Monday, November 03, 2008

Dangerous Illusions—Shadow World by Robert Chandler

Americans are slumbering in a cave of indifference and complacency, unaware of the reality outside

By William Kevin Stoos
Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Shadow World
By Robert Chandler
Publisher: Regnery Publishing, Inc., An Eagle Publishing Company
Pub. Date: August 2008
Sales Rank: 82,545

“This is the way the country ends…not with a bang but a whimper.” Had T.S. Eliot read Shadow World, he might well have written this tag line for Robert Chandler’s comprehensive, thought-provoking expose of the three major threats facing the American Republic which Chandler so masterfully documents.

While Americans live comfortable lives insulated partly by luck, the vigilance of our law enforcement authorities, and the sacrifice of our soldiers engaging enemies in foreign lands, forces seen and unseen are mounting against our country. Some are external; some internal, but all are engaged in a war against our country, its core values and our way of life. While we are captivated by Dancing with the Stars, American Idol, vacuous pop stars, and reality TV, as the War in Iraq drops to fifth place on the list of things that most concern us, we are oblivious to the fact that forces bent on the destruction of our Republic are shaping our future. Like the chained man in Plato’s cave who watches the dim shadows dancing on the walls and thinks them reality, we are being deceived. We see the shadows and think they are real; when in fact the world outside the cave is far different. There are indeed things out there—people, countries, movements—that we have reason to fear, if we only knew it. But it is easier to remain in the cave watching the shadows, and there is comfort in not facing reality.

Chandler’s use of Plato’s allegory works well. Americans are slumbering in a cave of indifference and complacency, unaware of the reality outside. Chandler’s book grabs you by the collar, wakes you up and drags you into the sunlight. Shadow World is a comprehensive analysis of the three major threats facing America today: A powerful consortium of countries (Russia, China, Iran, and Venezuela–“The Quadrangle”) whose common goal is to reduce the economic, political, and military influence of the United States—the sole superpower after the purported collapse of the Soviet Union—and change the world from a unipolar to a multipolar world in which the United States is weakened or even neutralized; The Islamic Salafist/Wahhabist movement financed by our purported “ally” Saudi Arabia, motivated by a seething hatred of the United States and liberal western democracy and whose goal is to establish a worldwide Islamic caliphate ruled by mullahs who want to revert to the good old days when the Prophet ruled by the sword, everyone studied the Koran and non-believers (Christians and Jews ) converted on pain of death; and a Socialist Fifth Column—a “progressive” (socialist-marxist-communist) movement within our own country, influenced not by classical Marxist-Leninist doctrine, but rather by revisionist Marxist Antonio Gramsci.

Gramsci held that powerful liberal Christian democracies such as ours cannot be overcome directly by open revolution but only by attacking the country from within--subverting and replacing its values, institutions, and most of all, its religious traditions with secular humanism and, in time, a socialist state. Shadow World is the bible on the subject of the threats to America and its standing in the world. Unless we read the bible, we may well go out with a whimper. Worse yet, we will not even see it coming.

The Unholy Quadrangle

After the fall of the Berlin Wall, one superpower was left standing. But now we face an alliance formed by sometime enemies/allies by convenience, Russia and China. Along with their surrogates, Iran and Venezuela, they seek to weaken the United States and change the world balance of power in ways we do not want. While George Bush gushed about his relationship with Putin, “looked into his heart” and saw a democratic idealist, in truth Putin stacked all levels of Russian government with communist cronies from his old KGB days, had his enemies (reporters, critics, and wealthy industrialists alike) killed, tried or banished, took control of powerful industries, passed laws making it a crime to “publicly slander public officials,” and parlayed his resources and political power in ways that would make the Czars blush with envy. But to the world, Putin is a democrat, and we delude ourselves into thinking that Russia will somehow turn into a benign western-style liberal democracy. We see the shadows of democracy and good will when the reality is something far different. Chandler drills deep and painstakingly analyzes how Putin and Russia seek hegemony over the region and the world, using its pipeline to Europe and billions of petrodollars and foreign investments to finance Russia’s historical dreams of conquest. Chandler’s treatment of the unseen but growing Chinese threat is equally sobering. We grant China favored nation status, feebly protest its repression of religion and free speech and look the other way while China buys the United States piece by piece. While we treat the world’s largest country and fastest-growing economy as a partner in progress, and watch the shadows of hope dance on the wall, the reality is far different. Chandler goes to great lengths to expose the true threat—the reality outside the cave: China is growing the greatest economy on earth, building its military into the strongest in the world, spreading money and influence in Africa and South America, and arming our enemies. Even more alarming, as Chandler notes, is the fact that a recent poll of Chinese citizens revealed that a majority consider the United States not as a friend, but as China’s number one enemy.

