Monday, October 22, 2012

"Al Qaeda is stronger now"

Tonight Romney argued that Al Qaeda is stronger now.

The problem with such a statement is that Al Qaeda is not one organization. Terrorists don't respect copyrights. The original Al Qaeda has been decimated and is no longer able to centrally command resources and training and high-impact operations like 9/11. Most of what the West has experienced since 9/11 has been much smaller scale--the biggest being the Spanish and London train bombings. The attempts made on an in America have all been thrwarted, and have all been small scale--mostly one-man operations that had had some training and equipment from organizations such as "Al Qaeda in Yemen."

That organization is as radical as the original Al Qaeda but it doesn't report to the original group and is in no way controlled or coordinated by it.

These regional self-named Al Qaeda knockoffs are dangerous in their areas but do not represent a significant threat to America. We must pursue them but not turn ourselves inside out on their behalf.

So Romney's wrong. He has been continually campaigning on the scaremongering scenario that Al Qaeda has practically taken over the Arab nations. It hasn't, though right wing Arabs and Arab groups are trying to take over in every Arab country.

The Arab Spring is just the beginning of revolution across the Arab world--of people trying to get rid of the dictatorships that have parasitized the Arab world for many centuries. Democracy has a chance there but there is going to be decades of upheaval in most countries there. Trying to hang this around Obama's neck is ridiculous--as if America could turn back this tide, and as if this tide is uniformly right wing Islamist. That plays well with Tea Party types, and helps pry loose some Jewish votes, but it's false.

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