An open letter to conservatives…
Before ISIS renamed itself ISIS in 2013, it was al Qaeda in Iraq – born of the U.S. invasion in Iraq. Before that, it was Bayat al Imam – a Jordanian group led by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi while he was still in prison. Zarqawi was recruited and trained by the CIA to fight in the Afghanistan Jihad against the Soviet Union. Its members were primarily Jordanians and Saudis, from firmly U.S. –backed countries.
During the criminal trial of some of Zarqawi’s close advisers, their lawyer said this
“Governments taught them these things, Salafi Takfiri” referring to hypocritical people, in other words infidels. “And after the Jihad they compared the governments conduct with what they had taught them, according to this logic the governments were infidels… What happens daily motivates anyone to Jihad… The magic turned against the magician. When they were against the Soviets they were good but against the USA, they are terrorists.”
I’m not a fan of lawyers, especially lawyers who defend terrorists, but this guy makes a good point. Let’s remember 9/11 stopped the world clock because a handful of people with homemade explosives effectively brought the leading world power to its knees – the same tactics the CIA taught them to defeat the Soviets.
For decades, we’ve recruited, trained and armed tribal groups to fight against governments we don’t like. We’ve overtly or covertly appointed hundreds of dictators, war criminals, drug lords and terrorists. In the past, it was all about the Cold War. Now it’s all business. We’re picking dictators to suppress their people so we can rape their natural resources.
In the 1980s, we helped Pakistan and Saudi Arabia overthrow Afghanistan’s socialist government. In 1976, it was Argentina. In 1964, it was Brazil and General Castelo Branco who reigned over that country for a brutal 20 years. In 1969, it was Cambodia and the Khmer Rouge. In 1970, it was Chile and General Pinochet. In Cuba, Batista was our man. His brutal dictatorship directly led to the Cuban revolution. In 1949, we overthrew the government of Albania and put Xhafer Deva, a known fascist war criminal in power. And the list goes on, El Salvador, Ghana, Greece, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, and still counting.
We created terrorism.
We’re feeding the terrorist ideology with every panic-driven bonehead move we make.
It’s election season and the tomfoolery is exceptionally thick. But in respect to the recent terrorist attacks, times are too perilous for run-of-the-mill stupidity. We can’t afford to repeat the mistakes of 9/11. For the record, laying the Paris attacks solely at the feet of President Obama is delusional and disingenuous.
- They say Obama’s lack of leadership created ISIS – no, that was the invasion of Iraq post 9/11.
- They say ISIS was able to regenerate because Obama did not leave a significant military presence in Iraq – no, prolonged military occupations only feed the terrorist ideology; it’s incapable of destroying it. We can focus on the supply, the “recruiters and masterminds” but only immediately, it’s our presence, our control of their governments, their movements, the destruction of their infrastructure and their livelihood, their sense of self determination that feeds terrorism.
- They say Obama should have armed the Syrian rebels in their fight against Bashar al-Assad – no, we would have effectively been arming ISIS.
- They say he didn’t finish the job in Iraq after the surge – you cannot finish an “ideology” while you actively engage in tactics that fuel the ideology.
- They say he won’t use the term “radical Islam” and somehow that’s to blame – this is all marketing, Obama doesn’t want to use the term because it effectively does what ISIS wants, equating their Jihad with the plight of all Muslims thereby upping their recruitment game. In the end, it’s more B.S. It isn’t about words but policy, tactics and self-governance.
And the path forward, the rhetoric coming from the mouths of those who seek to lead this country in the future is even more idiotic
- Donald Trump wants to put all Muslims living in the U.S. on a registry. That puts us on par with Nazi Germany right before the Holocaust.
- Ted Cruz wants to subject refugees to a religious litmus test – admitting only Christians. And this is supposedly the smart one? How does this square with Separation of Church and State?
- Chris Christie says we need to turn them all away, even 5-year-old orphans. Where will they go? If “governments” refuse who emerges, promising salvation, shelter and security?
- Jeb Bush advocates war. Really? It was your brother’s bonehead “let’s attack a country that has nothing to do with 9/11 but whose natural resources we want to secure” was that started this crap in the first place.
For conservatives, the path is clear, kill them all, when they regenerate, kill them again, new leadership, different countries, it don’t matter, just keep killing. That is not the path to keeping the homeland safe, it’s the path to ensuring a constant state of war forever—think Israel.
But terrorism is intangible. Invading a country and “killing the head of terrorism” will not solve the problem. Much like drugs, it’s a hunger, hopelessness and trauma. It can’t be cured by war. It is fueled by war. It is fed by dictatorship and corruption. It is fed by us.
Devona Walker is a contributing writer focusing on politics for The Burton Wire. Follow her on Twitter @DevonaWalker.