The Big Picture
Bill Roggio provides an outstanding overview of the current war on terror, framed by his agreement with liberal pundit Juan Cole. Yes, that Juan Cole. The bottom line? Bin Laden's latest message demonstrates all the strength of Pee Wee Herman on Vicodin. The war on terror... Iraq... and the Bush Doctrine of extending democratic freedom to Arab lands... are all synonymous. Even an ultra-liberal like Cole is starting to get it. Check and mate, my liberal friends.
|It is a rare occasion when I agree with Juan Cole, Professor of History at the University of Michigan and Middle East scholar, as he has done much to damage his credibility of late. In the past few months alone he has threatened a lawsuit against MEMRI’s Martin Kramer and Daniel Pipes for compiling his writings and statements (under the pretext of harassment); labeled the assault on Fallujah as counterproductive; misrepresented the history of British action in Fallujah (debunked by Ali of Iraq The Model); insinuated the intrepid bloggers Mohammed, Ali and Omar of Iraq The Model are tools of the CIA and outside of the mainstream (by using an April poll) in the Iraqi political sphere (debunked by Iraq The Model's Ali and Armed Liberal); issued a tepid back down from his accusations against the Iraq The Model bloggers; and advocated setting aside “a generous 25 percent of seats [in the Iraqi assembly] for predominantly Sunni Muslim parties,” even if they boycott the election.
Despite my many disagreements with Professor Cole's views on American foreign policy, Iraq and the Middle East in general, he provides an excellent analysis of the impact of Osama bin Laden’s latest tape calling for a boycott of the upcoming Iraqi elections. He states that Osama bin Laden's admonishment for Iraqis to boycott the elections will backfire badly on al Qaeda.
Critics of the Iraq War fail to recognize Iraq is a major component in the overall war on terror, and Iraq has presented the opportunity to draw al Qaeda out into the open and fight the United States military in a theater of our choosing. The American invasion of Iraq has forced al Qaeda’s hand, as the organization was obligated to resist an American incursion into the heart of the Middle East and fight any attempts to establish democracy.
Events over the past two months demonstrate al Qaeda's operations in Iraq are having a negative impact the organization. The loss of the terror bastion of Fallujah demonstrated that al Qaeda is unable to occupy territory and is in reality the weak horse in this race. Leaders of jihad are livid over the unwillingness of young Muslims to fight against the infidels; proof that the power of the Arab Street is nothing but a myth. Al Qaeda is having manpower problems after being forced to fight against the Americans in two major theaters. Al Qaeda has become unpopular among the indigenous Iraqi insurgents. Osama’s speech inciting violence in Saudi Arabia indicates his organization is taking a beating in the country and now has no alternative but to advocate the overthrow of the House of Saud.
Professor Cole has been a major critic of the invasion of Iraq, the actions of American soldiers in country and American policy in the Middle East in general. It is high time he recognize the invasion of Iraq, coupled with the invasion of Afghanistan and military actions elsewhere, have set up the conditions for Osama bin Laden's political and military failures.
Bill Roggio's The Fourth Rail: Osama bin Hamfisted
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