THE FIRST ACT IN THE FIRST WAR IN WHICH AMERICA ITSELF IS AT STAKE

Opposite are my two contributions to thinking about this epochal event. One is written for Americans; the other for Britons. Last night, I attended a bonfire on the farthest beach at the end of Cape Cod, within sight of where the pilgrims first landed. It was for a friend – a proud, brash, funny, gay Englishman who had become an American – and who was killed by the demons who took over the airplane he was on last Tuesday. On the beach, we attached two flags: the Star Spangled Banner and the Union Jack. In the dusk, they enfolded each other, their red, white and blue fusing in the red glare of the sunset. Yes, we must bring the rest of the world together. But it is no accident that the haters of the Middle East hate these two countries the most. As we have before, we must become almost one nation together again. The English speaking peoples who now span every race and color and creed are the indispensable force for the survival of freedom. I make no apology for thinking of Churchill and Roosevelt now. The torch they raised is now passed to us. What a privilege. What an opportunity – especially for my generation and those younger.