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Bodansky: Terrorists Seek ‘Mass Casualties on an Unprecedented Scale’ (says were losing)
Newsmax ^ | Oct. 5, 2004 | Dave Eberhart

Posted on 10/05/2004 9:43:48 PM PDT by FearGodNotMen

Few understand the minds of terror leaders the way Yossef Bodansky does.

Bodanksy was the first expert to significantly warn the West about Osama bin Laden in his 1999 best seller, “Bin Laden: The Man Who Declared War on America.”

As director of research at the International Strategic Studies Association and director of the Congressional Task Force on Terrorism and Unconventional Warfare of the U.S. House of Representatives, Bodansky is one of the world’s most sought-after terror experts.

In an exclusive interview with NewsMax, Bodansky starkly concluded that the U.S. is losing its war on terrorism. In fact, since Sept. 11, he estimates, “the cadres of terror groups have actually tripled since mid-September 2001, and the active support echelons have grown ten-fold.”

Also the best-selling author of “The High Cost of Peace: How Washington's Middle East Policy Left America Vulnerable to Terrorism,” Bodansky has no doubt that America is vulnerable to a major attack before the Nov. 2 elections.

Already, he says, there is talk among Islamic terror groups of an attack on the U.S. homeland yielding “mass casualties on an unprecedented scale.”

While lauding the policies of the Bush administration, he chides U.S. intelligence agencies.

NewsMax caught up with the busy expert as he traveled back to the U.S. from Geneva, Switzerland.

NewsMax: Are the recommendations of the 9/11 Commission sound – or do they miss some critical point?

Bodansky:

I don’t have a specific comment regarding this or that commission, but I think that the MAIN problem of our war on terrorism has so far eluded public debate. So, here goes my rather lengthy overall take:

The United States is losing the war on terrorism despite sound policies, responsible decision-making, and laudable dedication of the armed forces and law enforcement agencies.

Even a cursory examination of the war is not encouraging –

Iraq is going up in flames – the outcome of an escalating grassroots rebellion. A wave of terrorism engulfs Saudi Arabia. Afghanistan is falling apart because of revived fratricidal warfare. Pakistan is on the brink of civil war because of mounting grassroots opposition to Musharraf’s cooperation with the U.S. The Chechens escalate their terrorist war to the heart of Russia. The HAMAS escalates operations beyond the Palestinian theater, as do other Islamist-Jihadist groups in dozens of countries around the world.

The size of the Islamist-Jihadist terrorist forces around the world has tripled since mid-September 2001, and the active support echelons have grown ten-fold. Meanwhile, the hard core of Osama bin Laden’s loyalists have markedly improved their ability to strike out at the heart of the United States and Western Europe.

Despite the formulation of a correct policy by the Bush Administration, the war is in a dire state primarily because the U.S. intelligence community has repeatedly failed the White House by providing scant concrete data and wrong threat analysis.

It has been the wanting of intelligence that has made implementation of the President’s policy virtually impossible, and at times has even aggravated the problems facing the U.S.

The primary flaw of the U.S. intelligence community is the intellectual isolationism and arrogance of the purveyors of knowledge to the White House – that is, the intelligence system of research and analysis.

The current disastrous state of affairs is the outcome of more than a decade of intentional recruitment of like-minded individuals to sustain the course.

Consequently, there emerged an institutional culture – much like the State Department’s culture – that taints and tilts analysis, refusing to confront the possibility of lack of knowledge or errors of judgment.

Within the intelligence community’s analytical elite there is by now a very strong echo-chamber effect. And recent history is full with cases of honest analysts who dared question the party-line (through channels) being fired or forced to resign because they would not toe the line.

The American intelligence community does not tolerate challenge and dissent to the detriment of the national interest.

The gravity of the crisis of the U.S. intelligence community, particularly in view of the mounting quagmire in post-Saddam Iraq, is now widely acknowledged throughout official Washington.

Thus, the harsh criticism of the U.S. intelligence community by the various commissions investigating recent crises is warranted. Moreover, a crucial issue outside their mandate – namely, how come that intelligence community knows so little and comprehends even less – is yet to be addressed.

