October 29, 2006


How we lose (Herbert London / Linden Blue, October 29, 2006, Washington Times)

President Bush asserts forcefully that the United States will prevail in the war against radical Islamists. He may be right. We pray he is right. However, it is also important to understand the strength of the forces arrayed against us.

There are at least five reasons why we may lose the war against radical Islam -- which is in fact, a war for the Free World as we know it. [...]

• Fifth, arguably the most significant point, is that Islamists are united, notwithstanding the well-publicized differences between Sunnis and Shi'ites. Islamists believe the West has been weakened by cultural degradation. They also believe their goal of caliphates from Madrid to Jakarta is an inevitability. By contrast, the United States itself and its allies are divided on strategy and on the marshaling of resources to fight the enemy. The U.S. electorate wishes this war would go away. By contrast, the persistence and virulence of the Sunni Ba'athists reflects their efforts to regain punitive dominance. This needs to be understood in the context of the great wealth and power at stake. The Saddamists had a very good thing going when they controlled all the oil in Kurdish and Shia territories. To them, jihad is a desperate attempt to reassert their dominance, though they represent only about 20 percent of Iraq's population. Thus they will keep fighting until they come to believe they cannot win. Only then will their interests lie in accommodation. Winning is essential to radical Islamists.

At this point in the essay the authors have tipped from ludicrous to incoherent. Saddam and the Ba'athists aren't Islamists. Saddam's model was Stalin, not Osama, and he ended up failing just as miserably as the Communists always have, though even that was more success than OBL ever enjoyed. But the most obvious problem with this paragraph is that if the Ba'athists were Islamists and if the Shi'ites in Iraq were radical Islamists and if the radical Islamists were unified then the Saddamists would be working with Sadrists instead of executing each other in the night. Islamicism is a feeble threat, though one that should be dealt with for the good of Muslims.

Posted by Orrin Judd at October 29, 2006 9:18 AM

one that should be dealt with for the good of Muslims

One that we should with deal for out own good because of our starring role (as The Great Satan) in their perverse death fantasies.

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at October 29, 2006 12:20 PM