Will George Orwell's 1984 Become A Reality In 2004?

By Chuck Baldwin

Food For Thought From The Chuck Wagon

December 30, 2003 The current edition of Insight magazine features an article in which the former commander of the military's Central Command, Gen. Tommy Franks, warns that constitutional government could be subject to a sudden demise if another major terrorist attack took place in America.

Insight declares, "Gen. Tommy Franks says that if the United States is hit with a weapon of mass destruction that inflicts large casualties, the Constitution will likely be discarded in favor of a military form of government." Insight refers to an interview the retired general gave to a men's lifestyle magazine, Cigar Aficionado. The interview appears in the magazine's December edition.

According to Insight, "the former commander of the military's Central Command warned that if terrorists succeeded in using a weapon of mass destruction (WMD) against the U.S. or one of our allies, it would likely have catastrophic consequences for our cherished republican form of government." Franks is also quoted as saying if such an attack occurred, "the Western world, the free world, loses what it cherishes most, and that is freedom and liberty we've seen for a couple of hundred years in this grand experiment that we call democracy." The magazine quotes Franks as warning that a serious terrorist attack would result in our country being "militarized" and our constitutional form of government coming "unraveled."

General Frank's warning should be taken to heart by all Americans. President G.W. Bush, Attorney General John Ashcroft, and Homeland Security Director Tom Ridge, in concert with a Republican majority in Congress, have put in place a massive police state apparatus capable of enforcing martial law in a moment's notice. Furthermore, it appears that these leaders are more than willing to actually enact such a move.

However, the most disturbing factor in all of this is the apparent willingness of the American people, especially Christian people, to submit to a federal police state. Local police departments, judges, ministers, along with grass roots citizens, seem totally unconcerned to the prospect of losing their individual liberties and freedoms. Beyond that, they seem to enthusiastically support the idea.

It seems that the American people have foolishly bought into the notion that any abridgement of freedom is justified as long as the goal is "security." They obviously have forgotten that a bird in a cage is secure, but it is hardly free. Americans seem also to have forgotten the sage counsel of Benjamin Franklin who plainly said, "They who give up essential liberty for temporary security deserve neither liberty nor security." Amen!

It seems plain to me that a future attack by terrorists against the United States is not a matter of "if," but "when." We are no more immune to terrorist attack now than we were in September of 2001, the Patriot Act, the Department of Homeland Security, and the capture of Saddam Hussein notwithstanding.

The question, then, is not what the federal government will do to fight terrorism; the question is what the federal government will do to its own citizenry in the name of fighting terrorism. If Gen. Franks is right, the next terrorist attack will result in the Constitution being expunged and military law taking its place. If this happens, would not the real terrorists be our own leaders, and would anyone care?

© Chuck Baldwin