Thursday, July 21, 2005

The Second Wave of London Attacks

Details on the recent second wave of London attacks are sketchy. However, initial reports suggest the delivery of these attacks were less adept, that the bombs themselves were smaller than the first; and that consequently the British authorities were able to separate the crowd from the explosive devices and largely neutralize them. This time the bombers were not suiciders as this account from the BBC reports:

I was on the train at Oval. There was an automatic announcement between Stockwell and Oval that one of the passenger alarms had been activated. After a while standing at the platform at Oval, we were ordered off the train and out of the station. As we passed the second carriage, we could see an intact-looking medium sized dark rucksack that had been left on a seat. Emergency vehicles starting arriving quickly, then in huge numbers and variety. The roads outside were promptly closed to traffic, then a pedestrian exclusion area was extended increasingly far away and sniffer dogs deployed at street level. Kevin Beurle, London

The Economist compares the latest attacks with the ones two weeks previous. It notes that the bombs were smaller, that they inflicted few casualties and that, as the BBC report above details, the attackers were not prepared to take their own lives.

On Thursday July 21st the city’s transport system was reported to have been hit by explosions at four points around midday—three almost simultaneous blasts on the London Underground and a fourth on a bus, the same as last time. However, police are also talking of devices having failed to explode at the scenes of some of the attacks. What is clear is that the explosions were smaller this time and the results were far less devastating. The sight of bloodied commuters being brought out of Underground stations was mercifully absent. ... Armed police in body armour had entered the nearby University College Hospital, in pursuit of a man said to be carrying a bomb. Eye witnesses told of another suspected bomber seen running away from the blast at Oval. ...

if initial reports prove correct, the most important factor contributing to the lack of heavy casualties was that the explosions were very small—perhaps because only the detonators went off, not the devices’ main explosive charge. If so, only sheer good fortune prevented great loss of life.

Well, maybe sheer good fortune coupled with the absence of a competent bomb-maker and the absence of a second determined cell of suicide bombers. If the Economist is correct about the failure of the detonators to produce a high-order explosion two things can be inferred. First, the close-in defenses of London's public transportation system failed; after all the bombs were delivered to the trains and detonated, except that the detonations themselves were faulty. Second, the outer-ring of defenses, the anti-terrorist component that attacks the terrorist infrastructure, denies it havens, reduces its funding and makes it difficult to place competent bomb-makers in London has succeeded -- at least in this case. More details will clarify the situation as further news becomes available.

(Speculation alert) When faced with the suicide attack problem (Kamikazes) during the Second World War, US fleets adopted the concept of the layered defense around battlegroups, consisting of attacking enemy airfields, providing a radar picket on enemy lines of approach, creating a combat air patrol to intercept incoming Kamikazes and then presenting a succession of long, medium and short-range antiaircraft fire, before finally falling back on warship evasion, armor and damage control. Each component in the defense contributed its statistical share of the defense. The debate surrounding the prosecution of the war on terror can be conceptually split, though not very neatly, between those who advocate a layered defense with a forward-deployed component (coordination with 'friendly' Muslim countries, involvement in Iraq, Afghanistan, the Horn of Africa, etc), plus everything in between, and those who would rely primarily on terminal or close-in defenses (national IDs, CCTV cameras, border control, etc) in the homeland. A small percentage of policy advocates believe that a complete reliance on nearly passive close-in defenses ("support the troops, bring the boys home", build bridges to Muslim communities, etc) would be adequate to protect the public against terrorism. Over the coming years, the value of every aspect of the defense will be highlighted by different incidents. Some attacks will be stopped by an alert security guard, others will be pre-empted in a land so distant the public will never even know that the attacks were mounted. But they are all needed. If any lives were saved in London today, it probably means that a deep defense makes a difference.


Blogger Peter UK said...

It might be worth speculating that the terrorists had a second attack planned but the rapid siezure of the explosives factory left them without the main charge.This might indicate a rigidity in the planning processes of the group.
Also,since there was no possibility of death the terrorists who made the attack but had to run,but with the vast number of CCTV cameras there isn't a lot of places they can run to.
Whilst these could have been nuisance attacks to disrupt London,the question remains that this kind of terrorist does not usually stay their hand,as much mayhem as possible is the maxim.

Whoever it was made a serious mistake,those who perpetrated this may be cannon fodder,but they are alive,if they can be kept out of the clutches of the Human Rights lawyers,they will talk.

7/21/2005 12:39:00 PM  
Blogger exhelodrvr said...

Peter UK,
But Scotland Yard won't use any inappropriate techniques to get information out of them, will it?

7/21/2005 12:46:00 PM  
Blogger Das said...

Speaking of Wretchard's "nearly passive close-in defenses" I am not encouraged. BBC/PRI program "The World" ran a report yesterday about how Muslims kids in Britain are talking about the London train bombings. Out of seven or eight young people interviewed none flat-out condemned the bombings; most in fact, offered up self-pitying apologetics, e.g., remember that Timothy McVeigh was a Christian curch going man (you'd better believe that if a cult of Murderers for Jesus started up that I would elect myself president of Stomp Out Mrderers for Jesus Society). One girl, however, did raise the specter of Jihad recruiters on college campuses in northern Britain (she would not name the campuses). She was concerned that they urged young men - young men that she knew - to travel to Egypt, to grow beards and become zealots. A radio commentator quickly insisted that there is nothing wrong with foreign study or growing a beard, etc.

I do not know if these kids are typical but it was a very discouraging report for those of us who hope that moderate Muslims will strangle this beast in its lair.

7/21/2005 12:48:00 PM  
Blogger Baron Bodissey said...

Are you ruling out the possibility that this was a "test run" to sound out the new defenses?

7/21/2005 01:00:00 PM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...

Also today, a Palestinian rocket aimed at an Israeli settlement in Gaza hit a house in a Gaza refugee camp instead, killing a boy, 10, and seriously wounding another child, 12, both form the Abu Ubada family, Palestinian medical officials said.

Is this a pattern? will we now see more and more failed terrorists killing themselves as the "pool" of talent is dried up? drain the swamp.....

7/21/2005 01:24:00 PM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...

ops, story was from NYtimes...

7/21/2005 01:27:00 PM  
Blogger Sardonic said...

What would be particularly gratifying, and helpful, would be if the suicide bombers were to "accidentally" (with our secret service assistance) blow up their own bomb factories - with the big wigs standing around gloating before it happens... how sweet that would be. Another thought from yesterday comes to mind: why would we not wish to encourage the "resistance cells" in Iraq (and elsewhere) to take out the source of our troubles - the Imams themselves? The bad ones, of course, but one by one within in the space of a month, what if they all happenned to "accidentally" get blown up one way or the other? And when a new radical pervert monster evil creton moron terrorist Imam steps up to the plate to take over, woopsie - kaboom. Bye. Enjoy your 72 raisins in hell, buddy. Just a thought.

7/21/2005 01:40:00 PM  
Blogger Peter UK said...

Could be,but it is an xpensive way of doing it in terms of manpower and tips the hand of the terrorists somewhat.

7/21/2005 01:40:00 PM  
Blogger Cruiser said...

Perhaps these were intended to be suicide attacks, but when the bombs did not detonate the "suicide" bombers abandoned their packs and fled. Evidence of this may be seen in the reports that one suspect was seen fleeing with wires coming out of his shirt. Why would he have wires coming out of his shirt if the bomb was to be detonated remotely or on a timer?

7/21/2005 01:44:00 PM  
Blogger wretchard said...

My own gut feeling is that this attack is not a "copycat" event. It's not as if a bunch of guys sitting in a pub got drunk and said 'let's attack exactly the same stations in a fortnight on a dare' then went on to find explosives, personnel, etc in that time frame. This operation came out of some kind of pre-existing clandestine cell. So it's probably the British AQ bench subbing for the now-dead first team. But the bombmaker presumably didn't go up in the first attack. So where is he? The British authorities always acted as if some of the original cell, or their support organization had survived.

Right after the first London attack there were immediate counterterrorist arrests in Cairo, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia. Those are the ones that made the news but maybe there were others. The tempo of the response and its global scope, I think it is fair to say, could not have happened four years ago. The world has become a harder place for the AQ and similar organizations to mount an attack precisely because of the layered and forward defenses now available. This is guesswork, its true. Maybe the second attack failed purely due to luck, but you make your own luck sometimes.

7/21/2005 02:06:00 PM  
Blogger Bryan J Weitzel said...


This is wild speculation, and as I have not seen the report to which you refer it is even more so, but it is possible that the "gentleman" seen running with wires coming out of his shirt ran away with the explosives still attached to him, leaving the detonator behind. Hmm? Second thoughts about whether those virgins were really waiting for him perhaps?

As to the apparent lack of success this time around, I tend to go with the view that the quick and effective response by New Scotland Yard and British intelligence agencies have either captured the "talented" bomb makers or at the very least forced them to run and/or hide. It is also possible that the cache of explosive found in the boot of the rental found in the car park was intended to be used in this attack, indicating that perhaps supplies are limited.

But again, this is speculation. I think NSY and the intelligence agencies are running down all of these possibilities as well as some we haven't even thought of yet.

7/21/2005 02:11:00 PM  
Blogger Thon Brocket said...

There are supposed to have been instances in Northern Ireland of Brit double agents tampering with bombs either to make them fail to detonate, or to explode prematurely.

Just a thought.

7/21/2005 02:15:00 PM  
Blogger Fernand_Braudel said...

Has anyone read Paul L. Williams'
Osamas Revenge: THE NEXT 9/11 : What the Media and the Government Haven't Told You?

7/21/2005 02:17:00 PM  
Blogger Annoy Mouse said...

The “war on drugs” offers an analog to the layered defense doctrine. We attempt to work with nations that produce drugs to eliminate the problem at the source. We interdict shipments along the way. We try to prevent entry into the country at our borders. Eventually we bust the users and try to work our way up the supply chain to bigger fish. How well has this worked? Follow the money. Drug money is capable of corrupting all but the most steadfast, ¿plomo o plata? But who would have expected that terror operations inspired by Wahhabis could drive oil prices as high as they are? An economist?

7/21/2005 02:23:00 PM  
Blogger RWE said...

The fact that all of the devices appear to have malfunctioned tends to indicate the following to me:
1. The same guy made them at the same time. Explosives devices are manufactured, qual tested if a new design, then lot sampled as required to ensure quality. Given the increased secuity since the last attacks, qual testing probably was impossible and lot sampling certainly was impossible. Given this, failure of all of the devices is quite beliveable.
2. The builder did not do a good job. This may have been due to either lack of expertise or lack of materials. It is possible that the material deteriorated due to age; if so this would indicate a homemade high explosive. In any case this would imply local manufacture of the devices if not the explosive itself rather than complete packages smuggled in from a more professiuonal factory, where qual testing and lot sampling would be the norm.

7/21/2005 02:25:00 PM  
Blogger PresbyPoet said...

You would expect the best and most committed to go first, since that offers the best chance of success. The second group of planes to attack Pearl Harbor had more losses, since the defenders had been alerted by the first attack.

There is a diminishing returns aspect to terrorism. Once the citizens of the various cities under attack by the "terror" bombings in WWII got used to what was going on, it just became a fact of life to be faced. Living in cities is dangerous, some more than others, yet people flock to them.

It is interesting to note that in the 30's they thought bombers would quickly terrorize civilians, while there was some at the start in each campaign, i.e. Spain, Poland, Belgium, people quickly adjusted. In Israel, life goes on. In Baghdad, life goes on. No one wants terror, but what cannot be changed must be endured.(Always excluding the French)

7/21/2005 02:30:00 PM  
Blogger Marcus Aurelius said...

Early in the day here I speculated this latest bombing might have been diversionary. My gut feeling was it doesn't fit at all with a real attack. I had a hard time believing all four bombs malfunctioned.

However, nothing else has happened (at least nothing we know about, perhaps it failed to divert and something else was nipped) so I have come to believe today's bombers are not ready for terminal time players.

I can not remember where it was stated. Britain is said to be very uncooperative in general when it comes to rooting out the radicals in their midst but very cooperative with Iraq. OTOH, we have France which is said to be almost ruthless with its radicals but completely the opposite when it comes to Iraq.

Anyway to the main point of the blog. The left insists we (by we I mean us in the USA) are diverting resources in Iraq; resources that could be better spent on increasing port security or other such homeland defense concerns. While, it is important we work to a more secure homeland if we concentrate solely on that all we do is to build our own Maginot Line. Those defenses can and will be circumvented.


7/21/2005 02:34:00 PM  
Blogger Marcus Aurelius said...

FWIW, I have heard the reports that Cruizer relates many times today.

Initial reports.

7/21/2005 02:41:00 PM  
Blogger Doug Santo said...

Good post.

Comparison of our current defense against terrorism with that used by the US Navy in WWII to protect against Kamikazes is appropriate and relevant.

The Navy model shows what a comprehensive defense against suicide attacks by a fully mobilized country looks like. It may seem that attacks against naval elements at sea present a special case, but I would argue the same concepts with respect to defense in depth apply to each phase of the US defense against terrorists. This includes national policy and state, county, and local protective measures. Of course the tools and techniques of modern defensive measures to protect civilian targets from suicide bombers would be different.

The Japanese adopted suicide attacks as a last ditch measure to protect their homeland from imminent invasion. The development of this technique reached maturity at the Battle of Okinawa, where the Japanese flew more than 1500 human bombs at the attacking US fleet. The Kamikazes took their toll, sinking something like 30 ships, damaging many more, and causing thousands of casualties.

The kamikazes were not able to prevent the US invasion. The kamikazes were not able to change US plans to invade the Japanese main islands. The kamikazes were not able to prevent the soviets from entering the war against Japan in Manchuria. The kamikazes were not able to stop US B-29’s from devastating Japanese cities by firebombing. Suicide as a means to stave-off defeat in war was a failure. Suicide as a means to achieve victory in war is a non-starter. Islamofascist selection of suicide as a strategic and tactical weapon to defeat the west is evidence of the weakness of this fanatical cult.

Defense against Islamofascist suicide attacks must, and I believe currently does, take advantage of every aspect of US strength.

1. The brunt of the fight must be waged by our superbly trained and equipped military as opposed to our domestic police/fire/emergency response personnel: it is.

2. The fight must be taken to the homeland of the fanatics: it has been.

3. Countrymen of the fanatics, and Arabs in general, must be convinced to fight the fanatics alongside western armies: in many ways they are.

4. US financial assets and international financial institutions must be used against the Islamofascists: as near as I can tell they are.

5. Other western countries must be convinced to join the fight against the Islamofascists: many have.

6. The enemy should be clearly identified and named. Islamofascists.

Of the items listed above the only thing we have failed to do is to name and define the enemy. I believe this is a mistake. It must be only too clear to reasonable Arab’s everywhere that the Islamofascists are fanatics. Mature Arab’s must know this and the US pretending that the average Arab cannot differentiate between his or her religious beliefs and those of the head choppers is foolish.

Doug Santo
Pasadena, CA

7/21/2005 02:41:00 PM  
Blogger THE DIRECTORATE said...

Strategically, terrorists aim at weak, fairly inconsequential targets. Subways, cafes and car detonations are hardly the kamikaze targeted attack on strategic resources. A layered defense against a market or subway is unrealistic.

What needs to be done is a greater level of intelligence on Muslim activities in any given nation. Mosques will require surveillance, despite the invasion of privacy that mandates.

Logic dictates that if Muslims are blowing themselves up you don't wiretap the synagogues. More money and operatives need to be deployed. Mi5 and other groups need to increase their recruitment of arabic agents who are familiar with the customs, languages of the terrorists and a counter-infiltration must be conducted.

For that is really what has happened, Islamic fascism has infiltrated within the nations borders and needs to be routed and identified. A defense against future terror can only be successfully achieved by employing a net of intelligence gathering.

7/21/2005 02:44:00 PM  
Blogger Aristides said...

I can't share your careful optimism, Wretchard. This mistake humiliated the bombmakers, and we can expect a follow-up attack shortly. It may not be the same perps as today, but to deliver these items all you need are a pair of legs, and there are plenty British Muslims willing to take that walk.

