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Trump, Niger and Connecting the Dots
OCT. 31, 2017 | The New York Times | Thomas L. Friedman.

It is easy to ignore the recent story of four U.S. servicemen killed in Niger, the giant state in central Africa, because the place is so remote and the circumstances still so murky. That would be a mistake. Niger highlights a much larger problem — just how foolish, how flat-out dumb President Trump is behaving.

Trump is a person who doesn’t connect dots — even when they’re big, fat polka dots that are hard to miss. ..... To understand why groups affiliated with ISIS and Al Qaeda are popping up in that region of central Africa, you have to connect a lot of dots, and recognize the linkages between a number of different problems....As defense systems expert Lin Wells once put it: To ameliorate problems in places like Niger, you must never think in the box. You must never think out of the box. “You must always think without a box.” [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linton_Wells_II]

Why? Because what is destabilizing all of these countries in the Sahel region of Africa and spawning terrorist groups is a cocktail of climate change, desertification — as the Sahara steadily creeps south — population explosions and misgovernance.....Desertification is the trigger, and climate change and population explosions are the amplifiers. The result is a widening collapse of small-scale farming, the foundation of societies all over Africa. And that collapse is leading to a rising tide of “economic migrants, interethnic conflicts and extremism,”......Trump’s response to this reality? It’s to focus solely on using the U.S. military to kill terrorists in Africa while offering a budget that eliminates U.S. support for global contraception programs; appointing climate-change deniers to all key environmental posts; pushing coal over clean energy; and curbing U.S. government climate research.

In short, he’s sending soldiers to fight a problem that is clearly being exacerbated by climate and population trends, while eliminating all our tools to mitigate these trends.
That’s just stupid, reckless and irresponsible — and it evinces no ability to connect the dots or think without a box......Nothing Trump ever says has a second paragraph. His whole shtick is just a first paragraph: Build a wall, tear up the Iran deal, tear up TPP, defeat ISIS, send troops to Niger and Afghanistan to kill terrorists, kill climate policy, kill family planning, cut taxes, raise military spending. Every box just marks an applause line he needed somewhere to get elected. Nothing connects — and we will pay for that.
Donald_Trump  Niger  ISIS  climate_change  Tom_Friedman  Africa  connecting_the_dots  the_Sahara  terrorism  the_Sahel  misgovernance  desertification  sub-Saharan_Africa  weak_states  failed_states  farming  population_growth  U.S._military  mismanagement  destabilization 
november 2017 by jerryking
Jean-Jacques Susini, Right-Wing Extremist in Algeria, Dies at 83 - The New York Times
By RICHARD SANDOMIR JULY 14, 2017

Raoul Salan, the group’s commander, was a highly decorated French general who had turned against de Gaulle and participated in a failed military coup in Algeria in April 1961. Paul Henissart wrote in his book “Wolves in the City: The Death of French Algeria” (1970) that Mr. Susini regarded Mr. Salan as a “tactician rather than a strategist,” who was better at exploiting circumstances than creating them.

“This seemed a welcome state of affairs to Susini, whose limitless ambition was to create, himself, an entirely new set of circumstances, as part of what he believed was a revolution,” Mr. Henissart wrote......Independence finally came to Algeria in 1962, but Mr. Susini was nonetheless involved in plotting to kill de Gaulle later that year and again in 1964. Details of the first attempt — in which de Gaulle’s Citroen was raked by machine gun fire outside Paris but he was unharmed — were used by the novelist Frederick Forsyth to open his 1971 thriller, “The Day of the Jackal.” The film adapted from the novel two years later opened the same way, with de Gaulle and his motorcade attacked by gunmen.

Asked by Mr. Malye why he tried to assassinate de Gaulle even after the war in Algeria had ended, Mr. Susini said it was to hold him responsible for the massacre of people “slaughtered like rabbits” and for the exodus of one million European Algerians. Mr. Susini had separately said that the Secret Army first began plotting de Gaulle’s murder in late 1961.
'60s  Algeria  assassinations  Charles_de_Gaulle  exodus  extremism  France  obituaries  right-wing  terrorism 
july 2017 by jerryking
U.S. Cyberweapons, Used Against Iran and North Korea, Are a Disappointment Against ISIS - The New York Times
By DAVID E. SANGER and ERIC SCHMITT JUNE 12, 2017.

