Skip to comments.Did the U.S. Contribute in ANY Possible Way to Islamists' Attitudes Prior to 9/11?
Posted on 05/16/2007 1:25:01 PM PDT by dcwusmc
This is a question which requires a lot of thought and introspection. I realize and understand that many of you are pure knee-jerk, but try. Did the United States and the Federal Government in ANY way contribute to 9/11? Were our policies in the mid-east in any possible way factors which allowed a nutjob like Osama Bin Awful to recruit moonbats who were and are willing to die to kill "infidels," whether in the U.S. or overseas? If you say "no,' I ask for clear evidence to back you up. If you say "yes," then to what DEGREE did our policies contribute to 9/11 and subsequent attacks and attempted attacks? Which policies and why?
This is in no way to excuse what happened, of course. But to many of you here, it seems we were pure as the driven snow and 9/11 happened out of thin air and is totally inexplicable in terms of our own government's past actions and policies. Since the roots of it go back to Clinton and beyond (I would say at least to Jimmy the Peanut, myself, perhaps sooner), this does NOT constitute Bush-bashing, as some others are wont to claim (again, a kneejerk reaction).
It is my considered opinion that MANY of our presidents have thought so highly of themselves that they could consider that THEY, alone, held all the answers to all the factionalism and all the troubles in the Middle East. That they could, by virtue of their own personalities and whatever, overcome CENTURIES of fighting, infighting, atrocities and counter-atrocities by all these Arabs and Persians and even the Jews. (It seems that throughout history, MOST societies have scapegoated the Jews for all their ills.) Add the witches' brew of Mohammedanism to an already-backwards culture and we have semi-literate people with hair-triggers who WANT to believe the worst about outsiders, Jew OR Gentile. Then give them even the least bit of fact to bite on and a nutcase like Osama can wind up with scores of thousands of wanna-bee martyrs. And WE fell into that trap. When we took sides in their fratricidal civil wars. Even when we abandoned an "ally" and then allowed him into our country for medical treatment... one group took things one way, another took things THEIR way and now it seems we have the three main sects of that false religion after us.
Let me clarify now that I am a fervent supporter of Israel and the Jewish People, God's Chosen. However, I am NOT a supporter of GOVERNMENT AID to Israel. Besides the very questionable constitutionality of it, the aid comes with, in my opinion, way too many strings which inhibit Israel from mounting a proper defense of herself when needed. Also it gives American presidents, who are already too full of themselves, an arrogance that THEY ALONE can surmount the hatreds and ill wills that drive the Muslim countries to want to see Israel eradicated and all the Jews of the world exterminated.
The main problem as I see it is that if we refuse to look beyond our own prejudices and biases to the FACTS, we will LOSE our country and our culture. If we choose to blindly follow dangerous or misguided or even evil policies and policy makers, we will wind up with NOTHING of the once-free nation handed off to us by the Founders. I even sometimes do it, then I have to actually THINK for myself. Mostly I come down on the side that says that the people who attacked us and who continue to act like a plague upon the land should be wiped slick from the earth. However, I often strongly question the MEANS for doing that... and I question the WILL of the Bushites to WIN the war on terrorists and their sponsoring countries. I also have trouble with the name of this: The Global War on Terror. Terrorism is a TACTIC used by those who are too cowardly to come up against an opposing force on an even footing. It is also SPONSORED by certain nations who would see us done ill, but who want to keep their own hands "clean." Thus, there can be NO "war on terror," and it is the semantics which get in the way of WINNING, because there is no way to determine when or if you HAVE won. This is why I, along with others (including a presidential candidate who shall remain nameless), am convinced that we should have had a declaration by the Congress that specifically stated that a state of war exists between the United States and al-Qaeda, the Taliban and any nation which supports or harbors them. That way we would have mobilized our national resources, went on an actual WAR-footing and committed our country and our people and our resources to WINNING this thing instead of having it now to be used as a political football by the Left and the chickenhawks on the right.
