January 14, 2004

Old Anti-War Left Grandee Watch

"I think Bush is an impostor--a pretender. He couldn't find a mandate, so he found a war. But there is the reality of the Twin Towers, which is a challenge to political structures everywhere, and he had to respond. There were no precedents for a democracy. You either do a huge undemocratic thing or you lose. This was a case where we used a massive response when all we had to do, I think, was catch about three people, and you can do that without creating a regional war." [emphasis added]

Former Senator Eugene J. McCarthy, as quoted in the New Yorker, explicating succinctly the robust anti-terror policy that might await us should the ship of state be manned by Wesley ''(y)ou could have gone to the United Nations, and you could have asked for an international criminal tribunal on Osama bin Laden" Clark.

Apprehend UBL, Zawahiri and KSM and, voila, the threat of continued terror attacks on the American homeland would thereby be extinguished.

Didn't you know it was that easy? Or maybe not. (See sections entitled "The competence and determination of the remaining al-Qaeda leadership cadre" and "The resiliency of al-Qaeda and the likelihood of a post-bin Laden al-Qaeda).

See also Peter Bergen on this too:

"President Bush reportedly keeps photos of the 20 or so top terrorists in his desk, and when one of them is apprehended or killed writes an X through his picture. That might work for a Mafia crime family: Arrest all the key members and the organization will disappear. But al Qaeda is now a movement based on an ideology. Arresting a movement is quite a different proposition from arresting people."

Bergen oversimplifies Bush's approach to the war on terror.

But the passage is worth keeping in mind when you hear people talk about how, in response to 9/11, all we needed to do was to send process servers, under Blue Helmet guard, to the outskirts of Kandahar to inform UBL of his hearing date.

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