Winning the Future: A 21st Century Contract with America

Winning the Future: A 21st Century Contract with America

by Newt Gingrich


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781596980075
Publisher: Regnery Publishing
Publication date: 06/25/2006
Pages: 271
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Newt Gingrich, former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, is the author of seven
books, including the bestsellers Gettysburg, Contract with America, and To Renew America. He is the CEO of The Gingrich Group and an analyst for the Fox News Channel. He holds a Ph.D. in history from Tulane University.

Read an Excerpt

Winning the Future

By Newt Gingrich

Regnery Publishing, Inc.

Copyright © 2005 Newt Gingrich
All right reserved.

ISBN: 0-89526-042-5

Chapter One

Will We Survive?

* * *

"It is the eternal struggle between two principles, right and wrong, throughout the world." President Abraham Lincoln Debate at Alton, Illinois, October 15, 1858

Imagine the morning after an attack even more devastating than 9/11. It could happen. The threats are real and could literally destroy our country.

There are weapons of mass destruction, weapons of mass murder, and weapons of mass disruption-nuclear is first, biological and chemical is second, electromagnetic pulse (EMP) is third. All are real, and we are lulled into complacency by the fact that none is currently being used. But if any of them were used, the effect could be catastrophic.

Despite spending billions of dollars on our national security, we are still unprepared. Our intelligence capabilities are-at most-one-third the size we need. Consider that the Federal Bureau of Investigation has hundreds of thousands of hours of terrorist intercepts that have not been heard, much less analyzed, because there are not enough translators. Our intelligence community has been studying North Korea for nearly fifty years, yet we know almost nothing about the country. Our civilian national security bureaucracy is so weak, so slow, and so inefficient that only 5 percent of the $18 billion appropriated to help rebuild Iraq has been spent. Even our battle-proven military remains woefully unprepared for fighting the wars of the future.

America's lack of preparation, however, should not discourage us or even surprise us. Americans have had to rethink and reorganize for every major national security challenge in our history. We must recognize that we have three objectives to achieve.

First, we must defeat the radical wing of Islam as represented by al Qaeda and its affiliated terrorist groups, the Wahabbi sect, and terror-sponsoring Islamic states. Second, we must contain powers that could threaten us, including China, Russia, North Korea, Iran, and Pakistan-all of which have weapons of mass destruction. And finally, we must create a broad alliance of countries willing to defend peace and freedom.

As Ronald Reagan won the Cold War, so too can we win this war, as I'll show, by modeling and modifying President Reagan's strategy.

The Threat

The simple fact is: We have been warned. If anyone thinks terrorists don't threaten us, the question is: What would it take to convince you? If nearly 3,000 Americans dying on American soil in one day does not frighten you, what would?

The sobering reality is that terrorist leaders are determined to kill Americans and destroy our government and culture.

Consider the religious fatwa titled "A Treatise on the Legal Status of Using Weapons of Mass Destruction Against Infidels" that Osama bin Laden secured from Shaykh Nasir bin Hamd al-Fahd, a young and prominent Saudi cleric justifying the use of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) against Americans, in May 2003:

Anyone who considers America's aggressions against Muslims and their lands during the past decades will conclude that striking her is permissible on the basis of the rule of treating one as one has been treated. No other argument need be mentioned. Some brothers have totaled the number of Muslims killed directly or indirectly by their weapons and come up with a figure of nearly ten million.... If a bomb that killed ten million of them and burned as much of their land as they have burned Muslim land was dropped on them, it would be permissible, with no need to mention any other argument. We might need other arguments if we wanted to annihilate more than this number of them.

Other al Qaeda leaders are equally explicit about killing many Americans. This statement is from Ayman Al-Zawahir: "We have not reached parity with them. We have the right to kill four million Americans-two million of them children-and to exile twice as many and wound and cripple hundreds of thousands. Furthermore, it is our right to fight them with chemical and biological weapons, so as to afflict them with the fatal maladies that have afflicted the Muslims because of the [Americans'] chemical and biological weapons."

The threat of mass deaths at times becomes a threat of extermination. As Hamas leader Abdel Aziz Rantisi stated in June 2003: "Not a single Jew will remain in Palestine."

