Losing the War on Terror
Middle East expert Juan Cole (Professor of Modern Middle East and South Asian History at the University of Michigan, actually) has posted an essay on his blog that, if true, is pretty troubling regarding how we’re coming up with tactics for the war in Iraq. Apparently we’re bringing in the Israelis to come up with them for us:
Julian Borger of the Guardian reports that the Israeli army has sent “urban warfare specialists” to Ft. Bragg in North Carolina, to help train US Special Forces personnel for operations in Iraq. He says that according to two sources, Israeli military “consultants” have also visited Iraq.
Borger appears to have picked up on the story in the wake of a ground-breaking report by Seymour M. Hersh in the New Yorker, which goes into much more detail, but wasn’t on the Web yet when I initially posted…
W. doesn’t have his father’s experience with the world, and is, frankly, an ignoramus. If he is letting the US effort in Iraq be tarred with the brush of Israeli occupation, he is actually acting as the world’s most prominent recruiting agent for al-Qaeda in the Muslim world. Because that is al-Qaeda’s message to angry young Muslim men who feel humiliated by US power and by Israeli brutality in the West Bank and Gaza. Al-Qaeda says, the Americans are not in Iraq to bring democracy. They are bringing Israeli hegemony to the Middle East.
It was ridiculous. Until [this] story broke and gave it legitimacy.
Even better, the bring-in-the-Israelis plan is apparently the brainchild of noted Jesus freak General William G. “Jerry” Boykin. You remember General Jerry — he’s the one who spends his spare time when he’s not serving as deputy undersecretary of defense for intelligence giving speeches to Christian groups about how Islam is a Satanic religion, and the war against Islamic terrorism is a battle between holy Christian warriors (that’s us) and infidel idol-worshipping pagans (that’s them). So we probably shouldn’t be surprised at his lack of, shall we say, sensitivity to the message you might send to the average Arab by inviting Israeli soldiers to join American occupation forces in Iraq.
A big part of why we lost in Vietnam was because nobody on the American side had a clue about what motivated the average Vietnamese. With “leaders” like General Jerry calling the shots this time around, it’s starting to look like we’re going to get a repeat performance.