Flawed assessment of continuing terrorism blames American foreign policy instead of militant Islam for attacks
The War on Terror is World War IV : "The enemy in this war is not "terrorism" but militant Islam
MIM: The war against terror is ongoing but can be won only if the West understand and identifies the enemy and takes steps to stop the fifth columnists who are operating under the cover of major Islamic organisations world wide. The simple fact that many of the leaders of some of the major terrorist organisations are Phd holders and lived abroad shows that the problem is with Islam, not American foreign policy.More evidence for this can be found in the fact that many of the most notorious terrorists were converts to Islam, or Muslims who were born and spent years in the countries which they set about to destroy.
Even more to he point : Terrorism against Israel and attacks on Jews were being perpetrated before the Israel even existed.
The bottom line is that the terrorists want Islam to dominate the world, and anyone who does not accept the Islamo facist weltaanashaaung must be killed or subjugated . We can defeat terror by dismantling the infrastructure which is undermining us from within.
As Elliot Cohen pointed out in his essay "The War on Terror is World War IV "
"A less palatable but more accurate name is World War IV. The Cold War was World War III, which reminds us that not all global conflicts entail the movement of multimillion-man armies, or conventional front lines on a map. The analogy with the Cold War does, however, suggest some key features of that conflict: that it is, in fact, global; that it will involve a mixture of violent and nonviolent efforts; that it will require mobilization of skill, expertise and resources, if not of vast numbers of soldiers; that it may go on for a long time; and that it has ideological roots.
Americans still tiptoe around this last fact. The enemy in this war is not "terrorism"--a distilled essence of evil, conducted by the real-world equivalents of J. K. Rowling's Lord Voldemort, Tolkien's Sauron or C. S. Lewis's White Witch--but militant Islam. The enemy has an ideology, and an hour spent surfing the Web will give the average citizen at least the kind of insights that he might have found during World Wars II and III by reading "Mein Kampf" or the writings of Lenin, Stalin or Mao. Those insights, of course, eluded those in the West who preferred--understandably, but dangerously--to define the problem as something more manageable, such as German resentment about the Versailles Treaty, an exaggerated form of Russian national interest, or peasant resentment of landlords taken a bit too far. In the reported words of one survivor of the Holocaust, when asked what lesson he had taken from his experience of the 1940s, "If someone tells you that he intends to kill you, believe him...."
MIM: One of the causes of the terrorist attacks in London was the " failure to strike at the roots instead of just hacking at the branches" as Paul Sperry put it in his book Infiltration". Even more alarmingly one unidentified terrorism researcher pessimistically predicts an "endless war" while the man who 'has traced Osama Bin Laden for decades stated that "I don't think it's even started yet".
The article below shows that a flawed assessment of the causes of terrorism and failure to identify the enemy as militant Islam is the greatest obstacle to waging a successful war.
Which begs the question as to if the people quoted in the article below somehow missed 9/11, let alone the attacks which show that the West has been at war with militant Islam for decades . As Dr. Daniel Pipes wrote in "Militant Islam Comes to America".
"Unnoticed by most Westerners,war has been unilaterally declared on Europe and the United States." http://www.danielpipes.org/books/militantislam.php
Let us hope that the 'experts' quoted below will wake up and smell the coffee before we all start smelling the poison gas.
War without end?
By CHARLES HANLEY
New York and Washington. Bali, Riyadh, Istanbul, Madrid. And now London.
The experts aren't encouraged. One prominent terrorism researcher sees the prospect of "endless" war. The man who tracked Osama bin Laden for the CIA says, "I don't think it's even started yet."
An Associated Press survey of longtime students of international terrorism finds them ever more convinced, in the aftermath of London's bloody Thursday, that the world has entered a long siege in a new kind of war.
They believe that al-Qaida is mutating into a global insurgency, a possible prototype for other 21st-century movements: technologically astute, almost leaderless. And the way out is far from clear.
In fact, says Michael Scheuer, the ex-CIA analyst, rather than move toward solutions, the United States took a big step backward by invading Iraq.
Now, he said, "we're at the point where jihad is self-sustaining," where Islamic "holy warriors" in Iraq fight America with or without allegiance to al-Qaida's bin Laden.
The cold statistics of a RAND Corp. database show this: The 5,362 deaths from terrorism worldwide between March 2004 and March 2005 were almost double the total for the same 12-month period before the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003.
Thursday's attacks on London's transit system mirrored last year's bombings of Madrid commuter trains, and both point to an al-Qaida evolving into a movement whose isolated leaders offer video or Internet inspiration - but little more - to local "jihadists" who carry out the strikes.
