Sunday, February 26, 2006

The Nauroz offensive

Syed Saleem Shahzad, writing in the Asia Times (hat tip: Bill Roggio) says that the destruction of the Golden Mosque was a terrible blow to the Sunni-Shi'ite united resistance against the United States.

KARACHI - Spring is only a month away, and preparations for Nauroz (the Persian new year) are well under way. In Iran this year, however, Nauroz was due to come with a deadly dimension: the start of a new phase of a broad-based anti-US resistance movement stretching from Afghanistan to Jerusalem. ...

Security contacts have told Asia Times Online that several al-Qaeda members have been moved from detention centers to safe houses run by Iranian intelligence near Tehran. The aim of these people in Iran is to establish a chain of anti-US resistance groups that will take the offensive before the West makes its expected move against Tehran. ... Many believe that the US is planning preemptive military action against Iran.

With Wednesday's attack on the Golden Mosque in Samarra in Iraq, home to a revered Shi'ite shrine, the dynamics have changed overnight. ... The potentially bloody polarization in the Shi'ite-Sunni world now threatens to unravel the links that have been established between Shi'ite-dominated Iran and radical Sunni groups from Afghanistan and elsewhere.


I'm not sure whether to believe Mr. Shahzad. Zarqawi has long declared his intention to start an Iraqi civil war. The al-Qaeda or Sunni groups have attacked Shi'ite pilgrimages and holy places for two years running. Saddam Hussein launched a war against the Ayatollah in 1980. Therefore it does not necessarily follow that the Golden Mosque attack was in response to the Nauroz offensive. But it does raise the question: what is the Nauroz offensive?


Blogger Guessedworker said...

Zarqawi's objective of splitting Iraq along factional lines is his own, not AQ's. The Shia majority has, naturally enough, gained under the new "democracy", and for him that puts the elected government, including the Sunnis in it, and the Shia population at large on the same footing as "the Crusaders". They are all his mortal enemies.

Possibly, had the Sunnis not participated in the last election the Sammara attack would never have been launched. We cannot, of course, know for certain the attack was Zarqawi's. But assuming so leads straight to the possibility that he, a product of AQ's post-Afhanistan structural looseness, sees Iraqi Sunni sovereignty as an ultimate and non-negotiable interest. It's his thing.

He has, apparently, appealed to the AQ leadership to support him in this - meaning, obviously, that direct Sunni interests are at best proximate for them. AQ's original, primary objectives were to unite the Ummah, and to cleanse Saudi of Western personnel and influences and its corrupt rulers.

The Nauroz story is credible in the context of these wider, non-factional objectives. These days the AQ leadership is surely reduced to encouraging what opportunities and developments correspond to them. Meanwhile, Iran might well see the political benefit to fighting a public, defensive war against America but only the most private and detached offensive one.

If Zarqawi is putting such a promising marriage of convenience at risk he receive only betrayal instead of the support he craves.

2/26/2006 04:58:00 AM  
Blogger enscout said...

Depending on the response of the ISF, any forays into Iraq by Iranians could escalate into another war between the two countries. This time with American troops on the ground with US air support.

Not the worst scenario, it seems to me.

2/26/2006 05:48:00 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

thing is if they really, really wanted a civil war they'd just bomb the Ali mosque yesterday. but theyve nearly scuttled weimar now; sadr's untouchable as peacemaker for the time being; sunnis continue to be begging to have genocide committed against them, for the same inscrutable reason.

Hm. Maybe they did this just to transport sensitive stuff - WMD? - among countries, are to Israel?

2/26/2006 05:55:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My local Gannett newspaper, on an inside Nation & World page, under the Digest column carried a brief headlined, "Curfew doesn't work: 60 die in violence."

Bombs and gunfire killed 60 people as another daytime curfew Saturday failed to halt violence that has claimed nearly 200 lives since the destruction of a Shiite shrine set off a wave of retribution against Sunnis and pushed Iraq toward civil war.