In the 9/11 Commission Report, the commissioners concluded: "Bin Laden and Islamist terrorists mean exactly what they say: To them America is the font of all evil, the "head of the snake, and it must be converted or destroyed."

Americans cannot negotiate with al Qaeda. We have no common ground with terrorists. Al Qaeda and its affiliates can only be destroyed. We are in a war of survival-and we could lose that war. Our vulnerability is neither exaggerated nor a paranoid fantasy.

If these terrorists acquired nuclear weapons, they would use them against our cities. If they acquired biological weapons, they could kill millions. (One Nobel Prize winner told me that an engineered biological attack could kill 140 million Americans. Even a modest biological outbreak, like the 1918 flu pandemic, killed more people in one year than died in the four years of World War I.) And if the terrorists had chemical weapons, they could kill thousands.

Another threat can be from an electromagnetic pulse weapon-an explosion that could short-circuit our electrical systems. According to the commission of physicists assigned to study it, an EMP attack could collapse America into an 1860 world without electricity and reduce our advantage in military technology to zero. China and Russia have both considered limited nuclear attack options that, unlike their Cold War plans, employ EMP as the primary or sole means of attack. As recently as May 1999, during the NATO bombing of the former Yugoslavia, high-ranking members of the Russian Duma (Russia's parliament), meeting with a U.S. congressional delegation to discuss the Balkans conflict, raised the specter of a Russian EMP attack that would paralyze America.

There are conventional threats too. Terrorists could launch a campaign of bombings and sniper attacks in the United States. The next time you watch a bombing in Israel, an attack in Russia, or violence in Iraq, know that it could happen here.

The Hart-Rudman Commission, a bipartisan commission that spent three years studying American security, warned in March 2001 that the primary threat to the United States was that within the next twenty-five years, a weapon of mass destruction-nuclear, chemical, or biological-could be used against American cities, probably from a terrorist attack. As early as September 1999, the commission warned: "States, terrorists, and other disaffected groups will acquire weapons of mass destruction and mass disruption, and some will use them. Americans will likely die on American soil, possibly in large numbers."

The tragic and shocking events of 9/11 were actually of a much smaller scale than the dangers warned of by the Hart-Rudman Commission. The commission stated: "The greatest danger of another catastrophic attack in the United States will materialize if the world's most dangerous terrorists acquire the world's most dangerous weapons ... al Qaeda has tried to acquire or make nuclear weapons for at least ten years ... we mentioned officials worriedly discussing, in 1998, reports that Bin Laden's associates thought their leader was intent on carrying out a 'Hiroshima.' These ambitions continue."

Thomas H. Kean, the chairman of the 9/11 Commission, said shortly after releasing the report: "Time is not on our side." Every day, terrorists try to acquire weapons of mass destruction and weapons of mass murder. Iran and North Korea continue to develop their nuclear and other weapons programs. There is constant danger of a coup by radical Islamists in nuclear-armed Pakistan.

And the greatest danger for us in meeting this threat is the weakness of our intelligence services. We do not have any significant intelligence on the enemy's plans, networks, and troop strength. We have not even been able to find Osama bin Laden.

Terrorism Is an Act of War

The Clinton administration consistently dealt with terrorism as a criminal matter. President George W. Bush recognized immediately that the 9/11 attack was an act of war and not the scene of a crime. He responded with military force-not detectives.

President Bush told us the truth: It will be a hard campaign, a long war, and we will suffer setbacks on occasion. "This war will not be like the war against Iraq a decade ago, with a decisive liberation of territory and a swift conclusion.... Our response involves far more than instant retaliation and isolated strikes. Americans should not expect one battle, but a lengthy campaign, unlike any other we have ever seen."

Even after the initial military victory in Iraq, President Bush reiterated:

We have difficult work to do in Iraq. We're bringing order to parts of that country that remain dangerous. We're pursuing and finding leaders of the old regime, who will be held to account for their crimes. We've begun the search for hidden chemical and biological weapons and already know of hundreds of sites that will be investigated. We're helping to rebuild Iraq, where the dictator built palaces for himself, instead of hospitals and schools. And we will stand with the new leaders of Iraq as they establish a government of, by, and for the Iraqi people.... The transition from dictatorship to democracy will take time, but it is worth every effort. Our coalition will stay until our work is done. Then we will leave, and we will leave behind a free Iraq.