‘Profound Revamping’

Therefore, the recommendation that there should be a profound reorganization of the intelligence community, including the creation of a new cabinet-level position for an Intelligence Czar and the elimination of the CIA as a single agency through partitioning, is only the first step in what should be a profound revamping of America’s intelligence community and its culture. A profoundly thorough reform is urgently needed.

The current sorry state of affairs cannot continue. If the U.S. is to persevere and prevail in the war on terrorism – and it must ultimately triumph if Western civilization is to survive – it ought to comprehend its foes.

Intelligence is the key to fighting terrorism and subversion. The present U.S. intelligence community has not only failed to meet the challenge, but is failing to learn from its own recent mistakes, adapt and correct its ways of doing business.

Increasing the intelligence budget and reorganizing existing institutions no longer suffices. Urgently needed are changes of priorities and methods – the revamping of the U.S. intelligence culture. The intelligence community’s analysts must be freed from the current institutional stifling, must have greater exposure to the real world, must interact with outside expertise even if dissenting, must increase their reliance on open source-material – at least until viable sources are acquired and developed.

Without such profound intelligence reforms, the United States will keep losing the war on terrorism – an unthinkable prospect.

NewsMax: The 9/11 Commission seems to dismiss any serious nexus between Saddam Hussein, bin Laden and the 9/11 attacks. You have voiced, however, what you perceive as a long history of Saddam-bin Laden association. What is the strongest proof of that nexus and why, in your opinion, did the Commission take the relatively dismissive stance they have?

Bodansky:

The mere fact that I’ve discussed in great length the evolution of the Islamist-Jihadist cooperation with Saddam Hussein’s Iraq between the early 1990s and the spring of 1999 in my book “Bin Laden: The Man Who Declared War on America” is in itself telling because the book was published in the summer of 1999 – long before this cooperation became a hot political topic.

I cannot point out to a single specific piece of evidence as “the strongest proof.”

We are dealing with evolving cooperation that started way before Osama bin Laden was a leader and essentially continues – in the form of Izzat Ibrahim al-Duri’s June 2004 formal alliance with Abu-Musab al-Zarqawi after the demise of Saddam Hussein.

Perhaps the multiple source evidence about the training in fall 2002 of al-Qaida terrorists in WMD by Iraqi Military Intelligence Unit 999 in Salman Pack – as described in great detail in my latest book, "The Secret History of the Iraq War" – is the most relevant proof of these relationships.

NewsMax: There have been media reports that bin Laden is no longer running the al-Qaida show – that now, in fact, the network has a life of its own, spawned in part at least by the U.S. invasion of Iraq. In your opinion, is this true – is it now a broader and even more insidious war? What could we (the president) have done differently?

Bodansky:

Al-Qaida has always been an amorphous entity.

From an operational point of view, of significance are the terrorist groups run by and/or associated with the International Front for Confronting the Crusaders and the Jews.

There has been a major expansion since winter 2001 with the operational cadres (would-be terrorists) increasing by three-fold and the active support elements increasing by ten-fold.

Most significant is the flow of thoroughly westernized Muslims in Western Europe into the ranks of the would-be terrorists. Moreover, there is an ongoing radicalization and alienation of ever greater segments of the Muslim world even if only a relative few resort to violence.

However, of far greater significance is the fact that there is NO real counter-movement throughout the Muslim world since the fall of 2001. There is no popular movement calling for moderation, modernization, co-existence with the West, etc.

Osama bin Laden has never been in direct operational control over the majority of the Jihadist-Islamist groups.

Ayman al-Zawahiri has controlled, and is still controlling, the key elite terrorist formations committed to spectacular strikes of strategic or global significance.

The marked expansion of the Islamist-Jihadist movement since fall 2001, concurrent with the reduced importance of the Afghan-Pakistani hub, resulted in the growing pronouncement of the regional distinction of the various Islamist-Jihadist groups, particularly those with charismatic commanders and leaders.

Bin Laden, however, remains the undisputed supreme spiritual authority that charts the overall course of the Jihad.

