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UNLIKE IN MANY EARLIER CONFLICTS, there will be no way to tell when al Qaeda and its successors really ever accept defeat in the War on Terror. The only criteria worth considering will be whether coordinated acts of Islamofascist terror continue to be carried out against the English-speaking peoples. In a world in which weapons are likely to become ever more lethal, hard to detect, and easy to deliver, we must consider a world in our children and grandchildren’s time in which large parts of central London, New York, Sydney, and Chicago are rendered uninhabitable for decades as a result of makeshift “dirty” nuclear bombs, with unimaginable social and economic consequences. Such is the true “option of defeat.”
Fortunately, as Theodore Roosevelt told Rudyard Kipling, the constituent parts of the English-speaking peoples “are naturally closer than those of any others.” With Europe turning towards full-scale appeasement, in them lies the only true prospect for victory.
Andrew Roberts is most recently the author of A History of the English-Speaking Peoples Since 1900 (HarperCollins). This essay is the last in a series published in successive issues of The American Spectator since September 2006 under the general title, “The Pursuit of Liberty: Can the Ideals That Made America Great Provide a Model for the World?” The series is supported by a grant from the John Templeton Foundation. The opinions expressed in this series are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the John Templeton Foundation.
This article appears in the September 2007 issue of The American Spectator. To subscribe to our monthly print edition, click here.