The British Muslim communities might as well be the border towns of Pakistan. The youth claim no allegiance to the state in which they reside, their posture is decidedly anti-West, and their Imams preach hate and murder. As the London bombings have focused our attention, so too have they sharpened the contrast. But not just for us; 7/7 was a clarion call for the faithful. If just 10% answer, it is without a doubt that London will continue to be hit, and hit hard.

My first thought today, when I heard the explosives were small and the damage light, was fear: fear that the terrorists used an aerosol and the pop was the dispersal. Now I fear the need to fix a failure.

7/21/2005 02:44:00 PM  
Blogger Aristides said...

I do, however, agree with the analysis that a tiered defense will hold down their capability. Won't do much if the Kamikaze turns out to be your cook, but at least he won't be flying a plane.

7/21/2005 02:48:00 PM  
Blogger Common Cents said...

"She was concerned that they urged young men - young men that she knew - to travel to Egypt, to grow beards and become zealots."

Why aren't these young men, their recruiters, the Imams who teach them and the individuals who finance them considered combatants and therefore fair game?

In my opinion, we condem ourselves to hundreds of years of the same old, same old, if we don't engage in clandestine asymetrical warfare against the above targets. When, myteriously, bombs begin to go off in the Mosques of hate spewing Imams during Friday prayers, I will know the West has become serious about defending itself.

7/21/2005 02:57:00 PM  
Blogger Mr.Atos said...

If we're presuming the detonators exploded, but not the explosives, then perhaps we are talking about a bad homebrew mixture. If that is the case, however, why would we assume that these bombers were not suicide bombers? They may have fully intended to blow themselves up and were quite surprised to find themselves in a quite embrassing living condition... being that there were no stygian whores to greet the bombers after the pop, only a shocked angry crowd.

7/21/2005 03:13:00 PM  
Blogger StoutFellow said...

My own gut feeling is that this attack is not a "copycat" event.

Agreed. If so, and if carried out successfully, it would have been a tour de force - an act of bravura demonstrating that the Jihadis can strike at will deep inside the infidel's homeland. The "botching" of the action by the terrorists raises an interesting (to me) question. What effect will the failed attempt have on efforts to rally additional Leftists, Democrats, naysayers, "moderate Muslims", etc. to the anti-Islamic Jihad cause? Had they succeeded as well as on 7/7, I expect there would be a large increase in anti-terrorist/anti-Islamist feelings among these groups. Since no-one was killed, I fear there may be no increase in the support for the anti-Jihad effort, and perhaps even an increased tendency to view the terrorists as pitiful incompetents who are not so dangerous and who need to be understood not destroyed.

7/21/2005 03:23:00 PM  
Blogger CAHMD52 said...

The layered defense also applies to ASW. I can imagine the whinning we would have heard in April of 1945, if the mindset of the Press back then had been the same as today's? Could we ever have won WWII? It was certainly a different world.

7/21/2005 03:27:00 PM  
Blogger wretchard said...


I don't want to be overconfident or convey any feeling of complacency. The enemy has a lot of tricks left up his sleeve. But it's important to recognize what we're doing right and build on that because, as you say, it could be an aerosol next time.

The enemy inevitably experiences humiliation when he is thwarted, but there's nothing for it but to thwart him and if he gets mad it's par for the course. Because his intent will never change though lot of the sincere advocates of appeasement believe that making nice will alter intent. Not with a fanatic like Osama Bin Laden; not likely at least. But if intent is fixed, the enemy's capability can be downgraded. The London event might be a case in point. The spirit of murder was willing but the explosive was weak.

7/21/2005 04:00:00 PM  
Blogger wretchard said...

The Directorate,

I fully agree that intelligence, like the old radar pickets, is a key element. It was intellgence and the old combat information center that made battle management possible. But where does intelligence come from? One major source is contact with the enemy. When the US stood off from the centers of terrorism, operating behind embassies and such in countries where the Jihadis had a big presence, intelligence was collected more indirectly or by technical means. That was good, but it had limits.

By being in Iraq, Iran, Syria, Lebanon etc on an open or clandestine basis a lot of the intelligence you rightly point out as necessary is gathered. In a way, the outer defense picket of every schoolbus in America is some SEAL snooping around the Pakistani border.

7/21/2005 04:08:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Again in London, anglospheres most secure city, bombs were planted and detonated in the heart of the city, but at secondary targets.
If the Brits cannot secure the transit system of central London, well, we can learn that Close In defense against "citizen" bombers is bound to fail, anywhere.

Forward defense.

7/21/2005 04:09:00 PM  
Blogger Peter UK said...

There is a huge intelligence gap in the UK precisely becuse the security services have had to back off for varying racial discrimination and human rights reasons.Blair's incredibley PC Government have downplayed this problem, as have other governments over the decades,now it has come home to roost all they can manage is a stiff upper lip and a shit eating grin,no easy task!
To paraphrase a weeping starlet,"They don't like us,they really don't like us!"
Poor Tony Multiculturia has gone down the pan.

7/21/2005 04:38:00 PM  
Blogger Peter UK said...

There is a huge intelligence gap in the UK precisely becuse the security services have had to back off for varying racial discrimination and human rights reasons.Blair's incredibley PC Government have downplayed this problem, as have other governments over the decades,now it has come home to roost all they can manage is a stiff upper lip and a shit eating grin,no easy task!
To paraphrase a weeping starlet,"They don't like us,they really don't like us!"
Poor Tony Multiculturia has gone down the pan.

7/21/2005 04:38:00 PM  
Blogger RWE said...

I think we must return once more to the question of "why?", not Why in the overall snse but why London? By all accounts, London was the center of Islamic radicalism in Europe. I think that the 7/7/05 attacks were, as both I and Wretchard postulated, attempts to shore up the Islamic base rather than a genuine attempt to knock GB out of the GWOT. Evidence is that they had somewhat of the opposite effect in GB; there were statements of condemnation from numerous Islanmic leaders, although one might doubt their sincerity. So were the attacks of today yet another warning to the British Islamic community that the long arm of Bin Laden remains capable? Or were the attacks today a case of the radical Islamic equivalent of the Boston Red Socks showing that they can play ball as well as their brothers and rivals, the radical Islamic equivalent of the New York Yankees, that struck two weeks ago? I think the competing teams analogy is the most likely explanation, and that is rather chilling to consider.

7/21/2005 04:39:00 PM  
Blogger James Kielland said...

Some have speculated that this could be some kind of diversion. The idea being that it would call up emergency response personnel while the bad guys could run around elsewhere. I doubt it. It seems real, working bombs would have provided just as much, if not more, of a diversion.

It's important to consider that the UK is a fairly small, tight place. I'm guessing the bad guys don't have the capability of going out and doing extensive tests on their designs and equipment. Although failure on all the devices certainly is curious.

As to this failure perhaps upping the tempo for another attack in order for the people behind it to save face, well, I think there is something else to consider. If this event is what it appears to be, I'd imagine the fact that all the devices failed could create large amounts of division, skepticism, or distrust within the organization. In Boydian terms, this would be an ideal catalyst to an opponent turning in on himself.

Mass transit remains a serious vulnerability in many places. It's interesting to note that the US's extensive use of private vehicles is apparently a strategic asset, except for the irony of it increasing oil consumption. Taking a subway or train out of commission appears significantly easier than taking out a super-highway or a major bridge.

7/21/2005 04:42:00 PM  
Blogger Cedarford said...

I'll give Wretchard a counter-speculation. If this was actually a "War on Terror" rather than a war of idealogy, I'd agree with layers and layers to defend against suicide bombers.

We have 200,000 targets in the US and limited money, money already looking like it could be spent better on other things than paying 500 cops OT to "better secure subways" and thus drive the "evildoers" into shopping Malls.

But this is really a war of ideas that threatens to become a physical war.

So what measures have we yet to undertake in the war of ideas?

1. Removal of the Western Left (that apologizes and rationalizes the actions of the Religion of Head-choppers) from positions of power and influence. The Left still holds power over Courts, Hollywood, the media, and academia. They must be reduced in ranks by ensuring the hiring is done not by like-minded Lefty colleagues job committees - but by people holding mainstream values.

2. Make any preaching of violence against citizens who do not share a preacher's religion a major crime.

3. Under the establishment clause, eliminate not just our Government supporting and funding a religion in America, but any government - particularly Saudi Arabia.

4. Start a crash program to fund and train US citizens in Arabic, Urdu, Chinese - and a half dozen other "nations of interest" - learning culture & linguistic skills.

5. Get or impose Final Borders on Palestine ASAP. It has been intregral to stirring up a hornets nest of global anger for 38 years and it is time to take it off the table as a hate generator.

6. Begin some sit downs in the USA, Europe, and inside the Ummah with Muslims and infidels and make those sitdowns honest dialogue, not conditioned by diplomatic niceties. Blunt talk time.

A: "Hey, Muslims! We cannot allow you to exist in our midst if you refuse to assimilate and maintain an intolerant version of your religion. Not to mention harboring those that seek to kill us. Nor will we sit back while you throat-slit non-Muslims in your own countries or elswhere".

B: "It is the fault of you infidels policies. Besides, we will outbreed you and own the world soon."

C: "You best stop talking of others as infidels or pieces of unclean filth. Don't think our "multi-culti" toleration is eternal and limitless. It is coming to an end. Clean up Islam's mess or the West will have to do it...brutally. But let's talk Muslim grievances."

D: "Get out of Andalusia, Arabia, Palestine. Stop your vile culture. Make your women more modest. Stop supporting dictators."

E: "Ok, we'll stop supporting dictators. We are out of Arabia, except for businessmen and tourists your governments welcome in that we demand be accorded hospitality and safety by all Muslims as guests. Spain is a non-starter. And you will get final borders with the Zionists if you recognize it's existence and stop killing non-Muslims. We can't stop culture or womens rights. If you don't like it, come up with an acceptable alternative culture...otherwise, back off. We wish to avoid having to do to you what the Mongols & Turks did!"

F: "You wouldn't dare do what the Mongols did!"

G: "Keep killing us or being silent about those who do and see what happens. Or just set off a nuke if you don't care to wait too long."


Just always keep in mind it's a war between competing ideologies, not a war on terrorism. Terrorism is just a tool. Bush started us on the wrong foot with his GWOT blather because he either didn't recognize or want to admit it was about Islam and competing visions within the adherents of that religion. And perhaps because he didn't wish to admit the Muslims have real grievances with Western policies.

7/21/2005 04:49:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

At the very least, the imams and congregations who practice sedition and treason must suffer the full force of the law. That they don't is the malignant effect of liberalism, and the assumption of innocence in even the most extreme circumstances. (Free Jose Padilla!)

In war time, ignoring sedition itself is a fatal weakness. Defense in depth requires defense in toto.

During World War II, Great Britain was remarkably resistant to agents provacateurs and spies. Only multi-culti liberalism stands in the way of a much more thorough defense in toto.

How long will it take to wake up?

7/21/2005 04:50:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

as you say all four of the bombs failed. I heard NPR reports of 'Champaign pops', most likely the blasting caps. The explosive failed. Symtec, C4 or other military type demo would have ignited. As noted earlier by rwe, this could well be a 'home brew' that failed to ignite.
Luck, not Security saved dozens of Londoners today.
That is if you count Opfor incompetence as 'Luck'

7/21/2005 04:55:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

All this talk of War

read the Constitution some time

This is a conflict, police action, name it what YOU will

Only the Congress can name it War

to date they have failed to do so.
Nameless foes in an endless struggle, in the twilight,
short of War.

7/21/2005 05:03:00 PM  
Blogger James Kielland said...


Why the word "evildoers" in quotes?

I see what you're getting at with suggestion #1, but I also fear that it could be a bit vague or amorphous. There are a lot of lefties out there who realize what we're up against. My guess is that the Ward Churchills of the world are perhaps a bit less representative of the left than many people think.

As to #2, that's ideal. I wonder if there will be a return to the sedition laws?

4: excellent idea.

5: Not at all sure that any settlement we could impose would make anyone (let alone everyone) happy. Increasingly I'm beginning to think the Palestinian issue is a red-herring, anyhow. By that I mean that I don't think there is any solution that we could impose that would cause AQ to stand down. Considering the nature of palestinian society, it's quite likely that some fringe group would be unhappy with the settlement, demand more power, and start blowing stuff up again.

It may be something we should be concerned about, but I think it is something that shows very little promise of success. Secondly, if we rush to give the palestinians everything they want out of fear of being bombed... we give the terrorists a huge victory, one which could be pointed to by future grievance demagogues as an example of progress obtained via the slaughter of the innocents.

I'd have much more interest in the Palestinian issue if Palestinian groups unanimously rejected AQ.

7/21/2005 05:04:00 PM  
Blogger wretchard said...


Something like the politico-cultural resolution you describing is happening right now, but in a messy way. One reason for the mess is that, unlike the Soviet Union, there is no unitary 'they' the West can make a deal with. Hell, there's not even a unitary West to make a deal on our side. Questions of a final settlement presume a consensus and commitment on both sides. Ideological resolution also requires a kind of change of consciousness that must dawn upon millions, not just a few.

So I guess it's all happening in some way, but I'll be damned if I can say what parts are on track.

7/21/2005 05:08:00 PM  
Blogger Peter UK said...

The political situation has to be taken into account,in no particular order,
There is pressure on Blair to stand down in favour of Gordom Brown.
Britain currently holds the EU presidency.
Foolishly Blair's government is using the International Criminal Court Act to prosecute its own troops for war crimes.A prosecution that could have been brought under quite adequate civil and military law.This is going to be very demoralising,handing the enemy a propaganda victory which will discredit any existing and future actions by British troops.
London is to host the Olympics.
George Galloway's party is the first far left party wholly owned by a muslim backer.
MPs are on an 80 day holiday.
British troops are due to be brought home from Iraq in the coming year.

7/21/2005 05:09:00 PM  
Blogger Paul said...

Here is my own speculation that I posted on my blog.

Might be a little Bondish, hopeful thinking but who knows? (plus it makes me feel better)

It seems details of today's London bombings are coming out much more slowly than those of 2 weeks ago. From what I can gather there were 4 explosions, three trains and one bus, just like the 7/7 attacks. However, this time around the damage was minimal. Apparently the explosive devices malfunctioned. Here's my conjecture: British intelligence was loosely on to these guys (terrorists) so, using an undercover agent they sold them a pile of play-doh disguised as some sort of plastic explosives. Not very sophisticated terrorists attach the detonators to the play-doh, drop it in their backpacks, get in position, yell "72 virgins here I come!" but only a firecracker like blasting cap goes off, essentially 'marking' the would-be bombers. The bombers are still alive and can be questioned, as well all the evidence that would have been blown up is still in one piece.

Thoughts? Is that really as plausible as I make it sound?

7/21/2005 05:20:00 PM  
Blogger Marcus Aurelius said...

One thing for sure. The bombers BONKED in a very public and visible way. Lets hope this makes people realize they are not invincibles.

I know I have been harping on this quite a bit, but I do it again. Yes, this is no war on terror. This is a war on radical utopianism Islam. But, if our leaders use that language many Muslims who might be on our side are going to hear only: war on blah-blah-blah Islam.

7/21/2005 05:23:00 PM  
Blogger Lagwolf said...

I penned this song for my band to record next month in the studio. I wrote it after 7/7 and its even more poignant now. We will be finishing up the music this weekend...bombers be damned.

Cry Freedom

Doncha run, just cry freedom
Don’t let the bastards grind you down
Doncha run, just cry freedom
They’ll never take that from this town

Don’t let fear get in the way
Courage will be there
Tellin’ you to stay
When things are too much to bear

They want us to be afraid
To live life all scared
Freedom is to be paid
Coming to those who dared

Band together in the face of fear
Rally round and be counted
Stand up for what is dear
We will not be routed

Doncha run, just cry freedom
Don’t let the bastards grind you down
Doncha run, just cry freedom
They’ll never take that from this town

Doncha run, just cry freedom
Don’t let the bastards grind you down
Doncha run, just cry freedom
They’ll never take that from this town

7/21/2005 05:56:00 PM  
Blogger THE DIRECTORATE said...


