CIA agent Kevin Carroll wants a new war on terror. He wrote Monday: “We defeated al Qaeda and can do the same to the fascist thugs who attacked our democracy last month. But only if we take similar hard measures against the enemy within.” Trump supporters were offended by this, but it’s actually the best idea anyone has had since Donald Trump decided to go down that escalator and run for president.
The new war on terror will not be fought only against those who want to overthrow the government. Carroll’s CIA colleague Robert Grenier told NPR Tuesday that “even at the seeming height of the crisis immediately after 9/11,” he explained, “there really weren’t that many members of al-Qaida in Afghanistan.” So it wasn’t only they who had to be hunted down. What was done to al-Qaeda and has to be done now, Grenier said, is “to remove the supportive environment in which they were able to live and to flourish.”
The “supportive environment” in which the Capitol rioters “flourish” is you, me, and Aunt Mabel, ordinary Americans who committed the crime of voting for Donald Trump.
But fighting this like we fought al-Qaeda, that’s a capital idea, if you’ll pardon the expression. It will mean that the political and media elites will take great pains to assure the public at every conceivable opportunity that the Capitol rioters do not represent Trump supporters in the aggregate, but are rather the exponents of a twisted and hijacked version of Trumpism, a thoroughly peaceful and benign ideology.
Overheated leftist ideologues such as Reza Aslan and Mehdi Hasan, if they dare suggest that all Trump supporters are, in Aslan’s words, “by definition white nationalist terror supporters,” will be excoriated as racist, bigoted Trumpophobes whose “hate” must result in their marginalization, deplatforming, and ultimate complete silencing. Even those who take pains to repeat that not all Trump supporters are terrorists will also be tarred as Trumpophobes anyway; in fact, even the slightest criticism of Trump or his political agenda will before too long be regarded as unacceptable Trumpophobia and an indication that the speaker has no place in polite society.
The UN and other organizations will take up the problem of Trumpophobia and call upon member states to establish legal safeguards to protect Trump supporters and to admit more to their countries, if they choose to leave the U.S. as refugees. The establishment media will regularly feature admiring pieces about moderate Trump supporters who are working hard to clear away “misconceptions” about what support for Trump really means. Those who ask these Trump supporters to state for the record that they oppose the storming of the Capitol and any attempt to overthrow the government will be drowned out by cascades of accusations that they are trafficking in “hate” and otherizing an entire community. The entertainment industry will go out of its way to feature wise, genial Trump supporters in movies, characters who are often unjustly suspected of terrorism but are ultimately found to have been fighting against terrorism all along.
Meanwhile, the U.S. government will implement programs of outreach to moderate pro-Trump organizations, who will enjoy virtually unfettered access into the three branches of government at all levels. Presidential candidates will angle for the votes of Trump supporters and their allies by promising to appoint more Trump supporters to his administration. The military will begin to arm and train moderate Trump supporters to fight against the militants, and if indications appear that any of the people they took to be moderates are actually aiding those militants, military brass will turn away and pretend they didn’t see a thing, for the sake of the greater good involved.
Every time a radical Trump supporter commits a terrorist attack, the airwaves and social media will be full of stories about how moderate Trump supporters are the real victims, how they face so much unjust suspicion, how they’ve asked for extra police protection in the wake of the attack, for fear of an anti-Trump backlash, and how they’re doctors, lawyers, schoolteachers – the pillars of the community.
As a Trump supporter myself, I think this all sounds like a great idea. Mr. Carroll, you’re on: Let’s fight this new war on terror the way we fought the last one. Where do I sign up for my government grant?
Robert Spencer is the director of Jihad Watch and a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. He is author of 21 books, including the New York Times bestsellers The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) and The Truth About Muhammad. His latest book is Rating America’s Presidents: An America-First Look at Who Is Best, Who Is Overrated, and Who Was An Absolute Disaster. Follow him on Twitter here. Like him on Facebook here.