Mark Gordon at "Suicide of the West" sums up what is loved and yearned for, as well as what is hated and loathed, about the United States of America, offering a fine quote by presidential hopeful and former POW, John McCain.
Lee Smith, on the other hand, in The Weekly Standard (6/26/06) reminds us that the "Arab habit of blaming everything on the United States, or Israel, or the West in general, strikes many observers as evidence of faulty logical processes, or an abdication of basic political responsibility. But it is also part of an unspoken ceasefire pact--a reminder among Arabs that they have agreed not to attack each other and will focus their energies on external enemies in order to keep the peace at home." [HT: Daniel Pipes] This is the truest indicator of the nature of Islam in realpolitik -- recourse to the "lowest common denominator" of scapegoating as social cohesion.
May the day never come when America relinquishes and extinguishes the "moral power of American ideals" that rest squarely on the faith and morals of the Christian faith. For if it does, then our greatest foe will truly have conquered, and all that is best about the Shire will be lost.