Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Your typical suicide bomber

Academics at West Point have analyzed captured documents which provide an in-depth glimpse into the origins and personnel management of 'foreign fighters' bound for Iraq.

The records are "one of the deepest reservoirs of information we've ever obtained of the network going into Iraq," according to a U.S. official closely familiar with intelligence on the insurgent group al-Qaeda in Iraq. ... Al-Qaeda has a track record of good documentation, he said, adding that "Osama bin Laden was a businessman before he was a terrorist."



Among the more interesting findings are that ninety percent of all suicide bombers were 'foreign fighters'. The great majority had entered Iraq via Syria, "a greater proportion than previously believed", altering their point of entry as Anbar became more difficult to cross. The captured records also went a long way toward de-mythologizing the Jihadi phenomenon. One analyst said, "I think we made a mistake in assuming that al-Qaeda, because it's a terrorist organization, doesn't need to organize itself the way other large organizations do. They have a human resources problem; they have to manage people." Many of those human resource management tools would be familiar to anyone. Al-Qaeda had employment contracts, it provided 3 weeks of vacation each year and additional pay for married members.

And it turns out that most combat Jihadis didn't spring up spontaneously, radicalized and outraged by the "idea" of Israel or some television broadcast about Iraq. They came from ground long tilled and fertilized by extremism. "The West Point center's analysis notes that the home towns and regions listed by many fighters correlate with areas of high insurgent activity in the Arab world. More than half the Libyans came from in or around the coastal cities of Darnah and Benghazi. Both are long associated with the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group, which in November officially affiliated itself with the global al-Qaeda network headed by Osama bin Laden." This suggests a vital synergy between the effects of Jihadi propaganda and the efforts of extremist agitators. The suicide bomber, it's not surprising to learn, is the end product of long preparation and cultivation.

Perhaps one reason why the West has proved so helpless in the face of threats like al-Qaeda is that it is culturally unable to resist, or even to condemn, extremist Islamic agitation in its pre-militant phase. By fighting only those who have crossed the sharp legal border between religious hate-mongering (which is tolerated as a multicultural right) and actual belligerency it is permanently restricted to chipping away at the tip of the iceberg, while nine-tenths of it is allowed to grow unchecked beneath the surface.

The West Point analysis points out that many of the problems which beset Iraq have their origins elsewhere; in so-called allied countries and even within communities in the West. Iraq became a dumping ground, a mere outlet for the hate that is daily generated by radicalism in the Middle East, North Africa and in the West. A foreign suicide bomber is man who by definition was ready to explode before he even got to Iraq. The country itself provided him with a graveyard, but the process which gave him birth is still in full swing.

Update

This strange article from the Times Online illustrates -- in a different way -- how aspiring to suicide can become normal, even in rural Wales. Once you change expectations, people conform to them. Natasha Randall, aged 17, "was the latest in at least seven apparent copycat suicides in Bridgend, South Wales, that have alarmed parents, health authorities and police, who believe that they may be prompted by messages on social networking websites such as Bebo."

David Gunnell, Professor of Epidemiology at the University of Bristol, said that research had shown a connection between reports of suicide in the media and copycat deaths, and it was likely that discussions of suicide on websites would have a similar effect. He said: “Young people are more likely to see and read items concerning suicide on the internet than they are in newspapers. ...

South Wales Police fear that the reason could be simpler. One officer said: “They may think it’s cool to have a memorial website. It may even be a way of achieving prestige among their peer group.”

The macabre attraction of a "memorial website" would be instantly familiar to the Islamic suicide bomber, whose last act before going on a mission is often to record a commemorative video of himself, all decked out in attack paraphernalia, the better to achieve fame among his peers. Places like Iraq only supply the cemetaries for those who have been long on their way.

23 Comments:

Blogger NahnCee said...

THe Saudi's have trundled out a couple of their blowed-up but reformed jihadists to perform their apologia for the rest of the country.

Invariably, the wannabe martyrs *are* brainwashed in the mosques in Saudi Arabia.

