The end of Round One

Wretchard of The Belmont Club has a good post up, pulling together some recently published pieces of strategic thinking from both sides of the political spectrum, regarding the GWOT.

The main point in (my humble opinion) and the point that is largely ignored by the great majority here in the Netherlands, in Europe and in the West at large: We are in for the long haul. A quote from a piece in the American Thinker at the start of his post makes that point abundantly clear:
The first campaigns of the Long War are drawing to a close. The Jihadis have lost the opening rounds. What next?

There’s an unconscious conviction that what happens next is… nothing. We go back to everyday life, the way things were before all that unpleasantness in lower Manhattan and Washington those long years ago. We shut out the harmful, hateful world once again, go our own way, and forget about jihads, and suicide belts, and dirty bombs, and beheadings, and all the other nightmares that have filled our days since 2001.

Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem to be in the cards.
Wretchard himself, in his commentary on his selection of published articles:
This belated flurry of strategic thinking means it is increasingly accepted that September 11 wasn't simply a gigantic crime -- an Oklahoma City bombing writ large. It was the end of an era and beginning of a new one. We are not, as JR Dunn so eloquently put it, about to "go back to everyday life, the way things were before all that unpleasantness in lower Manhattan and Washington those long years ago". That may be terrible news for those who believe the 1960s never ended, but there it is. We are adrift on a dark sea and the mariners are breaking out the compasses.
While this sounds rather downtrodden, Wretchard is optimistic:
[W]ith any luck the 2008 Presidential campaign will be the first since September 11 to move beyond the "stolen election" of 2000 and openly debate what course we should follow in the long war ahead. It's a debate that will touch on everything: military preparedness, our core beliefs, demography and the structure of civilization itself because we have finally come to accept that in the end nothing will be the same in the way that it was. It's been a long time coming. It's going to be a long time gone.
Read it all!!!

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