Although no arrests have been made in the London attacks, a group using al-Qaida's name made a claim of responsibility, otherwise unconfirmed. Experts say the bombings bore the hallmarks of al-Qaida.
The movement's evolution "has given rise to a ‘virtual network' that is extremely adaptable," said Jonathan Stevenson, of the International Institute for Strategic Studies' Washington office.
The movement adapted switched from targeting aviation, where security was reinforced after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, to the "softer" targets of mass transit.
Such compartmentalized groupings, in touch electronically but with little central control, "are going to be a prototype for understanding where terrorist movements are going in the 21st century," said the University of North Carolina's Cynthia Combs, co-author of a terrorism encyclopedia.
Combs said the so-called Earth and Animal Liberation fronts in the United States are examples - if less lethal ones - of "leaderless" militant movements based on isolated cells. She also said it's not unrealistic that another American example - far-right militia cells - might make common cause someday with foreign terrorists against the U.S. government.
Bruce Hoffman, the veteran RAND Corp. specialist who fears an "endless war," dismisses talk of al-Qaida's back having been broken by the capture of some leaders.
"From the terrorists' point of view, it seems they have calculated they need to do just one significant terrorist attack a year in another capital, and it regenerates the same fear and anxieties," said Hoffman, who was an adviser to the U.S. occupation in Iraq.
What should be broken, he said, is the cycle of terrorist recruitment through the generations. "Here you come to the main challenge."
He and most of the other half-dozen experts said the world's richer powers must address "underlying causes" - lessen the appeal of radicalism by improving economies, political rights and education in Arab and Muslim countries.
Combs cited bin Laden's use of Afghanistan as his 1990s headquarters. "If we hadn't been ignoring Afghanistan and instead offered real assistance, would it have become a base for bin Laden?" she asked.
Not all agree this is an answer. Stephen Sloan, another veteran scholar in the field, prescribes stoicism.
The American, British and other target publics must give their intelligence and police agencies time to close ranks globally and crush the challenge, said Sloan, of the University of Central Florida.
"The public has to have the resolve to face the reality there will be other incidents," he said.
Scheuer, who headed the CIA's bin Laden unit for nine years, sees a different way out - through U.S. foreign policy. He said he resigned last November to expose the U.S. leadership's "willful blindness" to what needs to be done: Withdraw the U.S. military from the Middle East, end "unqualified support" for Israel, sever close ties to Arab oil-state "tyrannies."
He acknowledged that such actions aren't likely soon, but said his longtime subject bin Laden will "make us bleed enough to get our attention." Ultimately, he said, "his goal is to destroy the Arab monarchies."
For James Kirkhope, the outlook is "depressing."
His Washington consulting firm, Terrorism Research Center, sometimes "red-teams" for U.S. authorities, playing a role in exercises, thinking like terrorist leaders. That thinking increasingly seems focused on a struggle for Islamic supremacy lasting hundreds of years, he said.
And for the moment they just "want to be kept on our radar screen," Kirkhope said. For all the terror and carnage, he said, last week's London attacks carried a simple message: "We're still around."
World War IV
Take the matter of this war. It is most assuredly something other than the "Afghan War," as the press sometimes calls it. After all, the biggest engagement took place on American soil, and the administration promises to wage the conflict globally, and not, primarily, against Afghans.
The "9/11 War," perhaps? But the war began well before Sept. 11, and its casualties include, at the very least, the dead and wounded in our embassies in Africa, on the USS Cole and, possibly, in Somalia and the Khobar Towers. "Osama bin Laden's War"? There are precedents for this in history (King Philip's War, Pontiac's War, or even The War of Jenkins' Ear), but the war did not begin with bin Laden and will not end with his death, which may come sooner than anyone had anticipated--including, one hopes, the man himself.
A less palatable but more accurate name is World War IV. The Cold War was World War III, which reminds us that not all global conflicts entail the movement of multimillion-man armies, or conventional front lines on a map. The analogy with the Cold War does, however, suggest some key features of that conflict: that it is, in fact, global; that it will involve a mixture of violent and nonviolent efforts; that it will require mobilization of skill, expertise and resources, if not of vast numbers of soldiers; that it may go on for a long time; and that it has ideological roots.