Yes, intelligence from the nests of fanaticism is always helpful, but what we are witnessing is the satellite activities that have their origins in private homes and facilitated by local mosques.

When you think about it, what exactly does Al Qaeda benefit by blowing up some passengers on a London subway? That sort of thinking is local thinking. The sort local residents would think up to retaliate against their neighbors. In many ways it's similar to the school kid who goes to his local school on a suicidal rampage. It's a petty mindset. Al Qaeda, managing an operation in the UK, I believe would be much more likely to target Big Ben, Downing Street or some other high profile symbolic target and aim for even higher casualties.

This seems to be local "grassroots Al Qaeda" type terrorism funded by muslims sympathetic to the militant Islam agenda. Al Qaeda leadership rushes to take credit for any successful attack, but whether or not they knew of it before it happened is doubtful.

As useful as special force soldiers nosing around the Palestinian border are, they wont necessarily sniff out all terror attacks. Faith is the key. Wherever folks teach hatred and intolerance of the west is where you have the saplings of terror taking root.

This is, unfortunately, why every mosque and muslim neighborhood must be monitored to varying degrees. One could consider this monitoring the final layer of local defense against terror and special forces breaking down militants doors would be considered the first layer.

Balancing civil rights and security for your citizens is the name of the game.

7/21/2005 06:00:00 PM  
Blogger RWE said...

By the way, the attacks in London, both 2 weeks ago and today, could not have been timed better to ensure the renewal of the Patriot Act.
When you have enemies like these...
You don't need friends.

7/21/2005 06:15:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

Imams who praise terrorism to face deportation

7/21/2005 06:18:00 PM  
Blogger trangbang68 said...

Ferdnand Braudel:The Williams book(I haven't read it,but heard him interviewed) posits a scenario so bleak and apocalyptic that every argument anyone is making here or anywhere else is immediately muted if Williams is telling the truth.20 suitcase nukes set off here would not bring on a new Caliphate or a new world order,but Shiva the destroyer and the end of days.I don't think I want to read the book when it comes out.I'd probably never smile again.
A book I'm currently reading "Infiltration" by Paul Sperry is a valuable look at how deeply Wahhabi nihilism has infiltrated the mosques in America.
I remember a rumor after September 11 that Islamic schoolchildren made statements in New Jersey that indicated they knew about the attack before it happened.Sperry's book if true would tend to make that rumor possible.
We're engaged in a battle for survival and most in the west don't get it.The time for political correctness in confronting Islam is gone.

7/21/2005 06:47:00 PM  
Blogger Hannah's Dad said...

It seems from this article that at least one of these would-be mass murderers was prepared to make the ultimate sacrifice.

7/21/2005 06:55:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"An inspiration for terrorists both here and abroad,AND, he's Cute!"

7/21/2005 06:56:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"That sort of thinking is local thinking. The sort local residents would think up to retaliate against their neighbors. In many ways it's similar to the school kid who goes to his local school on a suicidal rampage. It's a petty mindset. "
It is also a mindset encouraged and provoked by PC Pandering and Mollycoddling.

7/21/2005 07:00:00 PM  
Blogger Hannah's Dad said...

What are the HTML tags one must use to properly post an active http link?


7/21/2005 07:00:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Marcus Aurelius,
We could take a lesson from Hollywood and call them radical skinhead terrorists.
...just to keep things straight.

7/21/2005 07:04:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

a href=""

Just remove the spaces between the
>< thingies.

7/21/2005 07:09:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Hannah's Dad,
Then clik "preview" and any typos etc will be pointed out.

7/21/2005 07:13:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Tony says,
"In war time, ignoring sedition itself is a fatal weakness. Defense in depth requires defense in toto."
We are sworn never to be JudgeMENTAL:
THAT suggestion is Highly JudgeMENTAL and should never be suggested, much less implemented.
Bags in NY are to be randomly searched:
Searching 80 year old Chinese Ladies in wheelchairs proves we are not JudgeMENTAL, and therefore pure and right.
In WWII, some Germans and Italians were interned along with some Japanese:
Then we were wrong and weak, and only won by pure luck
Now we won't even intern Muslim Aliens:
Now we are right and strong and could only lose by bad luck. (Who could have known in advance?)

7/21/2005 07:23:00 PM  
Blogger StoutFellow said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

7/21/2005 07:39:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

das said,
"I do not know if these kids are typical but it was a very discouraging report for those of us who hope that moderate Muslims will strangle this beast in its lair. "
If we just start calling their kids little angels, they will listen:
Whatever we do, we can't call them what they ARE!!!
(and if you MUST, be sure to call them *moderate* Muslims!)

7/21/2005 07:41:00 PM  
Blogger Cedarford said...

Why the word "evildoers" in quotes?

I suppose I put it in quotes because it is, as the French say, simplistic..It reflects a 4-year old meme that we should long ago have abandoned as we learned more - but for many people, it's still "A few evildoers who hijacked the reputation of the Religion of Peace - because they hate our freedom". All components of that meme are flawed, IMO.

On the "evildoers" - you have overly broad definitions of both who a terrorist is and who an "evidoer" is. Israelis pioneered broad brushing any Palestinian who defied Occupation - be it cutting comm wires, attacking a soldiers outpost, or blowing up a restaurant - indiscriminately - as "evil terrorists". By that measure, Indians attacking a Fort or a wagon train in America were "terrorists". And evildoers. I favor a narrower definition. It's too comic book. Obviously, the radical Islamists, even moderate Muslims and certain schools of thought in the West consider certain armed resistance, assymetric warfare acts - as not being evil, but morally OK. Things like the Marine Barracks bombing, Cole attack, even stretching...9/11 due to it's attacks being directed not indiscriminantly against ordinary civilians but at centers of US military, government, and economic power. Other stuff, like the Beslan massacre, head-chopping, UK attacks, cold blooded shooting of an Israeli mother and 4 daughters is hard for the Left, moderate Muslims, and even radical Muslims to justify as anything but evil...And within Islam, even many who oppose terrorism or it's support agree that a radical on Jihad that dies "Meets the rules" of martyrdom - is not evil - and is going to Paradise.

One of the elements of a dialogue is going to have to be agreement of the basic notions of what evil and terrorism actually is - and argue on the 10% we cannot agree on. But right now, we agree on little, and that gulf must be closed.

I prefer to acknowledge the wide spectrum between insurgents fighting occupation of their homeland and a Beslan Beast machine-gunning kids in the back. Ranging from legitimate to unlawful combatants committing the worst sort of war crimes.

And, James Kiellard writes: I see what you're getting at with suggestion #1, but I also fear that it could be a bit vague or amorphous. There are a lot of lefties out there who realize what we're up against. My guess is that the Ward Churchills of the world are perhaps a bit less representative of the left than many people think.

It's not just the Chomskyites and Churchills, even the sneering Oxford Dons and French poofsters I think of,'s the people on the Left that are locked into a pre-9/11 "let our legal system handle it while safeguarding our enemies sacred civil liberties" midset I fear. It's powerful media & Hollywood organs that strive to legitimize radical Islam while at the same time doing all they can to slam our soldiers as torturers and out of control thugs in the hopes that the Bush-Hitler will fall if we lose the conflict. And those aren't the fringe guys, but the NYtimes, CBS, George Soros, and big-time Hollywood producers and whole faculties in academia. Powerful, influential people, and I think they need further diminishment, because I believe they are not serving my Nation or my Civilization well.

Thanks on the compliments on a few other points.

7/21/2005 08:00:00 PM  
Blogger Das said...


Doug wrote:
"If we just start calling their kids little angels, they will listen: Whatever we do, we can't call them what they ARE!!! (and if you MUST, be sure to call them *moderate* Muslims!)"

Take a deep breath, say a prayer - I was just trying to keep the conversation civilized - something we can do that our enemies can't. Fact is I don't know what to call Muslim kids who won't come out and condemn their Jihad-killing brethren: lazy Muslims? Apathetic Muslims? Blind Muslims? Terrorist enabling Muslims? I don't have enough contact with them to know what they really are - and I was only reflecting on a 5 minute radio broadcast. What I heard - or rather what I DIDN'T hear condemnation of terror - disturbed me. To repeat: I am baffled that a parallel militant anti - anti - Western Islamic movement has not started up somewheres.

7/21/2005 08:19:00 PM  
Blogger oldefogey said...

It looks like the police are already saying this appears to be an Al Queda operation even though terribly botched.

“Detectives believe at least four bombers were involved in the attempted attacks and they are understood to be still at large. But police are certain their escape was caught on CCTV and several witnesses have already come forward with descriptions. One bomber struggled with three male passengers before fleeing up an escalator.

Early indications suggest the gang is part of the same terrorist network that launched the devastating strikes on the capital exactly two weeks ago in which 56 people died. If so, this would provide a crucial breakthrough in unravelling al-Qaeda's network in the UK.

Three of the four devices are thought to be of a similar size and weight to the bombs used in the attacks in the city on 7 July. The fourth was smaller and appears to have been contained in a plastic box.
It is understood that an initial examination of the devices has shown they contained constituents that appear similar to the explosives found in a bath at a property in West Yorkshire.
Four bombs were planted on three Tube trains and a bus, like the 7 July attacks. But this time, all failed to fully explode and only one bystander was "injured" - said to have suffered an asthma attack.
It is believed that with three of the devices, the detonators went off but the bomb failed to explode. On the fourth, it is thought that the detonator itself failed. “

I think we will have our answers shortly.

7/21/2005 08:26:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

why should they?
Surliness is rewarded by the girlymen "leaders" of the West.

Lileks on Tancredo, et al, Hat Tip Hewitt:
"Sorry. Bombing Mecca to revenge the acts of maniacs is like nuking the Vatican to protest the pedophilia scandal in Boston. The idea appeals to those whose nuanced study of Islam makes them conclude it’s better to alienate one billion people than defeat a fraction of the same group. It appeals to those who believe that Islam is a metal shard that cannot be absorbed and must be removed, preferably by blowing up the body. And burying the remains in pig skins! That’ll learn ‘em! It’s the mirror image of the PC conceit that holds Islam blameless for the terrorists who act in its name, as if there’s nothing in the Qu’ran but sweetness and light towards the infidel. Both groups are wrong; both groups’ misapprehension of the situation will get the rest of us killed."

7/21/2005 08:29:00 PM  
Blogger Cutler said...

"What would be particularly gratifying, and helpful, would be if the suicide bombers were to "accidentally" (with our secret service assistance) blow up their own bomb factories - with the big wigs standing around gloating before it happens..."

Paging the Weathermen [oops, too sexist, "Weather Underground"...]...

7/21/2005 08:36:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Did Tancredo elicit this?
"Today, I happened to drive by the local Islamic Center, not the mosque of Imam Kazerooni, who is Shiite, but a Suuni mosque. They've added some very welcome decoration:
US Flag - "Islam Values Human Life"
This is good. For one thing, it's the first time I've seen an American flag anywhere near a mosque since September 11. For another thing, they really do say all the right things. The more this becomes the message from Islam, the better. (They could use a better proofreader, but it's no worse than a whole lot of Israeli menus I've seen in LA.).
.View from the Height.
Hat tip, Hewitt.

7/21/2005 08:41:00 PM  
Blogger Cedarford said...

Wretchard writes, capturing my points more succinctly than I did:

Something like the politico-cultural resolution you describing is happening right now, but in a messy way.

Messy and incoherently, I'd say. It's bad when the 9/11 Commission has to describe who the actual enemy is and what should be done outside cops and military solutions. BUt it's not just America - other Western countries are all over the map because they are bent into pretzels over the conflicting values the West has embraced in recent decades.

One reason for the mess is that, unlike the Soviet Union, there is no unitary 'they' the West can make a deal with. Hell, there's not even a unitary West to make a deal on our side.

One great accomplishment of Western Civilization - much under remarked on - was our ability to introduce systems that eliminated the ability of miscellaneous tribes and interests to avoid responsibility and finger point to some other group as a problem. We did it inside the West and to 3rd World nations and movements. Essentially - "hey, you're part of this system and you're all on the hook." Religion is dicier, but without ordering them to -which would be resisted - we can suggest that we will hold certain centers of Islamic teaching and scholarship responsible for acts of those in their particular sect - Wahabbis, Shias, mainstream Sunnis. Like Qom for the Shias, the Grand Mosque of Cairo for mainstream Sunnis, the Saudis for Salafism & Wahabbism. Sort of - "get your shit together, end the anarchy of low end thugs deciding on their own whats right and wrong within your faith and.....We infidels await your decisions...."

Questions of a final settlement presume a consensus and commitment on both sides. Ideological resolution also requires a kind of change of consciousness that must dawn upon millions, not just a few.

As an American, I'm an impatient sort and want us to quickly cut to the chase and get the basic questions addressed ASAP - long before we address all areas of disagreement.

1. Question #1 - can the Ummah and the Dar al Harb share the same planet, or is this a conflict to the finish?

2. Question #2 - if that is affirmative, can you control Muslims and enforce tolerance? Because we cannot afford to have, in an era of WMD, Muslim freelancers 3-4 generations in Asia or the West explode on us literally or figuratively. We cannot abide a hostile population within our Borders, we cannot afford to guard 200,000 targets in the US and equivalent elsewhere or track millions of Muslims if even 1% are seeking WMD or other ways to kill us. And we will be forced to deal with the Muslims within.

3. Question #3 - If you agree that coexistence and control is possible, then we can talk grievances. You have things like Palestine, we have things like it is not enough just to tolerate non-Muslims and women in countries where Muslims are a minority and refrain from driving a knife with Koranic verses on it in the heart of an offender - toleration must exist within the Ummah. If not, we isolate you from humanity. But if we get that far, we can do some work on other grievances..

So I guess it's all happening in some way, but I'll be damned if I can say what parts are on track.

I hate to say it, since I approved of us going into Iraq, but since 2002, the whole idealogical conflict has gone into sort of a resolution stasis until the War in Iraq is over. We are still back in the post 9/11 months of saying "more equipment and money for the hero cops and firefighters who save us from the evildoers until they can be smoked out of their mountain caves", and we obsess about absolutely peripheral stuff like the Patriot Act, the "undiscovered threat du jour - MANPADs, school doors, making buses safe, the menace to milk, danger of tweezers, need to regulate all hunting rifles because "a few misguided Muslims" might be tempted.

Meanwhile the American Borders are still unguarded, Muslims still pour into the West. And I think the world won't move on addressing the idealogical conflict until Iraq is over or another 9/11, Beslan, or worse happens.

7/21/2005 09:21:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

(SAME in PC NEA/USA, I might add.)

Stuttaford has more at the corner:
SELF-LOATHING [Andrew Stuttaford]
Given today’s deeply disturbing news out of Britain, _____this_____ article in the latest London Spectator is very timely. It’s overstated, and its central thesis goes too far, but there is something to be said for the idea that the ceaseless denigration of Britain, its history and its institutions, by the country's liberal elite has done a great deal to hold back the assimilation of the country’s more recent ethnic communities. Here's an extract:
"No, the real answer to why Britain spawned people fuelled with maniacal hate for their country is that Britain hates itself.
In hating Britain, these British suicide bombers were as British as a police warning for flying the union flag. Britain’s self-loathing is deep, pervasive and lethally dangerous.
We get bombed, and we say it’s all our own fault. Schools refuse to teach history that risks making pupils proud, and use it instead as a means of instilling liberal guilt.
The government and the BBC gush over ‘the other’, but recoil at the merest hint of British culture.
The only thing we are licensed to be proud of is London’s internationalism — in other words, that there is little British left about it.
It wasn’t always like this.

7/21/2005 09:59:00 PM  
Blogger subpatre said...

Unless there's some compounds very different from the run-of-the-mill stuff, this attack wasn't from the same group that carried out the previous explosions. Or the group's run out of material and moderately competent people.

According to one witness, the backpack had "gooey lard coming out of it.... and there was a strong smell of vinegar". It'd be hard to mistake an ammonia or nitrate smell for acetic acid.

For all we know, it could have been a baking powder and vinegar "bomb"; but not likely. Equally improbable is a decomposed or rancid commercial blasting agent. If the odor was acetic, it's suspiciously like a homebrew attempt at a binary shell (binary backpacks?) poison gas.

