[lit-ideas] Re: Text of bin Laden Tape

You need to check out who George Friedman is, Irene.  Major companies and
government agencies subscribe to his service.  He isn't a conspiracy
theorist.  Many of the people working for him are former CIA.  His book has
been out long enough for people in the government to quibble with it he was
wrong.  No one has.  We did believe Al Quaeda had suitcase nukes and were
extremely concerned about it for awhile.  We didn't specifically invade a
country because of that, but we threatened several.  We went after Al Quaeda
more strenuously because of that.  It was the stonewalling of a major player
in the world of Al Quaeda, Saudi Arabia, which added to our reasons for
invading Iraq.  

 

You see this is the danger with attempting to summarize the several books
I've referred to.  I didn't summarize it but I mentioned a few issues only
to have them sneered at as epitomizing the whole.  I haven't epitomized the
whole.

 

But we mustn't get away from the fact that we are at war and must fight it
as best we can.  The enemy is real.  He has the will and the means to do us
serious harm.  We need to prevent that if possible.  If someone were to
convince us his intentions and capabilities aren't as potent as some of us
believe - and he were subsequently to harm us, well, shame on us.

 

And who said the U.S had its eyes upon Iraq since the 20s?  That's not true.
Wilson specifically refused any of the spoils offered him by Lloyd George.
He ascended the moral high ground and pretty much stayed there.  After he
returned to the U.S. and the congress refused to ratify membership in the
League of Nations, there was little interest in the Middle East for a number
of years - unless it was on the part of the diplomatic service, for which
see The Arabists, The Romance of an American Elite, by Robert D. Kaplan.

 

Lawrence

 

  _____  

From: lit-ideas-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:lit-ideas-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx]
On Behalf Of Andy Amago
Sent: Friday, January 20, 2006 9:04 PM
To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [lit-ideas] Re: Text of bin Laden Tape

 

Except that Annie Mylroie made similar cases for Saddam's connection to the
first WTC bombing, and there was no connection.  People write conspiracy
books all the time.  Also, we invade a country because Pakistan tells us
about two suitcase nukes?  That make us sound like a bunch of saps.  At best
Saddam was a potential threat.  There are many potential threats out there.
There are also existing, real threats, like North Korea.  What sense does it
make to go after a potential threat, one of many?  Even Bob Woodward
admitted he was hoodwinked with the potential argument and that there is
nothing in it.  Plus the world was against it.  Surely the whole world isn't
crazy, especially given that the U.K. and the U.S. had their eye on Iraq
since the 1920's.  No sale, Lawrence.

 

 

 

----- Original Message ----- 

From: Lawrence <mailto:lawrencehelm@xxxxxxxxxxxx>  Helm 

To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx

Sent: 1/20/2006 11:44:37 PM 

Subject: [lit-ideas] Re: Text of bin Laden Tape

 

Okay, the evidence exists that it was important to our war against Islamism
to remove Saddam Hussein.  I mentioned some books that address this evidence
two of which were written by Clinton supporters.  However, I dont feel up
to trotting it all out.  It would probably take me two or three hours  maybe
less, I dont know, but Im not up to it tonight.  Among other things, Saudi
Arabia was not going to cooperate in rooting out Islamists who were allies
of Wahhabism as long as they had nothing to gain by cooperating with the
U.S.  As far as Saddam and those influenced by him were concerned, he won
the first Gulf War.  He pulled back to Baghdad to fight us on his terms and
we chickened out.  That was his story and the majority over there bought it.


 

Also, we needed to remove Saddam to get at Al Quaeda whom the Pakistan
Secret Service reported had acquired two suitcase nukes.  (See George
Friedmans book, op. cit.)  We needed to take out the threat of Saddam
Hussein to get the cooperation of Saudi Arabia and others.  Also, Saddam was
a legitimate threat.  He sought WMDs and he intended conquest of the region.
Waiting until Saddam had a smoking nuke would be like waiting until Iran has
one  which may be what we intend to do in Iran, but thats another
discussion.

 

Good reasons (relating to the war against Islamism) existed for taking
Saddam out.  Im convinced of that.  If you want to argue that Bush didnt
explain these reasons adequately, I agree.  If you want to argue that we
should not have liberated Iraq, I disagree.

 

Lawrence

 


  _____  


From: lit-ideas-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:lit-ideas-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx]
On Behalf Of Andy Amago
Sent: Friday, January 20, 2006 8:24 PM
To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [lit-ideas] Re: Text of bin Laden Tape

 

I appreciate that they are an undervalued threat.  When Saddam was in Iraq,
however, they were not there, certainly not out in the open.  Saddam
patterned himself on Stalin, the antithesis of religion.  What in the world
was the advantage to invading Iraq?  The next question is, now that they're
there, how are we better off?  Also, Afghanistan is not finished, not at
all.  