Ideologically and theologically, all of these developments are still the manifestation of the growing alienation of the Muslim world from the West and the grassroots adoption of the call for fateful confrontation bin Laden has been advocating since late 1990s.

By mid-2002, the U.S. preoccupation with Baghdad – the former sacred capital of the Caliphate, as distinct from Saddam Hussein’s secular Iraq – resulted in the eruption of Islamist zeal based on the cataclysmic legacy of the Hulagu Khan syndrome.

I discuss this issue in great detail in the Introduction to "The Secret History of the Iraq War." Needless to say that the subsequent U.S. occupation of Iraq and the widespread destruction wrought only aggravated the situation and confirmed bin Laden’s worst-case scenario.

In a nutshell, going to a warranted and justified war to disarm and topple the Saddan Hussein regime, the U.S. completely ignored the much wider and more profound global Islamic ramifications of such a move – particularly the inevitable worldwide Islamist-Jihadist mobilization.

We now pay dearly for this oversight and will continue to do so for generations to come.

NewsMax: You were warning of a massive attack within the U.S. well before 9/11. What is our biggest worry now? Some media report that a dirty-nuke attack is forthcoming. Any solid basis for this? Ridge opines that there likely will be an attack to disrupt our democratic process – anytime in the period from the election right up through the presidential inauguration. Justified?

Bodansky:

There is ample evidence from impeccable sources that the Islamist-Jihadist forces are adamant on striking out before the U.S. elections. Some of the warnings specify a commitment to inflicting mass casualties on an unprecedented scale – perhaps through the use of a nuclear suitcase-bomb (which they definitely have).

At the same time, however, the key terrorism sponsoring states urge prudence – fearing U.S. retribution. Right now, there are intense theological deliberations within the Islamist movement about what to do next. We will surely see the outcome of these deliberations.

NewsMax: You have written that given the available evidence, it is imperative for the U.S. to confront not only the entire question of Iran's terrorism sponsorship, but also the possibility that Iran provided the perpetrators of 9/11 with unique training and expertise. Bush has said that the U.S. is exhaustively looking at Iran’s terror connections. If Bush is re-elected, do you expect to see some dramatic developments regarding this member of the “Axis of Evil”?

Bodansky:

Generally: For as long as the Mullahs’ Regime remains in power, and for as long as the Jihadist culture remains prevalent and dominant in Pakistan (Musharraf’s declared policies not withstanding), the qualitative Islamist-Jihadist war against the U.S.-led West – that is, the lethal, spectacular, strategically significant terrorist strikes – will keep escalating.

Moreover, the overall bitter struggle between the modernity (both values and technology) the West is imposing on the world and Islamdom will continue escalating and expanding until a genuine, indigenous self-reforming movement emerges in Islamdom.

There’s nothing the outside world can do in this respect but fight ceaselessly and resolutely the aggressive violent manifestation of this fateful struggle – Islamist-Jihadist terrorism.


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: alqaeda; binladen; bodansky; iran; iraq; israel; terrorism; waronterror

1 posted on 10/05/2004 9:43:49 PM PDT by FearGodNotMen
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To: FearGodNotMen

I say every time they strike us, we take down a new terrorist nation. No nation-building, no improving public works, etc. We just take out the terrorist government, destroy their military, steal all their inelligence, appoint the best people we can to form a new government, and split. If they hit us again, a new terrorist-supporting government is selected and taken down, and so on down the line.


2 posted on 10/05/2004 9:51:19 PM PDT by FearGodNotMen
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To: FearGodNotMen
In an exclusive interview with NewsMax, Bodansky starkly concluded that the U.S. is losing its war on terrorism. In fact, since Sept. 11, he estimates, “the cadres of terror groups have actually tripled since mid-September 2001, and the active support echelons have grown ten-fold.”

It's just like Kerry and Nam. The left is giving them hope, so they fight on.