In 2016, U.S. cyberwarriors began training their arsenal of cyberweapons on a more elusive target, internet use by the Islamic State. Thus far, the results have been a consistent disappointment......The effectiveness of the nation’s arsenal of cyberweapons hit its limits against an enemy that exploits the internet largely to recruit, spread propaganda and use encrypted communications, all of which can be quickly reconstituted after American “mission teams” freeze their computers or manipulate their data..... the U.S. is rethinking how cyberwarfare techniques, first designed for fixed targets like nuclear facilities, must be refashioned to fight terrorist groups that are becoming more adept at turning the web into a weapon......one of the rare successes against the Islamic State belongs at least in part to Israel, which was America’s partner in the attacks against Iran’s nuclear facilities. Top Israeli cyberoperators penetrated a small cell of extremist bombmakers in Syria months ago, the officials said. That was how the United States learned that the terrorist group was working to make explosives that fooled airport X-ray machines and other screening by looking exactly like batteries for laptop computers......ISIS' agenda and tactics make it a particularly tough foe for cyberwarfare. The jihadists use computers and social media not to develop or launch weapons systems but to recruit, raise money and coordinate future attacks.

Such activity is not tied to a single place, as Iran’s centrifuges were, and the militants can take advantage of remarkably advanced, low-cost encryption technologies. The Islamic State, officials said, has made tremendous use of Telegram, an encrypted messaging system developed largely in Germany......disruptions often require fighters to move to less secure communications, making them more vulnerable. Yet because the Islamic State fighters are so mobile, and their equipment relatively commonplace, reconstituting communications and putting material up on new servers are not difficult.
ISIS  NSA  security_&_intelligence  disappointment  Israel  encryption  disruption  London  London_Bridge  tools  cyber_security  cyberweapons  vulnerabilities  terrorism  Pentagon  U.S._Cyber_Command  campaigns  David_Sanger 
june 2017 by jerryking
On the Other Side of Terror’s Boom
JUNE 5, 2017 | The New York Times | By JULIETTE KAYYEM.

[Currently, in the aftermath of politician's comments on acts of terror like London (June 3, 2017)], there is an exclusive [over]focus on what is called in the crisis management lexicon “left of boom.” The measure of success, in other words, is simply whether or not an attack happened. It’s a simple metric, and surely one that terror organizations want us to adopt. It is a calculation weighted in their favour. Any attack, no matter how successful, is a victory for them and a defeat for us....The measure of success in counterterrorism efforts is not simply whether an attack occurred or not. Another measure must be whether fewer people died or were harmed because of the actions of police, fire fighters, emergency managers, public health officials and the voluntary efforts of the public.

But it is the other side of that spectrum — “right of boom” — where nations must also begin to define victory, especially in an age when we can’t prevent every attack no matter how much we would like to. We can still succeed, however, by making these attacks less effective and therefore less scary. While governments are already focusing on both sides of the boom, prevention takes too much of the spotlight from the more familiar, and often rote, activities of first responders.....“Right of boom” policies are not merely luck; they are the product of sophisticated planning and heeding the lessons learned from previous attacks...... Any successful terror attack is going to elicit fear, but fear is intensified when the consequences of the attack are not minimized and managed effectively. Admittedly, right of boom planning can seem defeatist or less aggressive than saying that we will stop all the terrorists. It shouldn’t......Right of boom planning is no more fatalistic than aggressively treating the growth of a cancer cell or building a sea wall as the oceans rise. They are all an acknowledgment that the harm has happened, but that we ought to try to command the depth of the loss.
terrorism  resilience  crisis  crisis_management  lessons_learned  pre-emption  left_of_the_boom  right_of_the_boom 
june 2017 by jerryking
U.S. Directs Cyberweapons at ISIS for First Time - The New York Times
APRIL 24, 2016 | NYT | By DAVID E. SANGER.

The United States has opened a new line of combat against the Islamic State, directing the military’s six-year-old Cyber Command for the first time to mount computer-network attacks that are now being used alongside more traditional weapons....The NSA, which specializes in electronic surveillance, has for years listened intensely to the militants of the Islamic State, and those reports are often part of the president’s daily intelligence briefing. But the N.S.A.’s military counterpart, Cyber Command, was focused largely on Russia, China, Iran and North Korea — where cyberattacks on the United States most frequently originate — and had run virtually no operations against what has become the most dangerous terrorist organization in the world...The goal of the new campaign is to disrupt the ability of the Islamic State to spread its message, attract new adherents, circulate orders from commanders and carry out day-to-day functions, like paying its fighters....The N.S.A. has spent years penetrating foreign networks — the Chinese military, Russian submarine communications, Internet traffic and other targets — placing thousands of “implants” in those networks to allow it to listen in.