While we naively treat China as a friend and partner, captivated by the dimly lit images of friendship and cooperation, the brutal reality is that China is our greatest competitor. Our sanguine thoughts of friendship and cooperation are sadly delusional—and not reciprocated. Shadow World offers a keen insight into the Chinese efforts in the world today to undermine our country and supplant us as the world’s superpower. The Chinese and Russians have found willing allies in their campaign to change the polarity of the world’s balance of power. Iran (our second greatest Islamic enemy) , itching to step into the vacuum created when a Democrat president keeps his or her promise to pull out of Iraq—is encouraged and financed by both Russian and China who have invested millions into the country, to design reactors, supply weapons and build infrastructure. That the United States cannot count on Russia or China to dissuade Iran from building nuclear weapons should come as no surprise; as Chandler points out, they are strategic partners, joined at the hip. They seek to build a powerful surrogate in the region which will fill the vacuum created by our departure, ensuring influence, access to oil, and the ability to strangle the world economy.

The implications of a nuclear capable Iran, flush with billions in oil revenues, bent on the destruction of Israel (our eternal ally), armed by China and Russia, and able to choke the world the gas pump, are simply too frightening to imagine. In our own back yard, Chandler chronicles the rising threat of Hugo Chavez, a surrogate of the Chinese government, who seeks to export terror, revolution and socialism throughout the region in ways that Fidel only dreamed. The man who would be the next Castro is not merely the next Castro—but Castro on steroids-- more dangerous, more ruthless, and infinitely richer—controlling huge oil reserves that enable him to finance his hemispheric subversion. Also joined at the hip with China, whose influence is increasing throughout the region, Chavez boasts of his desire to destroy America. Chandler’s book explores the depths of Chavez’ influence in the region, his desire for hegemony in the South American continent and his ties to Russia and China which few have studied as extensively as Chandler. No American should doubt that Russia and China seek world domination and are actively seeking to extend their influence into our own hemisphere. Chandler’s treatment of the unholy quadrangle is an eye opener and a unique study of the truth outside the cave. It would be a mistake to dismiss Russia as a second-rate power defanged by the break up of the Soviet Union, to regard China as a friend and partner, or to assume that Iran and Venezuela are simply third world countries run by crazy dictators. The harsh reality is that we face a powerful cabal of nations intent on doing us in, and Chandler exposes the true nature of the threat.

Saudi Arabia and Worldwide Jihad

Building on his own knowledge of geopolitics, his extensive study of the historical roots of Islam and the basis for the intense hatred of the West which is shared by a dangerous segment of Muslim jihadists bent on our destruction, Chandler has penned an expose on radical Islam that all Americans must heed. Radical Islam is here, now and in our own back yard. And the threat did not end with 9/11. Shadow World traces the historical, political and religious bases of radical Islam–Salafism/Wahhabism, and how it has spread from the Mideast to our shores. He details how our ostensible “ally”—Saudi Arabia (arguably our greatest enemy, contrary to the slick public relations campaign by the Saudi family to convince us otherwise) has financed the spread of radical, western--liberal –democracy-hating Salafism/Wahhabism across the Mid East, Europe, and into the United States. Ironically they finance their vitriolic anti-western propaganda with petrodollars sent by the billions from Americans who refuse to allow drilling in ANWAR and never stop to ask why nineteen of the twenty-one terrorists involved in 9/11 were Saudis. Chandler exposes the threat to our country from the Saudi-financed spread of radical Islam, and reveals how the Saudis finance mosques and madrassas, and use their billions to influence public education in United States.

Our so called friends preach hatred of the United States, Israel, and all non-believers and actively indoctrinate millions of young Muslims who will grow up hating the West–supplying recruits for the next generation of jihadists bent on destroying our civilization. While the Saudis pretend to be our friend, pay lip service to helping the United States track down terrorists and their sources of financing, they finance terrorism through a myriad of non-profits and innocuous-sounding businesses. Awash in billions of petrodollars, insulated from terrorism as protectors of the two holiest places in Islam, the Saudis are at once a terrorist state and “ally” of the United States. Deceived by the illusion of friendship and cooperation, Americans do not see the reality outside the cave—that the world’s richest country with the largest oil reserves, is actively financing jihad against America while we suppose them to be a staunch ally in the region. As Chandler warns, the Saudis are financiers, active participants and “cheerleaders” for radical Islam. While the Saudis and the jihadists they train dream of a caliphate that stretches across Europe and some day across North America, we finance those dreams and buy their bullets. Chandler warns of the dangers lurking right here at home, where terrorists cells planted years ago await further instructions from a shadowy enemy controlling a large terrorist network sworn to destroy this country. If we do not listen to experts like Chandler then in a sense, we deserve what is coming.

