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August 4, 2023

Here in Texas – with August temperatures breaking records set by the Comanches - we seldom worry about much else. Once you get beyond the conversational basics - how hot, how humid and is any rain forecast - my neighbors have begun to wonder if the country is headed for another civil war. Some even short-title it as “CW 2.0.”

This week we enjoyed a momentary respite from the prevailing smugness, worn like a recognition signal on the faces of the TV elites: the breather arrived when Hunter Biden’s Sweetheart Deal suddenly collapsed. Thereafter the anchor-hunnies on CNN and MSNBC were unable to explain (1) why Hunter’s lawyers and our alleged Justice Department were on exactly the same page; and (2) why the presiding judge mysteriously declined to endorse their subtle machinations. Hadn’t she gotten the memo? Didn’t she understand that President Biden was secretly calling the shots, that her job was merely to acquiesce sweetly?

With whistle-blowers testifying and Hunter’s business buddy appearing in camera before congressional committees, it looked as though confusion might lead to candor. But then, as if orchestrated by divine intervention, Special Counsel Jack Smith appeared with his latest indictments of Donald Trump, 45 pages apparently lifted intact from the Final Report of The Nancy Pelosi Special Committee to Outlaw Insurrection and Inconvenient Thinking. Although he began with the ritual incantation, “No one is above The Law,” Smith quickly gave the TV audience what it had been longing for: a litany of prosecutorial over-statements so far beyond the pale that he seemed transformed into an especially unkempt Inspector Javert.

The Media Swamp promptly declared itself back in session, CNN even empaneling a group-grope of six or seven “experts” to discuss, analyze and dispense the glorious tidings. With nearly orgasmic delight, a similarly full-house was gaggled together over at MSNBC. A distinguished historian old enough to know better joined former solicitors general to assure the breathless audience that these latest indictments of Trump were so significant that they could only be compared to the greatest moments in American history. It was only when those TV munchkins reveled in the prospect of Trump being judged by a black Obama appointee – who may or may not know what a woman really is – that my mind turned back to CW 2.0.

None of the mirth-makers seem to have considered that possibility, intent as they were on punishing Trump by any means available. In their parallel universe of fanatically defending the Bidens, they seem oblivious to the fact that each new indictment simply increases the Trump delegate count. Even worse, they ignore the ominous signs that President Biden, his own ship daily approaching the shoals of misconduct, has placed the American justice system squarely at risk. What happens when both Trump and Biden are snake-bitten and quite possibly in jeopardy of being disqualified from holding elective office? Should we count on either one to opt for the statesmanlike alternative and gracefully withdraw? Do we assume that the Supreme Court will somehow ride to the rescue of one or the other – and would their verdict be enforced in the courts or the streets?

While slavery and states’ rights had been underlying tensions since the beginning, the proximate cause of the Civil War was the election of 1860 and Abraham Lincoln’s elevation to the presidency. As a student of that war, I have walked its battlefields and reviewed most of Ralph Peters’ books; possibly our foremost historical novelist, Ralph applies his genius by deciphering the riddles of the maps, embracing the protagonists and helping modern readers recall that terrible era. Key question: How could the most destructive war in our history have resulted from such well-known and foreseeable consequences?

Later on, I pondered those questions in Bosnia, observing the particular madness wrought by modern civil wars. I maneuvered on battlefields that violated every known principle of war, witnessed the stomach-churning realities of ethnic cleansing; had my heart broken after seeing too many ill-nourished children and bombed-out villages. For a country that had enjoyed a relatively peaceful 800-year history, how had Serbs, Croats and Moslems generated such bloody-minded bitterness? Most of all: Amidst Europe’s most beautiful playgrounds, how had crops of land-mines been planted in every field?

Over twenty years later, I still cannot answer those questions, much less predict the outcome of the foundational dilemmas awaiting us in 2024. But these days I worry less about national sovereignty and more about God’s sovereignty – and His lessons about how we should treat neighbors, brothers, sisters and countrymen.

Colonel (Ret.) Kenneth Allard is a former West Point professor, dean of the National War College and on-air military analyst for NBC News.

