From the Jordan to the Moskva, war drums beat. The powder keg that set off the first world war was ethno-religious conflict in the lands of the former Ottoman Empire, and in a sense it threatens to do so once more. The Balkan nations were not impressed with the botched settling of the Eastern Question, and a mix of state and non-state actors took matters into their own hands, leading to a globalized conflict. As late as 2006, the borders of the region were still being contested, when Montenegro voted to break away from Serbia.
Today, millions of people in the Levant, especially in Syria and Iraq, reject the imposed settlement of their borders. These were drawn by imperialists and zionists nearly a century ago under the Sykes-Picot Agreement to serve the interests of Britain, France, and the overseas Israeli community—and the successors of those diplomats wish to maintain those same borders. The ethno-religious conflict I am referring to in the former Ottoman Empire is of course the:
- Syrian civil war
- Iraqi civil war
- Turkish-Kurdish conflict
- American intervention in Iraq
- American intervention in Syria
- Iranian intervention in Iraq
- Iranian intervention in Syria
- Russian intervention in Syria
- Hezbollah campaign in Syria
- Yemeni civil war
- Libyan civil war
- NATO intervention in Libya
- Egyptian counter-insurgency
- War on Terror / global Islamic jihad
- US-Russian Middle Eastern proxy war
- Arab-Israeli conflict
Oh. Too many? This is the scope of conflicts that the Leviathan on the Potomac has gotten itself into, and just in the former Ottoman Empire. This does not include the:
- South China Sea territorial dispute
- Korean civil war
- War in Afghanistan
- Russian-Ukrainian border war
- Combat support in various African countries
- Occupation of Germany
In November, Americans will roll to the polls on their motorized scooters to elect the next Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the United States. Hillary Clinton has a track record of following neoconservative foreign policy imperatives that favor “exporting” democracy and disrupting the enemies of Israel, such as Baathist (Arab nationalist) Iraq and Syria. Or as Republicans put it, “muh benghazi.” The Alt-Right cleverly notes that combined with America’s post-1965 immigration laws, this is a policy of “Invade the World, Invite the World.” If not for the dual policies of bombing Muslims and importing Muslims, the United States would be a radically different society. Instead of a bomb-sniffing watchdog state, we might have a night watchman state (like we used to). As late as 2000, some airline pilots would let you into the cockpit, especially if you had a small child with you who wanted to see it. Now even lingering at the front of the plane for to long means you’re a terrorist.
But it’s more than just a cultural change and anxiety about being in crowded, target-rich, or sensitive areas. The United States is required to spend billions of dollars a year now in order to prevent the next 9/11, which could have easily been prevented by not allowing immigration from Saudi Arabia, a country which practices shariah law, polygamy, and beheading of religious dissidents. Indeed, the surveillance and counterterrorism operations the United States is required to carry out against its citizens in the name of security as a result of mass immigration from outside of Europe put the state police of bygone regimes to shame. East Germany would be envious.
The other option is Donald Trump.
Donald Trump has never played a role in the shattering of nations or in conducting airstrikes against embittered medieval tribespeople. He has never been blamed for the death of an American ambassador or his staff. He has never chuckled about killing Muammar Gaddafi, whose autocratic and idiosyncratic rule of Libya raised living standards, generated oil wealth for his people, and prevented Islamist terror movements from spreading in a region where that is a problem. He has spoken favorably of Saddam Hussein, who likewise while imperfect did not preside over a millennarian civil war between two strains of jihadists and nationalist-secularists. There is something to be said for leaving these parts of the world to their own devices, even if it means they don’t get an American or parliamentary democracy. They can live without it. In fact, they literally live without it. What is happening right now in Syria and Iraq and Libya and Afghanistan and other hotspots is not life. It is death, and it is being funded with your tax dollars. By a Democratic administration that is fighting to preserve disputed borders in foreign countries while neglecting our own.