But those implants can be used to manipulate data or to shut a network down. That frequently leads to a battle between the N.S.A. civilians — who know that to make use of an implant is to blow its cover — and the military operators who want to strike back. N.S.A. officials complained that once the implants were used to attack, the Islamic State militants would stop the use of a communications channel and perhaps start one that was harder to find, penetrate or de-encrypt.
ISIS  cyber_warfare  NSA  security_&_intelligence  terrorism  cyberweapons  exploits  hackers  software_bugs  vulnerabilities  Pentagon  U.S._Cyber_Command  campaigns  David_Sanger 
april 2016 by jerryking
Confederate Memorials as Instruments of Racial Terror - The New York Times
JULY 24, 2015 | NYT | By BRENT STAPLES.

In the wake of the Charleston massacre, for example, the parks and recreation board of Birmingham, Ala., voted to explore a proposal that would remove a 52-foot Confederate memorial from the entrance of a prominent park and place it with a Confederate heritage group.

Not all monuments warrant that kind of challenge. But those honoring the Confederate general Nathan Bedford Forrest deserve the backlash they have generated. Forrest presided over the 1864 massacre of Union soldiers, many of them black, at Fort Pillow in Tennessee. He was also a prominent slave trader and served as the first grand wizard of the Ku Klux Klan.

Apologists argue that his involvement with the Klan was unimportant because he later adopted more enlightened views. But as the Forrest biographer Jack Hurst writes, by lending his name to the K.K.K. even temporarily, the general accelerated its development. “As the Klan’s first national leader,” Mr. Hurst writes, “he became the Lost Cause’s avenging angel, galvanizing a loose collection of boyish secret social clubs into a reactionary instrument of terror still feared today.”....Critics predictably condemn these efforts as bad-faith attempts to rewrite history. But what’s happening is that communities that were once bound and gagged on this issue are now free to contest a version of history that was created to reinforce racial subjugation.

They are reflecting on how to honor history — including the neglected history of African-Americans — and rightly deciding that some figures who were enshrined as heroes in the past do not deserve to be valorized in public places.
the_South  KKK  Confederacy  terrorism  white_supremacy  history  symbolism  race  African-Americans  Charleston_shootings  Reconstruction  race_relations  racial_discrimination  racial_segregation  racism  violence  Jim_Crow  race-baiting 
july 2015 by jerryking
White Supremacists Without Borders - The New York Times
JUNE 22, 2015 | NYT|MORRIS DEES and J. RICHARD COHEN.

This month, S.P.L.C. staffers will join activists from the United States and Europe at a conference in Budapest about this transnational white supremacism that is emerging as the world grows more connected by technology. The message of white genocide is spreading. White nationalists look beyond borders for confirmation that their race is under attack, and they share their ideas in the echo chamber of racist websites.

The days of thinking of domestic terrorism as the work of a few Klansmen or belligerent skinheads are over. We know Islamic terrorists are thinking globally, and we confront that threat. We’ve been too slow to realize that white supremacists are doing the same.
Charleston_shootings  white_supremacy  globalization  terrorism  racism  Confederacy  white_nationalists  nationalism  echo_chambers 
june 2015 by jerryking
In Charleston, a Millennial Race Terrorist - The New York Times
JUNE 21, 2015| NYT | Charles Blow.

Who radicalized Roof? Who passed along the poison? We must never be lulled into a false belief that racism is dying off with older people. As I’ve written in this space before, Spencer Piston, an assistant professor of political science at Syracuse University, has found that “younger (under-30) whites are just as likely as older ones to view whites as more intelligent and harder-working than African-Americans.”..... there is a widely published photo of Roof sitting on his car with an ornamental license plate with Confederate flags on it. That is the same Confederate flag that flies on the grounds of the state Capitol. What signal is South Carolina sending?

There is the thread of couching his cowardice as chivalry, framing his selfish hatred as noble altruism in defense of white femininity from the black brute. So much black blood has been spilled and so many black necks noosed in the name of protecting white femininity, and by extension, white purity. Roof is only this trope’s latest instrument.
Charleston_shootings  Charles_Blow  racism  South_Carolina  terrorism  Confederacy  white_supremacy  millennials 
june 2015 by jerryking
Why Reconstruction Matters - NYTimes.com
By ERIC FONER MARCH 28, 2015

Reconstruction also made possible the consolidation of black families, so often divided by sale during slavery, and the establishment of the independent black church as the core institution of the emerging black community. But the failure to respond to the former slaves’ desire for land left most with no choice but to work for their former owners.