They say their parents know nothing about their plans, but I have to wonder what these young men have been hearing around the breakfast table from Ma and Pa Saud the last decade or so.

They do *not* go to Iraq to be suicide anythings, and scoff at the idea. They are so superior, being Saudi's you see, that it would be a total waste in their eyes to off themselves. They're in it to shoot at Americans, and the tone is very much like American Indian braves counting coup.

Once they make it through Syria, they're stripped of their cash immediately by their AlQ handlers, so that one gets the feeling that they're at least as valuable being money mules as they are as fighters.

They receive very little training on how to handle a weapon, if any at all. Throughout their getting-to-know-you process their Al-Q handlers continue to mention the great need for suicide bombers, but according to the returned Saudi youth, said youth keep turning down those offers.

One young man was assigned to drive a truck into Baghdad on a route that took him by a Western embassy. He didn't understand why someone who's more familiar with Baghdad's streets didn't do the driving. When he had brought his truck far enough that it was more or less near the embassy, the guide who was telling him where and when to turn suddenly remembered another pressing engagement and leaped out of the truck. The traffic also slowed so that the Saudi kid couldn't drive his truck forward, and immediately thereafter the whole shooting match blew up with him still sitting in his truck.

If he hadn't survived with the most horrendous burns, I'm quite sure he would have been called a "suicide bomber" ... but really, he was a wannabe American soldier shooter who was in over his head and was manipulated into being a suicide bomber.

Saudi is now cracking down on the imams who have been preaching this sort of murder and mayhem for years and years and years. Great squeals of enraged agony that Muslim imams are being told they can't use the words, "Death to ..." any more, unless it's in reference to the Israeli's.

1/22/2008 05:39:00 PM  
Blogger Sissy Willis said...

Dr. Peter F. Rowbotham's 1992 essay "The Importance of Being Noticed" may shed some light on these behaviors:

"We search for honor in favored venues and in chosen social institutions. We avoid those places and those social groupings which inhibit our search, which do not advance, and may even set back, our moral careers. As Harre (1980) has pointed out:

"'Recent studies of adolescence have shown many young people to have an almost obsessive interest and preoccupation with the maintenance of dignity and the careful scanning of the social environment for occasions and acts of possible humiliation.'"

As I blogged awhile back in this context:

"The unorthodox bonding rituals of, for example, Hell's Angels and British soccer fans -- and now the deadly rituals of adolescent jihadi recruits -- may be seen as examples of a 'system of honor that is an alternative to mainstream moral orders.'"

The South Wales Police officer gets it right, I think, when he says “They may think it’s cool to have a memorial website. It may even be a way of achieving prestige among their peer group.”

Rowbotham's full essay is available here.

1/22/2008 05:48:00 PM  
Blogger Nomenklatura said...

Brief summaries:

(a) Flypaper.

(b) Kill them over there so we don't have to fight them over here.

The smart set laughed at these simple formulations from the very beginning, but in retrospect they are now being fully justified by the evidence.

1/22/2008 05:54:00 PM  
Blogger Papa Ray said...

Without getting too deep into a subject that is very deep and dark, the nuturing and education of children is the most important job adults can have. Especially parents and other members of the family.

Without proper guidance and education, self esteem and self worth are often not given to children. Even if it is, the constant reinforcement of parents and family are needed throughout a young person's life.

Without it, bad things happen increasingly, it seems.

Today's children can become tomorrows bringers of death and destruction if love, responsibility and other goodness is not instilled in their hearts and minds.

Papa Ray

1/22/2008 06:34:00 PM  
Blogger eggplant said...

Nomenklatura said

"(a) Flypaper.

(b) Kill them over there so we don't have to fight them over here.

The smart set laughed at these simple formulations from the very beginning, but in retrospect they are now being fully justified by the evidence."

The "smart set" are so full of excrement that they're in danger of exploding like a suicide bomber.

Killing bad guys on someone else's turf is such an obvious tactic. It amazes me that normally intelligent people can't see this.

