The Evil Genius of al-Qaeda

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Reports indicate that al-Qaeda has resorted to setting forest fires in Europe.  These fires have killed scores of people and done untold property and environmental damage.

This tactic is an example of the types of attacks that former special operations commander, John Robb, writes about in his book, Brave New War: The Next Stage of Terrorism and the end of Globalization.  The terrifying truth is that modern technology both allows individual terrorists to commit powerful attacks and also leaves nation states that employ high technology very vulnerable.  And all at very little expense to the terrorist compared the nation’s costs in defending itself.

People constantly talk about al-Qaeda et al’s lack of military power.  But, historically speaking, a large forest fire could easily destroy as much life and property as a carpet bombing campaign.  And since the terrorist’s goal is not to be precise in his targeting  but merely to cause the West to expend itself in various ways, it is a perfectly viable alternative–and much, much cheaper, than bombing.

But when a continent, such as Europe, allows the immigration of a huge population whose ideals are not compliant with its own, one could expect a lot of problems.  One thing is for sure, al-Qaeda is not going away by the world simply ignoring it.  It will take the moral authority–which means all legal powers–as well as military power to defeat this movement.  It can be defeated, just as Nazism and Communism were defeated (Can’t kill an idea, you say?).  In the case of Communism it took decades, just as it will with militant Salafism.  It is important that 1)  the West retain the moral high ground (which should be difficult against the likes of al-Qaeda), (2) never enable the duplicitous nations of the Middle East and Central Asia (as we’ve done with Pakistan and Afghanistan) and (4) firmly state what the west stands for juxtaposed against what al-Qaeda stands for.  And finally, (4) we should kill or capture every terrorist we can, not try to find complex ways to turn him into something other than a terrorist.  The best way to change the mind of a terrorist is through superior firepower.

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3 thoughts on “The Evil Genius of al-Qaeda

    Bill said:
    October 4, 2012 at 1:20 am

    the thing is, each year we have several fo these types of fires b/c we refuse to clear dead brush (and some poor chap always ends up in federal prison or in a world of hurt b/c of some small accident that’s just waiting to happen). It’s amazing that each year the media gets all out of breath and amazed that it happens and yet it’s as predictable as anything. Back in the day each time one was set they always ‘suspected’ AQ but at least here, it never turned out to be the case. However AQ would have to be crazy to not take advantage of it – and it’d be so easy to do without getting caught (I know the whole goal is to get credit, but you could take credit as a group without having any members apprehended, just have htem sneak out at night and use a small amount of accelerant – viola). Kind of crazy how peopel that supposedly care about and love the country (environmentalists) work really hard for policies that have results our stated enemies love.

    It’s really a salient point about the damage done too – after Batman when everyone was huffing about gun control, more honest commenters pointed out that back int eh day, arson did way more damage mass killing wise than guns ever did and that it’s something that would probably be used by someone intent on a mass killing if their other alternatives were cut down. Fire can do a whole lotta damage (isn’t fire after all the main thing that did the damage with the ‘daisy cutter’ bombs everyone was talkinga bout at the beginning of the AFGH invasion?

    As you do frequently, you bring up a point that’s really spot on and right there if one bothers to look, but that all the talking heads and ‘best and brightest’ seem to always miss.

    magus71 responded:
    October 4, 2012 at 2:19 am

    I also should add that I expect militant Salafism to be more resilient than Communism because it organic to and stems from the very ethos of an entire civilization. This is the third world war–just not the way we thought it would happen. The Black Swan War, perhaps.

    Bill said:
    October 6, 2012 at 4:05 am

    That’s an interesting concept, the Black Swan war. Communism is a strange thing b/c it’s quite amazing how much some become ‘true beleivers’ I’ve been told by many from the area that we consistently underestimate the power of militant Islam b/c we are too secular. When we hear of a president waiting for the hidden imam, we think it’s just political rhetoric and assume in the privacy of his own bedroom, he knows it’s a crock of shit. But we’d be completely wrong – educated people with Ph.Ds in many cases, absolutely believe this. While it’s hard to imagine, I look back at my own life – I still find it hard to make the break to atheism even though everything in my mind tells me it’s so (well, not atheism per se, but that all the invisible man in the sky stuff is bs and that if there’s a god, we have no idea of him, just like we had no idea of germ’s existing a few hundred years ago) but b/c it was beat into my head as a kid, i still get uncomfortable breaking from it. And by ‘beat’ into my head I mean going to Catholic school and having to go to Church when I was a young kid. If I lived and breathed it daily for all my life and saw anyone questioning it face really horrible consequences, and saw all the intellectuals I know signing on instead of poking holes in it – I guess I’d believe in a HIdden Imam. that all makes perfect sense, how people hold on to communism and think it’s great is what eludes me. I’ve often suspected that such people, the die hards that for instance are of the Chomsky or Turner school that deny what happened in Cambodia, North Korea or Cuba (I mean, is there anyone more loved by the left that Castro these days?), you have to just assume that deep down, they have a contempt for the common man and really don’t believe in any of the crap they spew. On the contrary, they really do believe in a powerful elite and yearn to be part of it – and know the equality stuff is just the suckers pitch. I know some well meaning communists /socialists but it’s almost always just a reaction formation to some really strict dad or mom who tried to live vicariously through them and crammed their ideals down the kid’s throat – so the kids just rebel against it all. But there are clearly mainstream communists, like Chomsky that really sign the praises of monsters. I honestly hve to say that given a choice, I think i’d rather live under radical islam as it’s a shitty game, but not an inherently zero-sum one. But I”ve never been to afghanistan or similar area so that could just be naivete talking.

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