The media refuses to place the level of violence in any sort of context. In the run-up to the recent elections as many as one hundred people were killed in a single suicide bombing. Also, we know that 47 Sunnis and Shia factory workers returning from a peaceful protest were pulled from a bus and executed. This was surely the work of al-Qaeda or Baathists seeking to promote chaos. It is doubtful that this was retribution.

But the "chaos of civil war" better promotes an anti-war, anti-Bush agenda.

2/26/2006 06:22:00 AM  
Blogger PeterBoston said...

Week lays bare a murderous sectarian rage

This is the headline for the Boston Globe's take on the civil war that didn't happen. The Globe is owned by the NYT. These folks are very disappointed.

2/26/2006 06:41:00 AM  
Blogger trangbang68 said...

I have referenced Bing West's book on the Fallujah and Ramadi battles recently.What I took away from the book is much of the opposition is not organized but for all intents and purposes chaos;in Abbie Hoffman's memorable phrase"Revolution for the Hell of it".Whatever the Americans do or don't do,these people will eventually destroy themselves it seems by their very nature .Organizing them is like trying to organize cancer cells.

2/26/2006 07:49:00 AM  
Blogger Tony said...

Once again, it seems our enemies do not agree w/ the Dems and MSM that Iraq is a "distraction" in the GWOT.

Maybe that "Axis of Evil" construction was accurate after all? Tehran is feeling intense pressure, ergo this Nauroz Offensive to harrass their enemy throughout the region, regardless of borders.That would be a reasonable explanation, but it pre-supposes effective organization, or at least coherent inspiration of independent actors.

Or it may be as bad as it looks, it may be as Trangbang suggests, like herding cancer cells.

2/26/2006 08:32:00 AM  
Blogger Cobalt Blue said...

I think it was Danton who said: Il nous faut de l'audace, et encore de l'audace, toujours de l'audace. The Islamic leaders seem to know this quite well.

To seize the initiative any slight will do, any grievance will suffice: cartoons, bombs, killings, the accidental death of two youths at an electrical substation. Whatever is at hand will work, apparently

We on the other hand are wrong-footed constantly, ever reacting.

2/26/2006 08:36:00 AM  
Blogger RWE said...

I'm really not sure about Mr Shazod's opinion. For some time now, the press and various others have warned of a joint Shia-Sunni insurgency designed to drive the U.S. from Iraq. That never happened. The conflict between the two groups sparked by the Golden Mosque bombing may be seen as an "out" by those that predicted the joint insurgency which never materialized.

If the Iranians can be tied to the mosque bombing in any way, even by merely being complict with Al Queda or whoever did it, then the Euro-style game is over and the real American-style fun begins. Even the Europeans are disgusted with the Iranians, and only Cindy, Fidel, Ceasar, Hugo, and Kim could even dare to mumble a disagreement if we took down that regime by any means necessary.

The enemy of your enemy may be a friend - but that does not mean that letting him use your spare bedroom is a good idea. It just makes the resultant target even more attractive.

2/26/2006 08:58:00 AM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

I read something in the last day or two suggesting that Sadr is in cahoots with Tehran, and that he and his men in black were the Shrine bombers. The double-motive would be increased power for Sadr, and for Tehran trying to push Iraq into civil war so Iran can either take over or have more influence.

This seems an unlikely outcome for Iran in that it posits the Americans and the Iraqi army just standing by as Iran swoops in, but I *do* like the concept of Sadr working with Iran behind the scenes for whatever nefarious reasons.

I also appreciate reading about pressure Iran may be feeling since their bluster-for-the-media and UN consumption is designed to indicate they are very sure of themselves and everything is a "go" and status quo.

2/26/2006 09:31:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"the Euro-style game is over and the real American-style fun begins"
re enscout comment on American Airpower:
Wouldn't the Iraq/Iran war have been essentially a Turkey Shoot with American Air? which case the only Turkey would have been Powell running around shouting:
"Oh! The Humanity!
Stop the Madness!
American-style fun, Indeed!

2/26/2006 10:15:00 AM  
Blogger Elam Bend said...