1/22/2008 06:50:00 PM  
Blogger whiskey_199 said...

The real issue is polygamy. It excludes from sex (unless degrading and humiliating for straight men, gay sex is considered) and marriage and family most young men. Who react violently.

Muslims won't give up polygamy any time soon, so will always be violent and aggressive and dangerous as a society. Islamicized Jihad preachers and networks merely prepare what is already there.

There is no real hope of changing that dynamic unless say, 50-60% of men in Muslim societies were killed and their societies became as France post WWI or Germany post WWII. I.E. with women holding the most influence since they would have the vast majority of the population, and the surviving men have their pick of women (which leads to risk-avoidance rather than risk taking).

1/22/2008 07:28:00 PM  
Blogger El Baboso said...

I believe that there is a whole chapter on suicide waves and the dynamics thereof in The Tipping Point. Since I am too lazy to walk across the house and get it, I'll leave it at that.

A group of us were having a discussion on logical fallacies the other day. We concluded that "the enemy is ten feet tall" should urgently be added to the list. It is my personal belief that "slippery slope" should just as urgently be removed from the list since history, economics, complexity theory, physics, and chaos theory all provide evidence that sometimes a little idea can rapidly grow into a huge company or a totalitarian nightmare.

1/22/2008 08:11:00 PM  
Blogger Fat Man said...

My assumption has been that Saudi Intelligence, whose sole goal is the perpetuation Sa'ud family power, has been buying plane tickets for anybody in the Kingdom who had gotten all excited about jihad. They go to Iraq where the Americans kill them. In the view of the Sa'uds, Iraqi civilians are just collateral damage, American soldiers just useful idiots.

1/22/2008 08:59:00 PM  
Blogger eggplant said...

/22/2008 08:11:00 PM
Fat Man said:

"My assumption has been that Saudi Intelligence, whose sole goal is the perpetuation Sa'ud family power, has been buying plane tickets for anybody in the Kingdom who had gotten all excited about jihad. They go to Iraq where the Americans kill them."

Supposably that was standard Saudi operating procedure during the Soviet-Afghansitan War, i.e. send all the riff-raff off to Afghanistan to be killed by the Soviets. The tactic worked pretty good. Of course Darwinism was in full force. Mostly the dumb ones were killed by the Russians. Unfortunately, the intelligent ones survived to form al Qaeda. It's a bit like using an antibiotic, i.e. use all of the medicine to kill all of the bacteria, otherwise the surviving bacteria may end up becoming antibiotic resistant. Fortunately, I think the US has done a decent job of eliminating all of them (now if the Saudis would only stop producing new ones....).

1/22/2008 11:09:00 PM  
Blogger Starling said...

Of late the Saudis have stopped harshly punishing former jihadis and have given over to "reforming" them:

If You Can't Beat Them, Enjoin Them

1/23/2008 01:17:00 AM  
Blogger Zenster said...

Perhaps one reason why the West has proved so helpless in the face of threats like al-Qaeda is that it is culturally unable to resist, or even to condemn, extremist Islamic agitation in its pre-militant phase. By fighting only those who have crossed the sharp legal border between religious hate-mongering (which is tolerated as a multicultural right) and actual belligerency it is permanently restricted to chipping away at the tip of the iceberg, while nine-tenths of it is allowed to grow unchecked beneath the surface.

These are the biggies. The former is a result of Islam enjoying religious status instead of being outed as a political ideology. The latter is a byproduct of a tolerant society that enjoys free speech and doesn't understand that some other people would like to kill all of us in our sleep.

Islam has yet to be identified as the enemy. Until that happens it'll be SSDD.

1/23/2008 02:47:00 AM  
Blogger Wretchard said...

Starling,

Very interesting.

1/23/2008 02:56:00 AM  
Blogger LarryD said...

... the latter (multiculturalism) is a byproduct of a tolerant society that enjoys free speech ...

