Phi Beta Cons

Heckled Vet Speaks the Hard Truth

Amidst the news that some vile and classless individuals heckled a wounded warrior at Columbia, his core message shouldn’t be lost in the justifiable outrage over his treatment. Staff Sergeant Anthony Maschek, wounded in Iraq in February 2008, said this:

“It doesn’t matter how you feel about the war. It doesn’t matter how you feel about fighting,” said Maschek. “There are bad men out there plotting to kill you.”

The great fallacy of the modern peace movement is the belief that American actions have any relevance to the existence of “peace.” As anyone who’s been downrange and seen al-Qaeda up close knows all too well, the jihadists hate us and will try to kill us regardless of our presence in Iraq or Afghanistan. We could concede to every single one of their manufactured “demands,” and they would still plot to kill us.

It does not take two sides to start a war. But it does take two to make peace. And like it or not — and no matter how many men of courage the radical Left heckles — Islamic jihadists have no desire for peace. Instead, they love death and will admit it to anyone who asks.

One final note: Apparently, the hecklers called Sergeant Maschek a “racist.” I wonder if these hecklers have the slightest clue that the Taliban, al-Qaeda, and other jihadist organizations kill more Arabs and Afghans than they kill Americans or Israelis. Sergeant Maschek laid down his life for Arab civilians. When have those hecklers ever done the same?  

David French — David French is a senior writer for National Review, a senior fellow at the National Review Institute, and a veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

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