So, in hindsight, COULD we have taken a different path years back that would NOT NECESSARILY have led to 9/11? Or are we as pure as the driven snow and those nutballs just up and decided to attack us because they could get away with it?
US gov’t policies were used as excuses. The real reason behind terrorist activity is western culture. Freedom represents a threat to traditional Islamic values. As such, Islamic leaders must promote a jihad against the west in order to convince young Muslims that western culture and freedom is evil. Otherwise the younger generation growing up now will absorb western culture through the Internet and satalite TV’s and western fashions and music.
Western culture is global thanks to new technologies and teenagers can grow up with many of the same likes and dislikes in all corners of the world. Islamic terrorism is a last ditch effort to fight off modernism and the 21st century.
US gov’t policies in the middle east are brain dead stupid, but they aren’t the real reason for 9-11. Western culture and it’s influence over young Muslims is the real reason for 9-11 and all Islamic terrorism.
In hindsight...we could have developed the modern western culture without including the acceptance of abortions, drugs, alcohol, prostitution, gambling, excellence, material wealth, and diverse religions.
However, after modifying our culture to meet their demands what other demands would we be obliged to grant or modify to ensure our safety? Better to nip it now before the terrorist tactics prove successful.
Terrorist attacks are not caused by the use of strength but rather by the perception of weakness.
Excellent summation, thank you.
> This is a question which requires a lot of thought and introspection. I realize and understand that many of you are pure knee-jerk, but try.
This is not a good way of encouraging people to read your words. For a start, please read Bernard Lewis’s brilliant op ed in today’s WSJ.
Well, I have to say....
I dont think that I’m knee jerk but I do resent too much soul searching asking if we deserved to be attacked.
But really I’m writing to tell you that I have thoroughly enjoyed this post and the responses.
The terrorists war on America began almost 50 years ago with the formation of Isreal. IMO it has nothing to do with freedom or and all that. The simple fact is that we are not Muslims and they have stated they will conquer the world. We should have went after the bastards back in the 60s when they committed terroists acts agains American. Hunt them down and kill them. But no we just blew off the terrorists attacks that killed our military and civilians in out embassies and other places like lebonon and Saudi Arabis. They had no respect for us and knew they would get away with it. Only W has had the balls to go get them.
Other than refusing to being as anti Semitic as all the sh$# holes out there in the rest of the world, and other than doing the right thing by supporting Israel against anti Western thugs, when the rest of the world has been too cowardly to do so, no.
Sort of. So many keep posting that they attack us becuase they want to expand, and that is not wholly right. Listen to what the Islamists talk about, and you will hear that they are MUCH more angered by the fact that Muslim countries are not under Islamic law than the fact that the United States is not under Islamic law. What's the biggest crime in Islam? Apostasy - leaving the Muslim faith.
You're right that it is Western culture that is destroying Islamic rule. But attacking Western culture doesn't get any traction in the Middle East, because it's acceptance is a voluntary act of the people. Our military presence, however, is not a voluntary act of their people, and gets a lot of traction on the Arab street, which allows bin Laden to recruit terrorists, raise funds, etc.
That's not to say that our military doesn't have a role. We need to protect secular governments in Muslim countries from Islamist coups. We need to support secular overthrow of Islamist governments. But that should be the extent of our military involvement.
We have a lot of advantages to win with - our culture is eating away at Islam, the Muzzies have the great tendency to slaughter each other as much as us, and they are complete idiots when it comes to traditional military strategy.
As far as Iraq goes, it is time for the Iraqis to fight their own war against the Islamists, both the Al Qaeda Sunnis and The Iran-backed Shia. We can offer support, but our men need to be off of the front lines.
“This is a question which requires a lot of thought and introspection.”
Well, no, it doesn’t. The use in your title of ‘any possible way’ means even the most unlikely things count. Given the war against Iraq under GHWB, a major cause of Islamic nettlement pops up. Didn’t take much thought and very little introspection.
