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Warriors versus capitulators in this War on Terror

By Carol Devine-Molin
web posted March 22, 2004

The message that the Spanish electorate sent was clear -- Terrorism works! It was stunning to see Spain totally capitulate to the al-Qaida terrorists. In the aftermath of the most deadly terror attack upon Spain's soil that left over 200 dead and 1500 injured, Spain promptly voted to give the murderous Jihadis exactly what they wanted – Spanish troops would be brought home from Iraq. In one fell swoop, Spain's Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar was axed, while socialist candidate Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, who vowed withdrawal of Spanish troops from Iraq, was handed the reins of power.

The prime minister-elect reiterated his campaign promise to remove Spain's 1300 troops from Iraq by June 30, 2004. And he further averred, "It is clear that using force is not the answer to resolving the conflict with terrorists." Well, what does Zapatero want? To send in the psychologists and social workers so that the terrorists can cooperate with therapy and contemplate their belly-buttons? Obviously, Zapatero is exhibiting incredible naiveté, and fails to grasp that al-Qaida is comprised of profoundly dangerous and unpredictable people. In contrast, Poland's president Aleksander Kwasniewski reportedly told U.S. President George W. Bush that Polish troops will stay in Iraq "as long as needed ... plus one day longer." Now Kwasniewski is a true leader, a man of resolve and integrity, and one that appropriately responds to the terror threat. He chose to stand up to the thugs.

Zapatero, on the other hand, is a craven Euro-weasel who's willing to roll over and play dead when confronted by terrorists. Was he playing hooky from class when history was being taught? If nothing else, a study of twentieth century tyrants tells us that attempts to appease inevitably backfire and only embolden thugs. Now let's examine al-Qaida more closely – It's bent on annihilating all infidels, and Spain is already highlighted on the al-Qaida hit-list for expelling Muslims from Spain back in the fifteenth century. Sure, this might seem silly to western sensibilities, but these fanatics like nothing better than to dwell on historical grievances and even perceived slights involving the Muslim people.

Moreover, it would behoove Mr.Zapatero to fully examine the ideology of these radical Islamists to better serve his nation. The goal of al-Qaida is to establish a pan-Islamic Caliphate throughout the globe by working in tandem with allied Islamic extremist groups to overthrow non-Islamic governments. Moreover, they're consumed by an apocalyptic death-cult mentality, as they go about the business of purifying the world by purging it of evil infidels. Christians, Jews, Mormons, Hindus, Buddhists, atheists, agnostics, etc., even moderate Muslims for that matter, are mere insects to be squashed in the minds of these zealots. Now, how can any thinking person really believe that Spain is going to be spared from further al-Qaida strikes?

However, the "peace at any price" capitulators to terrorism (and state sponsors of terrorism) cannot be limited to Mr. Zapatero. Rather, the prime minister-elect of Spain is just one small fish in a much larger barrel that is opposed to the ongoing Iraq campaign, and insists on abandoning the entire notion of the "war on terror" for the purpose of returning to the already tried and failed law enforcement approach of tackling terror. On this side can be found the anti-war American Left that is well-ensconced in the Democratic Party, the European Socialists of "Old Europe" most notably France and Germany, and nations such as Russia and China, which have their own Machiavellian reasons for opposing US policies. The UN also appears to be in this camp, which is particularly odd since one of the reasons the coalition went into battle in Iraq was to uphold the integrity of numerous UN resolutions.

Interestingly, a number of top officials from France, Germany, Russia, and the UN are now under investigation for accepting very lucrative kickbacks and bribes from Saddam Hussein's "oil for food" program (run under the auspices of the UN), which reportedly generated billions in revenues and did virtually nothing to benefit the starving Iraqi people. One recent Associated Press report indicated: "An Iraqi newspaper has published a list of about 270 former Cabinet officials, legislators, political activists and journalists in about 46 countries suspected of profiting from the scam." Could it be that France, Germany, Russia, and the UN had ulterior motives, other than ideological ones, to oppose the Iraq War and the ouster of Saddam Hussein? Were a number of officials on Saddam's gravy train and reluctant to see it all come to an end? That's a distinct possibility, given the information that continues to emerge regarding oil contracts and graft.

And on the other side of this equation are the warriors against terror. They're best represented by the 30-plus nation "coalition of the willing" led by the US, including Great Britain, Italy, Denmark, Poland, Hungary, and Australia, for the purpose of battling terrorists in Iraq and stabilizing the new nation.

The following reflects some salient themes espoused by supporters of this "war on terror": a) The Middle East can be transformed through freedom and democratic reforms that empower people, providing them with much needed opportunity and optimism. In turn, people pursuing productive, satisfying lives have no use for bitterness and terrorism. As President Bush stated at the one year anniversary of the Iraq War, "We have set out to encourage reform and democracy in the greater Middle East as the alternatives to fanaticism, resentment, and terror. We've set out to break the cycle of bitterness and radicalism that has brought stagnation to a vital region, and destruction to cities in America and Europe and around the world. This task is historic, and difficult; this task is necessary and worthy of our efforts," b) This is a global war against the forces of transnational terrorism and the outlaw regimes that aid and abet these terrorist groups – particularly worrisome is the possibility that a terror-sponsoring regime might provide al-Qaida or other radical group with WMDs, c) The antiquated law enforcement paradigm to fight terrorism, formerly utilized by President Clinton and now embraced by Democratic candidate John Kerry, has proven to be an utter failure, and, d) There are no "silver bullets" to quickly dispose of the radical Islamists and their planned acts of terror throughout the globe. We must continue to assiduously tackle the terror threat, which will take years to overcome. Sadly, since September 11th, myriad nations have been attacked by al-Qaida, and its affiliate terror organizations, including Indonesia, Turkey, Pakistan, Morrocco, Saudi Arabia, Tunesia, Kenya, Spain, and of course Iraq and Afganistan where coalition forces continue to engage the enemy on the frontlines.

Carol Devine-Molin is a regular contributor to several online magazines.

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