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07 December 2010

Infamy...

It is the memorial date of the attack by the Empire of Japan on the
United States of America's ground and naval forces in the Hawaiian
islands. On this date, in a cunning move, the Imperial Japanese Navy
sought to strike a crippling blow to the US carrier forces.
Unfortunately for the IJN, their attack only served to galvanize
American forces and miss the carriers, which were operating at sea
during the attack. At that time in history, the Japanese were a
homogeneous, xenophobic culture with deep mistrust of foreigners. Their
barbaric actions against neighbors in the region linger on in the
memories of Koreans, Australians, Phillipinos and Chinese alike - far
more deeply than the military assault on the United States.

We may draw some comparisons with the Japanese Empire and the current
enemy which may be classified as Radical Islamist Zealots, (RIZ). Both
Imperial Japan and radical Islam have a deep distrust of outsiders.
They also operate under a hierarchical structure, with a small group of
individuals defining doctrine and policy. Unlike Japan, radical Islam
does not have the aspect of a nation state, although the restoration of
the Caliphate is a significant objective in all of the "organized"
groups. This domain of Sharia and Islamist rule echoes the designs of
Imperial Japan to dominate the Pacific rim.

Ultimately the war with Japan was won when the allied powers,
specifically the United States, revealed the folly of the leadership of
that nation and demonstrated our own will to conclude the conflict on
our terms. The outcome ushered in the atomic age but also heralded a
deep friendship and alliance with our former enemy - which still
respects the vast cultural differences between the East and West.
Although I doubt that there will be a seminal event which undoes the
loosely connected leadership of the RIZ organizations, there is clearly
a willingness to connect with the wider population of "daily Muslims"
who simply would like to practice their faith, raise their families and
have a seat at the world table as an equal.

I sincerely hope we can begin to see the foundation which can be built
upon through the ashes of the start of this current conflict.