Assuming this, the 'inner defense ring' isn't indicted too much. Sensors and even dogs simply can't detect the infinite number of chemicals that, in combination, are poisonous. The attackers got through, which is a weak spot in the human analysis. The packs wouldn't be detectable except through profiling or personal interviews.

Wretchard's point about a second ring of defense is correct: The planning and execution of this attempted attack was stupendously incompetent. Even it's core idea is juvenile. The splodey-dopes are running out of brains.

Al-Q's typical MO says they won't claim responsibility. They always wait for a reaction and make the claim or denial after they've analyzed the effect (whether or not they had anything to do with it). These examples of incompetence are simply embarrassing to them.

It's coming down to Shock-n-Awe versus Fizzle-n-pop.

7/21/2005 10:14:00 PM  
Blogger CERDIP said...

My understanding was that 7/7 gang used peroxyacetone. This would emit acetone and ozone odours, which certainly can be described as having a vinegary sense.

There would not have been any ammonia or nitrates.

7/21/2005 10:23:00 PM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

Ohhhhhh. Humiliated Muslims.

Very bad mojo when Muslims get humiliated.

Now how can they blame it on Israel and/or America, since Muslims never become humiliated because of their own ineptitude.

7/21/2005 10:30:00 PM  
Blogger sugar said...

Are you ruling out the possibility that this was a "test run" to sound out the new defenses

Yep. Or to lure/distract the defenses. It could also be a psych warfare sorta thing as if saying "We own you no matter what you do" Multiple devices failing? Cmon, these guys arent amateurs.

7/21/2005 11:21:00 PM  
Blogger Brian H said...

when you suggested the British AQ bench, I flashed on "The Sorcerer's Apprentice" for some reason. Maybe there's a secret ingredient the master hadn't yet told the journeyman/apprentice about, and he's having to guess! Anyway, Baron, judging by the panicked reaction of the failed bombers, it seems unlikely this was just a "probe". It's a failed real attempt, for sure.

As for layers, I'd guess and assume there are layers beginning to kick in without any publicity or telegraphing. It has likely long been the case that there have been intercepted plans and plots-in-progress with no one publicly the wiser, since it would be a net negative to broadcast them, despite the "props" it would give to the security services.

subways etc. are EXACTLY where layered defense is not only relevant, it is the only possible response. That the close-in layer is necessarily very porous only means that the ones further out have to take even more of the load.

Some worthwhile points, but your characterization of the ideological conflict is nonsense, of course. The growth of democratic aspiration in Iraq and Lebanon alone should show you where the real action is. Quacking imams can squeeze and resist the flow, but will drown under it.

Iraqi Sunnis, especially, were deeply humiliated that it took an outside agency to "fix" their Saddam problem, and react with agonized resentment every time they see US troops. Even if they "know" it's irrational, they can't help it. And since ideas, opinions, and actions all arise from emotional patterns, they are caught in a self-imposed no-win situation. AQ and others hope to amplify this difficulty to the point of total irrational violent rage, but so far have had limited --and probably declining-- success, despite all the leftist claims to the contrary. In any case, humiliation is a BIG deal in tribal honor-culture. Don't sneer at the issue itself, but do be aware of it.

7/22/2005 12:21:00 AM  
Blogger sam said...

Cleric predicted more attacks:

JUST hours before the latest attacks on London's transport system, one of Britain's most radical Muslim clerics predicted more violence against the country, The New York Times reported today.

"Unless British foreign policy is changed and they withdraw forces from Iraq, I'm afraid there's going to be a lot of attacks, just the way it happened in Madrid and the way it happened in London," Sheik Omar Bakri Mohammed told the paper in a telephone interview from London late on Wednesday.,5936,16013371%255E1702,00.html

7/22/2005 01:04:00 AM  
Blogger husker_met said...

Regarding intent:

Whether this was a probe or failed operation (I lean toward failed operation), it seems like AQ favors the more dramatic explosion over the less dramatic chem attack. They seem to go for grotesque theatrics that can be replayed at 8 and 11, multiplying their psychological effect.

Killing 50 or 100 people at a time in a dramatic way (lots of smoke, twisted metal, and bloodied survivors), here and there is a lot better for sapping resolve than the relatively TV-unfriendly mass killing that nerve gas or some similar thing would do in such a crowded and poorly ventilated space.

I think (as has been suggested elsewhere) lower body count, more frequently tends to galvanize less and rattle more.

7/22/2005 01:14:00 AM  
Blogger husker_met said...

Oh, I have some background questions for those who have explosives experience. Can anyone direct me to a site where I can learn about this stuff?

**Law Enforcement Disclaimer: For education purposes only**

7/22/2005 01:41:00 AM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...

c4 spews: Israelis pioneered broad brushing any Palestinian who defied Occupation - be it cutting comm wires, attacking a soldiers outpost, or blowing up a restaurant - indiscriminately - as "evil terrorists".

Actually, long before there was an "occupation" Israel discribed the murder of school kids, attacks on it's water carrier, the shooting of rockets at it's villages, the shooting of mortars as "evil terrorism"...

c4 lists 3 types of attacks as "so called terrorism"

let's see...blowing up a resturant? terrorism

attacking a solder? terrorism...

and the final example? "cutting a comm wire".. yep usually when palestinians seek to slit israeli's throats they cut the phone wires 1st... thank g-d for cell phones, now we can't label palestinians cutting those wires anymore as "terror"

those poor palestinian freedom fighters, cutting comm wires from the tip of israel to the ass....

7/22/2005 01:54:00 AM  
Blogger ledger said...

After reading most of the comments, I deem them cogent given the fluid news. I have little to add. But, I will agree with Wretchard's basic theme that defense and deterrence play a major role. Also, I would point out that state sponsors and/or proxy fighters were probably responsible.

Look, we don't really know what MI5 and other intelligence agencies know. But, on the face of it, these were identical follow-on bombing attempts (which probably failed because of technical factors making the bombs a dud - basically, the starter TATP explosive failed because of old shelf-life or poor quality - but they were triggered by men and the caps went off).

That is not to understate the seriousness of the semi-successful operation (said operation had the men; the materials and the timing correct - and if bombs exploded, the frame work would have been proven - it could be applied anywhere in the West with devastating effects).

It's well known that the UK has one of the modern security systems in the world - yet during a high profile investigation said perps managed to essentially recreated a second bombing. This is quite troubling. Thus, said perps should be quickly dealt with.

Sure, the UK has relative large numbers of Islamic followers - and sure they exploit the legal system. But, that does not bode well for the USA with the same type of legal system. I would continue to suggest my pervious deterrents.

There is a historical chain of events that should not be dismissed:

1) The UK 7/7 Suicide attacks were well timed and highly effective given the low amount of explosives used.

2) During that day undercover police killed 2 suicide bombers at Canary Wharf (some levels of anti-terrorists elements worked well).

3) Approximately, a week later UK police announce armed officers in the field prepared to neutralize any suicide bombers before they could self-explode. This would indicate the UK authorities had an idea that a follow-on attack was probable.

4) The Ambassador to from Saudi Arabia resigns (meaning the US and Saudi Arabia have some conflict - ghostly similar to the Pear Harbor attacks).

5) Now, 4 blasts shake London in chilling replay.

6) "Conjecture 3.01." What happens next. Is the UK different from the USA? And, what happens when a terrorist spills his beans to the authorities? Below are some notes and some tangential thoughts:

A) British authorities told their U.S. counterparts that the backpacks used in Thursday's planned attacks and the explosives found in the backpacks are identical to those used in the July 7 attacks... NBC sources say that witnesses' accounts of the bombers indicate that they expected to die. Blair said: "Clearly, the intention must have been to kill... You don't do this with any other intention." ... information derived from police sources who have collected eyewitness accounts suggests that the attackers, who once again targeted three subway stations and a bus, intended to carry out suicide bombings and cause the kind of mayhem seen two weeks earlier, but failed because their detonators failed [Some speculate the explosive TATP, either used as a starter or as the actual explosive, has a very limited shelf life and did not function]... The attacks, which targeted trains near the Warren Street, Oval and Shepherd's Bush stations... The double-decker bus had its windows blown out on Hackney Road in east London.

See: Officials say backpacks, explosives identical to those of July 7 bombers


"Four blasts shake London in chilling replay... Preliminary studies by the FBI indicate Reid's black suede basketball shoes contained between 8 and 10 ounces of the explosive triacetone triperoxide, or TATP -- called "The Mother of Satan" by Palestinian militants, because its inherent instability makes it dangerous to both the victims and bomb maker.

"The TATP in Reid's shoes was "blended" with an explosive called PETN, or pentaerythritol tetranitrate... PETN is a key ingredient of Semtex, the Czech-made military explosive used to down Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, in 1988. "These bombs are sophisticated devices," said the British intelligence official. "They would have been difficult and dangerous to produce. Reid could not have done this himself -- he would have trouble tying his own shoelaces. It seems we may have an expert bomb maker on the loose in Europe."

See: Ried

[Mixture of TATP and plastic explosive]

FBI laboratory experts who dissected Richard Reid's black suede sneakers were horrified by what they found in the soles: bombs that were, as one agent says, "the first of their kind and extraordinarily well concealed." Each shoe contained about 4 oz. of PETN (pentaerythritol tetranitrate), a powerful explosive produced by the ton for military.... Some was mixed with a plasticizer to produce a substance that resembled putty. More was in short lengths of detonation cord... Packed around the PETN was a whitish powder that turned out to be homemade TATP, or triacetone triperoxide. If Reid had succeeded in lighting the fuses sticking out of his soles, the TATP would have blown instantly, setting off the less combustible but more destructive PETN main charge [if Reid had punctured the main fuel tank the airplane would have disintegrated].

See: Bomber

[Information connecting Reid to Islamic extremists via web log]:

…Reid received training in Pakistan and Afghanistan during extended visits there between 1998 and 2001; …Reid visited Israel and the Gaza Strip last July; and that the TATP (triacetone triperoxide) explosive embedded in Reid's trainers is the signature brand of Hamas, whose master bomb-makers developed it in Gaza for use in suicide attacks. To the Palestinians, the explosive is known as "the Mother of Satan,"so called because of its two characteristics (in addition to its lethality): it is fairly easy to make and it is highly unstable. Some 40 Palestinians are estimated to have been killed when the explosive detonated spontaneously and prematurely while been handled.
Despite this risk, TATP is used almost exclusively by Palestinian terrorists, recalling that it was the explosive of choice for the Palestinian car-bombers who devastated the Israeli Embassy and damaged a building housing several Jewish community organizations during a 12-hour reign of terror in London eight years ago. Two Palestinians Samar Alami, a chemical engineer who had studied at London University's Imperial College, and her accomplice, Jawad Botmeh, who had studied engineering at Leicester University – are currently serving 20-year terms for their role in the attacks. Both were found in possession of TATP. What is really so alarming is that hundreds, possibly thousands, of young British Muslims have received some form of military training abroad from Islamic militants.

see: Reid 50% down

Oddly similar to Imperal Japan with drawing its diplomats.


'Saudi envoy, renowned as insider, quits Washington'

The prince was instrumental in working with the two Bush administrations to plan both Iraq wars. There have been rumors of Bandar's retirement for years... But the rumors had accelerated in the last few weeks, amid suggestions among some experts that he had tired of the job and among others that he wanted to get back to Saudi Arabia to get into line for a higher position. Turki, who like Bandar is Western-educated, is a controversial figure who was removed from his job as intelligence chief in August 2001. American officials say that in that job he maintained close ties with Al Qaeda and the Taliban but that after Sept. 11, 2001, those ties do not seem to have remained. People close to the situation speculate that Bandar decided to retire because he had not developed the rapport with Crown Prince Abdullah... Prince Bandar bin Sultan, who in 22 years as the Saudi Arabian ambassador to the United States has operated as an insider's insider and wielded enormous influence in Washington and with successive American administrations, is resigning for "private reasons," Saudi Arabia announced Wednesday. Bandar, whose father is the Saudi defense minister, is to be replaced by another royal family member, Prince Turki al-Faisal, who is the brother of the Saudi foreign minister and a former Saudi intelligence chief and current ambassador to London. There was no immediate indication of why Bandar had decided to retire as dean of the Washington diplomatic corps, but friends say that the prince has struggled with back problems and exhaustion. In the last two years, since the beginning of the second Iraq war, he has spent very little time in Washington. The prince was instrumental in working with the two Bush administrations to plan both Iraq wars. "In troubled times, U.S. presidents past and present have relied upon Ambassador Bandar's advice," said Scott McClellan, the White House spokesman. "In good times they have enjoyed his wit, charm and humor. The president bids Ambassador Bandar and his family a fond farewell and wishes them all the best on their return to the kingdom." There have been rumors of Bandar's retirement for years, in part because he spends so much time in vacation homes in Colorado, England and elsewhere. But the rumors had accelerated in the last few weeks, amid suggestions among some experts that he had tired of the job and among others that he wanted to get back to Saudi Arabia to get into line for a higher position. Turki, who like Bandar is Western-educated, is a controversial figure who was removed from his job as intelligence chief in August 2001. American officials say that in that job he maintained close ties with Al Qaeda and the Taliban but that after Sept. 11, 2001

See: departing prince

A Terrorist talks under interrogation and names the financiers - who all die.


...terrorist called Abu Zubaydah... A leading member of Osama bin Laden's brain trust... the U.S. finally grabbed Zubaydah in Pakistan [approximately March 2002]... U.S. interrogators used drugs—an unnamed "quick-on, quick-off" painkiller and Sodium Pentothal, the old movie truth serum—in a chemical version of reward and punishment to make Zubaydah talk. When questioning stalled, according to Posner [a Berkeley lawyer and writer of a book described hear in], CIA men flew Zubaydah to an Afghan complex fitted out as a fake Saudi jail chamber, where "two Arab-Americans, now with Special Forces," pretending to be Saudi inquisitors, used drugs and threats to scare him into more confessions... when Zubaydah was confronted by the false Saudis, writes Posner, "his reaction was not fear, but utter relief." Happy to see them, he reeled off telephone numbers for a senior member of the royal family who would, said Zubaydah, "tell you what to do." The man at the other end would be Prince Ahmed bin Salman bin Abdul Aziz, a Westernized nephew of King Fahd's [and 2 other Saudi princes and a Pakistani air commander]... To the amazement of the U.S., the numbers proved valid. [all met natural deaths] ...Those three Saudi princes all perished within days of one another. On July 22, 2002, Prince Ahmed was felled by a heart attack at age 43. One day later Prince Sultan bin Faisal bin Turki al-Saud, 41, was killed in what was called a high-speed car accident. The last member of the trio, Prince Fahd bin Turki bin Saud al-Kabir, officially "died of thirst" while traveling east of Riyadh one week later. And seven months after that, Mushaf Ali Mir, by then Pakistan's Air Marshal, perished in a plane crash...

see: Time

[Explosive chemistry via Wikipedia]:

Acetone peroxide (triacetone triperoxide, peroxyacetone, TATP) is an organic peroxide. It is a high explosive that can be made from common household items: sulfuric acid, hydrogen peroxide, and acetone. Other strong acids such as hydrochloric acid may also be used to catalyze the reaction... often for detonators, and is sometimes used in terrorist attacks, for example in the West Bank area. Also perhaps at the 7 July 2005 London bombings.

...people have been killed or permanently injured by accidents with acetone peroxide. There is a common myth that the only "safe" acetone peroxide is the trimer, made at low temperatures: "If one is making tricycloacetone peroxide, the temperature must be less than 10 °C at all times, otherwise the product formed will be dicycloacetone peroxide, which is so unstable and sensitive that it has no uses in the field of explosives: dicycloacetone peroxide has been known to explode spontaneously." In reality, the acid-catalyzed peroxidation of acetone always produces a mixture of dimeric and trimeric forms. The trimer is the more stable form, but not greatly more so than the dimer. All forms of acetone peroxide are very sensitive to initiation and degrade in long-term storage, so they are used as explosives only by unconventional forces (e.g. guerrillas, freedom fighters, terrorists ) and curious amateurs...


