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Old 09-27-2006, 02:03 PM   #16
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Yes, Our Iraq Policy Has Helped al Qaeda Recruit …
Especially when it was Clinton’s Iraq policy - By Andrew C. McCarthy
Andrew


Another day, another New York Times publication of classified information
By Andrew C. McCarthy

Another election cycle, another strategic intelligence-community leak transparently designed to affect the outcome.

Another coincidence of Iraq and al Qaeda terrorism, another simplistic Democratic claim of causation between Iraq and al Qaeda terrorism (but, naturally, never a concession of connection between Iraq and al Qaeda terrorism).

On Sunday, the Times disclosed a selectively leaked snippet from the new National Intelligence Estimate which evidently suggests that Bush administration policy — in particular, the war in Iraq — has increased Islamic radicalism. As night follows day, prominent Democrats were ready to pounce … and pounce they did — even as the Times reported that Richard Holbrooke, the Democrats’ foreign policy guru, had pronounced it simply “astonishing” that anyone could believe the intelligence community might be doing the bidding of Democrats.

The once and future presidential hopeful, Sen. John Kerry, no stranger to this astonishing phenomenon, was quick to declaim, “The National Intelligence Estimate provides jarring confirmation that the disastrous policy in Iraq is a giant recruiting poster for terrorists.” He was echoed by the always measured Sen. Ted Kennedy, who insisted that the NIE “should put the final nail in the coffin for President Bush’s phony argument about the Iraq war.”

It was ironic that the familiar vignette happened to recur on the very same day Fox News broadcast Bill Clinton’s implosion. The thin veneer over the former President’s famously meteoric temper was pierced by an even-handed question anyone in his position should have expected, namely, why during his eight years in office had he not done more to stop al Qaeda. Clinton, of course, took it all in stride — going instantly to finger-wagging Code Red (and thus flashing us all right back to those salad days of “I did not have sexual relations with that woman …”).

The irony lies in the fact that there is an incontestable connection between Iraq policy and al Qaeda terrorism. We don’t need a leaked NIE to persuade us of it because Osama bin Laden stated it quite unabashedly. We don’t hear much about it from the mainstream media, though, because it was Bill Clinton’s Iraq policy.

It was over eight years ago, in February 1998, that bin Laden issued his infamous fatwa calling for Muslims to murder any and all Americans — soldiers or civilians — wherever on earth they could be found. As al Qaeda’s emir put it, “The ruling to kill the Americans and their allies — civilians and military — is an individual duty for every Muslim who can do it in any country in which it is possible to do it.”

This instruction section of the fatwa has gotten much attention over the years. Yet, the justification section has hardly been examined at all. To do so, after all, would not just call attention to the Clinton security failures; it would destroy the left’s favorite narrative: “Bush’s Iraq War Has Caused More Terrorism and Made Us Less Safe.”

The 1998 fatwa is readily available (find it here, for example) and worth studying. Here is some of why bin Laden said all Americans needed killing (italics are mine):
The Arabian Peninsula has never … been stormed by any forces like the crusader armies now spreading in it like locusts, consuming its riches and destroying its plantations….

[F]or over seven years the United States has been occupying the lands of Islam in the holiest of places, the Arabian Peninsula, plundering its riches, dictating to its rulers, humiliating its people, terrorizing its neighbors, and turning its bases in the Peninsula into a spearhead through which to fight the neighboring Muslim peoples.… The best proof of this is the Americans' continuing aggression against the Iraqi people using the Peninsula as a staging post[.]…[D]espite the great devastation inflicted on the Iraqi people by the crusader-Zionist alliance, and despite the huge number of those killed, in excess of 1 million... despite all this, the Americans are once against trying to repeat the horrific massacres, as though they are not content with the protracted blockade imposed after the ferocious war or the fragmentation and devastation. So now they come to annihilate what is left of this people and to humiliate their Muslim neighbors. …

[T]he Americans' aims behind these wars are religious and economic, the aim is also to serve the Jews' petty state and divert attention from its occupation of Jerusalem and murder of Muslims there. The best proof of this is their eagerness to destroy Iraq, the strongest neighboring Arab state[.]… All these crimes and sins committed by the Americans are a clear declaration of war on God, his messenger, and Muslims. And … jihad is an individual duty if the enemy destroys the Muslim countries.


So, yes, Osama bin Laden claimed in 1998 that President Clinton’s policy was a “continuing aggression against the Iraqi people”; a “devastation” that continued the “horrific massacres” of the 1991 Gulf War. For the world’s leading jihadist, Clinton’s purported “eagerness to destroy Iraq” was the “best proof” of America’s intentions toward the Islamic world. None of it was true, of course, but that didn’t stop him from saying it.

