Ayaan Hirsi Ali

Slender, elegant, stylish and articulate (in English, Dutch and Swahili), she
has found an intellectual home here at the American Enterprise Institute, where
she is writing a book that imagines Muhammad meeting, in the New York Public
Library, three thinkers -- John Stuart Mill, Friedrich Hayek and Karl Popper,
each a hero of the unending struggle between (to take the title of Popper's 1945
masterpiece) "The Open Society and Its Enemies.'' Islamic extremists -- the sort
who were unhinged by some Danish cartoons -- will be enraged. She is
The bad news
Neither is she pessimistic about the West. It has, she says, "the drive to innovate.'' But Europe, she thinks, is invertebrate. After two generations without war, Europeans "have no idea what an enemy is.'' And they think, she says, that leadership is an antiquated notion because they believe that caring governments can socialize everyone to behave well, thereby erasing personal accountability and responsibility. "I can't even tell it without laughing,'' she says, laughing softly. Clearly she is where she belongs, at last.