Skip to comments.Has Bush outfoxed bin Laden?
Posted on 09/27/2001 6:56:04 AM PDT by Tai_Chung
The terrorist atrocities inflicted on the US have give rise to a new rumor mill that grinds out stories that range from the banal to the bizarre. But a story out of the Middle East has more credibility than most, particularly in certain quarters. Some cooler and more intelligent heads in the Arab world have concluded that Bush has outfoxed the fanatical bin Laden.
Like all fanatics bin Laden is narrowly on his mission while being disconnected from the real world. Far from being the educated man he is said to be he, like his suicide-bombers, is remarkable ignorant of the West, specially the US. Although some of his followers have been educated at Western Universities their education has been confined to technical subjects like engineering. Those, for example, who attended US universities learnt nothing of US history or cultural values, confusing topless bars, which some of them enjoyed, with moral decay and lack of will. The sad fact is that what little they knew of US history and policies came entirely from the countrys anti-American left, which has painted a grossly dishonest picture of America that neatly fitted in with these terrorists anti-American dogma thus blinding them further to the political and military consequences of their actions.
As our editor pointed out at a recent seminar in Australia, being narrowly focused to the exclusion of all else is part of the terrorists Achilles heel. And so it is with bin Laden. Believing himself to be the hand of God and a follower of the one true faith, or his fanatical version of it, means he operates with an open loop. Therefore there is no negative feedback mechanism to correct his distorted picture of the world. There are no advisers to council restraint or retreat because like Hitler, Stalin, Mao, etc., he literally believes himself to be the only one capable of interpreting events and predicting their consequences.
Now we have bin Ladens fundamental weakness. Being truly ignorant of American history and knowing nothing of the countrys political system he has made the mistake of drawing the wrong lesson from a narrow range of fairly recent events by interpreting it in terms of his world view: the refusal of George Bush seniors to finish off Saddam Hussein, the hasty retreat from Somalia, the successful bombing of US embassies and military bases in Saudi Arabia, the attack on the Cole and Clintons self-serving pinprick responses to terrorism.
In bin Ladens fantasy America would either respond in a Clintonesque way and so demonstrate to the world its cowardly nature or it would blindly strike out, killing hundreds if not thousands of innocents and so inflame the whole of the Islamic world. (Notice how closely his apocalyptic vision resembles the extreme lefts one of a world-wide revolution against capitalism).
He got neither. Instead of grabbing the initiative he made a terrible blunder. His actions pulled the US together, awakening in it a steely resolve that can have only one outcome. Instead of retreating or immediately striking out, President Bush set about building up a mighty military force not only to destroy bin Laden but to demonstrate to the rest of the world the consequences of attacking America. Afghanistan has been isolated, its borders sealed.
Battle lines have been drawn and are being supported with varying degrees of enthusiasm. Russia, Tajikstan. Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, even Iran, Pakistan and China are cooperating. British special forces (SAS) are already operating in the country while American special forces are moving in. A coordinated plan consisting of concentrated air attacks on terrorist camps and Taliban installations, special forces assault teams, and the cooperation of the Northern Alliance is being put into action. None of this, so the story goes, is supposed to be happening.
Moreover, there are rumors that the scale of the forces that bin Laden has unleashed has caused subterranean cracks to appear within the Talibans ranks, with some of them wondering why they should have to take the fall for bin Laden. The smarter ones know they are not popular among the mass of Afghans, and that if properly equipped and supported by Western powers the Northern Alliance would drive them back to their mountain villages that is if the locals dont hang them from cranes and artillery barrels first.
Afghan refugees are relating tales of an increasing number of Taliban acts of banditry and rape as order collapses in the towns and cities. The wholesale kidnapping of non-Pashtun males aged between 15 and 30 for military service smells of panic because the Taliban knows these males belong to hostile ethnic minorities. These are not the actions of men who believe in their own invincibility.
So to some Arab observers Bush has already won. But surely if bin Laden is killed other bin Ladens will arise. There is only one bin Laden, thank God. This latter-day Mahdi is just another religious millenarian who promises paradise by driving out the infidel, the cause of the faithfuls misery. Such people have been a curse throughout history.
Im not saying that terrorism will end with bin Laden, only that his head must be the first to roll if victory is to be achieved. Once this is done, the invisible war against terrorism will accelerate, from the freezing of bank accounts to the assassination of terrorist organizers and the smashing of their networks.
The strategy, as explained to me, is basically simple. Make an example of bin Laden, demonstrate overwhelming military power and the will to use it against states that harbor and train terrorists; isolate the terrorists physically and squeeze them psychologically. The ultimate aim is the elimination of state-sponsored terrorism.
Don't underestimate bin Laden. Don't underestimate the willingness of Arabs to force this into a West Vs. Islam conflict. Don't underestimate the willingnedd of some Israelis to turn this into a Wesy vs. Islam conflict. Don't underestimate anyone...including friends and so-called allies. We are knee deep in the thornbush right now and the last thing we need to do is assume victory.
(Too bad. We really, really wanted to nuke somebody...)
Isn't that Wesy vs. Ferguson?
Okay, okay, I'm just being,
You are either a DU fanatic, a "Hate America First" traitor, or a pathetically confused person.
Thank you for choosing sides and telling all of us.
A DU fanatic would have said "Bush blew up the Trade Center so he could start a war to enrich his oil buddies," or something like that.
A traitor would have said "America got what it deserved because of our horrible foreign policy which has no regard for human rights in developing countries," etc.
All francis said was, "Let's be careful out there." I've got no problem with that.
The sad fact is that what little they knew of US history and policies came entirely from the countrys anti-American left, which has painted a grossly dishonest picture of America that neatly fitted in with these terrorists anti-American dogma thus blinding them further to the political and military consequences of their actions.
Our media stinks.
I could write for a week about the implications of this, but I'd be preaching to our own choir. Suffice it to say, that maybe, posssibly, the liberals in academia may have both caused the confidence in these infidels to do their diabolical work, and caused the underestimation of the patriotic American-right response that will lead to their downfall.
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