Sometimes, it's not easy understanding what a "war on terrorism" is really all about. It's a fuzzy term, something that may seem a far cry from clearly-defined "start" points like the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941.
But a chilling discovery by American troops brought the reality of terrorism and radical Islamism into sharp focus. An Al-Qaeda torture chamber in Muqdadiyah spotlights a base reality: the hatred goes beyond just philosophical "concepts" or political talking points.
The terror and brutality are up close and personal. These terrorists intend to destroy anyone or anything that is not part of their Islamic world. They torture, bomb,and murder every days. They intend to subjugate, degrade, destroy, maim and kill anyone in their path.
The pictures of the remains in the mass grave tug at the heart. These were people like you and I, people who loved, were loved, had friends and family. But they displeased the merchants of terror and hatred, and so they suffered, horribly, died, and their remains were dumped like so much garbage.
The terrorist/torturers even left behind a message. Scrawled on a wall: "Long live the Islamic State."
Here's what that state is like. Warning: these images are graphic.