Thursday, August 6, 2015

Holding the Formation

I was reading about Bronze Age warfare recently.  I get the impression that the tactics were more or less elegant in their simplicity.  The side that broke and ran got slaughtered.  The side that held together won.  I doubt that they use Paul's Epistle to the Ephesians as instructional material at West Point, but the Apostle was probably thinking of exactly that kind of warfare when he called upon Christians to stand.

Despite advances in weaponry over the years, the very oldest weapon is still the most effective: Fear.

Whether we are talking about Muslims gangs in Iraq, Mexican drug cartels, or the Iranian nuclear program, the purpose of many of their actions is to instill terror and dread in the hearts of those who might oppose them. The way to defeat an enemy is, short of destroying him completely, make him fear you more than you fear him.

If you do not want to fight, either because of morals, because you have better things to spend time and resources on, or because you do not want the collateral damage and losses that come with conflicts, the very best way to avoid it is fear.

Yes, there are cases where a frightened, terrorized opponent will attempt a preemptive strike against an adversary that he fears.  He believes at that point that he has some chance to succeed.  Sometimes a desperate opponent will attempt a suicidal strike, attempting to, in effect, alter the balance of fear.  Thus, instilling fear in the enemy is not 100% effective in forestalling violence, but it is better than being in fear of the enemy.

We are in a culture war.  We -- traditionalists, non-post-modern, normal people, are losing because we are being cowed into silence.  We fear the labels that will be attached to us: racists, homophobes, chauvinists, bigots, islamophobes, etc.  In turn, for fear of being thoroughly ostracized, we cannot label or threaten our opponents.  The battle ground is the popular media, and it is almost completely controlled by the opposition.  We can't call perversion perversion.  We can't call treason, crime, hatred, intolerance, or persecution by its proper name else we are haters and ignorant.  We can't call the Islamic State Islamic.  We can't oppose a bad "deal" with Iran lest we lose Iran's "trust" when the issue is not whether or not Iran can trust us but that we must trust the lying hard-liners in Iran.

Rhetoric carries the day.

Why was a half-witted, half-black, half-queer radical like Barack Obama able to win the presidency twice?  He is a master of rhetoric, and, because he is a protected class, he cannot be criticized.  He must be allowed to carry through on the deal with Iran while we are forced to ignore the obvious fact that his closest adviser and puppet-master, Valerie Jarrett, is an Iranian.  No conflict of interest there, is there?  I am a racist, hater, islamophobe for even noticing such a thing.

That's how it works.

Why is Donald Trump leading among Republicans?  Is it because of his foreign policy experience?  The number of times he's been bankrupt?  In Trump's defense, at least the man has done an occasional honest day's work -- unlike the current occupier of the White House.  Primarily Trump's appeal, like Bernie Sanders among the socialists, is his rhetoric, his willingness to wade in and refuse to break formation and run by apologizing.

Rule #1 for Republicans ought to be: NEVER APOLOGIZE.  (Actually, that's rule #2.  Rule #1 is refuse to talk about rape. "Rape is illegal.  We should execute rapists."  That's your position on rape.  After that, shut up.)

Our problem is when one of our number falls, instead of closing ranks around him or her and continuing to hold the line, we turn on the fallen and join in the stabbing and jabbing.  The other side does not do that.

The reason we call people like McCain, Graham, and Jeb Bush RINOs is because they are the ones leading the way in breaking rank and turning the attack on the guy next to them.

When Gideon called Israel together, as told in Judges chapter 7, about 32,000 men showed up.  Gideon was instructed to tell those who were "fearful and trembling" to go home.  Twenty-two thousand walked off the field.  God knew that an army with only a few resolute fighters is better than a larger force, most of which will give way at the first contact with the enemy.  The line loses its cohesion.  The flanks collapse and the courageous warriors are isolated, overwhelmed and destroyed. 


  1. Great article Mushroom.

    Sometimes we all feel like we are living in a parallel universe. I hear it ends well, but not without suffering along the way.

  2. Yes, night and increasing darkness then lighter.

  3. "The reason we call people like McCain, Graham, and Jeb Bush RINOs is because they are the ones leading the way in breaking rank and turning the attack on the guy next to them."

    Yes, it's bad enough they won't represent us, but then they go and attack anyone who speaks the truth and fights back, their fellow republicans.
    A lot of these cowards thought Cruz went overboard for calling McConnel a liar, but that is exactly what McConnel has been doing, and he should be called out for it.

    I know Cruz doesn't have executive experience, but he impresses me with his courage to speak out when the RINOs dump on their own constituents and help the democrats.

    Would be nice if the Rinos just got out of the way, but sadly, these cowards crave power, even though they only use it to enrich themselves and stab America in the back.

  4. I'm afraid you are right, Ben.

    I didn't watch the debate last night, as I was busy reprimering the Jeep. Any opinions on Cruz, Trump, et al? I saw that some thought it went well for Carly Fiorina.