3 posted on 10/05/2004 9:51:20 PM PDT by concerned about politics (Vote Republican - Vote morally correct!)
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To: FearGodNotMen

There is ample evidence from impeccable sources that the Islamist-Jihadist forces are adamant on striking out before the U.S. elections. Some of the warnings specify a commitment to inflicting mass casualties on an unprecedented scale – perhaps through the use of a nuclear suitcase-bomb (which they definitely have).

This is total BS. If they had a "suitcase nuke", they would have used it by now, either against our troops, or in a large city.


4 posted on 10/05/2004 9:52:12 PM PDT by edpc
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To: concerned about politics

You got it.

The fight really is America vs. America


5 posted on 10/05/2004 9:54:10 PM PDT by Finalapproach29er ({about the news media} "We'll tell you any sh** you want hear" : Howard Beale --> NETWORK)
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To: FearGodNotMen

Bodansky: Terrorists Seek ‘Mass Casualties on an Unprecedented Scale’ (says were losing)
Newsmax ^ | Oct. 5, 2004 | Dave Eberhar


Of course he does. Do you think he would get any attention in the "news media" if he came out and said "We are kicking butt in the war". Of course he has to be hyperhyseric and negative. No one would pay any attention to him otherwise.


6 posted on 10/05/2004 9:54:12 PM PDT by MNJohnnie (Vote Bush 2004-We cannot survive a 9-10 President in a 9-11 World)
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To: concerned about politics

You got it.

The fight really is America vs. America


7 posted on 10/05/2004 9:54:15 PM PDT by Finalapproach29er ({about the news media} "We'll tell you any sh** you want hear" : Howard Beale --> NETWORK)
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To: edpc

I disagree. Do you really think these terrorists are "on their own." They have a command and control structure, and answer ultimately to terrorist-supporting nations, who give them their money, weapons, training and techology. The terrorists who deliver the bombs are following orders. They are carrying out a plan. They don't just go around blowing Nukes. This requires extensive planning to minimize/avoid the massive blowback the US and its allies are capable of generating.


8 posted on 10/05/2004 9:57:59 PM PDT by FearGodNotMen
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To: Finalapproach29er
After the next attack it will be time to do something about the ragheads and their leftists allies in America.

If 9/11 wasn't enough to smarten these crazy SOB's up, maybe threat of imprisonment will.

9 posted on 10/05/2004 10:02:10 PM PDT by Rome2000 (The ENEMY for Kerry!!!!!)
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To: FearGodNotMen
"Already, he says, there is talk among Islamic terror groups of an attack on the U.S. homeland yielding “mass casualties on an unprecedented scale"

Yeah and in the Tokyo officers and enlisted clubs they heard the same thing. The only one there that was right though was Yamamoto. Remember?

The terrorists are learning not to "wake the lazy sleeping giant. You will just fill him with a terrible resolve."

Or something close to that.. but they haven't even fully woken us yet. We can be fair but when we are united and pi$$ed no one has taken us yet. They don't even want to go there.
10 posted on 10/05/2004 10:05:27 PM PDT by JSteff
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To: JSteff

Problem is, in the case of Japan, we were attacked by a specific country. I say if they set off a small nuke in one of our cities, we pick a known terror-state, and take it out. Period. That's how you defeat the terrorists. You damage/destroy/shrink the number of states they can operate in. Then they will start to feel our pain, big time.


11 posted on 10/05/2004 10:10:58 PM PDT by FearGodNotMen
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To: JSteff

I agree.

Bin Laden's definition of victory is at minimum the establishment of an Islamic caliphate incorporating most or all Muslims, and at maximum the conquest and conversion of the West.

I have yet to see anyone come up with a logical scenario by which either, but especially the second, could come about.

Ain't gonna happen.

The only question is how much damage the terrorists are allowed to do before we decide to squash them.

It might be a lot, and those preaching defeatism in America will be responsible.


12 posted on 10/05/2004 10:11:51 PM PDT by Restorer
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To: FearGodNotMen
I say every time they strike us, we take down a new terrorist nation. No nation-building, no improving public works, etc. We just take out the terrorist government, destroy their military, steal all their inelligence, appoint the best people we can to form a new government, and split. If they hit us again, a new terrorist-supporting government is selected and taken down, and so on down the line.

