Pat Buchanan: The East ascends as the West declines
The Egyptian Army, being slowly squeezed out of its central role in the nation's life by Mohammed Morsi, waited for the moment to oust the elected president and crush his Muslim Brotherhood. Morsi was deposed and arrested, and the Brotherhood leaders rounded up and jailed. Their Cairo encampments were cleansed by gunfire. Hundreds of brothers were cut down and killed, and thousands wounded.
In the near term, the Brotherhood is in disarray. It backed the Arab Spring, heeded America's call for free elections, and won parliament and the presidency, only to have the army, with America's backing, overthrow its Islamist government in a military coup. If the Brotherhood feels betrayed, if it believes its sons who opposed the coup died as martyrs, if it has concluded that the Americans, with their endless blather about democracy, are duplicitous hypocrites, are they entirely wrong?
Looking back, of all the forces unleashed by the Arab Spring, the Facebook-Twitter crowd calling for secular democracy harvested the greatest publicity. But even then, other forces seemed to have deeper and broader roots in the hearts and minds of the masses. Those forces: tribalism, nationalism and Islamism.
Western peoples are dying, as Muslim populations are exploding and Muslim migrants are pouring into Europe and the United States. While Islam is booming in the East and being welcomed in the West, Christianity is dying in the West and being expelled from the East. It is not unreasonable for Muslim visionaries to see the next 500 years as an era of Islamic ascendancy, as the last 500 saw a Western ascendancy.
Indeed, this is America's dilemma. When Japan attacked and Adolf Hitler declared war, and when Josef Stalin set out to dominate the world, all we held dear — faith, family, freedom, country — said resist. When Osama bin Laden took down our towers, we united to take down him and al-Qaida. Millions of Muslims are willing to fight to drive us out of their part of the world. How many Americans are willing to send our sons to die for secular democracy and American values in their part of the world?
Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of "Suicide of a Superpower: Will America Survive to 2025?"