Iran does not need troops on the gound to exert political control. Look at southern Lebanon, or southern Iraq.
In my view,the attack was carried out by Sadr as a sort of "burning the Reichstag" moment to give him a pretext for all his soldiers subsequent reprisals/attacks/protests. It was a power play.
Indeed, it could very well be the start of the campaign outlined in the A-Times article. The attack helped AQ bypushing forward a civil war and helped Iran by providing a possible power vacuum for Sadr to step into. (also, Sadr just went on a neighborhood international tour, no doubt offering himself as a strong-man alternative to democracy).
Once Iran has political control over all southern Iraq (maybe even Bagdad), there'll be plenty of oil money to rebuild the mosque.

I don't think Iran is just trying to stave off U.S. attack. I believe there priorities are much higher. They want expansion and hegemony.

2/26/2006 10:18:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

That is essentially the perspective of VDH after coming back from Iraq:
He says the major impediment to rebuilding is the 100k released criminals, not the "insurgency."

Likewise for many hostages for ransom, and etc.

Transcript of his interview on Hewitt is at Radioblogger.
Hugh has links to his articles.

2/26/2006 10:19:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"posits the Americans and the Iraqi army just standing by as Iran swoops in..."
VDH says the Iraq Forces now constitute the most formidable military in the region, w/o question.
...add our Air to that...

2/26/2006 10:24:00 AM  
Blogger PeterBoston said...

We on the other hand are wrong-footed constantly, ever reacting.

Why do I get the impression that I'm going to start reading tomorrow that MacArthur/Halsey screwed the pooch in the Pacific Campaign by not sailing directly to Tokyo Bay? This is a Long War. Let's hope so because the alternative is a very ugly one.

The GWOT will not end until pan-Islamic Salafism/Whabbism is totally discredited as a way out of the comparative failure of Arab and Muslim societies. For starters the demographic trends are discouraging. The percentage of under 20 males within overall increasing populations is skyrocketing in Arab and Muslim countries and plunging in Western countries some of which have stable or declining populations to boot. Rand has a brief study that raises some of the pertinent issues.

In the West, at least, there's hope that technology will increase productivity enough to keep pace with aging populations. Arab and Muslim countries must first drag themselves, or get dragged, into modernity, socially and economically at a minimum, to prevent the marginalization of the majority of their population. A majority that would most likely see the anti-technology vision of Salafism/Whabbism as attractive. If there's no chance of living a 21st century life then why bother trying? Fundamentalist Islam has the medieval life covered and is the answer. Palestine is the laboratory experiment run amock.

At this stage of the game breaking more eggs would make the transition to modernity more difficult. Arab and Muslim leaders see the demographic trends heading at them too. Nobody wants to be the next Leader strung up by his heels so they will out of necessity modernize. Hopefully it will be fast enough.

I think this is where the Bushies are going with the Long War. It may be the only approach the EU will buy into so long as oil keeps getting shipped from the Gulf. The two things that would fast track the Long War are a nuclear Iran or the fall of the House of Saud.

2/26/2006 10:26:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"Once Iran has political control over all southern Iraq (maybe even Bagdad), "
That's the ONLY way they could do it, since Militarily it is a media dream Non-Event.
So the question is, can they
"gain political control over all southern Iraq"
in these circumstances?

2/26/2006 10:28:00 AM  
Blogger trish said...

Right, Doug.

There is no insurgency. There is no civil war. Iraq just has a REALLY big crime problem.

So, I'll ask again: WTF are we doing, rotating in and out in the hundreds of thousands, year after goddamn year after goddamn year, in a country simply suffering a bad crime wave?

Enquiring minds, Doug.

BTW: I did answer your question on that other thread.

2/26/2006 11:14:00 AM  
Blogger trish said...


This would be ever so much easier if the insurgency (er, "insurgency") were organized, centralized, and coherent. Were it, in fact, I wager we'd be done and home by now.

2/26/2006 11:18:00 AM  
Blogger PeterBoston said...