Obama and Clinton get away with warmongering because they aren’t George W. Bush. But short of committing tens of thousands of ground troops, they are doing almost the same thing he did in Iraq and Afghanistan. Perhaps worse because of the low human cost of the war to the Western side, we could potentially intervene in this conflict for, well, as long as the drone program is funded and fuel is loaded into our planes. There is no attrition. Just us turning various cities into replicas of Guernica. No bodies are sent home; no one cares.
This would be bad enough on its own. But Obama and Clinton also want to import hundreds of thousands of Muslims to the United States. Muslims are not stupid people. They know the United States has been bombing Muslim countries for the past 15 years (and inserting itself into other conflicts since the 1960s, particularly on behalf of Israel). They also know that a large amount of Americans are uncomfortable with Muslims being here. They have customs that are frankly incompatible with Western secular liberal society (for what it’s worth at least).
Thus you have two problems here: 1.) an internationalist solidarity with other Muslims who, correctly, see the United States as oppressing them, and 2.) living in a country which they cannot truly be integrated into because of the political demands Islam makes not as a Westphalian-style Christian sect but as a system of government and social organization. This produces tension. It produces risk. It has produced terrorism in Europe and in the United States. Ask yourself this, how many attacks would you be willing to tolerate before you think restricting Muslim migration is a good choice? At what body count do you say enough is enough? Do you want to find out?
Don’t start saying, “well they were born here so they were Americans, not immigrants.” I hear that quite often. America indeed has had a number of “home-grown” jihadists. But if I were born in Saudi Arabia to oil industry contractors from Texas, no one would call me an Arab or a Muslim. I would be an American expat. Most countries do not have jus soli. Being born on American soil doesn’t make you an agnostic WASP. In fact, if you understand anything about immigration, you’d understand that many immigrants move to highly diverse places such New York or California, where not only do they frequently live in pre-existing immigrant communities of their co-ethnics, but also often live in broader areas where there is no majority to assimilate to in the first place. They have children there too. Can you become an “American” if you spend all your time around, say, Afghans, Russian Jews, Puerto Ricans, and Chinese people? Or do you take trips back to Afghanistan (Orlando shooter) or Saudi Arabia (San Bernardino shooters) or wherever and then decide you want to reconnect with the ongoing struggles of your religious and ethnic cousins? Some of them do. And it matters that some of them do.
Trump wants to solve the entire Muslim problem in a few executive orders. He says Iran and Russia are fighting ISIS. He’s right. We should work together. We shouldn’t be saber rattling at the Russians for supporting the de jure government of the Syrian people while we’re the ones bankrolling and arming a violent and uncontrollable rebellion against an established government. An untraceable amount of arms we give the Syrian insurgents may end up in jihadist hands. The idea that we can just gift weapons to the special “moderate” rebels is totally bunk. What if they are defeated in battle and those weapons get captured? By the Syrian government? By ISIS? What if they sell them? We have no control over this. Aleppo is not worth a nuclear holocaust, and by any measure, the United States is the villain here, funding a violent Islamic revolution.
More importantly, Trump recognizes that the importation of Islam into the United States is a terrible idea. There are dozens of Muslim countries. Many are extremely wealthy and could take in Muslim refugees and immigrants, who would fit in better in Arabic-speaking Muslim nations than an English-speaking and predominately European and Christian nation. Why subject ourselves and our Democrat-sponsored guests to alienation and even racism?
There is only one United States. How much of it are you personally willing to give up because there is a civil war somewhere in another country, or because a group of foreigners want to come here to earn higher wages? Is that all that matters to you? Virtue signalling and materialism?
Trump wants to end war in Syria and Iraq by working with the Russians and Iranians to defeat the number one enemy of international peace, which is ISIS. He also wants a moratorium on the importation of violent overseas ethnoreligious conflict into the United States.
Clinton wants to continue fighting the de jure Assad government, which benefits ISIS vis-a-vis just as much as it benefits the “moderate” rebels and non-ISIS jihadist groups. At the same time, she also wants to make the United States incrementally more Muslim each year. That’s how immigration works—less x and more y each year. Why recreate Syria in Seattle? Iraq in Idaho?
Trump wants to end the wars abroad and at home. He wants to put America First. What does Clinton want to put first?