Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Wrong Thinking about the War in Which we are Engaged

In response to the Orlando Attack these words were written by a man I know.  While I understand his anger and intention to find someone to blame, he is wrong when he blames America First.  He seems to ignore history.

His words:

    And we must also pull back and see the big picture of what is playing out here. Our government and its foreign policies and covert actions are the creator of ISIS. This is not conspiracy theory - it is a cold hard reality fact. What we created through our policies in the Middle East for the past at least 2 presidents have created this situation, and it has come back to bite us - in a very deadly way.

    We financed and supported with training and arms radical Muslims including Osama bin Laden since the Afghan-Soviet Union war of the late 1980's for our foreign policy objects. It didn't work. It just went from bad to worse. And they have turned on us - now having our weapons and bomb making expertise, arms, financing, etc etc.

    We only wanted them to declare Jihad on our enemies in the Muslim World to reshape nations and the power in the region. It backfired and they have declared Jihad on us. And no one in our government will take ownership of this from the White House to the CIA, because they prefer to cover up their ineptitude rather than letting us find out they have been the root of the problem over these years.

I respond:

While at first glance there seems to be logic in your contention, You have to go back to the early 1970s. The Oil Embargo of Saudi Arabia, an act of war against The USA. Saudi Arabia an overt Islamic State once more laid siege to the Gates of Vienna (western culture) as the Islamists did in 1683. This is and has been a very very long war.

This war is more than a clash of cultures, it is more than a difference in worldview, it is a clash of the Anti Christ religion Islam and Christianity as expressed rightly or wrongly in western civilization.

Let's go back in the wayback machine for 45 years and moving forward. There is good reason to come to grips with the fact that polices of the last ten years and Afghan intervention was only a small portion of what has been a long history of Islam at war.

In 1972, at the Munich Olympics, Israeli athletes were kidnapped and massacred by Muslim males.

In 1972, a Pan Am 747 was hijacked and eventually diverted to Cairo where a fuse was lit on final approach. Shortly after landing it was blown up by Muslim males.

In 1973, a Pan Am 707 was destroyed in Rome, with 33 people killed, when it was attacked with grenades by Muslim males.

In 1979 the Kidnapping of our citizens for 444 days in Iran after radical Islam took over there this also was an act of war.

At about the same time as the end of their captivity, was the beginning of the Russians incursion into Afghanistan. This went on for a decade and in part was the beginning of the destruction of the Soviet Empire. We did back some bad guys, but we did so after Beirut.

The Beirut Bombing in 1983 Iranian Backed Hezbollah murdered 271 American Soldiers who were trying to keep peace in Lebanon. This event was pivitol since we began to recognize that to keep peace we would have to go to war.

 In 1985, the cruise ship Achille Lauro was hijacked and a 70-year old American passenger was murdered and thrown overboard in his wheelchair by Muslim males.

In 1988, Pan Am Flight 103 was bombed by Muslim males.

Memories are long. They create strategies. When the invasion of Kuwait took place by Iraq and Saddam, it created an appetite for swift and powerful response. Nominally a Muslim, he nevertheless represented the closest to a caliphate that anyone had ever seen in the Muslim world. Even in his war with IRAN he had come out not victorious, but held them off.

We crushed him, but didn't take him out. Then there was the Yugoslav war. I was in Europe during both the Desert Storm and Yugoslav wars. I was managing a factory in Germany. I had many Muslims working for me. Those two wars hardened the lines between western civilization and the Islamic culture.  People on the factory floor who were once beer drinking buddies became mortal enemies ending in fistfights we had to break up.

Fast forward to the first attack on the world trade center in 1993 with a truck bomb and the bombing of the 2 US embassies in 1998 where over 200 people died, many of them Americans.  

We now knew who Osama bin Laden was.  We knew they had declared war on the US.. informally, but to be a member of the opposing army required neither uniform nor membership.  There are no lone wolf attacks in Islam.  They are all supported at least ideologically by a warped theology.  We had a chance to cut the head off the snake, but we didn't.

Now the big shock. 9-11.  The nation was shaken to it's core.  The cries or some kind of retaliation for this attack went out loud and strong.  People's memories are short.  Many would have been happy to see a mushroom cloud over Tehran, Baghdad, Medina, Riyadh and Mecca.  Turn them all into dust piles and let God sort them out.

What the congress agreed to and what President Bush did in going to war in Iraq and against the parts of Afghanistan was an effort meant to appease the anger then afoot in the USA.  While many voices expressed concern, it was more humane it seemed at the time to go to war with the army you've got, not the one you wish you had.. to keep from blowing the whole place to HELL!

It wasn't great, there was much contention.  While at first both parties endorsed it nearly unanimously, 5 years later in 2006 there was a sea change of emotion as the democrats took both the house and senate from the President's party.  Get out.  We had been at war 4 bloody years.  A year into the war Saddam was captured. That helped.  Bush responded with the SURGE and it worked.  Things calmed down.  Stalemate took place.  This all in Iraq. 

Afghanistan was a different issue. The US discovered that 5th century tribal people were not easily conquered our ruled.  It is there where culture and religion really mattered.  Attempts to have rule of the people failed.  Purple fingers and all.  Democracy doesn't work without a shared core value system.

Then in 2008 Obama was elected president with the promise of ending both wars quickly.  He announced it.  The enemy formed a plan.  ISIS was born in the hearts and minds of misleaders.  The idea of using distortion of Religion to continue the siege of Vienna into the 21st century and beyond was on track.

When in ignorance Obama retreated from Iraq declaring the war ended without any kind of restraining force as was advised by his advisors in the military as we had done in Germany and in Japan that opened the door for ISIS.   He was foolish.

Then the Obama Driven Arab Spring.  His speech in Cairo in May of 2009 created an environment that has resulted in the death of millions.  Syria erupted with our support.  Libya fell with our support.  Egypt fell and then without our support regained it's foothold.  Many other nations have not yet recovered from the spell cast that day.

So you see, while your explanation had a grain of truth in it, it is not the full story.  The core of the issue is there is Radical Islam and it is driving people like the shooter in Orlando to kill and destroy.  It's what it knows.  To draw equivalency with what has been missteps and attempts with bombs and bullets as somehow weak justification for those who join with ISIS misapplies the idea of human justice and mercy. 

It was not merciful to bomb Dresden as we did in WWII.  The war was already lost by the Germans.  It was merciful to Bomb Heilbronn and Lauffen where I lived and where the munition factories were.

It was merciful to bomb Hiroshima and Nagasaki in order to bring a brutal war to an end and the long reign of a despot to complete humiliation.

An out of hand dismissal of war as being noneffective thereby bringing retaliation from an ISIS force is wrong headed.  If that were true we would be doing battle with Nazi Terrorists or Japanese Kamakazi bombers in the name of the emperor.  Neither of those was capable of long lasting terror.  ISLAM IS.

The first rule of war is KNOW YOUR ENEMY.. we don't so we blame ourselves.

And that is my problem.. over simplicity.  The gates of Vienna are still under siege.   It's still 1683.

No comments: