JOHN RIEWE

Archive for the ‘Islamic’ Category

Are We There Yet?

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The din of defeatism is so loud on Capitol Hill these days when it comes to Iraq. Even Republicans are joining the cry in the interest of trying to prolong their political careers. Shame on these spineless Congressmen. While many are joining the wave of defeatist paranio, some Americans still understand the grave situation the nation would find itself in if the Democrats were to declare defeat and evacuate US troops from Iraq. They realize that, as Dick Cheney bluntly explained today, that the casualties US forces have suffered in Iraq are worth the lives saved in keeping nuke-toting terrorists off American soil. So like these perspective folks, I remain in full support of the action in Iraq, despite being well aware of past missteps and wary of more in the future. And as such it just makes me tired all over to hear this whining about Iraq.

I heard the most perfect analogy on Spencer Hughes’ radio program today. A caller said something to the effect that these whining defeatocrats remind one of the kids in the back seat that keep whining ‘are we there yet?’ The Dems (and a some of these despicable fair-weather Republicans) should grow up and act responsibly rather than pandering to masses. No we aren’t at the Grand Canyon yet. Unfortunately, in our case to turn around and go back means to declare with trumpets blaring America’s gross impotence. That is unacceptable. So if you don’t like it, shut up or bring a solution to the table.

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CIA Chief Drops the Ball, Throws Bush & Co. Under the Bus To Clear Name

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Former CIA director George Tenet has been a handy scapegoat for Bushites looking for someone to blame for missteps in Iraq. His infamous “Slam Dunk” characterization of the connection between 9/11 and Iraq purportendly made Bush, Cheney, and Company’s decision to attack Iraq–as if no other deliberation was involved in the President making the grave decision to commit US troops belligerent action. To blame Tenet for Iraq is bogus. And Tenet is tired of it. So, in the greatest American tradition, the much-maligned former CIA director is releasing his tell-all book and making the talk-show circuit. Tenet is obviously working to clear his name by playing the “I did my job but the White House roughed me up to hear what they wanted to hear” card. That’s all well and good. He has been unfairly utilised as a pinata by the Bushigentsia. But the problem is the that other than his lofty post, Tenet is no superstar and no portrait of smashing success. It bears stating for those evaluating the impact of Tenet’s revelations a few truths. First, Tenet took his post at the CIA in 1997 under President Clinton. During Tenet’s tenure the US faced the bombing of US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998, the attack on the USS Cole in 2000, and of course 9/11. While the CIA has been a mess since the end of the Cold War (or perhaps before), one would expect such a venerable agency to not act entirely inept at spying on Islamic extremism. So I suggest that Tenet may have a legitimate beef with being a scapegoat for Iraq, but maybe his poor record with the agency should be examined before we join his pity party.

Written by John Riewe

May 1, 2007 at 4:12 am

Wafa Sultan

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americanrevolution is convinced that Islamic Fundamentalism may be our long-awaited replacement for communism as a long-term ideological foe in another battle where the primacy of democratic government is at stake. One of the loud voices in the verbal arena has been Wafa Sultan, an Arab-American doctor who has come upon notoriety by way of her particularly harsh tirades against Islam. A New York Times piece from last March explains that “even as she settled into a comfortable middle-class American life, Dr. Sultan’s anger burned within. She took to writing, first for herself, then for an Islamic reform Web site called Annaqed (The Critic), run by a Syrian expatriate in Phoenix. An angry essay on that site by Dr. Sultan about the Muslim Brotherhood caught the attention of Al Jazeera, which invited her to debate an Algerian cleric on the air last July.” The interview earned Dr. Sultan numerous death threats. She evidently is still making the rounds in circles where her message is pertinent and maintains a website.

While this video has been around awhile, it is certainly worth watching if you haven’t seen it.

Written by John Riewe

February 8, 2007 at 8:36 pm

Know Your Enemy

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It strikes me that few Americans truly know how our enemies, the Islamic extremists, operate. Even as a political analyst, I admit I know much less than I should. The video below should open our eyes, then. If we believe we are fighting backward guerillas with only second-hand Soviet rifles, improvised exposive devices, and a death wish, we are gravely mistaken. The 911 Commission Report makes for some dull reading, but is a great start to learing about the evolution that has brought us today’s well-funded, technologically savvy terrorist organizations. These groups are well-versed in public relations, and understand how to affect perceptions. An area where this is key for them is in recruitment.

If you were an unemployed young Muslim with no prospects and a feeling that it might all be the fault of the West, then this recruiting video depicting the blowing up of American Humvees and tanks set to an energetic Arab ditty might just fill you with the spirit–of Jihad.

According to ForeignPolicyMag, who posted the video, “Al Zawraa began two years ago as an above-ground, hard-line Sunni TV station, based in Iraq, until the Iraqi government closed it down last November, around the time Saddam Hussein was sentenced to death. Today, it’s an underground station with brutal, no-holds-barred content, often amateur, shaky footage showing American soldiers crumpling to the ground after being shoot [sic], and alleged American atrocities against Iraqi civilians. The station’s anchors wear military fatigues and rail against the Shiite-led Iraqi government.”

That is what we’re up against.

Written by John Riewe

January 20, 2007 at 2:53 am