Now, did the Clinton Iraq policy endanger the United States by providing bin Laden with a valuable tool for recruitment and incitement? I suppose if I were a Democratic senator from Massachusetts, I’d have to say it did. After all, adopting what passes for this line of reasoning, the 1998 fatwa was followed by the bombings of the American embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, killing well over 200 people. The following year, plots against Los Angeles International Airport and the U.S.S. The Sullivans were thwarted by sheer luck. In October 2000, the U.S.S. Cole was attacked, resulting in the murders of 17 American sailors. And in the run-up to the 9/11 atrocities, Bush did not change Clinton’s Iraq policy; he continued it.

If we’re to be honest, however, it would be preposterous to claim that anything President Clinton did — in Iraq or anyplace else — “caused” jihadist terrorism. Just as it is inane to argue now that our current Iraq policy is the “cause.”

Whether we wish to acknowledge it or not, jihadism is attractive to tens of millions of people in what is called the Muslim world. Out of a total population of about 1.3 billion, that may not be a very high percentage (although I daresay it is higher than we like to think). But it is the ideology that attracts recruits. Grievances are just rhetoric. If the bin Ladens did not have Iraq, or the Palestinians, or Lebanon, or Pope Benedict, or cartoons, or flushed Korans, or Dutch movies, or the Crusades, they’d figure out something else to beat the drums over. Or they’d make something up — there being lots of license to improvise when one purports to be executing Allah’s will.

It is bad enough when the Muslim charlatans opportunistically use American policies they don’t like for militant propaganda purposes. It is reprehensible when American politicians do it.

Jihadists hate us because they hate us, not because of Iraq. If President Clinton’s Iraq policy was a problem, it was only because he didn’t follow through on it. By threatening to act forcefully but then letting Saddam Hussein and his terror-mongering fester, Clinton played right into al Qaeda’s conviction that America did not have the stomach for a fight and could be attacked with impunity — a conviction that was reinforced when terror attacks were in fact met with paltry, or no, response.

Bush, to the contrary, has chosen to fight al Qaeda where it is standing, figuring captured or dead terrorists can no longer harm Americans. Right now, al Qaeda is standing in Iraq, so that’s where we must fight it — whether or not you agree that we should be there in the first place. It matters nothing that jihadists will use that fight in their recruitment speeches. It matters everything, though, if we withdraw from the fight and they win.
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Old 09-27-2006, 02:06 PM   #17
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We went after the terrorists who were responsible for planning the events of 9/11, and we also went after those who harbor terrorists to pull out the roots of Islamic terrorism.
BS, if that was the case we would have gone into Saudi Arabia. Even Bush doesn't use this excuse for invading Iraq, it's because "they had the potential to have or obtain WMDs". Doesn't that sound like a great reason. So let's not get into revisionist history here...
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Old 09-27-2006, 02:07 PM   #18
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The NIE seems to say that fighting them has pissed them off, and that 5 years of democracy building will divide the support for Islamists and that if the Jihadists are defeated in Iraq it will seriously damage the appeal and recruiting power- you can read the whole document here, http://dni.gov/press_releases/Declas..._Judgments.pdf




did we read the same document?

it says, basically, that yes progress has been made in dismantling the leadership of al Qaeda. but that's about it. all threats to civilian safety in the US and Europe have worsened, and it presents no clear pathway to Democracy. it's clear that over three years later, our continued ineffective presence in Iraq is spawning more terrorism.
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Old 09-27-2006, 02:09 PM   #19
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Originally posted by AEON



Another day, another New York Times publication of classified information
By Andrew C. McCarthy


boy, Clinton on FoxNews really got some conservatives (and National Review editors) upset.
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Old 09-27-2006, 02:17 PM   #20
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What parts of his article do you disagree with?
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Old 09-27-2006, 02:19 PM   #21
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As a result, the inevitable Jihad that was declared on 9/11 is being fought in the Middle East, rather than New York City.
And we are safer here sitting in NYC? What if that recent bombing plot on several planes had been successful??? In fact we're more at risk now than during and after 9/11 as Al Qaeda has become highly de-centralized now and could attack anywhere anytime. Who knows how many 'homegrown terrorists' it has under it's wing!
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Old 09-27-2006, 02:22 PM   #22
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What parts of his article do you disagree with?


it's not even an attempt at serious analysis. it's all stilted and slanted and about as informative as a Rush Limbaugh speech (the clinton "implosion" on Fox?)

it has to rever to sex jokes (Lewinsky) to even make a point.

it's just red meat.
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Old 09-27-2006, 02:30 PM   #23
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Originally posted by Irvine511




it's not even an attempt at serious analysis. it's all stilted and slanted and about as informative as a Rush Limbaugh speech (the clinton "implosion" on Fox?)

it has to rever to sex jokes (Lewinsky) to even make a point.

it's just red meat.
Of course it is red meat - it is a response to writers and posters like yourself that apparently do not understand that the global jihad against Americans was already underway.