[Ledgers suggestions]

It's clear that Blair and MI6 (or the current internal security apparatus) needs to do a great deal of house cleaning. This house cleaning would encompass the actual application of a UK version of the Patriot Act, interrogating this one eye'd hooked "Cleric" for additional information in the recent terror killings, freezing terrorist's funds, adjusting the deportation rules for mass killers, enabling UK special agents to liquidate terrorists before they detonate the bombs, and the realization that certain organizations or states that sponsor terrorism must be neutralized by military action.

Further, Blair must start using the alley fight set of rules. He must use agents and/or proxy fighters to eliminate certain "clerics" and financiers of said terror "clerics." He must also get the message out that "either you are with us or against us." The George Galloway's of the political world must feel Blair's wrath. And, in the final analysis, if it comes down to UK survival, the "Dresden Option" must be considered.

In addition, Bush Administration must be willing to let the UK fully defend it self (i.e.: if the Syrians, Saudis, or Pakistanis are the root of the problem then let the British extract justice). This goes from top to bottom, all the terror sponsors are targets, information sharing and operational sharing are a must do.

The British came to America's aid in the Iraq and Afghan war. We must be prepared to do the same.

And, we must realize that if the war requires utter destruction of certain terrorists strongholds - then so be it. Let's get it done quickly.

See:30% down comments

{excuse all of the mistakes and extra material - ledger tried to submit a compact version but Blogger failed - hence the long version will be posted}

7/22/2005 02:06:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Continue to sneer at will:
I would feel humiliated if fellow Americans were cowed into following directions from foreigners.

7/22/2005 03:26:00 AM  
Blogger hambrough said...

Action taking place now in London. One man shot dead by police on the tube at Stockwell. Aldgate mosque surrounded.

7/22/2005 03:28:00 AM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...

ledger said...

the starter TATP explosive failed because of old shelf-life or poor quality

Studies by the FBI indicate Reid's shoes contained the explosive triacetone triperoxide, or TATP -- called "The Mother of Satan" by Palestinian militants

Reid visited Israel and the Gaza Strip last July; and that the TATP (triacetone triperoxide) explosive embedded in Reid's trainers is the signature brand of Hamas, whose master bomb-makers developed it in Gaza for use in suicide attacks

TATP is used almost exclusively by Palestinian terrorists, Two Palestinians Samar Alami & Jawad Botmeh, who had studied engineering at Leicester University – are currently serving 20-year terms for their role in the attacks. Both were found in possession of TATP

ah yes... the palestinian connection... those fun loving "non-terrorists" that simply want self determination, to grow trees, plant flowers, raise boy and girl scouts, learn little league, help the elderly....

7/22/2005 03:57:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

RIGHTS: Yes to Miss Tibet, No to Miss Tibet-China .
IPS Inter Press Service
DHARAMSALA, India, Jul 22 (IPS) - Tibetan youths, in this Indian Himalayan town, are furious that Miss Tibet has been barred from participating in a beauty pageant in Malaysia after China lodged an official complaint with the organisers. Beijing, in turn, wants Miss Tibet Tashi Yangchen to compete as Miss Tibet-China instead.

7/22/2005 04:02:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"raise boy and girl scouts"
Rinds, yes:
To be ruthlessly exploited by you know whos (rhymes with) as scout cookie vendor/suppliers for the little money grubbers in training.

7/22/2005 04:07:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Radical cleric attacks Muslim 'hypocrites'
"These are part-time Muslims or chocolate Muslims."
THE radical cleric Omar Bakri Mohammed inflamed tensions further yesterday with an attack on Muslims who took part in inter-faith services after the bombings.

He branded any Muslims who attended the Trafalgar Square vigil last week as "hypocrites and apostates".
In an interview, Bakri said: "God forbids us from praying with Jews and Christians side by side. These are part-time Muslims or chocolate Muslims.
"I cannot be British. I cannot be English. "Even if I change my colour, like Michael Jackson, I could not be English."

7/22/2005 04:12:00 AM  
Blogger Anointiata Delenda Est said...

Just heard cops pumped bullets into somebody in a London tube station.


7/22/2005 04:26:00 AM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...


just in from London...

British Islamic groups plan protest over GOVERNMENT crackdown on "militants" since 7/7...

Funny, they aint PROTESTING islamic MURDER....

7/22/2005 04:35:00 AM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...

New Newsflash...

Super secret EU/British agreement has allowed French SFFP to work in Britian with shoot to kill orders..

The SFFP has been notorious in France where it has struck fear in many citizens...

The infamous Special French Fashion Police have been allowed to shoot suspected heavey coat wearers in summer simply for offending our senses of fashion....

Be warned, if you choose to wear "down jackets" in summer, it can be fatal.....

7/22/2005 04:50:00 AM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...

Sorry folks, couldnt help myself....

7/22/2005 04:51:00 AM  
Blogger ceredipity said...

With the recent courageous decision by the British courts to jail criminals whose acts, although committed outside the jurisdiction of the UK, are so heinous that they deserve the full sanction of the law, might we now expect the courts to prosecute the Pakistani and Saudi governments for endouraging those who embark on acts of terrorism outside their terrortories?
There is already a quasi-legal precedent in Libya's eventual acceptance of 'civil liability' for the Lockerbie bombing in 1986. Even if prosecutions were unsuccessful, an unabiguous message is sent to advocates of an alien ideology.

7/22/2005 04:55:00 AM  
Blogger Jessica said...

Informative post. It's hard to fathom what is going on in a terrorists mind--how can they just kill innocent people?

7/22/2005 05:12:00 AM  
Blogger diabeticfriendly said...

Jessika said...
Informative post. It's hard to fathom what is going on in a terrorists mind--how can they just kill innocent people?

Cause they sincerely believe they are on Allah's side..

just like pediophiles sincerely believe they love kids..

Just like rapists sincerely believe the women want it...

and me? I sincerely believe they all are nuts....

7/22/2005 05:21:00 AM  
Blogger rexie said...

Interesting that these latest attacks have taken place outside the rush hour when the possibilities for carnage, disruption and confusion are far greater. Mind you, cheaper tickets are available after 9.30 a.m. so perhaps it's a funding issue.

7/22/2005 05:47:00 AM  
Blogger Papa Bear said...

re: Peter UK's comment: There is a huge intelligence gap in the UK precisely becuse the security services have had to back off for varying racial discrimination and human rights reasons.

A few more bombings, and Neville Chamberlain will be removed from office and replaced with whoever seems more like Churchill

Rational people do not tolerate having their families put at risk for the sake of political correctness

7/22/2005 05:53:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Out side of Mr porker's reason.

It's is fun and exciting to be a member of the "Fraternity"
Youthful belief in their own immortality
A willingness to sacrifice your self for the greater good.
The victims are sub human and also deserve to be injured or killed.

Most military groups use each of these facets of human nature in the indoctrination phase of training.

7/22/2005 06:40:00 AM  
Blogger WillyShake said...

Concerning your statement:
"Over the coming years, the value of every aspect of the defense will be highlighted by different incidents."
...may I recommend this column by Victor Davis Hanson, which urges us to start acting like we are at war.

7/22/2005 06:40:00 AM  
Blogger Goesh said...

It was a message - you can't stop us. Other homicide bombers are being prepped/trained/handled. There are much softer targets than the tubes and buses of London

7/22/2005 06:43:00 AM  
Blogger Aristides said...

Re: the meme that Iraq has increased the anger of Jihadists and the vulnerability of the West.

This is used as an argument against the Iraq war by many Lefty and Islamist groups in Britain and the US.

This assertion is meaningful only if the point of the Iraq war was to assuage the feelings of the Jihadists. If we went to Iraq to make Muslims less mad at us, if OIF was conceived as a parlay with terrorists, then yes, the Left is correct that it is a failure and we should leave.

But who in their right mind thought that invading Iraq would make the terrorists more agreeable? Who could possibly have considered OIF as a bouquet of flowers meant to win the collective heart of the fanatic, a valentine to call back a jilted lover?

This is where we can see most clearly the conceptual frozen tundra of the Left. If we are to take them at their word, if we are to dismiss politically hackery as the reason behind the words and really take them seriously, then their belated surprise that OIF would upset jihadists is the most astounding example of shallow thinking that I think I have ever seen. In the pantheon of idiocy, it is the 10,000 lbs elephant in the living room.

This proves, more than any other folly or ill chosen words, that the Left is the retarded little brother in the West Family tree. You tolerate his mistakes because you realize he doesn't know better, you protect him because he is incapable of self-defence, and every once in a while you take him to the store to buy him some Ice Cream.

But you never, ever, let him drive.

7/22/2005 06:45:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Mr Pape was on Fox News this morning. His study indicates that having the target at hand is what creates the atmosphere that revs up the attacks.
As in Iraq, if we lessen our presence, the footprint, we would lessen the cultural pressure that encourages the bombers.
While this makes some sense, it does not explain the London attackers mentality or motivations. They are operating on an International Grievance level or on one that is even more local, like Columbine.

7/22/2005 07:00:00 AM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

Seems to me that a humiliated Muslim is an enraged Muslim. Police training tells them that the Bad Guys won't be thinking straight because of adrenaline rushes, and therefore the police will have an edge if they remain cool and calm.

Which leads me to think that any time we can humiliate a Muslim and push him into doing something he's not quite ready to do -- i.e., yesterday's bombings -- that would be a Good Thing.

Motto for next week: Humiliate a Muslim ... especially if it's a male Muslim, ages 16-35.

7/22/2005 07:02:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

If that is the path to be taken, nahncee, the vocabulary changes from muslim or islamist to
that is a noun that is disapproved of in the Mohammedan world, it is insulting to them to be referred to by the word

7/22/2005 07:10:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

I'd enjoy seeing the Palistinians and the Israelis find an agreed on border. I'd like to see increased freedom and an improved life style for all concerned, but as VD Hanson illustrates in his Wash Times article

"... Speaking of Israel, shortly after the London attacks, a suicide bomber in Netanya, perhaps in sympathy with his kindred spirits in Britain, walked over to a group of women and blew them up.
He killed five persons, including two 16-year-old girls. This slaughter, in Israel proper, not the West Bank, took place during a mutually agreed "cease-fire" -- and on the eve of Israeli withdrawal from Gaza.
The supposedly more "moderate" Hamas refused to condemn the attack by Islamic Jihad. That was logical given the recent statement of a senior Hamas official. Mahmoud al-Zahar said he would "definitely not" settle for co-existence with Israel -- even if it withdrew to it 1967 borders. As he put it, "[I]n the end, Palestine must return to become Muslim, and in the long term Israel will disappear from the face of the Earth." ..."

peace opponent

Makes the idea of some kind of a compromise solution difficult at best.
Who would enforce an 'imposed' settlement?

Would it be accurate to say
'As goes Israel, so goes the West'

7/22/2005 07:35:00 AM  
Blogger Aristides said...

An analyst on Fox News says that "the presence of foreign troops on Muslim territory" creates the suicide bomber/terrorist mentality. Therefore, we should remove our troops from Iraq, Israel should quit Palestine, etc.

What he thinks about the attempted cleansing of Buddhists in Thailand, he didn't say. Probably would advise that Thailand is now in Dar al'Islam, better to give it up. Wouldn't want to incite violence, after all.

7/22/2005 07:58:00 AM  
Blogger Kevin B said...

That was priceless, Aristides, thanks! You've certainly got a way with words, best I've seen in blogland so far.

Are you posting or writing anywhere else other than here?

7/22/2005 08:02:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

That was the ever famous Mr Pape

did a study, wrote a book
Profiled the 400+ suiciders over last ? years.
Found them mostly motivated by foregin (to them) occupation.
he referenced Tamil Tigers as being leading in suicide attacks.

Have not read the book, but have seen him a number of times

7/22/2005 08:15:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Mr Pape advocates returning to an 'off coast' presence. As exemplified by our policies in the 70's & 80's.
There are elements of truth in what he says. In Iraq the handoff to the Iraqis and the draw down of our troop strength WOULD lessen the level of violence in the long run.

7/22/2005 08:24:00 AM  
Blogger trish said...

It would appear that yesterday's (botched) operation in London was designed to coincide, as was the 7/7 operation, with the kidnapping of diplomats in Iraq. On 7/7 the Egyptian envoy; yesterday the head of the Algerian mission and a fellow diplomat.

From today's Asia Times:

Jihad without borders
By Syed Saleem Shahzad

KARACHI - A line connects the resistance strategy of Iraq's Ba'athists and Afghanistan's Taliban militias as they both draw on the same blueprint in their struggle against US-led forces in their respective countries.

Significantly, their roadmap, conceived in the mountains between Pakistan's South Waziristan tribal area and Afghanistan and in the southern parts of Baghdad, involves taking their battles to the home countries of the invading forces.

The bomb attacks in London on July 7 can be viewed as the first manifestation of this approach.

The Jaishul al-Qiba al-Jihadi al-Siri al-Alami was formed in South Waziristan in the middle of 2003. Ansarul Sunnah was formed in the southern parts of Baghdad at about the same time. The organizations include Kurds, Arabs, Pakistanis and Afghans committed to fighting against the US and its allies all over the world, by any means.

The two organizations have established recruiting outlets throughout the world to generate finances and, crucially, to ensure a steady supply of recruits to training centers established in Samarra and Fallujah in Iraq and in South Waziristan.


Juan Cole today takes a look into the London bombing network - or a portion thereof. Interesting backround.

7/22/2005 08:34:00 AM  
Blogger Ash said...

Aristide wrote:
“But who in their right mind thought that invading Iraq would make the terrorists more agreeable?”

Well, no one really, but many have stated that invading Iraq would help in the fight on terrorism, that it would reduce terrorism. To date it hasn’t.

Cedarford wrote as part of his (mostly) good suggestions:
“1. Removal of the Western Left (that apologizes and rationalizes the actions of the Religion of Head-choppers) from positions of power and influence. The Left still holds power over Courts, Hollywood, the media, and academia. They must be reduced in ranks by ensuring the hiring is done not by like-minded Lefty colleagues job committees - but by people holding mainstream values..”

How do you propose to ensure that these varied institutions hire people whom possess the correct ideology? Some form of government ministry?

This second round of bombings in London so closely resembling the first round except for their failure to detonate could simply demonstrate how disconnected these terror cells are, how diffuse is their command and control. In other words, some other group associated only by ideology thought it would a powerful statement if they 'copied' the success of the first round of attacks. Of course the forensic info on types of explosives used, construction of the bombs ect. would shed light on my speculation.

7/22/2005 09:01:00 AM  
Blogger Aristides said...

re: Pape.

There is perhaps an element of truth in that our presence in the Middle East may lead more young men to suicide terrorism.

But the amount of people willing to blow themselves up is but a small metric by which to judge the current war. Disengagement may address it, it may not; I'll even give Mr. Pape a nod and assume it does. However, it seems to me that what we should be worried about is the conceptual paradigm that proclaims it is justified to blow yourself up as protest against a pseudo-occupation. Disengagement does not address this mentality.

This is a difference between efficient causes and final causes, and only engagement will eliminate the final causes of terrorism. The obverse of our mission in Iraq leads down a much more dangerous road. If we allow the Muslim world to remain backwards, bigoted, and unsuccessful, the audience for Bin Ladenism will grow exponentially as failure becomes prima facie evidence of repression and evil design. Right now we are contending with groups and cells. Let's engage before we are dealing with nations.

7/22/2005 09:04:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

7/22/2005 09:07:00 AM  
Blogger Ash said...

Aristide, one can 'engage' in many ways. One can engage with Health Clinics, food distribution, school funding as opposed to Military boots on the ground.

7/22/2005 09:12:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

our boots on the groumd engagement has led to all the engagements you prefer.
We could not begin to supply
"...Health Clinics, food distribution, school funding ..."
when we did "Oil for Food" the program was rife with corruption.
Now that there is a moderate and representitive government being formed we will be able to provide even more "...Health Clinics, food distribution, school funding ..."

7/22/2005 09:23:00 AM  
Blogger trish said...

At there is a good interview with John Arquilla, defense analyst at the Naval post-grad school, on the subject of al Qeada and terror networks. The first segment of the interview, concerning the US in Iraq, is unfortunately unavailable.