The Fifth Column—Gramsci Socialists and Their Useful Idiots

No one knows exactly the origin of the term “fifth column,” but Chandler cites several historical examples of “fifth columns”–dedicated, clandestine--waiting in the wings to wreak havoc on the enemy. They wait to rise up, working behind the scenes, lying in wait, ready to attack or sabotage or weaken the structure of a city, a country or a society. Not by frontal assaults do fifth columns prove their worth, but by intrigue, subtle maneuvering, and deception. Chandler’s book exposes the uncomfortable but indisputable fact that there is an active “progressive” (socialist) fifth column in the United States. It is well-financed, discreet, motivated, and, one might say—legitimate, or respectable, at least to all outward appearances. It is a group of fellow travelers, “progressives,” “marxist-leninist-communists, “ spelled in small type, and their “useful idiots” (as Lenin would say) including some well meaning protestors, activists and decent Americans who have no idea that they are being manipulated by more sinister forces. As Chandler teaches, these are not your classical “rise up and throw off your chains,” violent revolutionary Marxists. Socialism has become more subtle, more sophisticated, more urbane. It has long since evolved from defeating capitalism through violent confrontation to gnawing at its innards through subtle conversion or subversion if you will, of the host society.

Gradually, socialists realized that liberal western democracies with a strong religious grounding and tied together with common beliefs, traditions, and values—culture--could not be attacked from without. The sinews of religious tradition, especially, were simply too strong to overcome. In fact, modern day socialist thinkers believed that religious values were the biggest obstacle to the spread of socialism. For socialism to succeed it had to transform society from the inside out; it could never conquer a strong democracy such as the United States by force of arms, violent overthrow, or even by direct assault on the culture. If socialism were to succeed at all, it must work from within, transform, and eventually replace, the values, customs and beliefs which bind together a strong society. In short, it could only attack and defeat a country like the United States slowly, imperceptibly, comprehensively, and above all, culturally–by convincing us to abandon that which made us great in first place. Norman Thomas, co-founder of the ACLU held that: “The American people will never knowingly adopt socialism. But under the name of ‘liberalism’ they will adopt every fragment of the socialist program until one day America will be a socialist nation, without knowing how it happened.” As Chandler’s book illustrates, this eerily prophetic statement is being played out before our eyes in the United States.

Shadow World reminds us–and most Americans need reminding–that socialism did not dry up and blow away with the collapse of the Soviet Union. In fact it morphed, and adapted, because old-fashioned Marxist Leninist doctrine had proved an historical failure. Classical Marxist doctrine could not bring down a strong democracy with strong religious roots. In time, socialists adopted the thinking of Antonio Gramsci, an Italian socialist, who lived a short but influential life--a portion of it in spent as a political prisoner under Mussolini. Gramsci’s prison writings found fertile soil in the minds of modern day American socialists who run innocuous sounding “charities,” political cover organizations, labor unions, and church groups; organizations like ACORN, the ACLU or National Lawyers Guild, or big money radicals like George Soros. Chandler tells how Gramsci’s writings have influenced thousands of untouchable and now-tenured “progressive” [sic-socialist] college professors across the country (“teachers of destruction” in the book) who were radicalized in the 1960s, and now seek to influence thousands of young Americans who will carry the banner of Gramsci socialism into the next century. Intent on changing America by attacking its fundamental beliefs, economy, values, religions, concepts of marriage, attitudes about human life, and even its national sovereignty; intent on turning it into something it was not, they seek to transform the United States into a secular humanist, socialist state, whose sovereignty and constitutional rights are gradually ceded to international organizations like the United Nations, the World Court, and the International Criminal Court. As Shadow World illustrates, Gramscian theory–that capitalist democracies may be defeated by controlling mass media, mass organizations and public education and transforming society gradually from within--is being implemented by the fifth column American progressive movement today.

Chandler’s work will not be popular among certain presidential candidates, socialist politicians, or left-wing, big money power brokers such as Soros who spent millions of his personal fortune trying single-handedly to defeat George Bush in the last election. It will not be popular with socialist-progressive think tanks and “policy institutes” like the Institute for Policy Studies whose agendas subvert our country’s interests and home and abroad and seek to erode and subordinate our individual rights to the power of the State, in the name of the common good. Chandler names names, details their organizational structures, their agendas, and the people who run them. As Chandler warns, not everything in our country is what it appears to be. Gramsci socialism—which works from within to erode our freedoms, change our values, and subordinate our national sovereignty–is subtly transforming our country every day.

