George Bush: al Qaida’s best friend

October 18, 2007 | By | 3 Replies More

Republican apologists for George Bush have been trying to justify his enormous disaster in Iraq by pointing out that no major terrorist attacks have occurred in the U.S. since 9/11. They assert, without proof, that Bush’s invasion and occupation of Iraq (including his policies of rendition, torture, warrantless wiretaps, suspension of habeus corpus, etc.) have helped to prevent another terrorist event. They claim this demonstrates that America is “winning the war on terror.” Several Republican presidential candidates, and quite a few congressional ones, have been making such arguments to bolster their campaigns for the 2008 election. Their reasoning contains two glaring errors. One is that correlation does not prove causation. There is simply no evidence of any causal relationship between Bush’s invasion of Iraq and the absence of major terrorist attacks in America. Stationing U.S. troops in Baghdad might offer Mid-East terrorists easier American targets, thus reducing their desire to come to America, but it does not prevent them from doing so.  Indeed, the available evidence indicates that terrorist recruiting has dramatically increased in the Mid-East over the past few years, suggesting that Bush’s invasion has increased the long-term terrorist threat and greatly reduced America’s long-term security.

A second, and more disturbing, flaw in Republican reasoning is their erroneous assumption that suicide bombing is the only way to attack a nation. There is also, for example, economic terrorism. Indeed, America itself has often used economic terrorism — e.g., trade sanctions, predatory lending, etc. — to bully and coerce other nations. We should not assume America cannot also be a target of such attacks, though of a different type than America uses.

In this latter regard, George Bush might be al Qaida’s best friend. Not only has Bush’s occupation of Iraq been a political failure, it has also been a financial disaster. For the relatively insignificant cost of box-cutters, suicide vests, improvised explosive devices (IEDs), rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs), etc., al Qaida and other Muslim extremist groups have inflicted gigantic losses against the U.S. treasury — to the tune of half a trillion dollars and rising. Indeed, the entire terrorist budget spent against America is probably less than the $25 billion that America has lost in Iraq to fraud and corruption alone. Were you in Osama bin Laden’s shoes right now, you would no doubt be delighted with Bush’s so-called “war on terrorism,” especially his invasion of Iraq. Bush has destroyed America’s moral standing across the globe; enraged the Muslim world against the west; given Muslim extremists easy American targets to kill in Iraq; ignited huge al Qaida recruiting efforts all over the Middle East; and, to top it all off, driven America deeply into debt to pay for it. For every dollar al Qaida has spent against America, Bush has spent ten thousand to respond. Sure, al Qaida has not blown up any more American real estate, but what more could they wish to achieve? George Bush has done more to weaken America and strengthen al Qaida in the past six years than Osama bin Laden himself has done. Perhaps it is no surprise that al Qaida has not blown up more buildings in America: why should they? Bush is already doing more to ruin America than they could possibly hope to achieve through the bombing of a few buildings. In the “war on terror,” Bush has been al Qaida’s best ally. He is, unwittingly, their best friend.

I hope you will consider these issues when you hear Republican political candidates praising Bush’s policies in the so-called “war on terror.” When they point to the absence of a major terrorist attack on American soil since 9/11, do not assume this demonstrates that Bush’s policies are succeeding. In fact, the opposite is true, because American losses have come in other forms — forms that are not measured in collapsed buildings, but in spiraling debt, a falling value of the U.S. dollar, and widespread disgust with American policies.


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About the Author ()

Grumpypilgrim is a writer and management consultant living in Madison, WI. He has several scientific degrees, including a recent master’s degree from MIT. He has also held several professional career positions, none of which has been in a field in which he ever took a university course. Grumps is an avid cyclist and, for many years now, has traveled more annual miles by bicycle than by car…and he wishes more people (for the health of both themselves and our planet) would do the same. Grumps is an enthusiastic advocate of life-long learning, healthy living and political awareness. He is single, and provides a loving home for abused and abandoned bicycles. Grumpy’s email: grumpypilgrim(AT)@gmail(DOT).com [Erich’s note: Grumpy asked that his email be encrypted this way to deter spam. If you want to write to him, drop out the parentheticals in the above address].

Comments (3)

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  1. Niklaus Pfirsig says:

    Actually, according to the state department, in a list of "significant" terrorist attacks that goes up through 2003, there has been at least one significant terrorist attack. The antrax letters.

    The lists doesn't include any of the last four years, It also doesn't include the Columbine killings, the Beltway sniper, the unibomber, and many more.

  2. Erich Vieth says:

    We are happy to injure ourselves in ways that would outrage us if perpetrated by others. This applies to injuries we inflict on our own bodies and to collective injuries such as does described in this post. Yes, it wasn't al queda that squandered our national budget or killed 3,000 of our soldiers, or spied on Americans or corrupted our phone companies to spy on Americans. The list could go on and on.  For a musical rendition of Republican corruption, see here.

  3. grumpypilgrim says:

    In still more of the chaotic (read: "beneficial to al Qaida") results of Bush's unnecessary invasion of Iraq, Turkey is now moving troops and heavy equipment toward its Iraq border, while Bush neo-cons are saying that Pakistan is now al Qaida's home base. And, of course, they're also now blaming Iran for the insurgent violence in Iraq.

    Maybe it's a good thing Bush has his military bogged down in Iraq; otherwise, he might be sending them into Iran, Pakistan, eastern Turkey and God knows where else.

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