7/22/2005 09:23:00 AM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

Cefart said: Begin some sit downs in the USA, Europe, and inside the Ummah with Muslims and infidels and make those sitdowns honest dialogue, not conditioned by diplomatic niceties. Blunt talk time.


Yes, more talk..

It seems to me we already have an example in history as to how to deal with these jihadis. Andalusia. What's needed is the will to implement it.

7/22/2005 09:35:00 AM  
Blogger Ash said...

Desert Rat, unfortunately all those other engagements are vastly overshadowed and subservient to the military engagement.

Oil for Food was a fiasco on so many levels. On unintended consequence was that it solidified Saddam's hold over individual Iraqi's lives.

7/22/2005 09:38:00 AM  
Blogger Doug Santo said...

Ash says -

"...but many have stated that invading Iraq would help in the fight on terrorism, that it would reduce terrorism. To date it hasn’t."

How many terrorist attacks have occurred in the US since the invasion of Iraq?

Iraq serves as a magnet to attract Islamofascist fanatics. Based on information available from media reports, it is reasonable to estimate that it must be 10 times easier for jihadis to enter Iraq to fight the great satan than come to the US. To enter Iraq requires no training, no airline flight, no passport, no personal modifications to hide ones identity as a middle easterner, and little money.

Young, impressionable Arab men trained in Wahabi hatred and little else find their way to Syria. The men speak similar languages as the locals, they look like the locals (at least to westerners), there appears to be a don’t ask, don’t tell policy by the Syrian authorities with respect to foreign jihadis. It appears that a jihadi transportation underground is extant centered around extremist mosques with rat lines throughout local Arab countries.

The notion that this flow of men towards Iraq has not improved the security of the US homeland is nonsense.

These men are secreted across the Iraq border to face the US military. These men increasingly face a hostile Iraqi population. These men face a growing Iraqi security establishment not encumbered by US notions of fair play.

The fact is these young fanatics face certain capture or death. Death at the hands of US/Iraqi forces or death by suicide. The Iraq war is proceeding in the best possible way with respect to US interests.

Pretending Islamofascists don’t hate us will not make it true. Pretending Islamofascists will just leave us alone if we pull all our forces back to US shores will not make it true.

Doug Santo
Pasadena, CA

7/22/2005 09:44:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Exactly, as long as Saddam remained in control, he and his tribal and religious cohorts would have continued to repress the delivery of "...Health Clinics, food distribution, school funding ..." to those that needed it.
Your desire to deliver "...Health Clinics, food distribution, school funding ..." is one of the reasons Saddam' position was improved vis a vie Oil for Food and also a factor in having the Baathists removed from power.
There was no practical means to deliver "...Health Clinics, food distribution, school funding ..." while the Baathists remained in control.

7/22/2005 09:45:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Besides ash, why would we fund schools that instructed it's pupils in either the infallibility of Saadam and/ or hatred of 'Western Civilization' the Anglosphere in particular.
That would seem counter productive. All schools are not created equal and all 'education and schooling' not fit for subsidy.

7/22/2005 09:50:00 AM  
Blogger Aristides said...

Ash: the same goes for your comment. Only somebody not thinking very hard could believe OIF would make terrorists less likely to want to hurt us, which is why the Iraq war was never justified in this way.

What we are doing in Iraq is called s-t-r-a-t-e-g-y. At the risk of making fanatics more fanatical, we are trying to change the equation in the Middle East, trying to buy with blood and treasure a better future and a better world. Yes, we are even sacrificing peace--and our illusion of safety--in this noble cause, so that maybe, just maybe, our children will not have to deal with this horror.

Those that clamor for "peace in our time" do a most grave injustice to the cause of righteousness and justice. Nobody ever said this was going to be easy or that OIF would be the magic bullet, that once the tanks rolled into Baghdad the terrorists would lay down their arms in agreement or in despair. To protest OIF by shouting "Danger is upon us!" is the kind of myopic pacifism that frog-marched history right into World War II. We know where pre-OIF led us. You might have seen it on TV right around the beginning of September, 2001. It was in all the papers.

Now is the time to change the balance, to get rid of the old cliches. Osama had already proved himself pretty savvy working with the old reality, let's see how successful he can be with the new material we are building.

As for mollifying terrorists with good works and public spending, that is not a strategy. That is THE classic Leftist cop out. Osama doesn't want schools and sewage treatment plants any more than Yassir "Dollar Bill" Arafat did. The problem is not that the Arabs don't have the fruits of success, it is that they don't have the means. It is easy to mail a charity check, but it is humiliating to be the one who has to cash it. We don't need more spoiled dependants in the world. We need partners.

If you think OIF is primarily a military operation, you just made the same mistake the Administration originally did. Ask our soldiers over in Iraq exactly how "military" our efforts really our. We are building (not fixing, because it was never there) an entire country's infrastructure from the ground up; sewage systems, schools, hospitals, water plants, electricity: we are "donating" all of it. It is one giant public works project wrapped in tough love. How can you refuse to acknowledge what's in the box when it is our country who packaged it?

7/22/2005 09:53:00 AM  
Blogger Aristides said...

kevin: I'm relatively new to the 'sphere, and very quickly gravitated to this site because of Wretchard's excellent and erudite analysis. If I see a large enough hole in the hull I may consider setting up shop. But for now I'm content carrying water.

But thanks for the compliment.

7/22/2005 10:10:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

The UN Sanctions reportedly led to the deaths of tens of thousands

"... The World Health Organization believes at least 5,000 children under the age of 5 die each month from lack of access to food, medicine and clean water. Malnutrition, disease, poverty and premature death now ravage a once relatively prosperous society whose public health system was the envy of the Middle East. I went to Iraq in September 1997 to oversee the U.N.'s "oil for food" program. I quickly realized that this humanitarian program was a Band-Aid for a U.N. sanctions regime that was quite literally killing people. ..."

The UN Sanctions were responsible for killing 60,000 children a year according to the WHO. If that is anywhere near accurate, we have saved 120,000 children during the years 2003 & 2004. So far in 2005 45,000 children have been saved from a UN death sentence. One that would have been imposed by the UN's inability to run a competent Oil for Fun Program.
Just think of it, ash, 185,000 children, by the WHO's numbers, have been saved from death by US intervention in Iraq.
I read just two days ago that Iraqi civilian casualties for OIF are in the 25,000 range.
That is a positive swing of 160,000 lives saved from the projected civilian losses since OIF was initiated.

What a wonderful country we live in

What we wouldn't do to save a child, even an Iraqi Mohammedan child.

7/22/2005 10:13:00 AM  
Blogger Ash said...

Desert Rat, lets not conflate OIF with GWoT. I was not, nor am, referring to humanitarian efforts as a means to have rid Iraq of Saddam but rather as a means to combat terror in general. In a sense it is simply taking a page out the Hamas playbook; engage people at the grassroots level. It should also not be our only method of combating terror, but rather another tool in the box helping us ‘change Islam’ and improving their perception of 'us'.

Aristide, again we are back to Justice and again I maintain that the US cannot alone administer Justice for the World due to its inherent conflicts with self interest. Not only must Justice be done, it must be seen to be done.

Speaking of perceptions, don’t ask the military what we are building in Iraq, but rather ask the Iraqi’s. I think their perceptions will be decidedly different from the US military.

7/22/2005 10:15:00 AM  
Blogger RWE said...

On the History Channel's "Shootout: The Battle For Falluja" it was revealed that a great many, if not all, of the terrorist fighters in Falluja were hopped up on drugs. I wonder how common this is among terrorists? It could explain quite a lot. Has anyone else out there heard anything about this aspect?
Maybe we should blast Greatful Dead music across the battlefield and they will all just mellow out.

7/22/2005 10:17:00 AM  
Blogger Ash said...

Desert Rat, you won't get any argument from me regarding the problems with the Oil for Food program. Let us not forget how complicit we (the US) were in the whole mess.

7/22/2005 10:25:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

But ash, Iraq is now Terror Central according to your sentiments. To save those 185,000 children's lifes (year to date) from UN malfeasence and Saddams cruelty we had to act. The UN's management of the worlds attempt to help those children led to a strengthening of his tyranical grip on Iraq. It increased his ability to fund International terrorist groups like Hamas as well as fund an explosion bonus of $25,000US for the families of Palistinian Homicide Bombers, operating in Israel.

As we discussed the other day, the US had every legal right in International Law to take action against Baathist Iraq.

The UN's active mismanagement of the Sanctions Program encouraged Saddam's deviant ways and helped lead to the conflict.

The Iranians believe they are a civilized and advanced people, capable of funding their own "...Health Clinics, food distribution, school funding ..."
Perhaps we should increase the monies we send to Eygpt and Jordon, the billions we have delivered in the past not delivering "...Health Clinics, food distribution, school funding ..." in large enough quanities.
The Sudanese will not allow US to deliver "...Health Clinics, food distribution, school funding ..." in the Dafur area.
Should we force them to?
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, they need our aid?

7/22/2005 10:38:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Heck ash
During the Iranian earth quakes, when tens of thousand died and even more left homeless and destitute, the Mullahs would not accept our aid. They turned away the American Red Cross, our charitable International Disaster Relief Orginization.
Most of the countries on the Opfor list refuse to allow our involvement in their countries, in any form other than check writing.

7/22/2005 10:44:00 AM  
Blogger Tony said...

Ash regarding the problems with the Oil for Food program. Let us not forget how complicit we (the US) were in the whole mess.

I do forget how complicit we were Ash, please refresh us with the facts.

7/22/2005 10:48:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

I have not read of many Americans on the Oil for Fun management team.
Enlighten US with their names. I'd love to see an indictment. All the out country managers recieve UN immunity, I believe.

7/22/2005 10:52:00 AM  
Blogger Aristides said...

ash: "I maintain that the US cannot alone administer Justice for the World due to its inherent conflicts with self interest."

We "cannot"? Don't have the means, simply not possible for the US to be just, what do you mean? Self interest like defeating Japan and building democracy? Self interest like the Marshall Plan? Self interest like free trade? Are justice and self-interest forever conflicting?

Is it not in our self interest to help all peoples be free so they can freely do business with us? Is this something you find discomfiting?

You write: "Speaking of perceptions, don’t ask the military what we are building in Iraq, but rather ask the Iraqi’s."

We did ask the Iraqis, and in January over 8 million of them answered. You do believe that there is something called empirical reality, yes? If I see a video of a school being built, is it somehow not "real" because it is an American Soldier doing the narrating?

Over 75% of Iraqis are optimistic about the future. It seems to me the only ones with a perception problem are those who read the New York Times.

7/22/2005 10:53:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

the only country open to the US delivering "...Health Clinics, food distribution, school funding ..." where the Opfor are operating is Iraq. We do not control access to those other locales.
Are you advocating we force feed "...Health Clinics, food distribution, school funding ..." to the people in countries where their Governments reject our offers of "...Health Clinics, food distribution, school funding ..."?

7/22/2005 10:57:00 AM  
Blogger trish said...

On the History Channel's "Shootout: The Battle For Falluja" it was revealed that a great many, if not all, of the terrorist fighters in Falluja were hopped up on drugs. I wonder how common this is among terrorists? It could explain quite a lot. Has anyone else out there heard anything about this aspect?

- rwe

They found the same thing in Beslan. I asked about this and was told it's a common form of payment (and recruitment?), at least in South Asia. Drugs for services rendered. It's certainly been done in Africa.

7/22/2005 11:03:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

In Dafur, Sudan, the Mohammedan Government is systematically killing non Mohammedan people.
The US has called it Genocide and your ICC is investigating.
If the US were to demand the right to provide "...Health Clinics, food distribution, school funding ..." to the people in Dafur, and the Sudanese Government said NO! What course of action would you recommend?

7/22/2005 11:03:00 AM  
Blogger Ash said...


"Both the United States and the United Kingdom, as permanent members of the UN Security Council, and principal proponents of sanctions against the Iraqi ruler, voted for the creation of the program and for its expansion in 1998."

7/22/2005 11:15:00 AM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

Weren't drugs and hopped-up mujahadeen reported in the two or three Sadr seiges and shoot-outs in Sadr City? I'm trying to remember details or where I read that but I distinctly remember the connection being made between Sadr's guerilla's and something like a speed-high to keep them awake and defiant.

7/22/2005 11:20:00 AM  
Blogger Nathan said...

That only proves that it existed by the benevolent intent that everyone thought it maintained, until the scandal broke. It doesn't prove that the US was significantly complicit in the perpetration of corruption and wrongdoing.

7/22/2005 11:21:00 AM  
Blogger Abakan said...

Ash said,

"Speaking of perceptions, don’t ask the military what we are building in Iraq, but rather ask the Iraqi’s. I think their perceptions will be decidedly different from the US military."

I just can't wait to find out what you think the Iraqi commmon man/woman thinks about what we are building in Iraq.

I have no doubt that you will be able to create several paragraphs of thoughts, broken down cleanly into arguments.

I can't stand this whole strategy of 'channeling' with an imaginary Iraqi in order to try to make a point in a political argument.

However, it does have its humorous moments. I can't count the number of times I heard someone 'channeling' on NPR in an effort to explain why Iraqis would not vote in the upcoming election. Of course, I'm refering to the last election. The one where younger men carried older infirmed family members on their backs to get to the polling places.

7/22/2005 11:26:00 AM  
Blogger Fernand_Braudel said...

Trangbang68: The time for political correctness in confronting Islam is gone.

That's for sure.

The first Bio or Nuclear weapon set of in America by a Jihadist will result in the instant massacre of 20% of the moslems here and forced - Japanese Style - internment camps for the remaining moslems. Those who aren't in line at the bus stations by sundown that evening will probable not make it through the night (not enough police to protect them).

Picture the environment in that situation:

Some US city has a one square mile hole in the center of it. It could be Washington, NYC, Chicago, or Dallas, it doesn't matter. Everyone else in the United States who values his life will be thinking - in this sequence:

(1) The next one could happen in MY city.
(2) The folks who could be getting ready to attack my city are Moslems.
(3) If I want my family to survive through tomorrow, I'd better do something about the moslems that live nearest to me - or the mosque down the street where the congregate and probably have the bomb stored.

I know of no friend, or co-worker, or relative who would tolerate the existence of any moslem still breathing within rifle-range in such circumstance as these.

Think of it: 100,000 dead, 200,000 more about to die from radiation exposure, or three million dead from a bio-weapon outbreak.

As for the rest of the moslem world - annihilation by fire. The survivors (if any) would still be talking about it 10,000 years from now. We would make CERTAIN that every islamo-fascist still alive on the planet would know that GOD HATES HIM!

The Shiva is the perfect description. The destroyer of worlds, but not ours, theirs.

Which is probably why Al-Qaida never attacked China - they're too frightened of the possible response. Which also happens to justify everyone else taking a harsh response to islamo-fascists.

7/22/2005 11:29:00 AM  
Blogger gibson said...

Amazing still that many of these "channelers" fit one of two criterion:

1) They do not personally know a soldier stationed in a hot zone.

2) They have never met or come into contact with an Iraqi.

7/22/2005 11:29:00 AM  
Blogger Cedarford said...

Pok Rinds for Yahweh writes that in his opinion, anyone who attacks Israeli Occupation troops, armed Settlers, or defenseless civilians are - evil terrorists - as the Israeli regime claims, with no distinctions.

I put out my belief that American Indians attacking Forts, wagon trains, and Settlements were not necessarily evil terrorists, but people resisting Occupation and loss of their lands. Extending that, were the French, Norweigan, Polish, Yugoslavian, and Russian partisans resisting Nazi Occupation and Lebensraum policies - "evil terrorists"??? The Chinese or Filipino partisan resisting Japanese Occupation?

That is why I believe you need narrower definitions of who a terrorist is or the descriptor becomes meaningless or worse, diluted so that no moral distinction (by Israelis and Palestinians for example) is seen between attacking an Army post and a school....If it is all "evil terrorism," either nothing goes in resisting Occupation, or everything goes.

Ash writes a fine follow-up question to my statement:

"The Left still holds power over Courts, Hollywood, the media, and academia. They must be reduced in ranks by ensuring the hiring is done not by like-minded Lefty colleagues job committees - but by people holding mainstream values..”