Chandler exposes the shadowy progressive-socialist movement in the United States to the harsh sunlight outside the cave. One has only to consider the incessant attack on our religious traditions, the ACLU’s endless legal assault on the Boy Scouts, the movement to redefine the concept of marriage, the rise of the culture of death, to know Chandler is right. One has only to consider the incessant criticism of the United States whenever it fails to consult the United Nations on any foreign policy decision, the pervasive political correctness that stifles dissent, the shouting down of any college speaker who espouse any views to the right of radical, the propagation of class warfare, and the movement to redistribute wealth, to know that our society is inching slowly, irreversibly down the path of secular humanism and socialism. The sinews of common religion, traditions, values, language and political institutions that strengthened us and made us the world’s greatest superpower, gave us the strongest economy in the world and made us a beacon of liberty and hope are fraying. Chandler’s book tells us why, and outlines perhaps the greatest threat to our society—the one from within.

One has only to look at post Christian Europe, where few attend church, marriage is considered irrelevant, euthanasia is widely accepted, and the countries of Europe have ceded their national sovereignty. One has only to consider that France prevailed upon one third of the signatories of the European Constitution to drop their references to “God,” or “Christ,” or a “Supreme Being,” in their own constitutions and agree to a new European Constitution which grants sovereignty to a European secular humanist government. One only has to see the paralyzing fear of their own Muslim populations which renders Europe unwilling to fight terrorism and afraid that a simple cartoon will set off religious riots, to know that the Gramsci socialists have won in Europe. And one has only to observe the decline of that once great European culture to know we are next.

Chandler’s years of research, investigation and documentation of the threats to our society have resulted in the most comprehensive work to date on the real threats facing this country in the world today. And he should know whereof he speaks. Chandler’s credentials are impeccable and make him uniquely qualified to warn us. Dr. Chandler, who holds a doctorate in political science from George Washington University, is not merely an intellectual with an opinion on foreign affairs like so many talking heads in the mass media. A retired Vietnam veteran and Air Force Colonel, Dr. Chandler has extensive experience in intelligence analysis, defense strategy, and nuclear weapons deployment which few can boast. He has served at the highest levels of the Defense Department, the Strategic Air Command, and NATO Europe, and received the Defense Department’s Meritorious Service Medal. He has advised the White House; the Departments of State, Defense, Energy, and Justice; and the Central Intelligence Agency. During the Cold War he served as strategic analyst in the Air Force “Skunk Works” Strategy Division and as a nuclear weapons planner. Dr. Chandler has written numerous articles and several books, including
The U.S. Propaganda Campaign in Vietnam (1981); and Tomorrow’s War, Today’s Decision on Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction. Few posses his depth of experience and knowledge, or are as uniquely qualified to warn us of the dangers facing this country. And we need to listen to such voices. Whether they be geopolitical, religious, or cultural, our adversaries are real—not illusions—and bound by a common desire: to challenge our power, subvert out culture, undermine our values and destroy the country as we know it.

In the end, we can awaken from our slumber, walk into the light and confront the truth behind the threats outside our cozy cave. We can remain strong militarily; resolve to fight the War on Terror that will last for generations—but about which no one wants to hear. We can expose and confront the creeping socialism that pervades our society and which seeks to wear down our resolve by the grist of constant attacks our every institution—until one day we surrender our freedoms our values, and our sovereignty. If we listen to Robert Chandler and confront the threats that face us, we can save ourselves and our country.

Most of us “lives in being” will never know how America will look fifty or a hundred years from now. We should care for the sake of ourselves, but most importantly for the sake of our children and grandchildren. If we do not heed Chandler’s warnings, then America may look like a far different place. Whether the change comes from the geopolitical forces arrayed against us, the jihadists, or our own internal socialist movement; whether we become a second rate world power subordinated to the United Nations or the will of a new superpower, whether our kids learn religion only from textbooks and churches and synagogues become museums, whether our grandchildren speak Farsi and bow to Mecca five times today as required by the government, or whether we become the United Socialist States of America—all because we refused to see the light and take control of our own destiny--is still within our power to determine. If our freedom, our power, our wealth, and national identity become a distant memory because we failed to keep the faith with past generations who fought to preserve this great country, then don’t blame Robert Chandler.

Because we were warned.

The author of Stoos Views is a freelance writer whose feature articles on politics, religion, bioethics, and current events have appeared in The Catholic Digest, The Adventist Review, Liguorian, The Carmelite Digest, The Bread of Life (regular contributing writer), The Annals of St. Anne, The Catholic Medical Association Ethics Journal (Linacre Quarterly), The Journal of the American Chiropractic Association, Social Justice Review, Companion, Leaves, The Family Digest, The Nature Conservancy Magazine. During the early 1980s he wrote a conservative political column for William Loeb’s Manchester Union Leader. He is a practicing attorney who lives with his wife and children in Wynstone, South Dakota. His passion for writing is exceeded only by his passion for his family and concern for the direction that our country is heading.

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