Transformational wars always take time, and always mean overcoming setbacks: It took George Washington from 1776 to 1783 to win the Revolutionary War. It took Abraham Lincoln four years (1861 to 1864) to finally hit on a winning strategy to win the Civil War in 1865. And the Cold War lasted more than forty years.

We Must Know Our Enemies

To win the war we must know our enemy.

We have two immediate opponents, the irreconcilable wing of Islam and the rogue dictatorships that empower the radical Islamists. The irreconcilable wing of Islam considers America the great Satan. The Islamists cannot reconcile with a secular system of laws. They cannot tolerate a West that maintains a presence in the Arabian Gulf or that would defend Israel's right to survive as a country. They cannot tolerate freedom of speech, freedom of religion, or freedom for women. In short, their demands are irreconcilable with the modern world.

Politically correct secularists cannot understand that we are participants in a global civil war between the modernizing and irreconcilable wings of Islam. While the irreconcilable wing must be fought militarily, this is also a cultural, political, and economic war (as was the Cold War). This war is not primarily about terrorism, it is about an Islamist insurgency against the modern world.

A reasonable estimate would be that this war will last until 2070 (the Soviet Union lasted from 1917 to 1991, or seventy-four years). An optimist could make a case for winning by 2025 or 2030. Alternatively this conflict could be a fact of life for several centuries (as the Catholic-Protestant wars were during the Reformation and Counter Reformation).

Because secular post-modern analysts refuse to take religion seriously, we describe "suicide bombers" while our opponents describe "martyrs." We see them as psychologically deranged where they see themselves as dedicated to God. We focus on body counts while our opponents see their dead as symbols for recruitment. We focus on weeks and months while our opponents patiently focus on decades and generations. We think of trouble spots while they think of global jihad. We are in a total mismatch of planning and understanding.

We are hunting down al Qaeda (a loose grouping of 3,000 to 5,000 people) while our opponents are vastly larger. As one counter-terrorism analyst suggested to me "about the time we wipe out al Qaeda there will be five to ten new organizations of equal or greater size." We can reasonably guess that about 3 to 4 percent of the 1.3 billion Muslims on the planet are potential terrorist recruits-a pool of 39 to 52 million young men. There might be more than 10,000 potential recruits for every current member of al Qaeda.

Virtually every expert believes the number of militants available to the Irreconcilables is growing much faster than we are killing them. We have no effective communication counter-strategy to the television stations like Al-Jazeera and Al-Arabiya that serve as multimillion (maybe multibillion) dollar force multipliers for the insurgency. Consider the tiny cost bin Laden pays for an audio tape that these stations broadcast to more than a third of the Arab world at no cost to al Qaeda.

The challenge of these potentially violent Irreconcilables is compounded by what George Tenet, former director of the Central Intelligence Agency, described as the Gray World.

The Gray World

Even small terrorist organizations can have global reach through the global criminal system of the Gray World: illegal narcotics and drug-dealing, illegal transportation across borders, international arms dealers, traditional international crime, and people smuggling.

Every year at least 800,000 slaves-mainly from Eastern Europe, Asia, and Africa-are smuggled into other countries, including democracies like Holland and the United States. About 90 percent of these slaves are women, many are children, and most are sold for sexual purposes. A system that can smuggle slaves can also smuggle terrorists.

This Gray World is made even more dangerous by the fact that it can produce income for the terrorist networks. The dramatic increase in heroin production in Afghanistan is a major threat to the pro-Western government in Kabul. In 2004, heroin producers were probably earning as much foreign currency as the Kharzai regime. It is likely over the next few years that Afghan heroin processors will increase their purchasing power and technological reach much faster than the bureaucracy in Kabul. Unchecked, this Gray World could become a major threat to the efforts to create a free, modern Afghanistan.