Ash asks: How do you propose to ensure that these varied institutions hire people whom possess the correct ideology? Some form of government ministry?

The Left has strived to maintain idealogical selection processes that are quite different in those institutions depending on the formality and transparency of the selection process. But there is no doubt that just as the Communists that saw these institutions as both bastions and a means to disseminate influence and used Marxist tactics to get control of key positions, the Left does the same.

Regaining balance calls for varying tactics. I add this is not a problem unique to the Left. Other institutions became so conservative and so focused on hiring a certain sort that they too failed to serve the American public. The FBI is a noted example - preferring for a long period of time to hire straight-laced, athletic, over 6' tall white men who neither smoked nor drank, who eschewed drug experimentation or experimentation of any sort - like with new-fangled computers. Ideal cookie-cutter special agents of probity and family values. Who were judged for career advancement not on creativity or innovation, not on intelligence work or crime prevention, but on making the Big Case that got a conviction.

The American public paid a heavy price for what the FBI became over the years.

On the Courts, media, Hollywood, and academia - I don't think anyone is proposing a Ministry of Proper Thought. Just an end to self-selecting pipelines.

Take Courts: The Leftward drift started with law students taught by Left-leaning professors who then inclined to stay and teach themselves, while more conservative graduates went into business or government. Until whole elite law school faculties were described as "progressive centers of social change". And, when judges were selected, faculty provided some of the more eggregious activist judges themselves or had great influence within the ABA in being the "raters". Along with liberal Democrat dominance in State judge selections in certain States. And the lifetime Federal judge system. The change in recent years has been from insistence of elected officials in more mainstream values....

Academia itself has been a hotbed of discussion - mostly from its PC reputation on insisting on all forms of diversity in faculty or Administration - all but intellectual diversity. Conservatives have long complained of being denied Administration positions or tenure. Enough so that some academics have decided to lead dual lives for the sake of career advancement - outwardly a correct Left-leaning person on campus talking and teaching from a Leftist position, but inwardly a conservative. Signs of this secret life has emerged - for example - as 95% of faculty signs a letter demanding that military recruiters be barred after the Iraq War started, but when it is put to a secret ballot formal vote, only 70% vote so. One person who is at the forefront of getting idealogical diversity on campus is David Horowitz. Who seeks to avoid imposition of stupid things like one Republican for every Democrat rules....but use other legitimate mechanisms to bring diversity of thought and free speech back to campuses. His campaign, its methods and goals, are well discussed and laid out at his website

The media is now in some pain from it's lack of diversity. But it is not enough to say a few talk radio shows, right-leaning bloggers, and one cable network cancel out the LA Times, PBS, NYTimes, CBS, etc. In some cases market forces do not suffice, new management is needed to end incestuous relationships that perpetuate a Stalinist style Leftist Party line. That is happening at PBS - which was once so Democratic Party line consistent that the DNC and PBS exchanged membership lists to get contributors. It appears to be needed at the NYTimes, which still goes solid Left despite a string of embarassments and declining subscriptions and ad revenue. Other MSM outlets are moving more towards the Center, like the Washington Post and it appears now - the LA Times is becoming less hospitable to doctrinaire Lefty management.

Hollywood is the hardest, because it is a hybrid of a competitive market, but a market dominated by Leftward leaning Jews. Who are notorious for murky business accounting, secret deals, informal hiring practices, and heavy contributions and activism in Leftist causes and Democratic Party activities. The way to bring Hollywood - which is of course not just movies but symbolic of a larger entertainment industry that includes TV, music moguls, comics, the 18 billion domestic porn market and accompanying distribution & syndication networks - is through embarassment, transparency, and popular scrutiny.

Embarassment as when actors and songstresses like Ben Affleck, Babs Streisand, Richard Dreyfuss, Ed Asner, the Dixie Chicks are ridiculed as political idiots. Embarassment as in when one British critic is thought to have cost producers of "Kingdom of Heaven" - a Muslim panderfest -over 50 million in revenues by terming it "Osama bin Laden's version of history".

Transparency as in calling for Congressional or WTO hearings to examine why Hollywood distributors claimed that the "Lord of the Rings" Trilogy made no significant money in the USA and stiffed the overseas producers and certain actors of over 140 million in returns. Hollywood is long overdue for a Enron level of scrutiny. And scrutiny on how certain Hollywood insiders have managed to deduct their mortgages, Dem Party & political cause groups, entertainment, high fashion clothes, grooming as "business expenses".

Popular scrutiny is the public keeping tabs on Hollywood refusing to hire conservative actors, its agendas - like advancing gay rights, abortion, Christian-bashing, and America-bashing. And demanding changes.

I don't see any need for a ministry of thought. Just awareness that - as the FBI went too rigid and conservative and impaired its vital societal role......the media, Hollywood, academia, veered too far Leftward and have inflicted harm on society that can only be corrected by pushing those institutions to becoming more open and tolerant of differing opinions..

7/22/2005 11:30:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

nathan is right again ash,
We helped to set up, with the Brits, French, Russians, etc the Oil for Fun program. It was the administration of that program that failed. The intent of the program was to stop just what did occur, according to the WHO. Hundreds of thousands of DEAD Children under the UN's control, guidance and administration.
To blame those that supported delivery of Humanitarian Aid when the inept or criminal acts of the deliverers caused the failure of the program, is absurd.
The US was working in cooperation with the World Community.
Name those Americans that committed criminal acts in regards this program.

7/22/2005 11:34:00 AM  
Blogger Hepzi said...

With regard to the use of drugs, do you read Michael Yon?

If you scroll down about halfway in "The Devils Foyer" you will see a photo of hypodermic drugs found at weapons cache. Apparently it is quite common to dope up--I guess its all part of the "Hassassin" tradition.

7/22/2005 11:39:00 AM  
Blogger RWE said...

The TV show explained that it was a kind of a "speed" drug, describing it as "artifical adrenilein." I don't know if that is just a name used as an analogy or that is really what it is.
Whether it was designed to cloud judgement, is offered as a form of payment, or intended to enhance their performance, or all of the above, it would appear to offer us a new method of attack. I doubt such drugs were part of the Soviet-supplied stockpile of weapons, so they are getting them from somewhere. If we could inject a little something into that supply chain, the possibilities are endless.
But in any case, it seems to be almost certain that at least some of the surviving terrorists are seriously addicted to some pretty nasty stuff. The long term implications of that for the societies that produced them could be very serious. They are not just drug addicts but very violent drug addicts on a "holy" mission.

7/22/2005 11:39:00 AM  
Blogger Paul said...

rwe (and others)

RE: Drugs

In his latest pulitzer prize worthy reporting Michael Yon makes a reference to suicide bombers, etc being hopped up on drugs (and laying with hookers). There is even a picture.

7/22/2005 11:42:00 AM  
Blogger yumbrad said...

Have been a reader for about 2 years, just want to compliment both Wretchard's great analysis and the generally thoughtful discussion... And man, Aristides - I read very few blogs, but if you had one, I'd be there!

7/22/2005 11:46:00 AM  
Blogger RWE said...

By the way, if you get to see that "Shootout" program on Falluja, I recommend it. In terms of the strategic and tactical over view of the battle, Wretchard has them beat hands down. But the description of the indvidual firefights - reenacted with our half of the original cast and supplemented with video-game style animation - are fascinating. And thrilling.
It did leave me wondering why they did not use tanks, chppers, and aircraft to blow away every house that was any source of opposition -because they did do that quite frequently.
The only answer I came up with is that the Marines just like to fight.

7/22/2005 11:51:00 AM  
Blogger Ash said...

Aristides, you do understand that if you have a conflict of interest it impugns any justice you may render? From this link

“… it is not merely of some importance but is of fundamental importance, that justice should not only be done, but should manifestly and undoubtedly be seen to be done.” 1

Lord Hewart was encapsulating a principle that had been long known and often expressed 2. Another pithy articulation of part of the scope of the principle is that of Lord Bowen:
“… Judges, like Caesar’s wife, should be above suspicion …”. 3

Re: Oil for Food, c’mon guys, we were talking about how the Oil For Food scandal helped Saddam solidify his hold over individual Iraqi’s corruption was not the problem here but rather how the money was distributed within Iraq. Saddam controlled the flow, Iraqi rations were administered through his government the US was complicit in establishing that regime.

Desert Rat, humanitarian assistance, I repeat, is but one tool that may be used.

Abakan, I really can’t say what the mythical average Iraqi thinks. I’m merely suggesting that the Iraqi’s perceptions differ (a lot) from the US military’s.

7/22/2005 11:58:00 AM  
Blogger trish said...


We certainly don't need imaginary Iraqis to tell us what we're helping to build in Iraq - or imaginary soldiers. All we have to do is read the draft of the Iraqi constitution.

7/22/2005 12:13:00 PM  
Blogger RWE said...

Okay, very interesting. I will look at the dope on the terrorist dope.
Now, does anyone know if this drug use is also happening in terrorist attacks in the West? I have heard no mention of it.
Would that not be ironic? In the decadent West the terrorists keep themselves pure while in their own holy lands of the middle east they behave like Western rockstars with automatic weapons?

7/22/2005 12:27:00 PM  
Blogger Nathan said...

Ash, you're making quite a stretch with your insinuations of US complicity. Oil for Food was supported by the US on good faith. That good faith was violated. That is why there is a scandal.

7/22/2005 12:31:00 PM  
Blogger Abakan said...

Trish said,

We certainly don't need imaginary Iraqis to tell us what we're helping to build in Iraq - or imaginary soldiers. All we have to do is read the draft of the Iraqi constitution."

Sorry, but your response just shows another layer in the same strategy.

The Iraqi Constitution will serve as a rough generalization of the thoughts of an Iraqi common man only after it has been ratified.

This doesn't really have anything to do with the idea that you should never use your perceptions based on your exposure to data as a framework to describe the thoughts of another.

Also, it is alarming how many people use this tactic to create political arguments designed to further their own agenda.

7/22/2005 12:33:00 PM  
Blogger Hepzi said...

RWE, I would point out that there is a long standing tradition of doping up among islamic warriors. Hence the term "assassin" from "hashish".

I couldn't give you a link, but I have also read that the northern african warriors routinely doped up before fighting the british. I have read that it was a blend, not just hash--also included a stimulant and something that suppressed risk assessment center of the brain. So the warriors were essentially hopped up fearless kamikazes.

7/22/2005 12:48:00 PM  
Blogger Kevin B said...

I second the motion on Aristides, Yumbrad.....I hope he sticks around....As a senior U.S. military concept writer who is trying to articulate our path for the future, this type of discussion is proving to be very useful. Thanks to all.

7/22/2005 12:52:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

right ash
but when denied the ability to deliver that relief, in Dafur, Sudan,wger the Mohammedan Government is systematically killing non Mohammedan people.
Does there exist a right if not a duty to deliver it to those in need?
If not US who? If not now, when?

What course of action would you recommend today on the Dafur Genocide commited by Mohammedans?

7/22/2005 12:57:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Our operations in Iraq, Afghanistan, and around the world (thanks for your info, ledger) HAVE reduced terrorism.
Their leaders, well schooled in our politics, are relying on time, the left, and the electoral process to carry them through these hard times with the ONE nation on earth that has responded with EFFECTIVE force against them in their camps and countries of comfort.
Meanwhile, they continue their activities in countries that have yet to prove they have regained a spine sufficient for survival..

7/22/2005 01:12:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

I'll add the Aussies, making a list of 2.

7/22/2005 01:17:00 PM  
Blogger Ash said...

Hmmm, Desert Rat, tough questions and no easy answers. I will attempt a quick answer, tentatively, since my knowledge of the situation is limited, as is my knowledge in general ;) , and I’ve got to run.

The most pressing problem appears to be how to stop the genocide. The Security Council, after much bickering, has referred it to the ICC. I believe much of the arguing turned on whether the ICC was to be involved and what form of troops should be sent (regional – African vs. UN…I think). Anyway, isn’t there some form of coalition government now being formed in Sudan? Is the genocide continuing? The ICC should make its report and the US should work with the international community to stop the genocide and brings its perpetrators to justice. Force of arms may indeed be needed. The key is to get a form of dispassionate judicial/international face on the intervention. Why does the US not choose to act in Sudan as it chose to in Iraq?

7/22/2005 01:19:00 PM  
Blogger david bennett said...

Russians, etc the Oil for Fun program. It was the administration of that program that failed. The intent of the program was to stop just what did occur, according to the WHO. Hundreds of thousands of DEAD Children under the UN's control, guidance and administration.
To blame those that supported delivery of Humanitarian Aid when the inept or criminal acts of the deliverers caused the failure of the

Interestingly those who opposed Iraq denied the claims of massive child mortality. Now they are accepted.

The problem is that no one claims that these numbers have significantly decreased. The health situation has not been resolved. Part of it is the massive decay under Saddam, but there is also massive corruption and other huge problems.

So at this point *we* start to become responsible after overseeing the situation for over 2 years. Certainly the terrorists have a role in forcing huge numbers of doctors to resign and in blowing Baghdad water which has caused lots of illness as will as other infrastructure damage.

But much of this damage was caused by the looting estimated to have led to 10 billion in loss. We hesitated to intervene. Other health problems are caused by corruption which keeps drugs from getting to clinics and reduces the distributed food rations (for example since early this year many mothers have not been getting milk.) We have overseen these programs just as we oversaw the 300 million dollar weapons purchase program which bought only crap and foreig bank accounts for some officials.

It has also been our companies who have gotten most of the reconstruction contracts paid for with Iraqi money (almost none of the money appropiated by Congress has been spent.) While our administrators proudly state production capacity has gone from 4.4 megawatts to 5, they also admit that anyone time around 2 megawatts are down. These are our figures.

The oil for food program was a scandal. There is no doubt that saddam did not distribute many key items to his people, that he played political games, that he let the country further decline as he built his palaces and rewarded his allies. But sadly the improvement in public health remains marginal. The babies and children still die in massive numbers.

7/22/2005 01:20:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

I mean let's get real ash, suicide bombings in Baghdad or London pale in comparison to Genocide in the Sudan.
If this were truly a "War" against 'Radical Islam' or 'Terror' we would be fighting where the most blood was flowing and worst terror was being committed. But the Mohammedans kill by the tens of thousands and rape thousands without consequence. The best response from the west is to have 55 names under sealed indictment at ash's ICC.
There is no call from members of the Club to save the innocent and at the same time strike a Mohammedan terror state.

7/22/2005 01:23:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Multicult West: Breeding Grounds for Terrorists. .
I have always maintained that the vocabulary for today's terrorists is hatched here in the west, largely at Universities, Hollywood, the MSM, and the Democrat party.

7/22/2005 01:27:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

...and of course all other parties of the left.

7/22/2005 01:27:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

No mr bennet, if the death toll amongst Iraqi children was continueing at 5,000 deaths per month we would know it, that detail would not remain hidden to the world.
It may well be that there never was such a death toll, and that the entire story of tens of thousands of Iraqi children dying is an Urban myrh concocted by the WHO and other groups of similar stature.
I myself never believed so many children were dying, but the World Community saw it different. They must have been right, right?

7/22/2005 01:30:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"In an interview published Sunday by The Sun, Ms. Lewthwaite, who is eight months pregnant and in protective custody, said she could not believe that her husband was involved. "I won't believe it until they show me the proof," she said. "I'm not going to accept it until they have his DNA."

7/22/2005 01:34:00 PM  
Blogger Old Dad said...

It seems to me that a layered defense is essential, and that we are on the right track. That said, I think our efforts are still inadequate and under resourced. As noted up thread, it's time to mobilize behind the war effort.

I think also that the invasion of Iraq is at least partially misunderstood. Certainly the intent, in part, was to find and kill terrorists (the "fly paper" strategy), but let's be realistic. The main strategic thrust was to depose Saddam Hussein, radically destabilize the region, establish a strong military/ intelligence presence, and to warn neighboring regimes of what happens to those who support terror.

I argue for a large troop build up in Iraq, but not for the typical reasons. We might need more boots on the ground to secure the country. I don't know. But we definitely need more boots on the ground to effect regime change in Syria and Iran. Moreover, it would make sense to me to base a strike force strong enough to take the Saudi oil fields somewhere in the region.