A capable and relatively prosperous Iraq is Iran's biggest nightmare.

It's a lot "cheaper" to pay the butcher's bill now than it would be mano a mano against Iran.

2/26/2006 11:23:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Continuing with PeterBoston's theme:

David Meir-Levi (Hamas Uber-Alles,, February 23, 2006) ,writing about Hamas, gives a brief summary of Islamic history explaining the historic and spiritual cycles of Islam.

Descended from the Brotherhood, Haraqat al Muqawama al-Islamiyyah, Hamas, shares much of its DNA. Whatever its representatives may have said in the recently completed campaign, this is an Islamic fundamentalist terror group whose sole purpose is the destruction of Israel and an apocalyptic future in which all Jews are either dead or Muslim, all remaining Christians are Dhimmi, and the stage is set for the resurrection of the dead and the redemption of the world into “dar es-Salaam” (the realm of world peace that will prevail once Islam is the only religion on earth, or at least the ruling religion).

Hamas is part of Muslim history, which is typified by waves of what we today might refer to as “Islamic fundamentalists” or “extremists.” This has been the case since the original zeal of the 7th century propelled the newly converted Moslems out of Arabia and in less than one hundred years helped them conquer four civilizations, destroying the languages and cultures of scores of nations, replacing those with Arabic and Islam, killing tens of millions along the way.
Out of Arabia, and westward, they surged into Syria and Israel, across Egypt and North Africa, in to Spain and France, stopped at the gates of Paris in 736 by Charles Martel. Eastward they conquered the Byzantine and Sassanian empires in what is today Iraq and Iran, and launching wave after wave of attackers into western India, Kashmir, Gujarat, and Punjab. Gradually, the momentum of this wave ebbed, and Islam from Spain to India, Yemen to what is today Pakistan, settled in to a ruling, rather than a conquering, mode.
But such stability was always undermined by new waves of radical fundamentalism surging out of the “Umma” (the trans-national Moslem religious population). In the 12the century it was the Almohades, who wrecked havoc in North Africa and Spain; bringing an end to the Golden Age and re-instituting the harsh, oppressive religious apartheid of Moslem supremacy and the humiliating inferior status of Jews and Christians as dhimmi. Later, this pattern again emerges with the ascendancy of the Turkish Ottoman Empire and its conquests of what is today Greece, Cyprus, Crete, Albania, Czechia, Slovakia, Romania, and Hungary, a development that brought genocidal destruction and the murder of hundreds of thousands of Christians.
Over the next few centuries, Turkish rule became less harsh and, indeed by modern times Turkey became a model of Islamic tolerance and progressiveness. Meanwhile, however, another wave of Muslim extremism occurred in Arabia, with the birth of the Wahhabi movement in the 19th and early 20th centuries– an extreme regression to Islam at its most stringent and oppressive. Part of this pattern was the resurgence of the Moslem Brotherhood, and its Palestinian branch, Hamas. When normative Islam grows too tolerant of other cultures, too secular, too eclectic, the fundamentalists stage a purifying resurgence of violence, terrorism, assassinations, war, and mass murder to recapture the true identity of Islam.

David Meir-Levi has described a cycle similar to what has been repeated throughout the histories of Judaism and Christianity and at various times in the spiritual life of each believer.

The interesting contrast of Islam and Christianity is that when Islam goes through a less devout period and "falls away," it becomes more tolerant. As the fundamentalists seek to draw the umma back to pure Islam, the religion becomes more oppressive.

The challenge for this generation is to break the cycle of destructive fundamentalism and to promote the reformation that Islam desperately needs. This is what we are trying to do, break the cycle without breaking a billion people. It's messy but hopefully cheaper in lives and dollars.

2/26/2006 11:32:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

Damn, PeterBoston, that was good overview. I liked it because I agree with it. Just an aerial shot of mideastern cities is enough to get the message, we can't police the joint if it goes really bad. Long War may or may not work--NYTimes, when will you wake up?--but the alternative is not going to be good for the human race.

