Friday, February 11, 2005
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The limit to Al Qaeda's appeal
There may be another positive foreign policy spillover from Iraq's election -- it is forcing Al Qaeda into rhetorical gambits that limit its appeal.
Read the whole thing. Middle East Online points out that Al Qaeda ain't thrilled with economic integration either:
posted by Dan on 02.11.05 at 02:39 PM
How popular do you think the QIZ's are?posted by: praktike on 02.11.05 at 02:39 PM [permalink]
Cant we get our Say No To Drugs propagandists working on this? "If you go to a Madrassa even once, you and everyone you know will be killed by Israeli commandos. Is it really worth it?". Either that or get the Truth.org nitwits to annoy them into suicide.posted by: Mark Buehner on 02.11.05 at 02:39 PM [permalink]
AQ seems hemmed in by dictrinal rigidity on many fronts. Their appeal to western (and westernized) muslims is very limited - the ideaology is just too rigid and austere. Sure, many may love tough talk from the mosques and the OK to slap women arround ('put them in their place') but no booze, Xbox or hanky panky? Forget about it, most say.
But there are other, more flexible Islamists out there. The group that prodcued the Madrid bombers are Takfirs (sp?). The let their members have it all. They get the fiery Islamist rhetoric AND booze and sex and all the rest. The get to consider themselves 'undercover agents' for lack of a better term - and they don't have to commit suicide, either, unless they're cornered.
The Takfiris are smart and flexible. Bin Laden & AQ had a headstart and a funding advantage but are mostly gone now.
Apparently AQ is more of a branding & PR organization than anything else these days. Morrocco style Takfirs are the one who scare me now.posted by: Jos Bleau on 02.11.05 at 02:39 PM [permalink]
I think it is good to let Westerners see clearly what Al-Qaeda is promoting in the Muslim world, but to the extent that yo seem to be suggesting that there is a new strategy here, I don't see it. Back six years ago when Bin Laden, Zawahiri and friends made their famous declaration against "Crusaders and Jews," they basically said the same thing. They have never pretended to support democracy or economic freedom. They have always harkened back to the restoration of the Islamic caliphate.
Kirk H. Sowell
It is normally rude to try to change the subject. However, I think it to be most appropriate in this instance. Daniel Drezner needs to return to an earlier posting:
“What would you like to ask Mr. Anonymous?
Because he's giving a talk at the Program on International Security Policy, I'm going to have 45 minutes or so to chat one-on-one with Michael Scheuer -- a.k.a., Mr. "Anonymous", a.k.a., author of Imperial Hubris: Why the West Is Losing the War on Terrorism.”
Michael Scheuer’s name has come up again:
“Andrew Sullivan caught some of the neo-con paranoia mongering from this talk by Michael Scheuer at the Council on Foreign Relations last week. You can go to Sullivan's blog for the bit he quoted, and here's another bit he didn't quote:
Nicholas Lehmann BTW - the moderator - is Dean of the Columbia School of Journalism. Note that he didn't challenge Schneuer about any of this, like, oh, maybe to provide some actual examples instead of paragraphs of innuendo. (Yeah, that Columbia School of Journalism.) (Yeah, that Columbia University.) Read the article and count the number of Jewish names. Note how no one in the audience called Scheuer on his shit.”
Isn’t it time for Daniel Drezner to call “Scheuer on his shit?”posted by: David Thomson on 02.11.05 at 02:39 PM [permalink]
Jos Bleau makes the argument that the money trail is the most important avenue to track. The cosmopolitian appeal of terrorism is relatively obscure in the places where it matters most - Pakistan, Saudi Arabia. More and more there are stories of young men that are drawn into the life in order to acheive superstar status so as to jetset around the region like a Khalid Shiekh Mohammed or Ramzi Yousef. But the reality of the stories is much more dire.
Some of the men are being coerced into suicide bombings. We have stories of young women in the GS and WB that were "dishonored", ie raped, by militants in order to sully the girl's reputation and force her to seek redemption through suicide bombing. These stories need to be investigated more thoroughly, particularly by the Arab media that should reflect the reality of these events for the primary targets of the recruitment, Arabs.
I see the trend away from Islamic identity of liberation struggles and more towards nationalist identities. If there continues to mount an Islamic identity to liberation it will be in places where liberation theology is a protected idealism - the West.
Not that I see this trend as a warm sign of potential to lessen liberation tactics throughout the world, but it is a strong blow to the Iranian policy of connecting with Muslims in their struggles against all non-Muslims. What's bad for Iranian mullahcrats is good for the rest of the world.
What makes the nationalist struggle more appealing is that it subtracts the foundation for Al Qaida. Since it's history and reputation is a result of an Islamic call for Jihad against the Soviet Union, and its outgrowth was a direct result of the repatriation of the Afghan Jihad veterans, then when this foundation is destroyed the personal religious connection is lost. Therefore, the ways and means of making the impersonal personal are near impossible.
David Thomson: Strange, isn't it? In the free market where the media must compete you find strong defenders of Israel that expose detractors of Israel as impartial demagogues. But in Academia, where the market couldn't more less free, Israeli detractors are a protected class of tenured citizens.
Frankly, the campus is one of the only places where two plus two can equal five without any correction or retribution.posted by: Brennan Stout on 02.11.05 at 02:39 PM [permalink]
“Frankly, the campus is one of the only places where two plus two can equal five without any correction or retribution.”
The recent capitulation by Larry Summers to the forces of political correctness is further evidence of the seriousness of the problem. The president of Harvard has utterly disgraced himself. He probably needs to resign as soon as possible. I long ago realized that anyone possessing a Ph.D. in a soft science specialty should be treated like an idiot unless proven otherwise. I am unfortunately not even slightly exaggerating. The following email sent to Jonah Goldberg is quite interesting:
"PHDS CONT'D [Jonah Goldberg]
From a candidate at an Ivy League school:
Posted at 07:34 PM”
posted by: David Thomson on 02.11.05 at 02:39 PM [permalink]
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