We did in the same way those students caused Cho to kill them. ie, we exist.
You are talking about people who thought that a 1930s small town Colorado church social was decadent.
President Bush had it right. They hate our freedoms.
Today I held the hand of and kissed a man I was not related to, drove myself to the store, did not cover my hair and actually told men what to do at work.
These are all things that drive these terrorists nuts.
That I have the gall to do all those things and I am not hauled out and stoned to death just makes them quiver with rage. How dare I not conform to what they think is proper?
The terrorist were encouraged by the spineless and weak actions of our government in the years before 9/11. They were licking their chops while looking at an America they thought was afraid to fight.
They are at war. Civilians are killed in war! Last big war WW II some 30 to 50 million civilians were killed. As long as they feel that they can influence the way the American People think they will continue to kill so the headlines in the US will read 40 more killed today. The press does not report that today an average of 117 Americans died today in traffic accidents (or close to that number) and that 45 Americans were murdered today (on average). Their position as I see it is that they will kill anyone to meet their goal of world domination. Their desire is for the world to be under the yoke of Islam and they will keep killing until either they reach their goal or they are destroyed as happened when they invaded Europe and were repulsed and pushed back to North Africa and Turkey. The left in the United States and in Europe supports Islam because they do not know what lies in bed for them when they lay down with the terrorist. It is called being without ones head.
The big answer is Freedom and we don’t stone our women to death after they are raped
The recruitment is based on jealousy, envy, and a serious inferiority complex among much of the Muslim world. This is ultimately what leads them to "hate us" (tm/2001). I understand that you are saying we could have not done XYZ and XYZ was used to recruit, therefore, by doing XYZ we contributed to their attitudes.
This is wrong.
If we hadn't done XYZ, we would have done ABC. If we hadn't done ABC, it would have been DEF. We do these things because we are free, prosperous, and powerful. The only way to "not do" ANYTHING which "contributes" to their attitudes towards us would be to drastically, radically reduce our power, prosperity, and (therefore) freedom.
That's why I don't think "they hate us because we are free" to be such an inaccurate sentiment. Granted, when a guy like Giuliani says it, he probably is just reciting a nice sound-bite. However, I think that it's ultimately more accurate, and gets more to the heart of the matter, than to say "they hate us because we bombed Iraq in Operation Desert Fox in 1998" or whatever.
So that's my answer to your question: no.
If you say "no,' I ask for clear evidence to back you up.
You're asking for "clear evidence" to prove a negative answer to a question that is, by nature, philosophical and subjective ("did the U.S. contribute to Islamists' attitudes")? Ohhh-kay. Sorry no can do.
But to many of you here, it seems we were pure as the driven snow and 9/11 happened out of thin air and is totally inexplicable in terms of our own government's past actions and policies.
-we weren't "pure as the drive snow" (no nation, nor group of people, is, nor ever has been, so this is a silly standard)
-9/11 didn't happen out of thin air. it was planned and plotted for years, and yes, the psychos who did it did give us warning.
-9/11 is not "explicable" in terms of our government's past actions because that implies that by solely analyzing our government's past actions, you can make a good explanation (the root word of "explicable") as to why 9/11 occurred. But that is not correct! No true explanation of why 9/11 occurred would be a good explanation if it did not focus on the attackers themselves, in particular their psychologies and cultures.
So yes, 9/11 may be "explicable" in terms of our government's actions, but it would be a bad explanation. My beef with sentiments like that expressed by e.g. Ron Paul is not so much that Paul is "wrong" as that he is peddling a lousy explanation.
Add the witches' brew of Mohammedanism to an already-backwards culture and we have semi-literate people with hair-triggers who WANT to believe the worst about outsiders, Jew OR Gentile.
There, that wasn't so hard, was it? You see what the broad outlines of a good explanation look like?
Then give them even the least bit of fact to bite on and a nutcase like Osama can wind up with scores of thousands of wanna-bee martyrs. And WE fell into that trap.