2/26/2006 11:38:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Thanks for your comment on the other thread:
(Zeyad reports from Baghdad)
Seems the desired end point is the same for you, me, and VDH.

The difference is VDH believes we need additional time before that to get the Iraqi Forces to a point where we're down to the common "end point" (semi stable for the medium term, acceptable costs on all sides)
W/O a civil war.
You evidently see a Civil War as inevitable regardless.

I was going to say I wouldn't bet my life on either outcome, but that brings the seriousness to light, since that's exactly what's happening right now for us and the Iraqis. you know all too well.

2/26/2006 11:41:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

So the answer to the year after year complaint is that it has taken longer than it "should have" to train the Iraqis, but VDH believes they are almost there.

There ARE elections in the USA, so POTUS knows he doesn't have forever.

2/26/2006 11:45:00 AM  
Blogger trish said...

"A capable and relatively prosperous Iraq is Iran's biggest nightmare."

Capable of what exactly, peterboston?

"Capable and relatively prosperous" is far more ambitious even than 'maybe not coming apart entirely at the seams and hopefully not looking for all the world like one big abatoir.' That is, I do believe, the current hope on the ground.

2/26/2006 11:46:00 AM  
Blogger trangbang68 said...

West in describing the cities in Anbar province describes mobs of unemployed youths .Everybody has an AK or RPG launcher(Who led these clowns keep automatic weapons and launchers-fertile ground for the NRA)
At first opportunity,usually the bellowing of some jihadi preacher,everybody grabs their gun,hops in a vehicle and runs to the battle.Initially this was a real problem because of half hearted civilian leadership keeping the Marines on a leash.Once they were turned loose,the Marines chewed these fools up and spit them out.The AQ guys were more of a problem,but the Marines sent them to hell with Atta too.
The lesson is the only smart way out of this morass for us is overwhelming force brought to bear on the insurgents and riffraff they employ.Fear this Akmal!

2/26/2006 11:47:00 AM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

That's the difference, Trangbang, between "Long War" and the vast quarter-century trial of "Soft Power".

One could say that the allies we do have in the Ummah are a product of Soft Power, but that's conjecture.

AQ OTOH is a definite beneficiary of it--especially as it worked in the 90s.

2/26/2006 11:57:00 AM  
Blogger trish said...

"There ARE elections in the USA, so POTUS knows he doesn't have forever."

Has the POTUS put us on an election-related schedule in Iraq?

2/26/2006 11:58:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Point being, if HE didn't believe in VDH's perspective (which is GWB's original plan for Iraq, only taking 5 years instead of 2) we'd be doing something different, since it doesn't play very well if you are right and they are wrong.

...unless you believe he is so cynical that he's just "staying the course" knowing that every loss of life is just another life wasted.

2/26/2006 12:04:00 PM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

A snip from a GK Chesterton poem about the Battle of Lepanto, 1571, where the Ottoman Empire was turned back from a thitherto retreating and fearful Europe.

The last knight of Europe takes weapons from the wall,
The last and lingering troubadour to whom the bird has sung,
That once went singing southward when all the world was young,
In that enormous silence, tiny and unafraid,
Comes up along a winding road the noise of the Crusade.
Strong gongs groaning as the guns boom far,
Don John of Austria is going to the war.
Stiff flags straining in the night-blasts cold,
In the gloom black-purple, in the glint old-gold,
Torchlight crimson on the copper kettle-drums,
Then the tuckets, then the trumpets, then the cannon, and he comes.
Don John laughing in the brave beard curled,
Spurning of his stirrups like the thrones of all the world,
Holding of his head up for a flag of all the free.
Love-light of Spain - hurrah!
Death-light of Africa!
Don John of Austria
Is riding to the sea.

If something like this can be the western attitude, perhaps the west will not have to again "ride to the sea".

It strikes me that despite all the hue and cry from millions of differing opinions, the military establishments of the stalwart of the western nations have this spirit, and 'get' the imagery that Chesterton writes of here.