7/22/2005 01:34:00 PM  
Blogger Ash said...

Desert Rat, the Bush admin has been a big heel dragger in this issue. They opposed at the Security Council any action in Sudan until France maneuvered them into having to veto the ICC deal. The US abstained and it passed.

Yes, the blood flowing in Sudan demands action. Why, I ask again, has the US chosen not to act either unilaterally or multilaterally?

7/22/2005 01:36:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Children cannot survive w/o weekly visits to socialist clinics.

7/22/2005 01:36:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

I've asked that question myself, ash.
what would you do?

7/22/2005 01:40:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

We can't do anything 'Rat:
We're overstretched, remember?

7/22/2005 01:41:00 PM  
Blogger Ash said...

Desert Rat, in short, I would urge other nations to add troops to ours to back the ICC. I would say to the government of Sudan that the killing must stop and the perpetrators brought to trial or the troops move in.

7/22/2005 01:45:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

with half of Iraq'stabilized, that being the Shia south and the Gurdish north, I do not think children are dying of malnutrition and lack of medical services in those areas. That means that in spite of all the children that concregate for 'sweets' many of their cousins are hidden away, at homes and Mosques, starving. Those evil Sunni, treating their children like that.

7/22/2005 01:48:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

whose troops ash?
The ICC is NEVER going to be approved by the US. Read it sometime, if you understand the US Constitution you'll understand why.

The UN has no troops
The ICC has no troops
The troops of the 'West' are our troops. A few Brits and Aussies.
The French have not won a campaign in decades. Who will you deploy ash, in the World Policeman role?

Who backs up the UN & ICC with force of arms?

7/22/2005 01:54:00 PM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

Didn't Kipling write about "amok" fighters that the Brits had to deal with in their colonial empire period? Or "beserkers"? And the reason they were beserk was something they had imbibed -- smoked, drank or ate. I'm pretty sure they didn't have syringes at that point in history. Wretchard's a Kipling expert. He may have details.

7/22/2005 01:54:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

The Hijackers: Who They Were, Why They Did It .
Indeed, ''Perfect Soldiers'' replaces the caricatures of outsize ''evil geniuses'' and ''wild-eyed fanatics'' with portraits of the 9/11 plotters as surpassingly mundane people, people who might easily be our neighbors or airplane seatmates. It gives us pictures of Jarrah signing his notes to Ms. Sengün ''with a long drawn-out goodbyeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee, followed by multiple exclamation points,'' of Mohamed el-Amir (aka Mohamed Atta) as a slight young man padding about his student apartment in blue flip-flops, of Ramzi bin al-Shibh going on dates with a modern-dance student and subsisting on frozen pizzas with tuna.
The reason for reading ''Perfect Soldiers'' has to do with the chilling portraits the book draws of the ordinary men who executed the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, resulting in the deaths of almost 3,000 people -- a portrait that gives new meaning to the phrase ''the banality of evil.''

7/22/2005 01:55:00 PM  
Blogger Peter UK said...

"in short, I would urge other nations to add troops to ours to back the ICC".
So troops are goingt o fight under the banner of an unecleted and undemocratic organisation.

"I would say to the government of Sudan that the killing must stop and the perpetrators brought to trial or the troops move in".

Since these governments cannot control their countries,which like Iraq are awash to the gunnels with weapons,the only option is to go in.
How long will the public support a war,bound by the constrictions of a police action,under the auspices of a bunch of foreign judges.
Which Western army will trust their flank to some of these somewhat dubious Third World armies.
How long will it take,,western armies are still in the Balkans?
Who will fight knowing that the organisation which sends them will also try them if those they are policing make the slightest mistake.

7/22/2005 02:52:00 PM  
Blogger Fernand_Braudel said...

How about sending the Serbian army in?

With the Serbian army out of Bosnia, we could pull our troops out of there too!

7/22/2005 03:10:00 PM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

Cefard said: Pok Rinds for Yahweh writes that in his opinion, anyone who attacks Israeli Occupation troops, armed Settlers, or defenseless civilians are - evil terrorists - as the Israeli regime claims, with no distinctions.

1/ They ARE evil terrorists. Unless you're trying to imply that jihad is a good thing™.

2/ Jihadi terror cells are not a military unit make. Therefore cannot be considered such. Jihadi terror is meant compel the population to jihadi values by killing the arrogant dhimmi (Jew) that wishes his freedom from Islamic subjugation.

3/ Yours is an Islamist narrative of history. That these terror cells are resisting Israeli "occupation" is a complete joke. If anything, it is Israelis that are suffering the taste of jihadi occupation.

7/22/2005 03:12:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Donald Trump predicts UN Renovation will balloon to over 3 Billion in 3 years!
Says they have no idea what dealing with NY City Construction is all about:
They will take them to lunch!
Real cost should be 700 million.
They think they can rent temp space for 1 or 2 years!
(estimate $98 million for temp space: actual cost will be hundreds and hundreds of millions)

7/22/2005 03:27:00 PM  
Blogger Cedarford said...

pc^killa claims all partisans and irregular fighters are "evil terrorists", it seems.

Bummer for the Filipinos, Greeks, Danes, Yugoslav, Chinese, American Indians, Polish partisans, and dozens of other nationalities, that fought the same way, I guess. "Evil terrorists" all ---under the Israeli definition ----that pc^killa and Pork Rinds for Yahweh support.

7/22/2005 03:41:00 PM  
Blogger Aristides said...

Ash, on Sudan: "Why, I ask again, has the US chosen not to act either unilaterally or multilaterally?"

There are many reasons why we haven't acted unilaterally, and one giant reason why we haven't acted multilaterally.

The amount of animosity engendered by unilateral exercises of American power have the unintended effect of making our foreign actions even more singularly focused, more, as Ash would deride, self-interested. Therefore, because of a world affliction of power envy, and because of the existential struggle we are in with Radical Islam, we must choose our battles carefully.

Another reason would be that we really do want, despite the assertions of the chattering classes, to allow the rest of the world an equal say in what happens, and an equal responsibility in the results. Creating unrealistic expectations of America as the Universal Fireman is not in our interest.

Another reason is that, contrary to the flattering rumors, America is not omnipotent and, even though we have gi-normous reserves of resources, they are not infinite. Because of this, see reason one.

The primary reason for the multilateral stall is not the US. As far as I know, Ms. Rice's recent statements to Sudanese President Omar el-Bashir using the word "genocide"--to his face--are the first of its kind. Europe, if you'll remember, had a debate last year on just what "genocide" meant and if it could be applied to Sudan, and they adjourned unanimously convinced that they should talk about something else. They didn't want to say something that America would have to back up.

But even European weakness is not the primary "multilateral" reason for the inattention. Nope, for that you would have to look to China and her unquenchable thirst for Sudanese oil. While our moral betters on this side of the Atlantic are horrified about wars for oil, our Chinese friends are not as sophisticated and urbane. With a Chinese veto on the Security Council and the inevitability of its use, why waste time and political capital on an impossibility. Plus, if any sanctions were actually applied on Sudan's only major export, it is without a doubt that Omar el-Bashir and his regime would suddenly be awash in Chinese made weapons and cash, and the horror in Darfur would accelerate until the very reasons for the sanctions were...quieted.

How, then, would that solve the humanitarian crisis?

7/22/2005 03:53:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Trumps CLASSIC presentation will be available at

7/22/2005 03:53:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Yoni will be making more updates on Hewitt on Egyptian Hotel Blast.

7/22/2005 03:57:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Why blogs focused on the Plame game are one-fourth as relevant as The Belmont Club, FroggyRuminations, and Winds of Change.

HH: Last question, Howard Fineman, thanks for the time today, if you had to rank on a scale of 1 to 10 in terms of importance the Plame memo, the Roberts confirmation and the war on terror, where would you put those three, the Plame memo first, one being insignificant, 10 being life or death?
HF: Well I'd put the Plame memo at maybe 2 or 3, I'd put the Roberts nomination at 5, and I'd put the war on terror at 10.
HH: We, agree Howard Fineman. Have a great weekend.

Radioblogger will also have the transcript of Donald Trump's very entertaining testimony before a Senate committee on the projected cost of renovating the U.N.

7/22/2005 04:04:00 PM  
Blogger RWE said...

Aristides: I would argue against our intervention in Sudan due to the Oath taken by all members of the U.S. military: "support and defend the Constitution..." The GWOT fits that definition in my mind, as did WWII, Korea, Vietnam, Desert Storm, etc. The Balkans intervention did not; neither would going into Sudan. This is paricularly important in combat missions, as opposed to hurricane and tsunami relief, which are in the same category as being the unit Savings Bond Drive representative or organizing the office Christmas party. If you can explain in one sentence or less how a combat mission relates to the Oath, then it is worth considering. Otherwise it is not. Maybe this is not nice for some people, but the alternative is incorporating places that need our military assistance into the Union, or at least declaring them a possession. Or... force the military to recognize that the oath really just means "Perform duties as assigned" with the disasterous consequnces that would follow.
As for Cederford: there he goes again. Say you don't like commie guerillas or Islamic terrorists and that means you hate the Swamp Fox and the Heroes of Telemark...

7/22/2005 04:47:00 PM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

Cefart said:Bummer for the Filipinos, Greeks, Danes, Yugoslav, Chinese, American Indians, Polish partisans, and dozens of other nationalities,

Did they all belong to the Ummah?

7/22/2005 04:51:00 PM  
Blogger Mətušélaḥ said...

Btw cefard,
made your hajj to Makkah yet?

7/22/2005 04:54:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

old dad said,
"...we definitely need more boots on the ground to effect regime change in Syria and Iran. Moreover, it would make sense to me to base a strike force strong enough to take the Saudi oil fields somewhere in the region"
Is Kuwait still a suitable staging area?

7/22/2005 04:54:00 PM  
Blogger mbarr said...

The war on terror is in its essence the powereless lashing out at the powerful.

7/22/2005 04:56:00 PM  
Blogger mbarr said...

Hasn't this in one form or the other been going on forever?

7/22/2005 05:05:00 PM  
Blogger Nathan said...

In Cedarford's defense, his larger point seems to be primarily a matter of definitions; "terrorist" does not seem to be a well-defined word in popular understanding, as some people are wont to conflate the word and concept of "terrorist" with "freedom fighter".

For instance, I believe the distinction between a "terrorist" and an "irregular" or "partisan" lays with the types of targets each pursues, and to what ends.

7/22/2005 05:06:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

After a great deal of thought and deliberation, I have come up with a solution to your plumbing problem in the previous thread.
You're Welcome.

7/22/2005 05:10:00 PM  
Blogger Peter UK said...

This is quite a modern phenomenon,born of Western liberal attitudes and the invention of explosives,in an earlier time they would have crucified them all on the road between Damascus and Tehran.

7/22/2005 05:27:00 PM  
Blogger Dan said...

Where the hell are the British skinheads when you actually want them around, I'd like to know.

Sorry guys, sort of given up on serious analysis at this point. Guess I'm feeling a little of that good old timey clan justice creeping from the medula into the blood.

Assimilation must be forced upon these people if they are recalcitrant. Simply put, they are not entitled to that level of autonomy. Perhaps if they had something of value to impart, it would be an acceptable stance. Since they do not, and are here to learn, they should learn in silence if they cannot learn graciously. If they cannot learn in silence or graciously, they should be intimidated. That's how they did it in turn of the century America. That, apparently, is how it's done. Well, let us get to it then.

7/22/2005 05:29:00 PM  
Blogger Dan said...

And let me also ask: why is Moqtada al-Sadr still alive?

Just a question.

7/22/2005 05:30:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

old dad said,
"...we definitely need more boots on the ground to effect regime change in Syria and Iran. Moreover, it would make sense to me to base a strike force strong enough to take the Saudi oil fields somewhere in the region"

That's the upside of Iraq.

Just like we converted the bloody battlefield of Okinawa to the strategic Kadena air base. Only in this case, we get the extra bennie of a strategic base for ground troops, like Western Germany.

There's nothing new under the sun.

7/22/2005 05:30:00 PM  
Blogger Aristides said...

rwe: I agree with you that the US military should not be a global constabulary. During Clinton's years in office it seemed the litmus test for action was the absolute selflessness of the mission, and I disagreed with it strongly then.

However, I would submit that "interests" can be narrowly and broadly defined. Who would have thought that the bad governance, the bigotry, and the failure of the Arab world would be a national security issue for the United States?

In a very specific sense, we are safer when the world is less chaotic; we are more powerful when the world is free. Because of our singular characteristics as a global hegemon, there is a very real argument to be had in favor of humanitarian intervention.

Once you make that step, the dispositive terms are "cost" and "benefit", a coarse and bothersome way to weigh human life, but in the end a more humane approach than proscribing any humanitarian interventions altogether.

7/22/2005 05:39:00 PM  
Blogger mbarr said...

peter uk

Where is Tony Soprano when you need him?

You find the clerics that are preaching the anti American/Western hate.

Kill them and their families and eventually this problem goes away.

Barbaric yes effective yes

7/22/2005 05:49:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

I would think that if the US were engaged in a conflict of National Survival against Mohammedan Jihadists and those Mohammaden rule a country and were systematicly destroying nonMohammedan people there, the US could have an interest there, as justifiable as the Federal Regulation of instate medical pot in CA. The Mohammedan Government, by their very existance as such a Terrorist sancturay, could pose a threat to US. If the Congress were convinced and declared War, well that WOULD be something.

Operations, a word that does not carry the same gravity as WAR

7/22/2005 05:51:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

yeah I could do that, already am, kind of. Was looking for a technique that did not require handling the bag.

7/22/2005 06:00:00 PM  
Blogger Aristides said...

re: definition of terrorism.

The simple definition is the deliberate targeting of civilians, with the purpose of inflicting massive psychological suffering, in the furtherance of a political or religious goal.

The rejoinder is, of course, Dresden and Hiroshima are terrorism!

The answer to this objection is not simple. To me it comes down to honor and circumstance. The context of Dresden and Hiroshima were total war, where the justifications for each grew out of and indeed rested upon a militaristic consideration. Both Dresden and Hiroshima were contemplated, planned, and implemented to severely attack the enemy's war fighting spirit in the interest of protecting as many lives as we could. The goal, then, was the cessation of conflict, not its furtherance.

But in the end, I believe a metaphysically-solid definition of terrorism will continue to elude us. Therefore, I use Honor as my North star when I get lost in the gray areas. When arguing about means and ends, about freedom fighters and insurgents, terrorists or minutemen, it is sometimes helpful to simply step back and reduce the debate.

When weighing methods of fighting, the fundamental metric is honor. And there is nothing honorable about terrorism.

7/22/2005 06:02:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Yoni says at least 43 dead in Egypt, expects more:
Two Hotels, rumor is lots of British tourists.
No Israelis so far.
Check hewitt and radioblogger.

7/22/2005 06:03:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Ledger had some great posts earlier on Curtis LeMay's firebombing campaign across Japan:
Hiroshima and Nagasaki were dramatic, but paled in comparison in terms of damage and loss of life.
The last raid consisted of 823 B-29's, and not a single loss!
I think he said 225,000 lives lost in Tokyo...

7/22/2005 06:09:00 PM  
Blogger mbarr said...

It is kind of like someone's kid in your neighborhood constantly throwing rocks at your house .

At some point you pick up a baseball bat and go to the kids father and smash his head in.

That would solve the problem.

Terrorism should be a muslim problen not a western problem.

7/22/2005 06:09:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

The Belmont Club: June 2005.
He was replaced by Curtis Lemay after it became clear that his methods were notyielding results. Lemay embarked on a campaign of attacks on Japanese cities 2005_06_01_fallbackbelmont_archive.html - 256k -

7/22/2005 06:13:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

PC Mandates that it REMAIN a Western Problem.

7/22/2005 06:15:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Eygpt oh no!
Call Gordon Pasha!

Mohammedan Terror strikes at the Union Jack once more -
the Mahdi Army marches Koran in hand!
Leaving British blood a soakin' the sand
Remember the River War!

The Opfor ain't never read Kipling

Where is Iron Pants Thatcher when ya need 'er

7/22/2005 06:16:00 PM  

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