By Walter E. Williams
All of us should give some serious thought to some of the ideas containedi n an article circulating the blogsphere titled "Why a Peaceful Majority is Irrelevant." So often our political leaders, "experts" and talking headstell us that Islam is a peaceful religion and most Muslims are not out todestroy the West. We're told it's only that 1 percent, out of 1.2 billionMuslims, who are fanatical jihadists who believe America is the GreatSatan, cause of all evil, and should be attacked and destroyed. In terms ofnational policy, it's irrelevant whether Islam is a peaceful religion andmost Muslims are peaceful.Think back to the 1930s when the Japanese murdered an estimated 3 millionto 10 million people in China, Indonesia, Korea, Philippines and Indochina;and on December 7, 1941 when they attacked Pearl Harbor, killing over 2,400Americans. I'm betting that most of Japan's at-the-time 60 millionpopulation were peace-loving people and would have wanted nothing to dowith the brutal slaughter in China and the attack on the U.S. Informulating our response to the attack, should President Roosevelt havetaken into account the fact that most Japanese are peace-loving peopleruled by fanatics? Should our military have only gone after the Japanesepilots and their naval armada? I'd also wager that most Germans werepeace-loving people and not part of the Nazi sadists wanting to wage war ontheir neighbors and exterminate the Jews. Again, should Roosevelt andChurchill have taken that into account in their response to Germanmilitarism? My answer is no and thank God it was their answer as well.Whether most Germans, Italians or Japanese were peace-loving or not wasentirely irrelevant in formulating the Allied response to their militarism.Horrible acts can be committed in countries where most of the people arepeace-loving and simply want to be left alone to attend to their affairs. Iimagine that described most of the people in the former Soviet Union;however, that did not stop the killing of an estimated 62 million peoplebetween 1917 and 1987. The same can be said of the Chinese people, but itdidn't stop the killing of 35 million of their countrymen during MaoZedong's reign. Whether most people of a country are peace-loving or not isnot nearly as important as who's calling the shots.At this particular time, fanatical jihadists are calling the terrorismshots in many Muslim countries. Their success in committing terrorist actsis in no small part the result of the actions by the millions ofpeace-loving fellow Muslims. First, there is not enough condemnation oftheir terrorist acts by the Muslim community. More important is the director indirect assistance terrorists receive through the silence of theirfellow Muslims. There is no way terrorists can carry on their operations,obtain explosive materials, run terrorist training camps, raise moneywithout the knowledge of other Muslims, whether they're governmentofficials, bankers, family members, friends or neighbors. Because thosemillions of peace-loving Muslims do not speak out and expose terrorists anddon't more fully cooperate with domestic and international authoritiestrying to stop terrorists, they become enemies of the West just as thepeace-loving people in Germany, Italy and Japan became enemies of theAllied powers during World War II. Like them, Muslims should be prepared tosuffer the full might of the West in its efforts to fight terrorism. I'mhoping that the millions of peaceful Muslims take the proper action toavoid such an outcome. I'm not that optimistic. We're involved in a clashwith a culture that has little regard for the Western values that hold thesanctity of human life and liberty dear.