It was not economic dependency, however, but widespread violence, coupled with a Northern retreat from the ideal of equality, that doomed Reconstruction. The Ku Klux Klan and kindred groups began a campaign of murder, assault and arson that can only be described as homegrown American terrorism. Meanwhile, as the Northern Republican Party became more conservative, Reconstruction came to be seen as a misguided attempt to uplift the lower classes of society.
African-Americans  disenfranchisement  segregation  Jim_Crow  the_South  Reconstruction  slavery  emancipation  Civil_War  KKK  terrorism  violence 
march 2015 by jerryking
A ‘war on terrorism’? No thanks. There are smarter ways to meet the threat - The Globe and Mail
The Globe and Mail
Published Saturday, Feb. 07 2015

What do terrorists want? ....They want us to react to them, and above all to overreact....Using the language of war dignifies their delusions and elevates their crimes. Better to meet and defeat them on our country’s preferred turf: old-fashioned police work, patient intelligence gathering, meticulous legal proceedings and the fairest of trials. We know how to do this....Over the past few weeks, the Prime Minister has seemed intent on riling people up and making the most of the terrorist threat. He has exaggerated the danger of ISIS and its connection to possible terrorism in Canada. That’s wrong. At a time like this, the PM should be the chief minister in charge of deflating hyperbole, putting things in perspective – and reminding Canadians that we must continue as we always have, on guard but free.
terrorism  Stephen_Harper  overreaction  ISIS  Canada  Canadian  lone_wolves  editorials  sense_of_proportion  the_big_picture  home_grown  self-radicalization  strengths  security_&_intelligence  perspectives 
february 2015 by jerryking
The year in review: Canadians’ capital courage - The Globe and Mail
The Globe and Mail
Published Monday, Dec. 29 2014

In the aftermath of the attack, Canadians wondered how long it would take the country to return to normal. The real answer was, About three seconds, or whatever time it took for six people to rush in the direction of gunfire to help a wounded stranger....Canada’s greatest strengths are its compassion, freedom and proven courage. Those six in Ottawa who ran to Nathan Cirillo’s aid had no idea whether they were in equal danger, but they didn’t stop to think about it. Ms. Winters, Margaret Lehre, Martin Magnan, Kyle Button, Conrad Mialkowski and Tom Lawson have since become friends. They get together when they can. They don’t grandstand. They feel sad they couldn’t do more. They look out for each other. It is these qualities that will best guide Canada as it struggles through this peculiar age.
inspiration  editorials  Ottawa  Nathan_Cirillo  War_Memorial  heroes  terrorism  lone_wolves  strengths  home_grown  self-radicalization 
december 2014 by jerryking
Canada’s best response: Move forward - The Globe and Mail
WESLEY WARK
Special to The Globe and Mail
Published Wednesday, Oct. 22 2014

But the public should not be passive onlookers. The consistent messaging from countries more accustomed to such attacks revolves around a key ingredient: societal resilience. Democratic societies must not get bent out of shape – restoration of normalcy and confidence that ordinary life can continue is key to moving forward and avoiding responses that we may later regret. Catch the perpetrators, apply our tough existing legal sanctions, mourn the victims, learn the lessons, improve and refocus our intelligence efforts, but take a deep breath and practise normalcy. That's the best response.
security_&_intelligence  terrorism  attacks  Ottawa  next_play 
november 2014 by jerryking
What unfolded during the attack in Ottawa - The Globe and Mail
KATHRYN BLAZE CARLSON, KIM MACKRAEL AND BILL CURRY
OTTAWA — The Globe and Mail
Published Wednesday, Oct. 22 2014
heroes  Ottawa  terrorism  Parliament  House_of_Commons  home_grown  self-radicalization 
november 2014 by jerryking
The scene inside: Attack in the Hall of Honour - The Globe and Mail
JOSH WINGROVE
OTTAWA — The Globe and Mail
Published Wednesday, Oct. 22 2014
Josh_Wingrove  Parliament  terrorism 
november 2014 by jerryking
A New Kind of Terrorist Threat - WSJ
Aug. 21, 2014 | WSJ| Peggy Noonan

The question "What should we do about ISIS?" is not the same as the question "Do we want to go back to Iraq?" One is about facing up to an extreme and immediate challenge, which we have to do. The other is about returning to an old experience, which almost no one wants to do....The U.S. cannot be certain of ISIS' immediate strategic plans. Perhaps they will concentrate on holding the land between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers. It is possible they will widen their war. In an audio statement in January the ISIS leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, referred to America while speaking to ISIS fighters. "Soon we'll be in direct confrontation," he said. "So watch out for us, for we are with you, watching." Those associated with ISIS have promised to raise their black flag over the White House...Continue bombing ISIS where potentially efficacious, as heavily and for as long as needed. This week's bombing forced them to give up the dam they'd seized at Mosul, an act that left ISIS looking, for the first time in its history, reduced and stoppable. Go to Congress for authorization of force, showing the world we have gained at least some semblance of unity. Give the Kurds, our actual friends, every kind of help they need, from military to material. Use the threat of ISIS to forge new bonds with allies and possible allies, such as the leaders of nearby countries that are immediately threatened. Go to the U.N., pound the table, ask for the world's help. Let them humiliate themselves by doing nothing if that's what they choose. At least it will be clarifying.

