If that means spending billions to attack the root causes of terrorism, it will be money well spent.
The world we want for our children is the world we once knew, not the world of today. And we can promise them no less. Like Churchill, our aim must be victory.
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