U.S. Raid on Libya and ‘Spiral of Violence’
President Reagan must be commended for his actions concerning Libya. We must take terrorism to the terrorist’s shore. Reagan has adapted a policy that extends back into U.S. history for over a hundred years.
Jefferson’s attack on the Barbary pirates set the first precedent. It was not until Adm. Alfred Thayer Mahan’s book, “The Influence of Sea Power Upon History,” that current American foreign policy took root. Mahan’s theories (based on examples from past history) encouraged the development and maintenance of American fleets away from U.S. ports.
When Mahan wrote his book in 1890, the first lines of defense were the coastlines of the United States. By establishing fleets around the world (and the coaling stations to support those fleets) Mahan proposed that the United States protect itself thousands of miles from the shores of the United States. Because of American expansionism, the United States has hardly seen a bomb dropped on the mainland. By taking our fights elsewhere, our homes have been secured.
We cannot stop terrorism! But by taking the fight to them, instead of to us, I can rest assured that I will never hear the bombs from Libyan planes being dropped on my own home.
JOHN J. PLEVACK