Friday, June 01, 2007

Warning to Lebanon

The Counterterrorism Blog reports a video message announcing that al-Qaeda has set up a command for Greater Syria and warns the Patriarch of the Christian Maronite church in Lebanon: "pull back your dogs from our people, and cease your artillery fire—or else, from today onwards, there will be no safe place for any crusader in Lebanon ... we give you this final warning that from now on, an ocean of blood will be spilled.

It is a very interesting message because it advances the Christian versus Sunni narrative rather than one between Muslim factions. It also demonstrates the amazing ease with which al-Qaeda can expand the war -- in the Mahgreb, Iraq and within the USA -- by setting up command centers. If past experience is anything to go by the initial al-Qaeda "command for Greater Syria" may be liquidated, but it will be reconstructed again and again. Al-Qaeda's culture allows it to accept huge casualties with equanimity. Not only is the lifespan of a commander expected to be limited to a few years or even months, many of its operators have no expectation of surviving an attack especially in suicide operations.

That kind of persistence will continue until the culture which generates these forces is discredited or changes, as happened with Imperial Japan. It should be remembered that even in late 1945, despite a total superiority in land, air and sea weapons, the US was in near paralytic dread of invading Japan because it understood how fiercely it would be resisted.

Absent the use of weapons of annihilation the sort of which Harry Truman used, an indirect method must be found to discredit or neutralize radical Islamic recruitment within the Muslim world. Unfortunately, no such effort even seems in the offing. For now the enemy is publicly nameless and Islamic "schools" train replacements in Pakistan, Saudi Arabia or even London and the US at a rate quick enough to replenish their dead. Radical Islam is outstripping the demoralized West in fighting manpower and the West doesn't even want to recognize it.

And are we generating the right kind of forces?


Blogger El Baboso said...

There is a reason, Wretchard, why the Hamas Charter specifically calls out civic organizations like the Lions and the Rotary as enemies. It is the same reason why the Lions and Rotary formed the core of the opposition (Cruzada Civica) against Noriega and currently form the core of the opposition against Chavez. They are the new yeomen. These are the modern small freeholders. You find a way to give them a longbow or a Swiss pike and train them to fight, and they will once again defeat tyranny.

6/01/2007 08:03:00 PM  
Blogger Ari Tai said...

Good to see that Mr. Thompson understands that our allies-on-welfare (that we continue to provide) have little more than unionized show-bands for a military, with even Britain now joining the socialist crowd. Granted, after the Clinton draw-downs to fund their own give-aways and buy votes, and the necessary appointment of "yes wo/men" to the military leadership who would permit same (knowing full well we have to spend $10 to match other countries' $1 investment given our bureaucratic inefficiencies and market value of our people), we're still far from recovered and still suffering the effects.

The Clintons never once called the congressional leadership to defend either the military or intelligence budget that their own staffs proposed, that congress then cut worry-free of ever being called to account. They couldn't conceive of a 9-11.

Wrt alternatives less brutal than bombing the jihadis (and the complacent societies they are embedded in) out of existence, those societies could save themselves by a dark-ages option: they can declare their fascists heretics, and root them our themselves, limb and branch.

6/02/2007 05:24:00 AM  
Blogger Boghie said...

What is that joke about a bear chasing two guys in an open meadow...

Something about not having to outrun the bear – rather, you simply have to outrun the slower chap next to you…

Fat and slow Europe is a ‘Target of Opportunity’. America has its luscious cuts of beef rather prominently exposed, but much of Europe is actually advertising their weakness!

Eventually, radical Islam will strike Europe hard. Maybe even the glass towers of the intelligencia (European colleges and universities and MSM). Radical Islam doesn’t seem enamored with Western science and culture either!!!

Here is an odd thought that is a bit scary. Who will join the dilapidated armies (which do not exist), navies (which do not exist), and air forces (which do not exist) of an entity which could barely be called a country in an effort to avenge the massacre of ‘The Guardian’ journalists who just recently wrote about how aggressive western culture is forcing the hand of jihad?

That’s right, we cannot avenge anything…

6/02/2007 07:18:00 AM  

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