And be prepared, to the degree possible, for a hit or hits on American soil or that of our longstanding allies. ISIS says it's coming. So far they've done pretty much everything they said they'd do.
Peggy_Noonan  ISIS  terrorism 
august 2014 by jerryking
Made-in-Canada terror is real - and it's being ignored - The Globe and Mail
MICHAEL ZEKULIN
Contributed to The Globe and Mail
Published Wednesday, Jun. 11 2014
terrorism  radicalization  homegrown  extremism 
june 2014 by jerryking
What’s So Scary About Smart Girls? - NYTimes.com
MAY 10, 2014 | NYT | Nicholas Kristof.

So why does girls’ education matter so much? First, because it changes demography.

One of the factors that correlates most strongly to instability is a youth bulge in a population. The more unemployed young men ages 15 to 24, the more upheaval.

One study found that for every 1 percentage point increase in the share of the population aged 15 to 24, the risk of civil war increases by 4 percent.

That means that curbing birthrates tends to lead to stability, and that’s where educating girls comes in. You educate a boy, and he’ll have fewer children, but it’s a small effect. You educate a girl, and, on average, she will have a significantly smaller family. One robust Nigeria study managed to tease out correlation from causation and found that for each additional year of primary school, a girl has 0.26 fewer children. So if we want to reduce the youth bulge a decade from now, educate girls today.

More broadly, girls’ education can, in effect, almost double the formal labor force. It boosts the economy, raising living standards and promoting a virtuous cycle of development. Asia’s economic boom was built by educating girls and moving them from the villages to far more productive work in the cities....Educating girls and empowering women are also tasks that are, by global standards, relatively doable. We spend billions of dollars on intelligence collection, counterterrorism and military interventions, even though they have a quite mixed record. By comparison, educating girls is an underfunded cause even though it’s more straightforward.
Nigeria  terrorism  Nicholas_Kristof  girls  virtuous_cycles  education  women 
may 2014 by jerryking
L. Gordon Crovitz: White Hats vs. Black Hats - WSJ.com
August 4, 2013 | WSJ | By L. GORDON CROVITZ.

The NSA says 42 terror-related plots have been disrupted, thanks to its surveillance program.

In the language of computer hacking, the good guys are "white hats," who identify weaknesses in systems so they can be fixed. "Black hats" are the ones who take advantage of weaknesses in systems.......A white-hat hacker would point out what happens when intelligence agencies fail to monitor communications data. Gen. Alexander pointed out that the 9/11 plots succeeded because of avoidable intelligence failures, citing the example of an intercept of a phone call from Yemen involving one of the 9/11 hijackers. "We didn't have the tools and capabilities to see that he was actually in California," Gen. Alexander said. "The intelligence community failed to connect those dots."
black_hats  NSA  security_&_intelligence  surveillance  9/11  privacy  L._Gordon_Crovtiz  terrorism  U.S._Cyber_Command  connecting_the_dots  white_hats 
august 2013 by jerryking
Lone-wolf bomber scenario poses special challenges for law agencies - The Globe and Mail
Paul Koring


Washington — The Globe and Mail

Published
Wednesday, Apr. 17 2013,
terrorism  lone_wolves 
may 2013 by jerryking
Muslims terrorized
JULY l2. 2005 | G&M | BY BRIAN CYBULSKI.

Toronto Ruth Ilyse (London Calling letters, J 9) writes that "people are dying every day in Iraq and Afghanistan" and as a result "the U.S. and its allies must get out of Iraq and Afghanistan." Dennis Bryant (Salutin's London letter, July 9) writes that the U.S. is "terrorizing the populations of Muslim countries and using dictators as proxies,Have these people been watching the news? People are dying in Iraq and Afghanistan because of suicide bombings and shootings carried out by Islamic terrorists not unlike the ones behind the London attacks. Muslim populations are being terrorized in Indonesia, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Turkey by, you guessed it, Islamic terrorists.
As for dictators, the United States and its allies toppled a dictator in Iraq who had attacked neighbouring Muslim countries and had probably killed more Muslims than any other leader of the 20th century. Oh yes, and the U.S. also got rid of a brutal, terrorist-friendly Islamic theocracy in Afghanistan. Remember?
Muslim  Islam  terrorism  letters_to_the_editor 
march 2013 by jerryking
Klein blames the victim
September 10, 2004 | Globe and Mail | Letters to the editor
Naomi_Klein  letters_to_the_editor  root_cause  terrorism  Mideast_Peace 
march 2013 by jerryking
Stop making excuses for terrorism
September 15, 2001 | G&M Page A19 | By MARCUS GEE.

