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    21 July 2006

    Scheuer on Israel's war

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    I'm a big fan of Dr. Michael Scheuer ( 22-year CIA vet. member of the bin Laden Unit at the Counterterrorist Center from 1996 to 1999 and Special Advisor to the Chief of the bin Laden unit from September 2001 to November the 2004). I had the pleasure to met him a few weeks back at an event at CAP called The Terrorism Index (full disclosure: We're losing the GWoT) where, despite saying some controversial things (he was coming from a national security standpoint and if you consider what he says, he is completely right), which you can watch or read at the link.

    He's long been a critic of this administration and its policies in the Middle East and abroad. He is the author of the book Imperial Hubris which I used to write this post about the misuse of the terror frame and suggestions for dealing with our problems in a different way. He is also a conservative Republican, and you can verify that is the Q and A session in the link above.

    Today he wrote an article for antiwar.com that has the right frame for the Israeli-Lebanon madness, as well as larger implications for the GWoT. Here is an excerpt:
    As Lebanon burns, bin Laden's words will reinforce and harden Muslim perceptions – including the views of Muslims in Europe and North America – that the U.S.-led West is warring on Islam and its followers. Bin Laden's claims that Arab regimes cannot protect Muslims and are the West's apostate lackeys were underscored when Arab kings and dictators acted through the Arab League to condemn Hezbollah. Nothing better proves bin Laden's consistently made point than the juxtaposition of the Arab leaders' damning of Hezbollah – heretofore always a "legitimate resistance group" in their rhetoric – and their implicit acquiescence in Israel's leisurely razing of Beirut.
    ...
    So bin Laden wins without lifting a finger. The G-8 leaders, their Arab allies, and Israel have behaved in a way that will burn bin Laden's words deeper into Muslim perceptions and push more to accept jihad as the only recourse. Western leaders can argue forever that they are honest brokers but, because perception is reality, it will be bin Laden's words, not theirs, that echo long and tellingly in Muslim ears.

    Red it here.

    Posted by Geoff

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