Jon Sprunk, on 08 March 2012 - 12:50 PM, said:
I think (hope) that no one here is defending the 9/11 hijackers. But what Typical Woman and others are saying is valuable. Before solving a problem, you have to understand the problem. Bush Jr and his posse never cared to understand the Middle East. They thought it would be easier to launch the full might of US military at the problem.
Uh, you do know that 9/11 happened before
we invaded Iraq or Afghanistan, right? Likewise the attacks on the embassies in Tanzania and Kenya, the attack on the U.S.S. Cole, etc.. For some odd reason, that seems to get overlooked by a lot of people who wish to pretend that such hostility was due to George Bush.. If anyone around here doesn't understand the problem, it is those folks.
Now personally, I wouldn't fault any American for those AQ attacks. But if you want to pick someone, the guy who was President during those attacks, and when 9/11 was first planned, was Bill Clinton. So exactly what did he do wrong that he shouldn't have done?
Raidne, on 08 March 2012 - 12:44 PM, said:
I think the idea is that courage is undertaking necessary action in the face of reasonable fear to accomplish a worthwile goal.
What is the goal that the 9/11 hijackers sought to accomplish? What is the goal of Al Qaeda? To end U.S. influence in the region? Fine. How can that be accomplished, specifically? The overthrow of the Saudi royal family? The Iranian acquisition of nuclear weapons? The end of an Israeli state? What? Some strategy has to be outlined, planned, and pursued.
Here, I actually think the plan was to draw the United States into a ground war in Afghanistan, a land where no foreign army has ever successfully invaded, and to fight us there for as long as necessary, hopefully eventually drawing Pakistan and their nuclear arsenal into the mix.
I don't buy that at all.
First, let's talk about "U.S. influence". For the most part, there wasn't very much military influence in that part of the world until 1990 or so. No U.S. troops in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, etc. Very few in Saudi Arabia. There was some economic and cultural influence from the west in general. Things like free trade, human rights, etc. But that didn't seem to be something that most people there found all that objectionable. And I personally don't think any freaky minority bunch of murderers has the right to dictate to everyone else living in that region how they must interact with westerners. The AQ freaks want to control how other people in their countries behave, including morally, religiously, and every other way. What gives them that right? Because AQ doesn't like westerners, that makes our influence there wrong, or improper?
The U.S. presence there didn't grow significantly until we were drawn in by a war started by Iraq. And that U.S. presence was actually specifically endorsed by a great many Muslim countries who opposed the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait. Again, that wasn't something we did that was against the wishes of that region. It was something we did that had their support
, because they were scared shitless of Saddam.
In any case, in determining what OBL and AQ expected after 9/11, the key is what they'd learned by our own prior actions. OBL was very blunt back in 1998 in pointing out how the U.S. had quit after incurring just a few casualities in the 1993 Battle of Mogadishu. They thought that meant the U.S. didn't really have the stomach for a real fight, and that we'd run if hit hard. Based on that, it seems most likely that they expected 9/11 to so horrify us that we'd withdraw from the region. That's the most direct reasoning, and make the most sense. Will the American people support keeping troops in Saudi Arabia if the price is planes crashing into the White House, Pentagon, and WTC? He figured hell no. He just figured wrong.
It worked for the most part, minus the latter bit and our detour into Iraq, which was kind of an extra unexpected present.
It didn't work at all. Ten years later, we have far more troops and influence in that region than we had before 9/11. There is a budding democracy in Iraq (AQ hates in principle), and other democratic movements in the whole region. That's not the desired result for someone whose goal is the re-establishment of a worldwide Caliphate.
So I'm not sure what FLOW's point is.
My point is regarding the specific individuals who flew into those buildings. Their
war consisted of one strip-club and paradise-fueled suicide attack on a bunch of civilians. The guys I'd give credit for courage, which still makes them no less deserving of a bullet in the head, are the field troops who have been fighting the daily combat battle in Afghanistan.