Addressing "root causes" will not stop people like that. Even if Israel pulled out of the West Bank tomorrow, Islamic terrorist groups would keep trying to kill Israelis. To them, it is not the Israeli occupation that rankles. It is the very existence of Israel It is pure hatred, more than grievance. that drives them.

Yet the "root causes" notion lives on. We have seen it twice this week on these very pages. The day after Tuesday's attack. University of Toronto scholar Thomas Homer-Dixon argued that the root cause of terrorism was the growing gap between rich countries and poor ones.

"These differences breed envy and frustration and, ultimately, anger." he wrote. "The problem will never go away if we don't address the underlying disparities that help motivate such violence."

Then, in yesterday's paper, columnist Rick Salutin said that the key to defusing support for terrorism was "eliminating the worst cases of wretchedness that sustain it." His suggestion: End Western sanctions against Saddam Hussein's Iraq and get Israel to pull out of the West Bank.

No doubt both writers abhor what happened this week as much as everyone else. But by making excuses for terrorism, even qualified excuses, they give the perpetrators what they crave most: legitimacy. Worse, they acquit them of responsibility for their own actions.
If terrorism springs from their frustration over unanswered grievances. then it is not really their fault. It is merely a disease and they are simply the carriers, "rather in the way that innocent animals might be the carriers of rabies" (as the conservative U.S. author Midge Decter once put it).

That not only gives comfort to the terrorists, it hurts the effort to fight them. If terrorists are not morally responsible for their own actions, then it frees the rest of us from the burden of taking them on.
Marcus_Gee  terrorism  root_cause  Thomas_Homer-Dixon  Rick_Salutin  moral_equivalencies 
september 2012 by jerryking
War Without End - WSJ.com
October 10, 2001| WSJ | this is an e-mail exchange that occurred Sept. 19 between a senior cadet at West Point and one of his professors, retired Gen. Barry McCaffrey.

Cadet: Could you describe what you think the United States should consider as an "endstate" on the matter of dealing with terrorists? Eradication, containment, or some other option? And what would the United States consider the literal and figurative center of gravity?

Gen. McCaffrey: Great issue to consider . . . we have too liberally borrowed from the language of science to deal with the imperfections of political and security analysis.

There will be no endstate . . . we will, if successful, manage this chronic threat to our survival, economy, and self-confidence by dramatically lowering the risk. We will build a series of defensive programs that will make a multiple order of magnitude increase in our day-to-day security. Second, we will form a coalition based on common danger. Much of the globe will join us to leverage foreign intelligence services and security forces to fight these FTO's forward in the battle area. Finally, we will at last take the gloves off and use integrated military power to find, fix, and destroy these organizations.
Barry_McCaffrey  military_academies  9/11  security_&_intelligence  terrorism  endgame  orders-of-magnitude  imperfections  West_Point 
july 2012 by jerryking
They Live to Die - WSJ.com
April 8, 2002 | WSJ | By REUEL MARC GERECHT.
terrorism  Islam 
july 2012 by jerryking
What we stand for
September 17, 2001 | Globe and Mail | editorial

What hatreds fuel extremists such as Osama bin Laden? He opposes the West's secularism, its focus on individualism, its commitment to personal freedoms and its embracing of diversity. He feels the United States is polluting the rest of the world with its cultural output of movies and music and books. He opposes the equal role of women in society. He resents America's wealth and its military might, and the way its political values -- democracy, open and accountable government, equality before the law, protection of minority rights -- spread elsewhere in the world like an unstoppable cancer....Personal freedom and a philosophy of individualism rely at their core on a shared understanding of tolerance. Without tolerance of difference, the rest of the system cannot work. We cannot be nations of immigrants. We cannot be nations where people are free to choose their religion, their politics or how they live their private lives.
9/11  editorials  Western_values  OBL  terrorism  tolerance 
july 2012 by jerryking
Stop the Moral Equivalence - WSJ.com
May 19, 2004 | WSJ | by GARRY KASPAROV.