Do we attempt to find out which government was behind each attack, and take that one out?

Or do we just start with Mecca and Medina?

Or do we put slow pressure on them by starting at the extreme east and west ends of the Islamic empire, blowing up two major/capital cities each time we're attacked, moving closer and closer to Mecca and Medina each time?

13 posted on 10/05/2004 10:12:05 PM PDT by dagogo redux
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To: Rome2000
What a load of crap. The terrorists are losing. They no longer have friends in Kabul or Baghdad, nor the financing from those governments. Pakistan is nowhere near a civil war, in fact it is helping to root out the terrorists. Afghanistan will have elections this week, Iraq in January, then Iran will be surrounded by democratic states, as will Syria. Iran is about to have a democratic revolution from within, and once that happpens its state suport for terrorism will be gone as well. Bin Laden has Bin Hidin now for over two years. Saddam will go on trial soon for crimes against humanity. The wall built by Israel is working, as is Israel's assassination campaign against Hamas. Hamas is barely functioning now. I could go on and on.

Mr. Bodansky, with all due respect, will not find much need for his opinions once we get rid of all the terrorists. Is it any wonder he says we are losing?

14 posted on 10/05/2004 10:15:30 PM PDT by Dems_R_Losers (Proud to be a Reagan Alumna!)
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To: edpc

I'm surprised so many Americans have no clue how much planning goes into an operation like 911. For instance, it seems perfectly obvious to me that OBL and Co. packed those planes with Saudis for a reason. They were attempting to make sure that the blowback of the 911 operation was directed back at OBL's sworn enemy: SAUDI ARABIA. Yet, I have never heard any US official (or Saudi for that matter) make the connection. In short, the terrorists we face are super-sophisticated...very different from the average American's view of the "Arab Street."


15 posted on 10/05/2004 10:16:03 PM PDT by FearGodNotMen
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To: dagogo redux

To answer your question...yes! If we are hit again, we take out Iran, and with the Israelis help, possibly Syria (and their Lebanese puppets) at the same time. Etc, etc.


16 posted on 10/05/2004 10:20:02 PM PDT by FearGodNotMen
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To: Restorer

"I have yet to see anyone come up with a logical scenario by which either, but especially the second, could come about."

Well as a group they (Muslims) are having some success. Look at France and many of the other European countries. Were they gain a legal or illegal immigration foothold they are doing it the same way as the Mexicans.

Combining immigration (legal or illegal) and a high birth rate they are having success. If not at converting then by infesting.


17 posted on 10/05/2004 10:28:53 PM PDT by JSteff
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To: Dems_R_Losers
"Iran is about to have a democratic revolution from within"

Prayers and best wishes for that day and those brave people. Better yet if it does occur it will be the first revolution in a Moslem country to remove the religious elements.

Once that happens the citizens of other countries will ask themselves why they are living under Mullah law and decree.
18 posted on 10/05/2004 10:33:15 PM PDT by JSteff
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To: JSteff

I was talking about them winning this war, not about what might happen over the next hundred years.

Yeah, Europe is going down the tubes in the next 50 years unless something changes. However, a France or Europe run by Muslims is unlikely to be much more of a threat to the US militarily or economically than Egypt or Libya is today.

We just have to get out missile defenses working before they get control of the French nukes. :)

These people are incapable of running a single modern economy and all of a sudden we're afraid they will "defeat" us?

Give me a break!


19 posted on 10/05/2004 10:35:15 PM PDT by Restorer
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To: FearGodNotMen
If we are hit again, we take out Iran, and with the Israelis help, possibly Syria (and their Lebanese puppets) at the same time. Etc, etc.

My idea was even a bit more widespread and indiscriminate.

Start by nuking Morocco's largest or capital city as well as Islamabad first, and keep moving in towards a big heyday on the Saudi Arabian peninsula. Just make it all a massive parking lot, or use some neutron bombs around the oil-rich regions so we can go in later and get the oil.

20 posted on 10/05/2004 10:36:02 PM PDT by dagogo redux
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To: JSteff

Most of the Muslim who emigrated to Europe went there searching for jobs and a better life. The problem is, the terrorists can easily slip in along with them.


