Will Osama bin Laden's Dream Come True?

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In the past, when wars were won, the vanquished were as relieved as the victors, especially if their nation was vanquished at the hands of the Americans. Humbled, and even humiliated by their loss, such emotions were short-lived as the vanquished saw the restoration and opportunities for an even better and more bountiful future open before them with the assistance and even guidance of the United States. Such was the history of wars between nations and regular armies.

The same could have been true of Afghanistan. But, the United States, instead of pouring resources and hope into Afghanistan after the fall of the Taliban, chose instead to move on to another nation and victory of sorts, in Iraq. Almost a quarter of a trillion dollars later, and a looming national debt that threatens the American people's future, resources are stretched too thin to rebuild Afghanistan with hope and infrastructure as the U.S. did with Japan and Germany. The Warlords and the opium trade are flourishing in Afghanistan. Initial overtures toward the Warlords even portend inviting them into the future government in the hopes of avoiding civil war that would threaten the toddler government.

The United States failed to recognize in part, that Afghanistan and the al-Queda were fundamentally different as enemies from the uniformed armies of Germany and Japan. This was a new kind of enemy, a nationless enemy, without a geographical homeland, without a history and investment in such a home country, and without the limits that such a homeland nation imposes upon those willing to join and fight. This enemy was both capable and willing to take up residence anywhere it could, and unwilling to stand and fight for a territory or national boundaries, making them elusive, almost vaporous against our artillery, bombs, and masses of troops. Their aim is not to defeat the American armies, their aim is not to claim American soil, their aim is not prove their military prowess, their aim is not to win by any definition of conventional war. Failing to recognize these fundamental differences, and failing to understand their goal in attacking the U.S., America fell prey to their hidden strategy, fell vulnerable to their intent, and even in part, aided this new enemy toward its goals.

In part their goal was akin to that of the bad guys in the movie "Sum of All Fears" in which the antagonists, recognizing the futility of engaging battle with the U.S. and Russia, embarked on a strategy that would deceive the U.S. and Russia into believing each was the enemy of the other, opening the way for war between the antagonist's enemies. Let our enemies fight each other, let them weaken each other, let them defeat each other. The goal of al-Queda was to awaken the 'sleeping giant' in a fit of rage, and encourage it to lash out indiscriminately with its mighty power, and show the world what Osama bin Laden believed was the true face of America and the west. An arrogant power which believed that by virtue of its arrogance and power, it could do no wrong. Osama bin Laden had his vision fulfilled double fold, when the U.S. turned on one of al-Queda's other enemies, the secular Arab state of Iraq in its war on terrorism, leaving al-Queda and Osama bin Laden relatively untouched by America's rage.

Osama bin Laden expected the U.S. to retaliate like a child enraged, without discipline, without foresight, without objectivity, and without patience. But he could not have anticipated the divide of confidence, the divide of trust, the divide of respect that would be created between the U.S., Great Britain and the nations and peoples around the globe. It was an even greater victory than Osama bin Laden had dreamed. And that victory has rallied large numbers of new recruits, large donations of funds and supplies, and even new alliances for al-Queda to draw upon and direct. It is in O. bin Laden's interest now to keep the war going in Iraq, occupying the attention, focus, and resources of the United States. It is in O. bin Laden's interest to foster as much collateral damage as possible in Iraq, fueling the disdain against America for its elective, preemptive, and unpopular occupation of Iraq. Little do the Iraqi insurgents recognize the puppets they have become at the end of bin Laden's strings.

It is in the interest of O. bin Laden's cause to exacerbate the conflict between Israeli's and Palestinians. It is in the interest of O. bin Laden's plans to have Arabs from differing nations fighting each other in Iraq. bin Laden will then be able to make the case that the U.S. is behind the new and elevated tensions, deaths, and destruction taking place in the Arab world. It is in the interest of bin Laden's plan, to have Mosques bombed, burned, and looted under the occupation and leadership of Israel and the United States.

It is in the interest of O. bin Laden, to destabilize the Arab world. The more unstable the Arab world and the Middle East becomes, the more willing Arab peoples will be to turn to their Koran, to long for the days of relative calm under clerics and a way of life governed by fundamentalist order and black and white proscriptions for society where right is right, and wrong is wrong. The more likely Arab peoples will view their plight as the result of infidels from the West. And with all of these developments will come the historical record that will imprint Osama bin Laden's name upon Arab culture as the leader and hero in the fight against the infidels.

The simple truth of it is this. Osama bin Laden was born into wealth, breeding, culture. He was born with a gifted mind and an ego to match. But he was also born into a huge family which would stand as a barrier between him and the only other thing of import he could hope for as an adult. Power! Unaccustomed to being denied, he set a course upon which he could acquire that which his rich station of birth would not provide. He turned his bright and educated mind toward the only course available to him to develop a following, create a cause, and hoist himself up into a position of power that the rest of the world would have to acknowledge and deal with. And like all mortals with power, the last and final goal is to insure that posterity immortalizes their name with that power.

Osama bin Laden has been successful in acquiring a position of leadership, of power, and of renown. He has not yet secured his ultimate goal to immortalize himself as a great man. For that goal to be realized, he will need the help of the United States and its coalition of the willing. He will need the assistance of Israel and Arafat. He will need the assistance of Allawi to invite Arab to fight Arab and create blood feuds over secular goals that will live for generations. In a very real sense, the ball is in our court, as to whether bin Laden achieves his dream or not. Reelecting President George W. Bush, if the past is any indication, will go a great distance in furthering the fulfillment of Osama bin Laden's dream.


I'm so glad they finally caught Osama, what a shame they had to kill him, we could have had some great photos of him in his underpants like with Sadam

Sipadan, most in the world today, are relieved by OBL's demise.

We should take care, however, not to allow ourselves to fall to OBL's level in rejoicing for the death of others, or in our desires for revenge. To be better than OBL, we must not submit to the basest of passions which OBL allowed himself to submit to.

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This page contains a single entry by David R. Remer published on July 29, 2004 4:49 PM.

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