In the seven weeks after the attack on Pearl Harbor, the only significant military gain of the United States was that the country's subsequent losses were limited to the Guam and Wake islands.
The Doolittle Raid, the carrier-launched bombing of Tokyo, was symbolic, and, if it managed to raise spirits, it also meant several crews were captured, executed or out of action for part of or all of World War II. Even a small victory of any measure was a year or more away.
Seven weeks into the war on terrorism, the government of the United States has managed a surprisingly broad, worldwide coalition including some unlikely allies. In just the past three weeks, the combined military branches have launched hundreds of sorties and cruise missiles against specific targets in Afghanistan, away from populated areas. ...
That said, there does seem to be some expectation for the next step. As if we should be ready for the next prime-time episode, on to the latest version of some new operating system. ...
This isn't a video game. Don't think of this as a TV show. We've all seen too many movies, the kind where our bombs and bullets hit the target exactly while withering enemy fire whistles by.
The generations born after the epic efforts of World War II need to brace themselves for the setbacks and stalemates that will precede resolution. ...
When you find yourself impatient with another day of uncountable results or eager to win a war far away, remember this isn't a Sunday outing. This war, a world away or right here, will be with us for the rest of our lives.
-- The Times-Leader, Wilkes-Barre, Pa.
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