Bring It On!

Know Your Enemy

June 24th, 2008 | by Dr. Forbush |

After the attacks on 9/11/2001 many Americans pulled their heads out of the sand and began to ask why anyone would want to do anything so horrible to us. Bill Maher famously asked the same questions in what seemed to a too sympathetic way, by going against the common wisdom of the time. The common wisdom proclaimed that the terrorists were cowards. Bill Maher pointed out: “We have been the cowards lobbing cruise missiles from 2,000 miles away. That’s cowardly. Staying in the airplane when it hits the building, say what you want about it, it’s not cowardly.” Bill was attempting to try to understand why the terrorists would attack us. He was pointing out in a very insightful way that the common wisdom of the time was not even close to being honest. And this brilliant insight got him fired.

The Chinese warrior and writer Sun Tzu wrote “know your enemy” before going into battle. If “you know your enemy and know yourself,” he wrote, “you need not fear the result of a hundred battles.” But, Sun Tzu warned, “If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat.”

As Americans we need to examine the current conflict that we have with many of the residents of the Middle East. We need to know why some of these people want to do us harm. And, if we fail to ask the right questions and answer them honestly then, as Sun Tzu taught, we will suffer defeat.

I know that this doesn’t sound positive. But, being positive alone isn’t going to beat the enemy. Looking honestly at the problems that we face is the only way to fix those problems before we suffer once again. It is interesting that the neo-conservatives, the Bush administration and everyone else that has been so gung-ho about fighting “Islamic Fascism” haven’t spent the time to consider the reality involved in this fight. What is the goal, and what does victory look like? If we are fighting Islamic Fascism, we should know why the enemy is attracted to this ideology. Or, for that matter, if this is even the correct way to describe the enemy.

As I said above, before we can win we need to know our enemy. So, who is it that we are fighting and why are they fighting us, the USA?

Since we have linked the 9/11/2001 bombings to al Qaeda and Osama bin Laden we should begin with what he tells us. He communicates with his group, his allies and with us and he tells us everything that we should know about him. But, because of the fear of our enemy the media is quite lax in publicizing what he says. Without getting involved in the bin Laden view of the world we can cut to the chase and discover what al Qaeda intends to do in order to win this war.

Osama bin Laden tells us that there are three ways he intends to attack us and win this conflict:

1) He wants us to spend ourselves into bankruptcy and waste our resources.
2) He wants us to spread our military strength thin by fighting the enemy around the world.
3) And, He wants us to become disorganized through political infighting.

By understanding what our enemy wants us to do, we can evaluate if we are fighting our enemy properly.

How are we fighting the “War on Terror?” First of all, we have determined to spend billions of dollars fighting a war in Iraq and Afghanistan. We began the war by destroying these countries with our massive weapons. We don’t have the actual cash on hand to fight these wars, so we are borrowing money to fight these wars. In fact, the majority of the money that we are borrowing is being loaned to us by China. What happens if we continue to borrow until we have borrowed so much that we are no longer able to repay our debt? They call that bankruptcy.

Now, where are we fighting the “War on Terror?” First of all we collected our allies together and invaded Afghanistan. This seemed to make sense because the Taliban had given refuge to al Qaeda. Al Qaeda collected themselves and found cover in the border region between the two countries of Afghanistan and Pakistan. The territory is steep and difficult, but a surge of 200,000 troops concentrated in this area with the cooperation of Afghanistan (the government we put into power) and Pakistan (our long time ally) could have weeded out the enemy and we could have put an end to this a long time ago. However, we have less than 50,000 troops in Afghanistan mainly walking around looking for Taliban remains. The success of shooing the Taliban out of the cities and into the Mountains was so encouraging that George W Bush and his cohorts determined that invading Iraq would be the best thing to do. After 5 years of occupation many military leaders continue to remind us that we have spread ourselves quite thin. As to the political infighting, the polarization of our country started long before al Qaeda attacked us the first time. However, the stupidity of the Iraq War and how it has been run has only increased the political infighting. The possibility of real political unity appears to be some remote hallucination based in fiction.

My conclusion is that we must be losing the “War on Terror” because we are accomplishing every goal of al Qaeda based merely on the threat of another terrorist attack. They attacked us, and we are doing their bidding. Why would they attack us again if we are already doing what they want us to do?

Terrorism works by intimidation. They motivate us with fear and we do what they want us to do. It looks like the terrorists are getting what they want. The terrorists know that despite what John McCain might want we aren’t likely to stay in Iraq for 100 years. The terrorists operate on a Middle East time clock, a clock that works on a scale of 1000 years instead of the instant gratification clock that most Americans operate on. It doesn’t really matter whether George W Bush is stubborn about making a timetable. Our enemy knows that one year or five years it doesn’t really matter because they can wait. Echoing The Rolling Stones, “Time is on their side.”

So, how can we win?

Well, I believe that in Iraq we have already won, as far as any stated goals announced. We went to Iraq to secure our country from the potential act of aggression with “Weapons of Mass Destruction.” We discovered that there weren’t any in Iraq, so we should be loading up and getting ready to go. The Iraqi government and the Iraqi people now need to stand up to the plate.

In Afghanistan we have given up our search for Osama bin Laden, the leader of the group that attacked us. We need to re-concentrate our efforts and bring him in before he dies of old age.

And, we need to strengthen our borders and increase security at home. But, unless we want to live in a police state we need to do the best we can to use our soft power and show the world how we can all live together in cultural diversity and political harmony.

Of course, this is only if we truly want to win this war.


Don’t forget what Stephen Colbert said, “Reality has a well-known liberal bias.”

Cross Posted @ Bring It On, tblog, Blogger and BlogSpirit


Share and Enjoy:
  • Digg
  • Sphinn
  • Facebook
  • Mixx
  • Google
  • e-mail
  • YahooMyWeb
Sphere: Related Content

  1. 5 Responses to “Know Your Enemy”

  2. By Rainbro on Jun 24, 2008 | Reply

    Great article Dr.

    OBL is probably dancing in his cave at the implementation of his strategy by the current administration. Keep on writing it like it is, Bro.


  3. By Badtux on Jun 25, 2008 | Reply

    OBL isn’t in a cave, RD. He’s in a cushy condo in Islamabad courtesy of the ISI, which evacuated him from Tora Bora as our forces were closing in. Remember, the ISI (Pakistani Intelligence) set up the Taliban…

  4. By Rainbro on Jun 25, 2008 | Reply

    Oh that’s right, BT I forgot… Our “allies” - the same ones who had Benazir Bhutto assassinated…

  5. By Paul Merda on Jun 25, 2008 | Reply

    Good post Doc, I couldn’t agree more. We are playing right into the hands of our enemy, we are losing based upon their stated goals…

    Besides, you can’t kill an idea with bullets and bombs, it will take us discrediting their ideology to win. And we can’t do that when they say we want to dominate the middle-east for their oil and then we go and attack Iraq and dominate them…for their oil. What I don’t understand most is why other people (namely conservatives & neo-cons) don’t see the folly of our ways…

  6. By Rainbro on Jun 25, 2008 | Reply

    I really was wrong about the dancing… and everything.


Post a Comment