I say it was not humanly possible for the U.S., at this point in time, given its position in the world, "not to fall into that trap". Because any sort of foreign policy we could have engaged in would contain grievance-fodder for people who are xenophobic and resentful enough. How the hell do you calibrate a foreign policy which pisses off ZERO crazy people?
If you disagree, please show me your "clear evidence" to the contrary! ;-)
When we took sides in their fratricidal civil wars.
Even when we abandoned an "ally" and then allowed him into our country for medical treatment... one group took things one way, another took things THEIR way and now it seems we have the three main sects of that false religion after us.
Your point being... what? We shouldn't have "allowed" someone to come here to obtain medical treatment?
However, I am NOT a supporter of GOVERNMENT AID to Israel. Besides the very questionable constitutionality of it, the aid comes with, in my opinion, way too many strings which inhibit Israel from mounting a proper defense of herself when needed.
Why single out Israel? What about our GOVERNMENT AID to Egypt, which gets roughly the same amount? Is that ok?
If we choose to blindly follow dangerous or misguided or even evil policies and policy makers, we will wind up with NOTHING of the once-free nation handed off to us by the Founders.
Wow. I like how you started out this vanity trying to seem all even-handed and genuinely inquisitive, and I'm 3/4 through it and all of a sudden we're engaging in "evil policies".
Which policies might those be, may I ask? Lay your cards on the table.
I also have trouble with the name of this: The Global War on Terror. [terror being a tactic, blah blah blah]
Sigh. I'm so sick of this boring complaint. Call it whatever the hell you want for pete's sake. Can't you just do a mental find/replace whenever you hear/read "war on terror" and replace it by a terminology you like better? Wars don't really have "names", you know. There's no Official U.S. Commission On How To Name Wars. And it doesn't matter anyway what the "name" is. You're talking about semantics. It is what it is.
the semantics which get in the way of WINNING
No it doesn't. Semantics cannot do that. People who needlessly obsess on semantics might, however.
This is why I, along with others (including a presidential candidate who shall remain nameless), am convinced that we should have had a declaration by the Congress that specifically stated that a state of war exists between the United States and al-Qaeda, the Taliban and any nation which supports or harbors them.
We did, it was the War Powers Resolution which preceded the invasion of Afghanistan.
That way we would have mobilized our national resources, went on an actual WAR-footing and committed our country and our people and our resources to WINNING this thing
First of all it doesn't follow that, had war been declared in the semantical manner you wish, we would have "gone on WAR-footing" whatever that means exactly.
Second of all, it's not obvious why that would be necessary. We already invaded Afghanistan and displaced the Taliban. We didn't need to ration our nylon stockings (or whatever) to do it. So why would you want us to?
instead of having it now to be used as a political football by the Left and the chickenhawks on the right.
Wow! All the way from "thought and introspection" to "you're chickenhawks if you disagree with me"! Bravo, sir! well played!
So, in hindsight, COULD we have taken a different path years back that would NOT NECESSARILY have led to 9/11?
We can always take different paths in our foreign policy. And no such path "necessarily" leads to 9/11 or anything else.
However, I claim that, no matter what "path" we had taken, there would be jihadis out there now jealous of our prosperity and eager to murder Americans for honor and glory, and they would have perpetrated 9/11 or something like it sooner or later. If you disagree, please give your clear evidence to the contrary!!
Or are we as pure as the driven snow
Nice roomy, spacious excluded middle there. We are not "pure as the driven snow" (and it is a straw-man) but that does not prove your silly post to be correct.
No, they attack us because they are jealous, impotent, and xenophobic, and we are big, powerful, and prosperous. That prosperity has a lot to do with our freedoms. In addition, those same freedoms are portrayed via mass-market entertainment which they see - rubbing their faces in our "big"ness, so to speak.
So, while I agree they do not attack us "just because" we are free, I would say they attack us for reasons that are intimately connected with and inseparable from how free we are.
Backward-looking in this way is highly overrated as a guide to future actions.