2/26/2006 12:35:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"On the window-sill
Fall the blow-flies that I kill:
Dozens buzz and blunder still.

Plague from the Abatoir
Clark Ashton Smith

2/26/2006 12:41:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Prager had an interesting caller that claimed to love both Christianity and Islam.
His reminder was about all the MUSLIMS killed in Africa by ARABS.

2/26/2006 12:46:00 PM  
Blogger PeterBoston said...

I think one delusion of historical dimension that continues to exist, albeit to a lesser extent each day, is that the real world is the one being described by the MSM sitzpinklers.

The sitzpinklers control the Conversation but it's of a world that does not exist outside its own description. I think that's one of the reasons that GWB/Cheney have been such an irritant. Not only do they not advance the Story they make it obvious that the Story is and has always been bullshit.

A rational, objective student of history would not have spent two years excoriating the USA for projecting its power into Iraq. The collapse of judgment lies with the Europeans who failed to support the founding principles of the United Nations, the band of brothers of Western democracies who pledged to advance civilization under the banner of Never Again.

The United States is the world's oldest democracy. 230 years later the Leviathan continues to grow stronger. 20 year olds still wear the uniform. Still kick down doors to grab the enmy by the throat. Maybe today's Marines are named Carlos or Ming or even Abdul but they're the same American, the same indefatigable force that always steps up to resuce history. Sitzpinkerls be damned. We're taking care of business. Let history catch up with us again.

2/26/2006 01:51:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"The sitzpinklers control the Conversation but it's of a world that does not exist outside its own description.
I think that's one of the reasons that GWB/Cheney have been such an irritant
I was just thinking this morning about how put off the MSM was right at the begining when they learned that GWB was out of their minute to minute manufactured Beltway Reality.
They were doubly offended that he could not even understand (ha) why they should be so outraged about it.
Foiled by the Moron from the giddyup.
(Richard Cheney is at an undisclosed location, drinking an undisclosed beverage.)

2/26/2006 02:11:00 PM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

I think it was the first big convocation in Crawford, when GWB told the assembled powdered and rouged courtesans that he didn't really 'read (their) papers'.

2/26/2006 02:40:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

There was some "Top of the News" specific that he didn't know the latest media line on, and for them that was proof enough that he was out of touch with reality, and by G_d they were going to hold him accountable/show the world.
(what Morons the voters were for putting him there)

It was a big big deal in their world in front of the cameras, and no doubt of little consequence to the real world.

I remember they asked for specifics about what he read and watched.
His honest answer left them fuming.
(the condensed news was one)

2/26/2006 03:06:00 PM  
Blogger buddy larsen said...

He devalued their stock-in-trade. tsk-freaking-tsk.

2/26/2006 03:13:00 PM  
Blogger trish said...

I see a civil war as the ongoing reality, Doug. Iraq is going to be extremely unstable for a long time to come. VDH doesn't think so. He sees a residual force in a country that is progressively, recognizably united and peaceful. I see a residual force (well after the '08 elections, for obvious reasons) in a country going to hell in a handbasket - well-trained army or no.

This was always going to be decided by the Iraqis themselves. (With a little jihasist assistance.)

2/26/2006 04:32:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

Iraqi National Security Advisor blames mosque bombing on Al Qaeda.

Instapundit posts this transcript snip of a Wolf Blitzer interview of Al-Rubbiae:

On who is responsible for the recent bombing of the Golden Mosque in Samarra
MOWAFFAK AL-RUBAIE: The blueprint of that unfortunate event, the blueprints of al Qaeda in Iraq is that. It’s the same design, the same methods, the same objectives they want to achieve, which is a civil war. They wanted to drive a wedge between the two communities in Iraq, between the Shia and Sunnis. And they've been trying this for the last two and a half years. And they failed miserably in this.

And I think also this is one of the most horrible, really terrible attacks on the doctrine, on the belief of the largest community in Iraq. And still, Iraqi people have proven that they've gone through this difficulty, yet again, and they have shown the al Qaeda and the outside world that they will never be driven to the civil war.

