The Worst Enemy: A book review

May 2, 2013  |  KOSCIUSZKO CHAIR

The ongoing culture war in the West continues to hamper our efforts to defeat radical Islam. Such is the thesis of a recently published anthology, co-edited by Katherine C. Gorka and Patrick Sookhdeo, which was reviewed by Dr. Marek Jan Chodakiewicz for the Selous Foundation for Public Policy Research (SFPPR).

Fighting the Ideological War does not limit itself to pointing out the self-inflicted obstacles to winning the ideological war with Jihadist extremism, however. Its contributors-including IWP's Founder and President, Dr. John Lenczowski-also demonstrate how lessons learned from our victorious struggle against Communism may be applied successfully in the battle against Islamism.

Dr. Chodakiewicz's review follows below:

The Worst Enemy

Katherine C. Gorka and Patrick Sookhdeo, eds., Fighting the Ideological War: Winning Strategies from Communism Islamism (McLean, VA: The Westminster Institute and Isaack Publishing, 2012).

Reviewed by Marek Jan Chodakiewicz
April 26, 2013

We are the worst enemy of the West. Or, to put it a bit differently, the most serious adversary is born and bred within the gates of the West. Thus, the battle against mortal danger to our civilization ranges among the denizens of our cultural and political sphere and it must be won here before we can proceed to victory outside. This is a phenomenon which James Burnham called "Suicide of the West" as reflected in the inability of liberal intelligentsia to comprehend the evil of Communism. A neat illustration of the civil culture war can be the sustained leftist campaign of hatred and ostracism against Yale's Professor G. Warren Nutter who, in the 1950s, dared to suggest that the Soviet economy was inefficient. He thus violated the obligatory Sovietophilia of America's chattering classes and their socialist prejudices.

Now seven distinguished experts, including two who are my friends and colleagues, Brits and Yanks, demonstrate in Fighting the Ideological War: Winning Strategies from Communism to Islamism, how the culture war phenomenon has survived to cripple our response to the radical Muslim challenge. "The result is an unwillingness to engage in the battle of ideas and a widespread confusion, even doublespeak, in the way policymakers talk about Islam." But take heart. The experts also show, plain and simple, how Communism was overcome and propose to apply the same strategy and tactics to Islamism. They give us trenchant definitions, vivid analysis, and bold solutions to lead us to victory.

To continue reading the review, please visit the SFPPR Book Review section.