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Studies, US Intel: Iraq War Creating More Terrorists

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posted on Jul, 19 2005 @ 10:16 AM
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According to US Intelligence officials and two separate reports issued by Saudi and Israeli research organizations, the Iraq war has created an artificial front against terror, contradicting US President Bush's assertions that terrorists are being fought in Iraq so they do not have to be fought "at home." The war, rather than reducing the number of terrorists, has increased them: the vast majority of terrorist attacks in Iraq were committed by individuals with no history of prior terrorist activity, part of a new front which arose as a result of American activity in Iraq.
 



www.boston.com
American intelligence officials, speaking on the condition of anonymity, and terrorism specialists paint a similar portrait of the suicide bombers wreaking havoc in Iraq: Prior to the Iraq war, they were not Islamic extremists seeking to attack the United States, as Al Qaeda did four years ago, but are part of a new generation of terrorists responding to calls to defend their fellow Muslims from ''crusaders" and ''infidels."

''The president is right that Iraq is a main front in the war on terrorism, but this is a front we created," said Peter Bergen, a terrorism specialist at the nonpartisan New America Foundation, a Washington think tank.

...

Obaid said in an interview from London that his Saudi study found that ''the largest group is young kids who saw the images [of the war] on TV and are reading the stuff on the Internet. Or they see the name of a cousin on the list or a guy who belongs to their tribe, and they feel a responsibility to go."

Other fighters, who are coming to Iraq from across the Middle East and North Africa, are older, in their late 20s or 30s, and have families, according to the two investigations. ''The vast majority of them had nothing to do with Al Qaeda before Sept. 11th and have nothing to do with Al Qaeda today," said Reuven Paz, author of the Israeli study. ''I am not sure the American public is really aware of the enormous influence of the war in Iraq, not just on Islamists but the entire Arab world."


Please visit the link provided for the complete story.


Did we need a study to tell us this? Regardless of whether it was right or wrong, legal or illegal, for the US to invade Iraq, the Iraq war has not made the US, the average Iraqi, or indeed the Middle East any safer. How many more deaths and studies will it take before the majority of the American public realizes this simple fact?

I will be kind and say that the Iraq war was a tactical error, a huge misjudgment taken in the fact of global and internal opposition, in how to fight the "war on terror." It has set back the struggle to eliminate terrorism, if such a thing can ever really be done, in a great amount.

One line from the article above I found particularly poignant, and worth noting for all those who feel wars and occupations can stomp out terror, or that Iraq is some kind of honey trap for terrorists:

''To say we must fight them in Baghdad so we don't have to fight them in Boston implies there is a finite number of people, and if you pen them up in Iraq you can kill them all," said Bergen. ''The truth is we increased the pool by what we did in Iraq."

The number of terrorists, radicals, and extremists fluctuates. It is not fixed. New ones can be created depending on many factors, which is why we have to be thoughful and deliberative in waging "war" against them. Iraq is not some kind of duck-hunt for terrorists, where every one a soldier kills is one less terrorist the world will have to deal with later. And the terrorists in Iraq are not, for the most part, the same terrorists that pose a threat to us "at home."

Related News Links:
asia.news.yahoo.com
www.chron.com
www.dailystar.com
www.csmonitor.com


[edit on 19-7-2005 by koji_K]

[edit on 24-7-2005 by asala]




posted on Jul, 19 2005 @ 11:27 AM
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The invasion of Iraq was never about terrorists anyway since there never was any connection between Iraq and al Qaeda. It was originally supposed to be about WMDs. When that was shown to be bogus, it was then changed to "regime change", which is double-speak for bloody conquest and pillaging. The terrorist factor in Iraq only became an issue after the invasion, thus you could say that the number of terrorists in Iraq started out at virtually zero, and now is probably in the thousands.



posted on Jul, 19 2005 @ 11:37 AM
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Assuming for the moment that I agree with this article, what should we do at this stage of affairs?

Well written article and a topic that bears discussion--up; however, the links appear redundant. Two of the links cite the Chatham report and the other two the Boston Globe article. A link to the actual studies cited would be more appropriate.

[edit on 19-7-2005 by Astronomer68]



posted on Jul, 19 2005 @ 12:28 PM
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I don't know what the appropriate course of action is to take at this point. I would say that the best we can do is examine the failure and poor judgment that has taken place to date and learn from it. Continuing to cheerlead this war and play up the "positive" aspects, if any, it has, will only serve to lengthen the time it takes before a new generation of Americans learn why the United States has never fared well in the unilateral nation building game. Not to mention the time it will take to change tactics in fighting the "war on terror" as a whole.

For the average American, all I can say one can do is:

1.) Don't vote for any politician who wishes to escalate a strategy of invading terror free nations in the hopes of turning them into "terrorist honey traps."

2.) Don't vote for any politician who wishes to pursue wars non-related to the war on terror at a time when we need to build international consensus and focus our resources on the main (ie, terroist) threat.

3.) Support our troops. The hawks have clearly learned nothing from Vietnam, but this doesn't mean the rest of us can't learn either. Don't vote for any politician who would reduce the benefits and medical care available for returning veterans, and remember that the military did it's job in Iraq with great skill.

For the policy makers, I have nothing original to say that hasn't been said to them already by the advisors they chose to ignore. To fight terror, we need a global consensus, and the problem has to be treated through negotiation and diplomatic channels, via extraditions and concerted efforts to locate and destroy terrorists. Not via unilateral wars which eat up all our resources and engender resistance to US policy, even when that policy may be "good." Iraq now poses a serious terrorist threat, but we shouldn't forget the other nations that did so before we turned Iraq into what it is today: North Korea, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and Yemen, to name a few.

As for Iraq, dealing with the situation on a tactical level, like I said, I don't know... The only two options I can think of are escalation or "Vietnamization," both policies which clearly failed in the past. As an American, I would vote for the Vietnamization option, since this would get our troops out of harms way the fastest. As a global citizen, though, I realize that this leaves Iraq in a lurch. Perhaps a third way is to turn to the UN and international body, and redraw Iraq's borders, so the Kurds, Shiites, and Sunnis have autonomous regions. It's certainly not a perfect solution by a long shot, but then the nation of Iraq was an imperialist fiction to begin with, and it seems to have worked somewhat in the case of the former Yugoslavia. At the very least, we should be exploring this option.

Astronomer68- I agree with you regarding linking to the reports. I'm a little busy at the moment (used up all my free time writing this post!) but as soon as I have more time I will attempt to find them and link to them.

-koji K.

[edit on 19-7-2005 by koji_K]



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