Multiculturalism exploits the tolerance of our society, but does not arise out of it. It's a Marxist technique aimed at delegitimizing Western Civilization.

The tricky part of dealing with Islam is, that there are large numbers of people who self-identify as Muslims despite not being very religious. The Islamists would like nothing better than for us to drive such people "back" into their fold.

1/23/2008 06:26:00 AM  
Blogger Swami said...

"'Recent studies of adolescence have shown many young people to have an almost obsessive interest and preoccupation with the maintenance of dignity and the careful scanning of the social environment for occasions and acts of possible humiliation.'"

Whoa. Wow. For a second there I thought this was discussing Islamic society.

1/23/2008 07:13:00 AM  
Blogger Annoymouse said...

It wouldn't be so cool if the authorities displayed the mangled remains of the 'splodey-dopes'. The sight of a partial jihadi skull on a stick would do a lot to demystify the act of terror. I suppose if that didn't work feeding it to hungry dogs would sure put a fine tip on it.

1/23/2008 07:21:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

In Iraq, based upon MNF press releases, only 10% of the bad guys are killed, the balance are detained.

In almost every case they are eventually released. This has been policy since LTC Kurilla was profiled by Mr Yon, years ago.

Flypaper only works if the flys die, otherwise it's US funded R&R with three hots & a cot.

Sold a bill of goods, with that flypaper meme.

1/23/2008 09:32:00 AM  
Blogger Marzouq the Redneck Muslim said...

From the post and comments it is obvious the strategy of projecting our power, will and fighting them over there is working.

It also seems to have a calming effect on the U.S. Ummah. As stated in a previous comment, there are American Muslims who like their lives in the U.S.A. They do not want to return to the ME Ummah.

The noisy ones here are mostly those converted in prison or the "hood". In other words, they have a propensity for the criminal jihadist mindset. Cases in point: John Muhammed, Manuel Padilla.

Rarely we see moonbat children convert and seek the glory of jihad. Case in point: John Walker Lind.

There is American Muslim "blow back" to the ME and Africa. A new type of madrassa is being established. One which teaches language, philosopy, math and science. American imams are establishing these madrassas.

Folks, I may be wrong because I may be fed bad info. I hope and pray I am right. The talk of nukes in other threads scares the hell out of me.

I am not a bad Muslim. I am a lover of love, hater of hate and seeker of truth. I fly like a cruise missile under the radar, through the gaps to deliver my pauload of live and deeper understanding. I am a Muslim who loves America and the Idea of America. I still believe most American Muslims feel like me.

Salaam eleikum Y'all!

1/23/2008 10:09:00 AM  
Blogger Fred said...

zenster,

Spot on with your analysis. Unfortunately, there is a lot of bleak terrain to be traversed before we get to the point where Islam is reclassified as a political ideology of the totalitarian genus, much like Communism.

I've come to the conclusion that it really is mainly pure sloth that accounts for why the movers and shakers in our society continue to deny the scriptural and theological roots of jihad. Plus, the Saudi money has found many dhimmi collaborators in our universities, think tanks, the Pentagon, State Department, CIA, etc.

Greed and laziness are the main ingredients to this prescription for Ambien.

1/23/2008 10:12:00 AM  
Blogger David M said...

The Thunder Run has linked to this post in the - Web Reconnaissance for 01/23/2008 A short recon of what’s out there that might draw your attention, updated throughout the day...so check back often.

1/23/2008 10:27:00 AM  
Blogger Zenster said...

LarryD: Multiculturalism exploits the tolerance of our society, but does not arise out of it. It's a Marxist technique aimed at delegitimizing Western Civilization.

My "latter" refers to "religious hate-mongering" which is tolerated as a multicultural right. Please pardon me if that was unclear.

Marzouq the Redneck Muslim: The talk of nukes in other threads scares the hell out of me.

It damn well ought to. Islam is doing its level best to bring about a nuclear holocaust in the MME (Muslim Middle East). To date, the only uncertainty is whether it will be initiated between Iran and Israel, between individual Muslim states like Iran and Saudi Arabia or between the MME and America. If the status of Islam is left unchanged, a Muslim holocaust is a dead certainty.