The Islamic public-relations offensive is focused on proving that the West is corrupt and offers no improvement on the despots in charge throughout the Islamic world. At the same time, Al Jazeera isn’t examining Vladimir Putin’s war against Muslims in Chechnya. All of Chechnya is one big Abu Ghraib, but the Islamic world pays scant attention to the horrible crimes there because Mr. Putin shares their distaste for liberal democracy. The war is not about defending Muslims; it is about Western civilization and America as its representative.
chess  al-Qaeda  terrorism  Chechnya  moral_equivalencies  Garry_Kasparov 
july 2012 by jerryking
Why this American feels safer
October 3, 2001 | Jerusalem Post | by Daniel Pipes
9/11  FBI  terrorism  history 
july 2012 by jerryking
'They Are All So Wrong' - WSJ.com
September 9, 2005 | WSJ |By MARK HELPRIN
9/11  terrorism 
june 2012 by jerryking
The Eastern Front - WSJ.com
October 15, 2002 | WSJ |By RALPH PETERS
terrorism  Indonesia  al-Qaeda 
june 2012 by jerryking
The missing link, indeed
September 6, 2006| Globe & Mail | Letter to the editor
If foreign policy drives Islamic terror, could Ms. Khan explain the beheading of Christian schoolgirls in the Philippines, the murder of citizens in Thailand, the bombing of tourists in Egypt, the slaughter of black Africans in Sudan, the killing of more than 100,000 Algerians, the massacre of Indians in Mumbai, the daily slaughter of Shiites by Sunnis in Iraq, and murder and mayhem over cartoons? Is the common denominator a belligerent foreign policy toward the Muslim world?
Islamic  terrorism  foreign_policy  Arab-Muslim_world  appeasement  Canada  letters_to_the_editor 
june 2012 by jerryking
Unjustified violence
14 June 2006 | The Globe and Mail | Letter to Editor
by FRANK WHITE
terrorism  letters_to_the_editor  Tibet  Muslim  Buddhism  China  violence 
june 2012 by jerryking
A Historian's Take on Islam Steers U.S. in Terrorism Fight - WSJ.com
February 3, 2004 | WSJ | By PETER WALDMAN | Staff Reporter of THE WALL STREET JOURNAL.
A Historian's Take on Islam Steers U.S. in Terrorism Fight
Bernard Lewis's Blueprint -- Sowing Arab Democracy -- Is Facing a Test in Iraq....Bernard Lewis, Princeton University historian, author of more than 20 books on Islam and the Middle East, is the intellectual author of what is referred to as the the Lewis Doctrine. Though never debated in Congress or sanctified by presidential decree, Mr. Lewis's diagnosis of the Muslim world's malaise, and his call for a U.S. military invasion to seed democracy in the Mideast, have helped define the boldest shift in U.S. foreign policy in 50 years. The occupation of Iraq put the doctrine to the test--and it failed...."The Lewis Doctrine posits no such rational foe. It envisions not a clash of interests or even ideology, but of cultures. In the Mideast, the font of the terrorism threat, America has but two choices, "both disagreeable," Mr. Lewis has written: "Get tough or get out." His celebration, rather than shunning, of toughness is shared by several other influential U.S. Mideast experts, including Fouad Ajami and Richard Perle.

A central Lewis theme is that Muslims have had a chip on their shoulders since 1683, when the Ottomans failed for the second time to sack Christian Vienna. "Islam has been on the defensive" ever since, Mr. Lewis wrote in a 1990 essay called "The Roots of Muslim Rage," where he described a "clash of civilizations," a concept later popularized by Harvard political scientist Samuel Huntington. For 300 years, Mr. Lewis says, Muslims have watched in horror and humiliation as the Christian civilizations of Europe and North America have overshadowed them militarily, economically and culturally."
historians  Bernard_Lewis  terrorism  U.S.foreign_policy  Middle_East  Mideast_Peace  humiliation  blueprints 
may 2012 by jerryking
Blind Faith
May 20, 2004 | WSJ |By IRSHAD MANJI.

"Muslim reaction to the beheading of Nicholas Berg tells us a lot about what's happening in the Islamic world. More than that, it reveals what's not happening, yet needs to, if Muslims are going to transcend the intellectual and moral crisis in which we find ourselves today."...."Which means religion is no innocent bystander in the violence perpetrated by Muslims. Just as moderate Christians and Jews acknowledge the nasty side of their holy texts, modern Muslims ought to come clean about how our sacred script informs terror."...Moderate Muslims, like moderate Christians and Jews, shouldn't be afraid to ask: What if our holy script isn't perfect? What if it's inconsistent, even contradictory? What if it's riddled with human biases? As an illiterate trader, Prophet Mohammed relied on scribes to jot down the words he heard from God. Sometimes the Prophet himself had an agonizing go at deciphering what he heard. What's wrong with saying so?

What's wrong with not saying so is this: If we Muslims can't bring ourselves to question the peaceable perfection of the Koran, then we can't effectively question the actions that flow from certain readings of it. All we'll be doing is chanting that the terrorists broke the rules, without coming to terms with where they got their concept of "the rules" in the first place. In which case, we'll only be sanitizing what we don't want to hear.
Irshad_Manji  moderation  Muslim  Islam  terrorism  religion 
may 2012 by jerryking
The 21st century's Hiroshima ProQuest
Aug 6, 2005 | The Globe and Mail pg. A.17 | Preston ManningThe same science that can be used to develop genetically-based cures for human diseases can also be used to produce mutated smallpox bacteria or influenza viruses even more virulent than their predecessors and highly resistant to any known treatment. And if the sun of human progress should again become obscured by the storm clouds of war -- war itself transformed by the increasing scope and sophistication of terrorism -- how long will it be before the plan for utilizing mutated viruses and terrorist-induced pandemics as instruments of mass destruction appears on the underground blackboard of some terrorist cell capable of implementing it?