 

 

----- Original Message ----- 

From: Lawrence <mailto:lawrencehelm@xxxxxxxxxxxx>  Helm 

To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx

Sent: 1/20/2006 10:55:57 PM 

Subject: [lit-ideas] Re: Text of bin Laden Tape

 

Irene, Ive studied this matter at considerable length and have mentioned
some of the books that bear upon it.  It is easiest to understand the
Terrorists with the bombs and the Islamists who crashed into the towers.  It
took a bit more imagination to see us going into Afghanistan not simply
because Osama and the bulk of Al Quaeda were there, but also to liberate
Afghanistan and remove the Taliban regime.  After that the situation
confused a lot of people but the information was there for the curious and
the energetic.

 

Islamism is a powerful religious ideology.  It had its roots to some extent
in Wahhibism which was an Islamic Fundamentalist religion founded in Saudi
Arabia in the 18th Century.  The Wahhabis influenced the Muslim Brothers of
Egypt out of which Sayyid Qutb became the greatest Islamist ideologue.  Qutb
wrote hugely and advocated a return to the Sharia and a revitalization of
the Islamic advance which stalled after the Righteous Imams were superseded
by the Unrighteous.  Qutb argued that a return to the proper righteousness
and an adherence to holy war against the infidel would achieve the manifest
success that Mohammad sought.  

 

Qutb was not simply a religious fanatic.  He read widely.  He was influenced
(according to the Islamic scholar Youssef Choueiri in Islamic
Fundamentalism) by the Fascist writer Alexis Carrel who wrote Man the
Unknown.  Choureiri argues convincingly that Islamism is not simply a
religious sect.  It is also political fascism.  This is not simply
speculation.  We have seen it at work in Afghanistan under the Taliban.  We
have seen Islamist strategy applied in several nations in the Middle East.  

 

The war against the Islamists would be counterproductive if they were not a
threat to us -- if they were peaceful and our actions were stirring them up.
But there is no evidence for such is the case in either their writings or in
their actions. 

 

Iraq isnt strictly speaking a breeding ground for Islamists.  It is
extremely important to the Islamists that they defeat us there.  Islamists
are going there from far and wide because if they lose in Iraq they are in
serious trouble throughout the Middle East.  

 

Lawrence

 


  _____  


From: lit-ideas-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:lit-ideas-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx]
On Behalf Of Andy Amago
Sent: Friday, January 20, 2006 7:24 PM
To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [lit-ideas] Re: Text of bin Laden Tape

 

It's not that.  It's that this war is clearly counterproductive except to
those who are committed to a my country right or wrong policy.  If that's
your position, or another position, then certainly as an American you are
entitled to it.  We need to agree to disagree, that you think Iraq is the
right place to be, and others think Iraq is a breeding ground for Islamists,
and let it go at that.  Regarding what these organizations think, I don't
remember your posts on them.  Regardless, even if a year ago they supported
the invasion, times have changed, seeds have sprouted and born fruit.  It
would be interesting to know their position today, especially in light of
the fact that this war is turning into an internal hemorrhage for the
country.  But I'm not rattling your chain, honest.  I'm really glad to see
you back.

 

 

----- Original Message ----- 

From: Lawrence <mailto:lawrencehelm@xxxxxxxxxxxx>  Helm 

To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx

Sent: 1/20/2006 10:12:14 PM 

Subject: [lit-ideas] Re: Text of bin Laden Tape

 

Summarizing would take a bit of time but Ive done it before  seems like
Ive done it several times.  Feels like my chain is being pulled.

 

Lawrence

 


  _____  


From: lit-ideas-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:lit-ideas-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx]
On Behalf Of Andy Amago
Sent: Friday, January 20, 2006 7:05 PM
To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [lit-ideas] Re: Text of bin Laden Tape

 

Can you summarize any of this into your own words?  Not what ought to be,
oughts and shoulds are a dime a dozen, but what is and how we're now better
off than before and what our next steps should be?

 

 

----- Original Message ----- 

From: Lawrence <mailto:lawrencehelm@xxxxxxxxxxxx>  Helm 

To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx

Sent: 1/20/2006 9:54:54 PM 

Subject: [lit-ideas] Re: Text of bin Laden Tape

 

Osama bin Laden and the Islamists understand how important Iraq is.  They
are opposing us there with all they have.  It is complicated, but I could
refer you to several books on the matter if you are interested.  For
example, the founder of Stratfor, the private organization that provides
Intelligence info to companies and other interested in international
affairs, George Friedman in Americas Secret War, Inside the Hidden
Worldwide Struggle between America and its Enemies, describes how the
removal of Saddams regime was important in the war against the Islamists.  

