Posted on | February 20, 2006 | No Comments
DC, a.k.a. the Whore of Babylon(WoB), is a city of acronyms. POTUS, SCOTUS, CIA, FBI, DOJ…and the Pentagon is a sea of acronyms. GWOT is the acronym du jour. Global War on Terror. Not on “Terrorism.” Although I find “Terror” to be too open ended, it does serve the POTUS (President of the United States) better than “terrorism.” Terrorism is precise…a conflict against specific actions and actors that can be defined and applied.
Terror, on the other hand, implies evil and fear and a state of mind…not specific actions. A war on “terror”? Does that mean we’ll be attacking video stores that carry Hitchcock films, the collected works of John Carpenter and the first two Friday the 13th films? The first day of school, a blind date, speaking in front of a huge crowd…all terrifying. And then there are all those phobias….
Anyway, I digress.
It’s the imprecision of “terror” over “terrorism” that is so telling. The attack on Afghanistan was justifiable. The Taliban and Al-Qaeda were there. Osama was there. There was a direct connection. Iraq? It was an Al-Qaeda-free zone. Tapes released this week have Saddam–over a decade ago–talking to his underlings about the threat of terrorism on the US…of nuke-car bombs in DC, bio-terror…and how he’s warned the US of this impending doom and, he said, it wouldn’t be coming from Iraq. Yeah, he said that. You might recall that he was a key ally of the Reagan-Bush Admin and remained so until about a month before he invaded Kuwait. In fact, we have incontrovertible evidence that Bush the First was illegally arming Saddam right up to the invasion. He stamped out Islamic fundamentalism. He attacked our Iranian enemies upon our request. He got WMDs from us beginning in 1983.
But we attacked Iraq and part of the case was he was a terrorism threat armed with WMDs. No evidence there. But perceptions will do when we are simply talking about terror, and not terrorism. The Administration did create Iraq into a terror threat. Like a Hitchcock movie…they wrote the script, told the story and convinced the American people to be terrified of Iraq. And they convinced the Congress to be terrified of voting against the invasion…for fear of losing in the next election.
So, Iraq was part of the war on terror…if not on terrorism.
You see, if the war was about terrorism we would’ve invaded Saudi Arabia and Pakistan. If it was about WMDs we certainly would’ve gone into Pakistan, where the ISI covered up A.Q. Khan’s nuclear technology distribution network for years. You know…the guy who gave North Korea the means to build it’s bomb. Precision would’ve dictated that Al-Qaeda, to be cut off at it’s roots, needed to be severed from it’s Saudi funders and Pakistani trainers. A quick look at history shows that Al-Qaeda was created by the Saudis, the Pakistani ISI and the CIA. Long after the CIA cut it’s public ties, the other two kept on keeping on. The Taliban would not have been…had it not been for Saudi money, religious Wahhabism and Pakistani training and support through it’s system of madrassas. The support was direct and significant. Hell, the Saudis even provided most of the actual hijackers.
So, now that some Senators are up in arms about the United Arab Emirates buying into the US seaport system and the Administration okaying it…well…remember that those are concerns about terrorism…not terror. There is no terror threat regarding the UAE. Even though they offered some financial support to Osama and even tossed in one 9-11 hijacker… the Administration has not identified the UAE as a terror threat. They may be a terrorism threat, but this is the GWOT…the Global War on TERROR.
Be terrified of terror. The Whore of Babylon loves fighting amorphous things like terror. Fear is good for business. Terror is good for politics. And, given human nature, there will always be something or someone to be terrified of. But if you take a close look at the history of the 20th century I think you’ll find that those who want to protect you from some amorphous terror are likely to be those you should be most terrified of in the first place.