The third pebble

What exactly is the most disruptive and lethal dimension of the "dark side" of the life sciences -- the genetic equivalent of the first A-bomb -- and how might this destructive force be delivered to target populations to accomplish the political purposes of those desiring to unleash it?

While a terrorist attack on military or civilian populations utilizing such techniques would have immediate impacts on public health, the greater damage to human life and society will most likely be through the panic and terror that such a biological attack or pandemic will trigger throughout the general population. And this panic won't be transmitted by air, water, or utility system, but by the mass-communications network of 21st-century society, in particular the electronic media of radio, television, the Internet, cell phones, and personal computing devices. It is the electronic mass media that will most likely prove to be the B-29s of the age of genetics and bioterrorism.
life_sciences  genetics  viruses  ProQuest  Preston_Manning  21st._century  terrorism  threats  WWI  WWII  bioterrorism  panics  mass_media  virulence  pandemics  digital_media  dark_side 
october 2011 by jerryking
Tackling the dangerous ideology of victimhood
Jun 6, 2006 | The Globe and Mail. pg. A.16| Editorial

Muslims are not oppressed worldwide. Forty leading Arab and Muslim intellectuals, including Canadian economist Atif Kubursi, have come out and said so in the past few years in the Arab Human Development Reports done for the United Nations. They have said, for instance, that in the development of knowledge, Arab (usually Islamic) countries lag far behind the West and even the leading countries of the Third World. The faults lie within, they wrote.

The notion that Canadian Muslims are victims is nonsense....In Canada, Muslims do not find themselves living in separate communities as in Britain, where in 17 primary schools, 90 per cent of students are Bangladeshi. They are not living in sprawling suburban ghettos, as in France. Female Muslims are not forbidden to wear the traditional head scarf in public schools, as in France. Schools make enormous accommodations -- barring male lifeguards, for instance, to permit special swimming periods for Muslim girls.
ProQuest  victimhood  Muslim  Canada  ideologies  terrorism  editorials 
october 2011 by jerryking
At Least 87 Dead in Norway Terror Attacks - WSJ.com
JULY 23, 2011 | WSJ | By CHARLES DUXBURY And KJETIL HOVLAND. Savage Terror Attacks
Bomb Blast, Youth-Camp Gunman Devastate Norway; at Least 87 Dead
Norway  terrorism 
july 2011 by jerryking
Book review: A High Price - WSJ.com
JUNE 13, 2011 By GABRIEL SCHOENFELD An Antiterror Roadmap:
Entebbe-style derring-do is great, but 'routine, grind-it-out' measures
have been essential to Israel's security...."Israel often blunders from
crisis to crisis without a long-term plan for how to solve the problem
once and for all."
counterterrorism  Israel  terrorism  security_&_intelligence  long-term  book_reviews 
june 2011 by jerryking
Canada’s North at risk for terrorism, human trafficking
Nov. 15, 2010 | The Globe and Mail | NATHAN VANDERKLIPPE
CALGARY— From Monday's Globe and Mail
Published Monday,
canada  Canadian  Artic  terrorism  human_trafficking 
november 2010 by jerryking
Judith Miller: The Weekend Interview with Ray Kelly - WSJ.com
JUNE 19, 2010 | Wall Street Journal | By JUDITH MILLER.
Terror Target: Manhattan. New York's police commissioner says it's a big
mistake to write off failed attacks as the work of incompetents, and
he's developed his own intelligence apparatus to make sure they don't
succeed...."Apart from helping bring violent crime down to historic
lows, Mr. Kelly's fame is based on the counterterrorism plans he first
sketched in 2002 on a piece of paper for Mayor Michael Bloomberg. That
model has transformed the way that the NYPD and other large police
forces in many cities now combat terror. By creating a local
intelligence capability—complete with undercover agents, informants,
analysts, a community mapping effort, a terrorism cyber-unit, a small
army of linguists and even an overseas presence in 11 cities—Mr. Kelly's
counterterrorism force is widely regarded by experts as second only to
the FBI in homeland defense intelligence."
counterterrorism  covert_operations  informants  intelligence_analysts  New_York_City  NYPD  policing  Ray_Kelly  security_&_intelligence  terrorism  violent_crime 
june 2010 by jerryking
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