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Comments 1-9 of 9

  • Michael Day

    08/05/2023 11:48 AM

    This why mankind again finds ONE PEOPLE
    Many a word smith
    Has read the
    The two WORDS
    And still cannot or maybe
    The Declaration of INDEPENDENCE
    When in the Course of Human Events
    It becomes Necessary for
    DISSOLVE THE POO-litacal
    Today my fellow AMERICANS
    Evil is in FOOL Capitals
    A divided people by THE TRUTH
    The Blood of ONE PEOPLE

  • Mary K

    08/05/2023 09:03 AM

    Warm wishes Col. Allard
    Thankyou for insightful piece depicting what many fear to say and only a heartbeat away. The unrestricted warfare of todays elitslists breaking down societal norms, destroying cultural diversity and mowing through all in the path of their sinister rebuid, is unprecedented. It was said that pistols at dawn was barbaric, yet the faceless cowards reeking havoc, chaos and anarchy worldwide remain esconsed in their covetousness.
    Any solutions?

  • Ed Thompsin

    08/04/2023 09:12 PM

    Civil war? Back when it actually happened the reasons were twofold— basically states rights AND the abolishment of slavery—- sprinkle it with lesser issues like voting rights and civil rights for certain individuals and there are the answers more or less. Had you lived in the south, even if you never ever owned a slave, being told you had to give up that practice by a government that only acknowledged your state by the product it made, cotton or tobacco more than likely, you felt like you were less than a citizen of America. Now the government wants you to change your vary way of doing anything agriculturally , while you struggle with getting workers to work! Slavery was the way of life in the south in the fields! Humans mistreated by humans. Humans who attended church and purposed to be Christians! No one wants to be told how to live but wrong is wrong no matter how many times it’s done. I thank God we had a great man in our government who understood finely begrudgingly that slavery had no place in America. States Rights? Call it what you want—- God put His hand on the shoulder of the President and gave him the opportunity to end something that should never have happened in any country in the world period! Slavery is probably as old as time itself. Don’t make it right. And it’s still going on. America has to lead the way to abolish it entirely. We are the light of the world. Under Joe it’s getting very dim!

  • Richard Elofson, Major, USA retired

    08/04/2023 08:00 PM

    Full disclosure: I am an 80+ year old retired intel officer who was not selected for higher rank because I am not the best follower. Maybe not such a great leader either. Water under the bridge.
    My best friend and fishing companion for the past 25 years told me about 3 months ago that we could no longer be friends. It seems that the only glue he believed that held us together as friends was our mutual passion for fly-fishing. We never had real discussions about politics, as were knew that we were at opposite ends of the spectrum. Yet, I was astounded to be kicked to the curb for such a specious argument. We NEVER discussed politics in depth, always agreeing to disagree. He then claimed that the Conservatives were plotting a civil war I did know that! Now I find that the Democrats have that as a talking point, and are probably plotting to start a civil war themselves. A bad idea libs! We Republicans are WELL armed. I have a hard time projecting how a civil war could start. I live in an extreme liberal area, and at my advanced age am willing to sacrifice my life to the cause of freedom.

  • Nick Rockway

    08/04/2023 06:13 PM

    Your assertion that Serbia, Croatia, and Balkan Muslims had a relatively peaceful 800 year history prior to this century is either a bald faced lie or bald faced ignorance, professor. You tell me which.

  • steve Hansmeyer

    08/04/2023 05:25 PM

    The DOJ & FBI are domestic terror organizations. This country will no longer be a free country, until it is defunded and dismantled entirety. You cannot have freedom or democracy in a country when its corrupt security services are allowed to indict their opponents, while covering up the crimes of their allies.

  • Steve

    08/04/2023 03:54 PM

    'Enemies domestic' are not "countrymen".

    Anyone creating more government is as ANTI-AMERICAN as one can get. DemoKKKrats are the enemy if humanity, in fact.

    Many more ubiquitous facts prove their evil and deserving of punishment.

  • Sharon Faulkner

    08/04/2023 01:46 PM

    Noone is above the law -- but the Kennedys, Clintons, Obamas and Bidens sure have a lot of slaves to help them crawl under it...

  • Paul Kern

    08/04/2023 01:05 PM

    A good must read for any with a brain left