Americans still tiptoe around this last fact. The enemy in this war is not "terrorism"--a distilled essence of evil, conducted by the real-world equivalents of J. K. Rowling's Lord Voldemort, Tolkien's Sauron or C. S. Lewis's White Witch--but militant Islam. The enemy has an ideology, and an hour spent surfing the Web will give the average citizen at least the kind of insights that he might have found during World Wars II and III by reading "Mein Kampf" or the writings of Lenin, Stalin or Mao. Those insights, of course, eluded those in the West who preferred--understandably, but dangerously--to define the problem as something more manageable, such as German resentment about the Versailles Treaty, an exaggerated form of Russian national interest, or peasant resentment of landlords taken a bit too far. In the reported words of one survivor of the Holocaust, when asked what lesson he had taken from his experience of the 1940s, "If someone tells you that he intends to kill you, believe him."
Al Qaeda and its many affiliates consist of Muslim fanatics. They will, no doubt, find almost as many enemies among moderate Muslims as among infidels, and show them, if anything, less mercy. One hopes for a wave of revulsion among Muslims who abhor this rendition of their faith, understand the calamities of all-out war waged to erect a theocratic dystopia, and will fight these movements with no less vigor, and no more reservations, than do Christians, Jews, Hindus and, for that matter, atheists.
Afghanistan constitutes just one front in World War IV, and the battles there just one campaign. The U.S. is within range of gaining two important objectives there: smashing al Qaeda (including the elimination of its leadership), and teaching the lesson that governments that shelter such organizations will themselves perish. But what next? Three ideas come to mind.
First, if one front in this war is the contest for free and moderate governance in the Muslim world, the U.S. should throw its weight behind pro-Western and anticlerical forces there. The immediate choice lies before the U.S. government in regard to Iran. We can either make tactical accommodations with the regime there in return for modest (or illusory) sharing of intelligence, reduced support for some terrorist groups and the like, or do everything in our power to support a civil society that loathes the mullahs and yearns to overturn their rule. It will be wise, moral and unpopular (among some of our allies) to choose the latter course. The overthrow of the first theocratic revolutionary Muslim state and its replacement by a moderate or secular government, however, would be no less important a victory in this war than the annihilation of bin Laden.
Second, the U.S. should continue to target regimes that sponsor terrorism. Iraq is the obvious candidate, having not only helped al Qaeda, but attacked Americans directly (including an assassination attempt against the first President Bush) and developed weapons of mass destruction. Again, American allies will flinch, and the military may shake its head at the prospect of revisiting the aborted Gulf War victory, but the costs of failing to do so, and the opportunities for success, make it good sense. The Iraqi military is weak, and the consequences of finishing off America's archenemy in the Arab world would reinforce the awe so badly damaged by a decade of cruise missiles flung at empty buildings.
Third, the U.S. must mobilize in earnest. The Afghan achievement is remarkable--within two months to have radically altered the balance of power there, to have effectively destroyed the Taliban state and smashed part of the al Qaeda--is testimony to what the American military and intelligence communities can do when turned on to a problem. But the Taliban were not the hardest case, and the airplanes dropping bombs on the enemy in Kunduz and Kandahar are in some cases older than their pilots, and suffering for lack of spare parts.
The combination of precision weapons, Special Operations forces, and sophisticated intelligence-gathering systems indicates the beginning of a desperately needed "transformation" of the American military. But this will require something more than the $20 billion a year in defense spending increases over the budget now in the offing.
Similarly, the creation of a homeland security office without real powers, the reluctance of the government to open comprehensive, formal inquiries into the disaster of Sept. 11, and the absence of big, imaginative programs--mass scholarships for public health programs, for example, or, more ambitious yet, a really substantial program of scientific research to emancipate the West from dependence upon Persian Gulf oil--tell us that Washington is somewhere between a war footing and business as usual.
It is, of course, early yet, and many of the signs--from the B-52s pounding Taliban front lines to CIA teams scouring the Afghan hills, from enhanced spending on vaccines and the Centers for Disease Control to the creation of military tribunals for foreign terrorists--indicate that the government is truly serious. But much remains to be done, beginning with acknowledging the scope of the task, and acting accordingly. Yet if after the Afghan campaign ends, the government lapses into a covert war of intelligence-gathering, arrests, and the odd explosion in a terrorist training camp, it will be a sign that it would rather avoid calling things by their true name.
World War IV
The term World War IV was coined by Professor Eliot Cohen from Johns Hopkins School for Advanced International Studies, and used most frequently by R. James Woolsey (Director of the Central Intelligence Agency 1993-1995) in reference to the current US-led War on Terrorism (World War III being the Cold War). However, it is not a widely used term by politicians or the press.