There is another complication arising from the Gray World. As international criminals of all types become wealthier and more sophisticated, they can corrupt law enforcement, politicians, and to some extent an entire society. As Mark Bowden illustrated in his book Killing Pablo-about the hunt for the billionaire cocaine lord Pablo Escobar in Medellin, Colombia-Escobar's wealth made him a local folk hero and bought him protection from the police.


Excerpted from Winning the Future by Newt Gingrich Copyright © 2005 by Newt Gingrich. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Winning the Future: A 21st Century Contract with America 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
eisenkreuz on LibraryThing 10 months ago
A very astute analysis of the problems of the nation and how to solve them.
mramos on LibraryThing 10 months ago
Newt Gingrich, the former Speaker of the House of Representatives (1994-1998), outlines challenge to the United States ten years after his original Contract with America. He suggest ways to guard the country against terrorism and reform domestic programs like Social security, the courts, Medicare, and many others. It is obvious that he has a strong grasp on U.S. history and the strengths that are the foundation of the nation. This is a very intelligent analysis of where our country stands today and what are achievable goals that are needed for improvement today. This book is about issues that affect every citizen of the U.S.A. Every American should read this book regardless of political affiliations.
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Guest More than 1 year ago
I would recommend this book to absolutely any American citizen. Mr. Gingrich portrays an image of the kind of America everyone wants to live in, plus ideas on how to achieve such a country. This work will inspire you to do your part to make America greater!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It was refreshing to read actual ideas from a man that has the potential to be president, rather than an onslaught of generalizations.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Speaker Gingrich has provided America with a new wake up call with his new book, Winning the Future. His vision regarding education, healthcare, immigration, and Social Security are must-reads for all lawmakers. The centrality of the English language in American society for all American citizens now and in the future is also an important component in the Gingrich view of American continued success and prosperity in the 21st century. I particularly recommend chapter four regarding a rather dynamic series of ideas on bringing the Courts back under the Constitution. Having designed buildings in the District of Columbia I would also not miss appendix B, which takes you on a walking tour of God in the built environment in Washington, DC. The nation¿s architects over the last several hundred years have made sure to include God in the Architecture of our buildings.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Winning the Future is an excellent primer for the political operative and novice alike. Want a quick read on the top issues outlined in the original Contract with America? Want a better understanding of the most pressing issues facing our nation today? This collection of thoughtful capsules is a great way to join today¿s political debate. I can not recall a single leader that offers so many rich ideas, solutions and proposals on such a range of issues from immigration to social security to environmental science. While national security dominates most of our current public policy, Gingrich tackles many domestic problems- particularly health care- that, as he demonstrates, is equally important to our survival as the world¿s foremost democracy. Love him or hate him, you have to admire his willingness to offer ideas where others do not. Be sure to check out Chapters 5, 6 & which outline the current state of affairs of US immigration and assimilation policies. I enjoyed his gutsy views on ¿patriotic immigration, education and stewardship¿. Always a straight shooter, Gingrich does not disappoint by drawing on the lessons of the Founding Fathers to promote basic principles to guide our role as the beacon of worldwide freedom. There are also a few unique bonuses you will not find elsewhere. The American Traditions and Values self assessment and the ¿Walking Tour of God in Washington, DC¿ are sure to incite controversy. While you are certain not to agree with Gingrich on all subjects, this book is great for anyone seeking to understand the top issues facing the government today. On the heels of the recent [negative] campaign, it is refreshing to see someone so at ease on a breadth of issues. This is an ideal blueprint of ideas for students, conservatives, liberals and anyone else that cares about America. Congrats Newt!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a concise, pointed, and descriptive analysis of the election issues likely to dominate the next few national electoral cycles. More impressively, it's written by a man likely to be directly involved at the highest levels in exactly the campaigns to address those issues. While a few have written for publication as they campaigned (Churchill) it took forty years to publish Reagan, and only now is the development of his political philosophy getting broad attention. If for no other reason, this is a must read for simple civic awareness, and knowledge for the informed voter. See also his prior book on health care, and try to find another candidate this far ahead in addressing these issues.
Guest More than 1 year ago