806. Condemned to Repeat it

Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.

IT’S WORTH CONSIDERING

You may remember Barack Obama’s outrageous claims about Islam, Christianity, and the Crusades during last ISLAM SILOUETTE 2year’s National Prayer Breakfast. These came on the heels of a series of similar claims regarding Islam’s role in the founding of our nation. Of all those engaged in the rewriting of history, our president takes a backseat to no one. Perhaps the fact that his flagrant lies go unchallenged explains, in part, why so many historically knowledgeable voters are so upset with “Washington types.” They know very well that the followers of Muhammed have never¬†been friendly toward America. Yet, from his apology tour to his recent Baltimore mosque speech, Barack Obama has been touting the greatness of Islam as a religion of peace, while demeaning Christianity.

History shows that those living in the early days of our nation knew all too well that Islam stood in stark opposition to everything upon which our young nation was founded. In fact, American/Islamic conflict began as soon as our nation was birthed. After our War of Independence, Muslim pirates along the Barbary Coast of Africa began attacking American ships engaged in commerce in the Mediterranean. Algerian Dey Muhammad actually declared war on the United States, resulting in two separate wars against Tripoli (1801-1805) and Algiers (1815-1816).

Barbary wars PD FreeThe Barbary Wars began, however, with an attempt at appeasement that took the form of an agreement in 1784 by the Continental Congress to enter into treaties with the four Barbary States (negotiate with terrorists). Without the ability to adequately protect its ships, the fledgling American government tried to appease the Muslim slavers by paying a tribute (Jizyah) as well as ransoms in an attempt to purchase the release of captured American sailors and ships. John Adams argued that all things considered, paying the tribute was the cheapest way to get commerce moving again in the Mediterranean. Thomas Jefferson thought otherwise, believing that there would be no end to the demands for tribute. He believed war was the only real solution.

With the “appeasers” in congress winning out, the next fifteen years saw the American government paying out millions to the Muslims. These payments amounted to 20 percent of the federal government’s total annual revenues in 1800! As president, Jefferson was now in a position to end the “extortion.” He dispatched American Marines and some of our best warships to the Barbary Coast. The Muslim surrender at Tripoli brought the return of all Americans who had been held as slaves. Intense naval bombardments and on shore raids by the Marines eventually brought an end to the piracy altogether. Jefferson’s victory is memorialized in the line of the Marine Hymn “From the Halls of Montezuma to the shores of Tripoli.”

Our president likes to point to the constructive and essential role that Islam played in our nation’s beginnings. Oh, it played a role all right, but his version of the story isn’t even close to the truth. In the real story, the danger posed by the fanatic followers of Islam was so great that delegates to the newly formed American government urged their states to ratify the U.S. Constitution. It became clear that their survival depended on a strong federal union and a strong Navy to protect them from the Algerian Muslims.

In¬†The Federalist¬†¬†¬†No. 24, Alexander Hamilton asserted without a “federal navy . . . of respectable weight . . . the genius of American Merchants and Navigators would be stifled and lost.” Likewise, John Jay, in his letters, wrote, “Algerian Corsairs and the Pirates of Tunis and Tripoli” would compel the feeble American states to unite, since “the more we are ill-treated abroad the more we shall unite and consolidate at home.”

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AS I SEE IT

The fact that Obama’s outrageous claims have gone largely unchallenged is bad enough. It’s even worse that so many Americans are so historically illiterate that they just accept his lies as fact. Thanks to American public education, we have several generations now who can’t learn from the past because they have no idea what happened in the past or what’s going on today. Just watch Jesse Watters interviewing college students and you’ll wonder how these people managed to stay alive for twenty years.

The Bernie Sanders phenomenon is a case in point. A few decades ago the thought of an avowed socialist runningsocialist logo for president was unthinkable, let alone one who had received the support of a large chunk of the college and young professional crowd. Don’t they know what socialism is? The obvious answer is, “No, they don’t.” Neither do they know the destruction that socialism has left in its wake as it marched through Eastern Europe and Russia not that long ago.

These people seem content to follow anyone who promises things that will benefit them directly, without considering the cost in both dollars and freedom. Having endured eight years of Barack Obama, you’d think they would have learned a lesson, but it is still true that those¬†who cannot remember the past¬†are condemned to repeat it, and millions are willing to repeat it with Bernie Sanders or Hillary Clinton.

Across the aisle, there’s the Trump phenomenon. While he’s running an unconventional campaign, his style has a lot in common with Barack Obama-generalities and platitudes dipped in arrogant self-confidence masquerading as leadership, short on details but long on scratching where he detects an itch. Had Americans paid more attention to Obama’s past, numerous red flags would have emerged, but if you’re not interested in the past, you’ll maintain your firm grip on stupidity, and the nation will suffer. I want to remain optimistic, but if we haven’t learned anything from the last eight years, we are doomed to repeat our mistakes. May God help us!

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ON THE LIGHTER SIDE

¬†Even duct tape can’t fix stupid, but it can muffle the sound!


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