Remember:

Islam would not have it any other way.

Islam loves death. To quote Golda Meir:

"Peace will come when the Arabs will love their children more than they hate us."

"We can forgive you for killing our sons. But we will never forgive you for making us kill yours."


Islam has no use for life that does not worship Allah. Until that changes, it is Islam that is headed straight for nuclear annihilation.

PS: Thank you, Fred. Islam must be outed as a political ideology. Since it is unable to renouce its desire for theocratic rule, it is a form of government and not any type of worship. This must remain its death knell.

1/23/2008 11:05:00 AM  
Blogger Marzouq the Redneck Muslim said...

Zenster,

Political Islam must be separated from spiritual Islam and defeated.

In other words, there should be no state religion.

Dang! Sounds like our First Ammendment, don't it? I like the idea and I bet you do too.

1/24/2008 05:03:00 AM  
Blogger NahnCee said...

Marzouq - wht do you propose to do about the aspects of "spiritual Islam" that include child brides, multiple wives, not allowing anyone to quit being a Muslim on pain of death, the concept of it being OK to lie, and the superiority of Muslims over non-Muslims so that non-Muslims can be used as slaves and/or taxed for the privilege of being alive?

I just don't see how the West can allow people who believe in these things and live in this way to live amongst us.

When the push gets to the shove, it seems to me that Muslims will either be told they can live with their "spiritual Islam" in their own countries and no where else, or they will have to revise and/or renounce the aspects of Islam that directly contravene Western law.

1/24/2008 06:05:00 AM  
Blogger Zenster said...

MtRM: Political Islam must be separated from spiritual Islam and defeated.

In other words, there should be no state religion.

Dang! Sounds like our First Ammendment, don't it? I like the idea and I bet you do too.


Hokay, please tell me how you propose to go about this. More importantly, as NahnCee notes:

what do you propose to do about the aspects of "spiritual Islam" that include child brides, multiple wives, not allowing anyone to quit being a Muslim on pain of death, the concept of it being OK to lie, and the superiority of Muslims over non-Muslims so that non-Muslims can be used as slaves and/or taxed for the privilege of being alive?

The above "non-political" issues still make Islam a total non-starter.

If you'd like to keep this short and sweet, please present a coherent and verifiable way for Islam to genuinely and authentically reject taqiyya. Doctrinally sanctioned lieing is one of the most profound moral and ethical crimes imaginable. I'd certainly like to be shown some way that Islam can dispose of this monstrosity in a way that gives the West even an iota of confidence.

Personally speaking:

TAQIYYA DAMNS ISLAM

There is absolutely no way of knowing if Islam has given up taqiyya or simply declared sotto voce a prolonged hudna in order to further deceive the West. This is why I feel that the West had no alternative but to totally eradicate Islam in all of its forms. Allowing it to remain even remotely intact is to permit some taqiyya spewing element sufficient reprieve whereby they can reconstitute radical Islam and resume terrorist hostilities against the West.

Marzoukq, if you have some innovative solution to this, by all means please present it. Islam has given itself every unfair advantage and this is simply not permissible. It makes possible the most base form of deceit and eliminates all possibility of trust.

There can be no countenancing a group that simultaneously declares total war, yet gives itself the opportunity to sign solemn peace treaties which it has absolutely no intention of upholding, save to its own best advantage.

Can you not see how any recognition of such vile conduct as acceptable it sheer suicide? This is why Islam is so far beyond the pale. There is no perfidy, no subterfuge, no betrayal, no treachery, no lie too great, no crime too heinous that Islam will not commit in the name of advancing its own agenda.

Again, please tell me why any rational society should deem such deceitful enmity and vile self-service as being worthy of respect. All civilized cultures have but one obligation and that is to crush such fraudulent filth without a backward glance.

1/26/2008 04:42:00 PM  

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