BTW - isn't it about time the NY Times stops publishing classified material. I am pretty sure there is a law or two about printing such documents.
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Old 09-27-2006, 02:32 PM   #24
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Originally posted by Zootlesque


And we are safer here sitting in NYC? What if that recent bombing plot on several planes had been successful??? In fact we're more at risk now than during and after 9/11 as Al Qaeda has become highly de-centralized now and could attack anywhere anytime. Who knows how many 'homegrown terrorists' it has under it's wing!
Counter-terrorism has become the central issue at home and abroad. That's why the recent bombing plot wasn't successful. We've discovered many homegrown terrorists and terror cells as a result of taking the issue seriously.
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Old 09-27-2006, 02:33 PM   #25
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Originally posted by BonoVoxSupastar


BS, if that was the case we would have gone into Saudi Arabia.
That wouldn't make sense EVEN IF the Saudi government funded 9/11. This isn't a war against one nation, but an ideology. The Jihadists exist worldwide, not just in Saudi Arabia.
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Old 09-27-2006, 02:43 PM   #26
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Originally posted by Macfistowannabe
Counter-terrorism has become the central issue at home and abroad. That's why the recent bombing plot wasn't successful. We've discovered many homegrown terrorists and terror cells as a result of taking the issue seriously.
The recent bombing wasn't successful because of good intelligence, law enforcement and international cooperation—all things we're going to desperately need as we move forward in the fight against terror. In fact, they are the very things Senator Kerry cited 3 years ago: "It's primarily an intelligence and law enforcement operation that requires cooperation around the world, not reckless foreign policy."

The bombings certainly weren't thwarted by the US occupation of Iraq. Republicans need to stop kissing Bush's ass long enough to wake up and realize how dangerous terrorism really is, and that every minute, dollar and life we waste in Iraq is a minute, dollar and life we should be using to fight terrorism.
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Old 09-27-2006, 02:46 PM   #27
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The bombings certainly weren't thwarted by the US occupation of Iraq.
No kidding - they were foiled because Brittain's counter-terror operations were taken seriously.

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Originally posted by LPU2
Republicans need to stop kissing Bush's ass long enough to wake up and realize how dangerous terrorism really is, and that every minute, dollar and life we waste in Iraq is a minute, dollar and life we should be using to fight terrorism.
So WHERE should we fight terrorism?
At home or abroad?
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Old 09-27-2006, 02:46 PM   #28
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Originally posted by Macfistowannabe
That wouldn't make sense EVEN IF the Saudi government funded 9/11. This isn't a war against one nation, but an ideology. The Jihadists exist worldwide, not just in Saudi Arabia.
They're harboring more terrorist than Iraq was, where have you been?

And it wouldn't make sense if they funded 9/11? Are you crazy?
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Old 09-27-2006, 02:50 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally posted by BonoVoxSupastar


They're harboring more terrorist than Iraq was, where have you been?
Who - the Saudi government? Do you have anything to back this up?

Quote:
Originally posted by BonoVoxSupastar

And it wouldn't make sense if they funded 9/11? Are you crazy?
No - similar to Clinton not invading Iraq, Bush did not invade Saudi Arabia because it would drasticly increase the price per barrel of oil. It would make sense to use ANWR to drill our own oil, but it hasn't happened, and therefore, we rely on foreign oil.

Basic economics.
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Old 09-27-2006, 02:57 PM   #30
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Who - the Saudi government? Do you have anything to back this up?
There's quite a bit of info out there, plus how many of the 9/11 terrorists were from Iraq and how many from SA?
Quote:
Originally posted by Macfistowannabe

No - similar to Clinton not invading Iraq, Bush did not invade Saudi Arabia because it would drasticly increase the price per barrel of oil. It would make sense to use ANWR to drill our own oil, but it hasn't happened, and therefore, we rely on foreign oil.

Basic economics.
Well you just proved my earlier point. That the
Quote:
and we also went after those who harbor terrorists
as a reason for Iraq is a lie.
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