posted on July 20, 2006 14:49
Authorities have arrested three men – and are seeking five others – overseas in a plot to blow up the train tunnels beneath the Hudson River that lead to Manhattan. The New York Daily News also reported the terrorists had intended to blow a hole in the wall of the Holland Tunnel to flood it.
In Israel they have been fighting terrorists for years. I recently asked a friend who does a lot of work in Israel, ‘How do you ever win a war on terrorism?’
Is it possible to destroy the foundation of the power that allows the terrorists to wage war on us – just as we destroyed Germany’s and Japan’s ability to wage war in World War II? My friend made an interesting observation. He said that the power of the terrorists comes from three sources.
One, of course, is their willingness to use brute force. And, he said, the only way to defeat it is to match it with superior force.
The second source of their power is money. He said, ‘Think of it this way. We send the Middle East billions of dollars each year to buy oil. Assume twenty percent of the people in the countries we buy oil from are Islamic fundamentalists. Part of that money ends up making its way into the hands of terrorists. When we buy oil from the Middle East, indirectly, we are providing the terrorists with the money they need to operate.’ Maybe that’s an oversimplification. And it’s certainly not scientific. But he’s got an interesting point. He says to defeat terrorism we need to be free of our dependence on Middle Eastern oil.
The third foundation, he said, of the terrorist power rests on communications. The Internet and their ability to communicate and recruit in the Middle East. He said we need to make war on their communications. We need to shut them down so they no longer have the ability to recruit.
I don’t know if he is right or wrong but here is someone who is thinking about how to destroy the foundations of terrorism. He’s not arguing democracy will save us. He’s saying match force with superior force, cut off their money and destroy their communications.
It seems to me this is the kind of analysis, about how to win the war on terrorism, we need to hear from our political leaders – both from Democrats and Republicans.
Today we’re having a debate about what we’re doing to stop terrorism, now, and what we’ve done wrong, and whether to stay the course in Iraq or get out. But what we need is a debate on how to destroy the foundations of terrorism, win the war and end it.
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