All war all the time
By Alan Caruba
I have a friend who recently made a list of all the nations that have openly suggested they would like to "nuke" the United States. They included North Korea, a general in Red China, and as soon as they announce they have perfected a bomb of their own, we can add Iran to the list. Lots of other nations have nukes, including Great Britain, France, India, Pakistan, and the Russian Republic.
If the US does suffer a nuclear attack, however, it is more likely to be at the hands of agents of al-Qaida. It is not a nation, but it is at war with just about every nation that tilts toward modernity of any kind. An equal opportunity network of Islamist terrorists, it doesn't mind killing either infidels or other Muslims. One has to pause to think of nations where it has not used terror as its calling card.
I got to thinking about this on July 20 when the US embassy in Riyadh, the capital of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, issued a warning citing evidence of "operational planning" in the one nation most responsible for the existence of al-Qaida. Osama bin Laden was born in Saudi Arabia and is a member of one of its most prestigious families. At some point this spoiled little rich boy experienced some kind of epiphany that led him to reject the royal family while committing his life to the Wahabi interpretation of Islam it had promulgated from the days when Abdel Aziz ibin Saud set out to conquer or buy off the other tribes of the vast desert peninsula.
In 1933, he proclaimed the country unified as the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. However, other than fees collected from pilgrims traveling to Mecca, this king was broke. Two thirds of his "Kingdom" was uninhabitable desert when the first oilmen arrived. Had it not been for their modern science and the world's increasing need for new sources of oil, the royal family would still be living in tents or mud dwellings. It was not ibin Saud who built modern Saudi Arabia, it was Aramco, the American oil company that discovered and developed the source of the royal family's obscene wealth to this day.
Flash forward to July 20 and today. Saudi Arabia, the Sunni citadel responsible for the worldwide spread of the most backward form of Islam extant, is now the victim of its own success. Already, it has tasted the wrath of al-Qaida for permitting "foreign", i.e., American troops on its "sacred sands." Since it does billions of dollars of business with America, its oil wells and refineries are the natural target of those who want to drag Saudi Arabia back to the good old days when camels and goats were currency.
Since al-Qaida is largely funded by every criminal activity you can name, it can afford to be indifferent to the oil riches of the Saudi royal family. If, however, it can destroy their grip on its "sacred sands", access to the oil would make al-Qaida the most powerful force for the domination of Islam to have ever existed. There isn't a single Muslim on Earth that does not know this.
And people wonder why the United States of America invaded Iraq. The world's greatest empire is engaged in a whole new kind of war. It is the famed "asymmetrical" war in which the enemy is everywhere and nowhere. As Donald Rumsfeld, the US Secretary of Defense put it, "Our challenge in this new century is a difficult one: to defend our nation against the unknown, the uncertain, the unseen, and the unexpected."
In other words, all war all the time!
Don't believe me? As the new millennium dawned, there were almost two thousand sustained armed conflicts in effect throughout the whole of the world.
It is the reason the United States has its troops posted all over the world, as often as not at the invitation of those nations where we conduct the business of fulltime war against an unseen enemy and, occasionally as was the case of Iraq, against a nation state that is a threat to world order. Recall, please, Saddam's invasions of both Iran and Kuwait.
That is the job of the United States. Our greatest export is security. It is necessary for a world that is stable enough to engage in trade. It is necessary to our economic growth. Any nation or any group such as al-Qaida that threatens that stability is going to find itself subject to "regime change" or the relentless hunt to find and kill its leaders and followers.
Do you think the 2008 election will change this? Or those to follow? Unless we destroy al-Qaida, there will be no United States of America in which to hold an election. We have only one choice and it is all war all the time for very long time to come.
Alan Caruba writes "Warning Signs", a weekly column posted on the Internet site of The National Anxiety Center. © Alan Caruba, August 2005
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