BLITZER: So when you saw al Qaeda in Iraq, you mean Abu Musab al- Zarqawi? Is that right?

AL-RUBAIE: That's absolutely right. It's the same organization of al Qaeda, this international terrorist organization, and one -- the branch office in Iraq is Abu Musab al-Zarqawi leading this -- this terrible attack, terrorist attack against our people.

On whether any individuals have been arrested for the bombing
AL-RUBAIE: We have arrested 10 people. Four from the guards of the Golden Tomb shrine. And six -- there were in the city of Samarra, just moved in and rented a place. Six young people there. So we are investigating then. We are very -- there are two leads, and these leads are very, very good in our investigations. And we will reveal this in the very near future at Jala (ph).

Glenn closes by wondering if the trail leads back to Iran.

2/27/2006 06:20:00 AM  
Blogger Bigger Diggler said...

Could someone provide me with a cogent argument on why the mosque bombing is such an allegedly terrible thing?

Before the terrorists started directly attacking muslims and their holy places, Islamic condemnation of terrorism was tepid at best, and riddled with hedging, hemming and hawing, and massive exceptions. For instance, terrorist attacks against Israeli citizens were actually strongly supported by muslims, attacks against American citizens were qualified with "buts," and "howevers," and "on the other hands" and proferred explanations of "root causes" and so on.

Yet now that muslims and mosques are the primary recipients of terrorist largess, suddenly Islamic condemnation of terrorism is extremely robust, unequivical and unqualified. Is this yet another quiet positive side effect of OIF? If so, is the Mosque attack a bad thing?

2/27/2006 01:16:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why William F. Buckley is Wrong

Karl Zinsmeister, editor at The American Entreprise, has just returned from a month long visit to Iraq; his fourth in the last two and a half years.

He talks about the cost in American lives putting it in the context of historical wars. He cites the morale of our troops with reenlistment rates very high. He points out that no war has ever been 100% popular but the American public has been patient with this one.

He admits there are problems but he talks about the progress being made in the reconstruction, building Iraqi security forces and bringing the Iraqis and other Muslims to a better appreciation of America.

William F. Buckley was never a big-time supporter of this war, but he have may abandoned ship a little too quickly. This civil war ain't happening and the worst thing we could do at this point is subscribe to this kind of doom and gloom.

2/27/2006 03:04:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"Could someone provide me with a cogent argument on why the mosque bombing is such an allegedly terrible thing? "
To suggest otherwise is to show a willingness to think incorrect thoughts.
Incorrect thoughts are no longer acceptable in this country.
Strive harder to conform, infidel correct thyself!

2/27/2006 10:38:00 PM  
Blogger Bigger Diggler said...

More good news?

"West warned of Middle East chaos

THE Palestinian Authority could collapse within a fortnight because of Israel's decision to cut off cash after Hamas's election win."

Hmmm. They almost make it sound like it would be a bad thing if PA and Hamas were to collapse!

Levity aside, I am a firm believer that the more mayhem, mass slaughter, violent upheaval, terrorism and murder that occurs in the Middle East, the better for the remaining civilized part of the world.

Wouldn't the utter collapse of the PA and the descent of the Palestinian territories and Hamas into uncontrollable mass mayhem and massive bloodbath be an unambiguous good for both Israel and the West? If Hamas gets busy and vents its murderous bloodlust only against other palestinians, it will keep them too busy to prey upon civilized people.

Notice how closely the modern advent of Islamic terrorism followed closely on the heels of the conclusion of the Soviet war in Afghanistan and the Iran/Iraq war. One must inevitably theorize that without a sufficient local consumption of murder and mayhem, massive and pointless slaughter will become by default the only viable export of Muslim countries.

Thus, the severe outbreak of civilian slaughter in Iraq is a healthy situation for the civilized world.

2/28/2006 09:06:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

A hopeless case.
I've got a sensitivity adjustment class to attend.

2/28/2006 03:30:00 PM  

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