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Saturday, August 24, 2013
We can’t win the war on terror because we have learned nothing from our enemy since radical Islam began attacking us in 1979. It took the killing of more than 3,000 people on Sept. 11, 2001, for America to wake up to the war on terror. Twelve years later, we’re losing.
Lack of understanding of the enemy combined with political correctness and feel-good policies have left us as vulnerable as ever. The recent closing of 20 U.S. embassies shows how quickly we lose a game of flinch with our tormentors.
Most all of our attackers have been men of Middle Eastern descent who are between the ages of 18 and 38; we ignore that fact. Instead, we search octogenarians, infants and the infirm in our quest to feel safer. An 18- to 38-year-old Middle Eastern man wore shoes on a plane loaded with explosives, so now we all take our shoes off. We don’t look for the man — that would be profiling — so we take our shoes off to feel safer.
Afghanistan was basically leaderless and ignored from 1992 until 2001. The Taliban gained influence and controlled much of the country. It was assisted by al-Qaida, which set up its own state to train terrorists. When we attacked Afghanistan, we had no idea who our enemy was or what the attack should look like.
We were going to convert them to be just like us. If they only would elect a president and set up a government that we liked, that would stop all of the violence. We ignored the 10 years Russia had spent trying to make Afghanistan like Russia.
We attacked Iraq to depose Saddam Hussein, defeating the country in record time. We had no idea what to do with it once we had it, and let the entire inter-workings of the government fall into disarray and chaos. We oversaw elections, patted ourselves on the back and left.
Now, the country is a breeding ground for terrorists waiting to boil over.
We were convinced that the Arab Spring was a movement of people crying out for freedom, when the reality was radical extremists looking for an opening. We cheered from the sidelines as the evil men from Egypt and Libya were toppled.
The Middle East and North Africa seem to be falling apart with one common denominator completely ignored. The more dictators who fall, the worse it gets.
Are heartless dictators and monarchs what radical Islam needs to control it? Harsh as it sounds, that is exactly what kept the lid on the turmoil for most of last century. The shah of Iran, once accused of being too harsh, replied, “When Iranians start behaving like Swedes, I will behave like the king of Sweden.”
Hosni Mubarak ran Egypt from 1981 until 2011. Muammar Gaddafi ran Libya for more than 40 years. Bashar Assad has run Syria since 2000. Bad guys, you bet, but maybe it takes a bad guy to control radical Islam.
Iraq was run by Saddam Hussein from 1979 until 2003. We tend to forget that he battled and controlled radical Islam on his border with Iran for years, using the cruelest methods.
Is it any surprise to anyone that Saudi Arabia supports the military government in Egypt and not the Muslim Brotherhood? These are Islamic countries; they know what it takes.
We have to adopt a new strategy if we are to curb the threat of terrorism. I suggest the John Foster Dulles plan of “massive retaliation” against countries that allow and sponsor terrorism. You want to get Afghanistan’s attention? Napalm the poppy fields and let the tribal leaders straighten out the Taliban.
A well-placed bomb years ago quieted Libya for decades. That air strike showed we were serious and had the resolve to carry out harsh actions. Terrorists have no country, so the country of origin must police itself. Punishment by the U.S. will strongly encourage the necessary action.
The next thing we need to do is dismantle the Department of Homeland Security and dump the ineffective Transportation Safety Administration. Massive bureaucracy that has done nothing to add to our security, but has taken away our freedoms, is not money well spent.
Stop spying on Americans and start spying on the terrorists. The government doesn’t need our metadata.
If we’re to fight, then let’s fight smart and let’s fight to win.
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