Tuesday, September 11, 2012 marked the anniversary of one of the most audacious attacks against America. As promised, it also marks the annual threat by Muslim extremists against innocent Westerners, except this time their threat was backed up by action.
It is time for people to wake up: This was not just an attack by a group of fringe loons; this was an attack by Muslims following Muslim beliefs.
Muslim protesters took to the streets to incite anger and instigate violence due to the release of a fourteen minute, made-for-YouTube film attacking their faith. The film makes the prophet Muhammad out to be a killer and womanizer, among other things, and the people of Libya refused to let this “atrocity” go unpunished. During the hours of melee that ensued, a planned militant attack took place on the U.S. Embassy, what our laws classify as American soil, and four Americans lost their lives.
As more facts start to pour out of Libya, one stands in stark comparison to the rest: Muslims used violence to impose their religious agenda and, yet again, innocent Americans paid the ultimate price.
At the risk of making the situation out to be more simplistic than it really is, how can the rest of the world continue to overlook the one congruous fact that binds all of these types of attacks?
These terrorists gasp for relevancy and attempt to make every violent whim mirror those of a violent religious figure. At the same time, we make concessions for their behavior while sacrificing our safety for their diplomacy.
After such a horrific act, the thought on many Americans’ minds is to retract from the rest of the world and isolate ourselves from those who insist on ridding the world of Western civilization. The reason we, as Americans, cannot do this is because we are the example that the rest of the world looks to. Other nations need to be continually reminded that we will not step back from our role as the leaders of this world.
Instead of quelling in fear, we should bolster our worldwide footprint, and send more troops to other embassies in hot spots around the world. This would allow our troops to do what they were trained, what they believe they were bred to do: defend American soil, its citizens, and our Constitution.
How disheartening would that be for a would-be terrorist or protester? ‘Not only are the Americans staying, they’re INCREASING their presence.’
But, the real question at the crux of this entire situation is a very sensitive and scary one: Is it really extremism if so many Muslims act like this?
Entire libraries could be filled with literature written in defense of the average peaceful Muslim. But how many more graves contain people killed in the name of Islam? The words of a war-monger became a religion bent on converting the world, providing for only two options (three in relative few circumstances): convert to Islam, be killed, or pay a jizya.
We as Americans are independent, rebellious creatures, not too keen on being told what to do, and even less keen on giving in to terrorism. Others attempting to force us into action is why the Marines were founded.
There is a hard truth that the world is learning right now and the realization that follows will shake many Americans to the center of their beliefs. When the President of Egypt does not condemn the attacks made on the U.S. Embassy in his own country but instead admonishes the creator of a film that sparked the outrage, what is to be expected from the average Muslim? When countries around the Middle East, in turn, block YouTube, Google, and Gmail, thereby foregoing the opportunity for their citizens to learn the truth about the video that was created, they are perpetuating ignorance. If the government of a country cannot subdue its religious biases to grieve for the deaths of innocents and attacks on its own soil, what can be expected of any Muslim? If Islam is the truth and the way, why does no Muslim country allow for the free and open discovery of this fact?
Regardless of your beliefs about religion and Islam, there is one irrefutable fact: Muslims in Muslim countries are attacking and attempting to kill innocent Americans on a daily basis. What we decide to do right now will either encourage more attacks or suppress an ensuing worldwide revolution.
Luke Dane Huffman is a United States Marine currently working as a civilian advisor to NATO forces in Afghanistan. He is a writer and a small business owner residing in the National Capitol region.