21 posted on 10/05/2004 10:36:08 PM PDT by FearGodNotMen
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To: FearGodNotMen

"In short, the terrorists we face are super-sophisticated ...very different from the average American's view of the "Arab Street."

Jeez, you could take out the words "terrorist and Arab" in the sentence and replace them with Democrat and it would still ring true.


22 posted on 10/05/2004 10:37:07 PM PDT by JSteff
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To: FearGodNotMen

bump


23 posted on 10/05/2004 10:44:16 PM PDT by kimosabe31
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To: FearGodNotMen
Mr. Bodansky may be a "terrorism expert", but he's also peddling a book, and is therefore inclined to use sensationalism and "loaded" phrases ("losing the war on Terror). If one were go back to November 1942, one would find that while there was a grim determination to persevere in the Allied camp, no one "knew" to within a moral certainty that we were "winning" or "losing". Yet historical factors were already in motion that would make our victory "inevitable". The fact is that we have only just begun to fight the War on Terror, and that some dark days and difficult decisions lay ahead before we develop the sense of urgency, the ruthlessness (yes, ruthlessness) and the true will to win that it will take to keep terrorism away from our shores.
24 posted on 10/05/2004 10:48:07 PM PDT by pawdoggie
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To: kimosabe31

Thanks for the bump kimosabe31,

It's about time the American people--especially conservatives--got a little more savvy about the world around them.


25 posted on 10/05/2004 11:28:31 PM PDT by FearGodNotMen
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To: pawdoggie

Bodansky is always on with John Batchelor and he ALWAYS says were losing. A real alarmist who has an overinflated view of his own importance. Then Loftus shows up in the next segment and says we're winning and victory over time is inevitable.

Take it all with a grain of salt.

I agree that if they had a suitcase nuke they would have used it by now.


26 posted on 10/06/2004 6:30:02 AM PDT by Kingasaurus
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To: Restorer
Yeah, Europe is going down the tubes in the next 50 years unless something changes. However, a France or Europe run by Muslims is unlikely to be much more of a threat to the US militarily or economically than Egypt or Libya is today.

Got to disagree with you here. The "froggies" have a fairly substantial nuke stockpile and IRBM's to deliver them with. If this fell into the hands of the islamo-fascists, they could "blackmail the rest of europe. It would represent an enormous threat escalation that would require immediate neutralization.

27 posted on 10/06/2004 11:08:50 AM PDT by kimosabe31
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To: kimosabe31

I don't think we can tolerate allowing the "frogs" to go "islamo-fascist". Bush should makesure they understand this right after the election.


28 posted on 10/06/2004 11:11:47 AM PDT by kimosabe31
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To: FearGodNotMen; hchutch
Bodanksy was the first expert to significantly warn the West about Osama bin Laden in his 1999 best seller, “Bin Laden: The Man Who Declared War on America.”

He was probably not the first "expert" to make stuff up (faced with a shortage of material about Osama's teenage years, he simply faked it).

And he's been caught doing that before--back in the 1980s, he came up with a doozy of a story for Jane's Defense Weekly, claiming that "female Spetsnaz troops" had infiltrated the anti-nuclear dingbats protesting outside the US cruise missile base at Greenham Common.

29 posted on 10/06/2004 11:15:17 AM PDT by Poohbah (If you're not living on the edge, you're taking up too much room.)
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To: FearGodNotMen

If intelligence is so bad, on what does Mr. Bodansky base his doom and gloom predictions?

vaudine


30 posted on 10/06/2004 11:37:59 AM PDT by vaudine
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To: vaudine; hchutch
If intelligence is so bad, on what does Mr. Bodansky base his doom and gloom predictions?

See my post #29...he makes it up as he goes.

31 posted on 10/06/2004 9:07:04 PM PDT by Poohbah (If you're not living on the edge, you're taking up too much room.)
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To: FearGodNotMen
More Bodansky:
32 posted on 11/16/2004 3:23:38 PM PST by Wallaby
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