Newt Gingrich has always impressed me as one of the more intelligent men in political life today. He's a firebrand, to be sure, but he puts a lot of thought into his bombs before he rolls them out onto the table.
He's said something lately that echoes what I have been saying for three years now. He called our "Global War on Terror" a "phony war." While I would disagree on points (it is a war--declared on us by others, we are just fighting it with both arms tied behind our backs), he is closer to hitting the target than any other political or military "leader" I've heard opine on the subject in the past six years. Of course, one of the reasons for Newt's accuracy on the intellectual firing line is the fact that he is an historian.
Newt's superior understanding of the history of America (and dozens of other empires) at war, allows him to put our present game with guns in correct perspective. He makes the case that if we are going to win this war, we need to commit to it. I concur! Despite the expenditure of thousands of young American patriots' lives and billions of dollars in American treasure, the United States never truly committed to the fight. Oh, we flew our flags on our cars, and painted billboards with United We Stand, but that is not the sacrifice required of a people to win a war (read any book on America during the period 1942 to 1945). Make no mistake, our enemies are making sacrifices and they are much more committed to victory than we.
Until we get serious about this war and start leveling our enemies' sanctuaries and financial/training support infrastructure in countries like Iran, Syria, and Pakistan (not to mention Saudi Arabia), we are in grave danger of repeating our inglorious retreat from Indo-China. Think our reputation around the world is suffering, now? You ain't seen nuthin' yet! Think our military is suffering from personnel and equipment fatigue, now? Wait until the next Jimmy Carter takes over and reduces the US military to a mockery.
Been there, done that, got the plaque.