 

See also, Kennet Pollacks The Treatening Storm, the Case for Invading
Iraq., The Reckoning, Iraq and the Legacy of Saddam Hussein by Sandra
Mackey, and The Pentagons New Map, War and Peace in the Twenty-First
Century by Thomas Barnett.

 

Lawrence

 

 

 


  _____  


From: lit-ideas-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:lit-ideas-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx]
On Behalf Of JimKandJulieB@xxxxxxx
Sent: Friday, January 20, 2006 6:29 PM
To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [lit-ideas] Re: Text of bin Laden Tape

 

I completely fail to understand how opposing the Islamists has anything to
do with attacking Iraq or ousting Sadaam.  He was a secularist, and what we
have done is open the country to waves of Islamists who have footholds and
bases for their agendas.  If you support the war on Iraq for other reasons,
fine.  But I don't think you can make the case that attacking Iraq was an
opposition to the Islamists.

 

Julie Krueger


========Original Message======== 


Subj:

[lit-ideas] Re: Text of bin Laden Tape


Date:

1/20/06 8:04:47 PM Central Standard Time


From:

lawrencehelm@xxxxxxxxxxxx


To:

lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx


Sent on:    

 

We have an enemy: the Islamists.  The Islamists want to conquer us.  We need
to oppose them.

 

If you disagree you should logically argue that we dont need to oppose them
or that they dont want to conquer us.

 

If we arent opposing them as well as we ought, that doesnt detract from
the argument that we ought to oppose them.  Although I did mention it as an
aside, the people are being provided with faulty information by the media.
I blame the media and the people for that.  The media for being perverse and
the people for being gullible, but I am not surprised by any it.  We will
(as a people) eventually learn that the enemy is to be taken seriously  that
he does want to conquer us.  It took a lot of blood to get us into both
World Wars.  We probably need to bleed a bit more before we develop
enthusiasm for this one, but notice that Osama does intend to make us bleed.

 

Lawrence

 


  _____  


From: lit-ideas-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:lit-ideas-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx]
On Behalf Of Andy Amago
Sent: Friday, January 20, 2006 5:44 PM
To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [lit-ideas] Re: Text of bin Laden Tape

 

Okay, let's cut the leadership some slack.  It's all the people's fault that
we lost this war.  Let's blame them instead.  It wasn't Napoleon's fault
that he lost (or won).  It was the French people, right?   So let me get
this straight.  This is a necessary war, but not an important one.  Is that
right?  And kindly point out the bothersome non sequiturs.  

 

 

----- Original Message ----- 

From: Lawrence <mailto:lawrencehelm@xxxxxxxxxxxx>  Helm 

To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx

Sent: 1/20/2006 8:38:47 PM 

Subject: [lit-ideas] Re: Text of bin Laden Tape

 

You are giving me a headache with your non sequiturs.  I didnt discuss the
importance, but I do believe it is a necessary war.  It can become more
important if we dilly dally and let them win more than we ought to let them
win.  You have introduced several tangents which dont seem important.  We
have an implacable enemy.  We may or may not be fighting him as
enthusiastically as we ought.  From the fact that so many people want us to
withdraw prematurely from Iraq (to the delight of Osama) it is clear that
millions dont understand the importance of fighting this enemy.   So
perhaps the people you refer to as not doing something right ought to be
given some slack for not fighting them as well as they might.  

 

Lawrence

 


  _____  


From: lit-ideas-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:lit-ideas-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx]
On Behalf Of Andy Amago
Sent: Friday, January 20, 2006 5:25 PM
To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [lit-ideas] Re: Text of bin Laden Tape

 

Well, if it was such an important war, why wasn't it fought more seriously?
Why did the Army have to laugh at their proposal and insist on a larger army
than what Rove & Co. wanted, and still be nowhere close to what was needed?
Why was there no plan for after Baghdad fell?  Why did we go to war with the
army we had instead of the army we needed (a paraphrase)?  Why cut taxes
when the money is needed for military spending to fund the army to fight
this war that we need so desperately?  Yadda yadda.  In short, why was it
not waged as if it was an important war?  If you say it was the Democrats'
fault, then you're passing the buck.  The Republicans run the show and he
had everybody's approval in any case.

 

 

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