Because our homeland and very survival are once more at stake, the American people can't afford to treat this new war against terrorism like they did Vietnam.
Terrorism, too, must be excised wherever it exists, which will take years, and which can't happen without the total commitment and the everyday involvement of the American people.
That's because international Islamic religious fanatics have the same goal as the Axis fascists - the destruction of our way of life.
Modern American war is as easy to script as a B movie.
The old saying that war is a racket has taken on an even more shameful meaning.
War is the ultimate reality-based horror show.
We citizens don't need to know every detail of every military operation in this new kind of war. Nor should the media tell us and hence our enemy.
Our fumbling government's response since Beirut - during both Republican and Democratic administrations - has been to cut and run, or to flat ignore this growing threat, apparently hoping it would go away.
It's human nature to start taking things for granted again when danger isn't banging loudly on the door.
In order to drill into young men the need to stay alert and stay alive, I used to punish offenders with my fists, boots and rifle butt, and with stockade time.
Our generals talk a good game about taking care of their grunts, and the majority of our Beltway politicians bay with moralistic fervor about how they, too, support the troops.
If a policy is wrongheaded, feckless and corrupt, I take it personally and consider it a moral obligation to sound off and not shut up until it's fixed.
That's what supporting the troops is really all about - making sure American grunts get the right stuff!
Their plan is to return the entire world - not just the Middle East - to the days of the caliphate and either convert all of us so-called infidels into born-again Islamic believers or kill us.
Fortunately, it's still not too late to develop a comprehensive global strategy to eliminate our real enemy.