Sunday, September 24, 2006

NIE Intel and motivated Terrorists

Tom Barnett blogs on the recent debate generated by the Washington Post and NYT reporting of now Iraq is making us less safe.

"This analysis is typical intell stuff: obvious, useless, and playing into a do-nothing mind-set that here says, "Do nothing to piss off the terrorists!"

Duh! When we engage the security situation--any security situation--in the Middle East, we piss off (and create more) terrorists. We do it when we're pro-active, like in Iraq. We do it when we're passive, like our military support to Israel. And we do it when we're behind the scenes, like our intell co-op with regimes throughout the region.

So it's never been a question of whether or not we piss off terrorists (who live to be pissed off, and when there's not enough going on, they'll get jacked over a film (e.g., Van Gogh), a book (Rushdie), a speech (Benedict)--whatever)."

Capitan Ed at Captain Quarters also argues that the conclusion reached "makes the classic logical fallacy of confusing correlation with causation" citing how "Islamist radicalism didn't just start expanding in 2003" and concludes by saying "fighting terrorists and upsetting their plans for regional domination will make them mad".

Then the Counterterroism blog notes that "The 1997 NIE, the last one before the 9/11 attacks on global terrorism, mentioned bin Laden in only three sentences as a "terrorist financier" and didn't reference al-Qaeda at all". So much for historical credibility.

This debate won't get political will it?

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