The Best Quotes From Mark Steyn’s Last 52 Jewish World Review Columns

“If you can’t sell the country on the need (to drill ANWR) when you’re at war with a bunch of Islamofascists from the Middle East, when can you? Wouldn’t it be more efficient to fly to Alaska and do a walkabout with all the locals who are itching for the drilling to start? And, while you’re at it, give a speech out on the ugly barren wasteland the eco-loonies have declared inviolable while getting pecked to pieces by the world’s biggest mosquito herd, whose needs apparently outrank those of the American people.”

“These days, the Left advances its causes more effectively through the courts than through elections, for the fairly obvious reason that very few people are dumb enough to vote for this stuff.”

“Sadly, a U.S. invasion of Iraq ”would threaten the whole stability of the Middle East”–or so Amr Moussa, secretary-general of the Arab League, told the BBC on Tuesday. Amr’s talking points are so Sept. 10: It’s supposed to destabilize the Middle East. The stability of the Middle East is unique in the non-democratic world and it’s the lack of change in Iraq, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Egypt that’s turned them into a fetid swamp of terrorist bottom-feeders.”

“Once upon a time we knew what to do. A British district officer, coming upon a scene of suttee, was told by the locals that in Hindu culture it was the custom to cremate a widow on her husband’s funeral pyre. He replied that in British culture it was the custom to hang chaps who did that sort of thing. There are many great things about India — curry, pyjamas, sitars, software engineers — but suttee was not one of them. What a pity we’re no longer capable of being “judgmental” and “discriminating.”

“The Republicans, meanwhile, have been battered by the political fallout from Strom Thurmond’s birthday party–not a phrase I would have predicted typing 12 months ago.”

“(T)he state needs a birth rate of 2.1 children to maintain a stable population. In Italy, it’s now 1.2. Twenty years ago, a million babies were born there each year. Now it’s half a million. And the fewer babies you have today, the fewer babies are around to have babies in 20 years. Once you’re as far down the death spiral as Italy is, it’s hard to reverse. Most European races are going to be out of business in a couple more generations.”

“Meanwhile, those of us who talk of reforming Iraq are assured by our opponents that it’s preposterous to think that Arabs can ever be functioning citizens of a democratic state. If that’s so, isn’t that an issue, given current immigration patterns, not for Iraq tomorrow but for Britain, France, Belgium and Holland right now?”

“(During the Cold War), only five guys had their fingers on the nuclear button – Britain, America, France, China and the Soviet Union – but because two of those fingers belonged to Ron and Maggie the Left was convinced the apocalypse was just around the corner. Now we’re at the dawn of the freelance nuke era, and the Left is positively insouciant about it.”

“For all M. de Villepin’s dreams of Napoleonic glory, his generation of French politicians will spend the rest of their lives managing decline. By 2050, there will be 100 million more Americans, 100 million fewer Europeans. The US fertility rate is 2.1 children per couple; in Europe it’s 1.4. Demography is not necessarily destiny, and certainly not inevitable disaster. But it will be for Europe, because the 20th-century Continental welfare state was built on a careless model that requires a constantly growing population to sustain it. In hard-hearted New Hampshire, we don’t have that problem.”

“In a year’s time, Iraq will be, at a bare minimum, the least badly governed state in the Arab world and, at best, pleasant, civilised and thriving. In short: not a bad three weeks’ work.”

“While the lefties warned that Ariel Sharon would use the cover of the Iraq war to slaughter the Palestinians, the Congolese are being slaughtered, and you don’t need any cover. Because nobody cares. Because no arrogant Americans or sinister Zionists are involved.”

“When a man doesn’t know the meaning of the word ‘fear’, that might just be a deficiency in his education.”

“Two years after ”the day America changed forever,” the culture is in thrall to the same dopey self-delusion it held on Sept. 10, 2001: There are no enemies, just friends we haven’t yet apologized to.”

