Today’s times are turbulent ones, with the world wracked by chaos and instability. Country after country is in the throes of revolution and civil war, and all over the globe mini-wars have erupted. No sooner does one crisis pass than another conflagration flares up. And this international unrest is matched by an alarming increase in crime, violent and senseless, in city after city. Individuals armed only with hand guns can plunge entire nations into turmoil, constituting an ever present menace to society. And with the frightening spread of nuclear weapons, the threat of a nuclear holocaust is no longer a mere nightmare, but a very real danger. Just one country, one group of men, one individual, desperate enough or insane enough, can plunge all mankind into total destruction. A gloomy scenario indeed, but in truth, the entire world is teetering on the brink, playing some mad balancing act for its very survival.
In the midst of this stygian darkness, one beacon of light, one ray of hope, shines out as a possible, if not the only means of a return to stability. The great democracy, the United States of America, is a superpower, the most powerful nation on earth. Blessed with great natural resources, the U.S.A. has risen to a position of unequalled power and prestige, with tremendous opportunities to influence other countries. The exercise of these opportunities can, if used properly, do much to reverse the world’s slide into chaos and turmoil. The vigorous pursuit of peace, backed by the awesome power it possesses, will ensure success for the U.S. in this great mission. This is not an easy task. But the steadfast trust in He Who delights in peace will ensure a true and just discharge of its obligations; and peace, true, lasting peace, will be attained.
Unfortunately however, there have been recent signs of a pro-isolationist sentiment in certain quarters. The argument, and it is an appealing one, is that the U.S. has enough problems of its own without worrying about the rest of the world. Weary of being the world’s policeman, the wish to dissociate themselves from others’ troubles is strongly tempting, and a spirit of self-interest dominates. Aside from matters concerning its own security, the argument goes, America should wash its hands of the rest of the world. Time enough to concern ourselves with others when our own affairs are in order.
Torah, however, teaches us differently. This is a land of vast potential, with the means to benefit the entire world. We did not create the vast resources which made this country so wealthy and powerful; G-d gave them to us. And it is not G-d’s intention that they should go to waste. In a sense we have no right to ignore the opportunities so graciously given to us, no right not to use our potential to its fullest. Ingratitude is a despicable thing; and to isolate ourselves would brand us as ingrates of the highest order, unmindful and unappreciative of the largesse so freely bestowed upon this country. Yes, we have an obligation to others. But it is also a privilege, a very great privilege, a global one, to utilize our influence to the utmost to correct the alarming state of instability and chaos, of growing violence present today in the world, and ensure true and lasting peace.
But to maintain the power necessary for this most important task, the U.S. must remain independent of other countries. A nation that is dependent on others for its energy needs, finds its strength diminished and weakened. The crippling dependency on foreign energy sources, particularly oil, has sometimes prevented the U.S. from following policies that are in accord with its ideals of justice.
But it need not be so. The U.S. does have the resources, and this country, with G-d’s help, can be self-sufficient in energy. The problem lies elsewhere, in the failure to utilize G-d’s gifts to their fullest. The realization that America’s wealth has always been G-d given must inevitably lead to the realization that G-d will not now leave this country unequipped to fulfill its great mission of bringing good and peace to the world. The motto on this country’s currency is "In G-d We Trust." We need but live up to it.
There are various sources from which the U.S. can derive its energy needs. Oil and coal alone, if properly developed, would not only provide the U.S. with all its energy needs, but other countries as well. But due to opposition in certain quarters, it will take time to develop these sources properly. And nuclear energy is potentially dangerous, as well as facing vociferous opposition.
There is, however, one energy source which can be made available in a very short time. Solar energy is non-polluting, cheap, and inexhaustible. Already used in many countries, it can power individual homes as well as giant factories. The United States has been blessed with plentiful sunshine, especially in the south, and it is no great technological feat to transport the energy derived from it to other parts of the country. The entire United States, and indeed, other countries not so well blessed with sunshine, can have their energy needs met with the solar energy produced in the southern United States. The U.S.A. need but have the proper determination, brush aside all opposition, and very quickly solve its energy problems. Then, no longer dependent on foreign countries, it can utilize its G-d given assets to influence peoples around the world -- to be productive, G-d fearing citizens.
This is a country which has traditionally been full of kindness and compassion to those less fortunate than itself. The determination to continue in this admirable work lends urgency to the necessity of utilizing all possible assets. We do this not for our own selfish, egocentric purposes; for G-d has blessed this country richly, and it is our duty to use those riches to their fullest good.
With the independence and power thus granted to it, the United States can fulfill its role of bringing peace and stability to this sorely troubled planet.
Starting with solar energy, the U.S.A. must quickly as possible begin its program of energy self-sufficiency. Let those who hinder the pursuit of peace take heed of this determination, and be warned that this country will not allow the havoc and chaos to continue. Just the knowledge that the U.S. is preparing to do so will contribute immeasurably to the stilling of the madness and instability presently rampant. Then speedily we will come to the time when all will be peace and plenty, in the final redemption through our Righteous Redeemer.