“When I bought my home in New Hampshire, I heard a strange rustling one night, and being new to rural life, asked my police chief the following morning, if it had turned out to be an intruder whether I should have called him at home. ”Well, you could,” said Al. ”But it would be better if you dealt with him. You’re there and I’m not.” That’s the best advice I’ve ever been given.”

“I spent a short time on the West Bank earlier this spring. I would have spent longer, but to be honest it creeped me out, and I was happy to scram across the Allenby Bridge and on through Jordan to Iraq. Say what you like about the Sunni Triangle and RPG Alley, but I never once felt I was in a wholly diseased environment. On the West Bank, almost all the humdrum transactions of daily life take place in a culture that glorifies depravity: you walk down a street named after a suicide bomber to drop your child in a school that celebrates suicide-bombing and then pick up some groceries in a corner store whose walls are plastered with portraits of suicide bombers.”

“On 11 September 2001, I wrote that one of the casualties of the day’s events would be the Western alliance: ‘The US taxpayer’s willingness to pay for the defence of Canada and Europe has contributed to the decay of America’s so-called “allies”, freeing them to disband their armed forces, flirt with dictators and gangster states, and essentially convert themselves to semi-non-aligned.’ ‘The West’ was an obsolete concept, because, as I put it later that month, for everyone but America ‘the free world is mostly a free ride’.”

“All that stands between an Islamist nutcase and Pakistan’s nukes is General Musharraf and the handful of chaps he trusts. Ultimately, it’s not enough ‘ as the general understands. It’s easier to organize a coup than to create the institutions of liberty, but the latter are the only real bulwark against the horrors of the age.”

“But that was the way they did things back then. Find the most promising local client, before Moscow or Paris or Beijing does. As the classic realpolitik line has it, he may be a sonofab*tch, but he’s our sonofab*tch. As I wrote a couple of weeks after 9/11, apropos the House of Saud and President Mubarak, “the inverse is more to the point: he may be our sonofab*tch, but he’s a sonofab*tch.” Trying to cherrypick local strongmen is a fool’s game.”

“You don’t invade Iraq in order to invade everywhere else, you invade Iraq so you don’t have to invade everywhere else.”

“Well, it’s January, December’s come and gone, so let’s add up the final score: Coalition of the Willing: Saddam captured, Gadhafi neutered. The ”International Community”: Milosevic elected to Parliament in Belgrade.”

“Remember the 1986 immigration amnesty? One of its beneficiaries was Mahmoud abu Halima, who went on to bomb the World Trade Center in 1993. His friend Mohammad Salameh wasn’t so fortunate. He applied for the ’86 amnesty but was rejected. So he just stayed on in America, living illegally, and happily was still around to help Mahmoud and co-attack the Twin Towers. He’s the guy who rented the truck, which suggests he had enough ID to get past the rental agent at Ryder.”

“How typical the (John Kerry) is of Vietnam veterans I leave for others to judge. But he’s an all too apt embodiment of the Vietnam era: of the fatal lack of resolution that damaged America’s standing in the world and emboldened its enemies.”

“(John Kerry) spent the Seventies playing Jane Fonda and he now wants to run as John Wayne.”

“At the Davos economic forum the other day, a live greeting was beamed down to the assembled grandees from a British astronaut, who read out some one-world guff about how, viewed from space, the Earth is not divided by borders. I’m sure that’s true. It’s also true that in space no one can hear you scream, which is just as well, because that’s what I’d be doing in a world without borders.”

“In a field that ranged from happy warriors like Joe Lieberman to goofy peaceniks like Dennis Kucinich, the party’s primary voters seem to have gone for the most cynical option: a man who’s weak on defence when it counts but can be passed off as the exact opposite for the purposes of the campaign.”

“I’m a small-government guy, so my default position on any issue is that, generally speaking, I’m on whichever side the government’s not.”

You can read more from Mark Steyn at: Steyn Online: or at: Jewish World Review.

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