Thursday, November 15, 2018
You are here: Home » Sport » US War Against Terrorism: Rethinking Strategies Bookmark This Page

US War Against Terrorism: Rethinking Strategies 

By Bouddih Adams

As the United States of America, USA, is joined by the rest of world to commemorate the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, it should be rethinking new and different strategies.
It is quite axiomatic that the approach taken by George W. Bush Jr., against advice from most of the world, has failed woefully. Bush’s accomplice in the woeful failure, Tony Blair, in his newly published book, refers to the expedition merely as a ‘nightmare’, but justifies his support to Bush.  This denotes the fact that he does not regret the human loss witnessed in Iraq and, later on, in Afghanistan.

As at the end of August when President Obama ordered the withdrawal of the 50, 000 combat men, 4, 400 had been killed in the 7-year war on terrorism. That number is higher than the 3,000 that perished in the World Trade Centre, and, put together, give a 7, 500-man loss – all of this caused by Bush Jr.’s approach. Bush Jr. probably did not read the great scientist, Albert Einstein’s strong advice that: "You can’t solve your problems with the same mentality you used to create them!" 

The Al Qaeda had been there, apparently latent, before the coming into the Oval Office of Bush Jr. But his approach awakened and sent them to work. See what happened? And then his reaction? He behaved like someone who defecates in his pants and then, turns around to ask where the sh*t smell is coming from. The world had even thought that he was not going to be re-elected in 2004. But Americans being what they are…

When Obama won in 2008; I was as overjoyed but there was this killjoy:  he just took over the heaviest task in the world; to shine and de- foul the mess gathered by Bush. Nonetheless, if it were like the US presidency, the war on terrorism would be in the last year of its second and last mandate.  Change would be expected. Recalling the troops in Iraq, therefore, is just the beginning of the end.    

Why US Couldn’t Win

The war on terrorism could not be won and could never have ended because, you cannot be fighting a war with people who are fighting to die while you are fighting to live and celebrate the victory. Bush took the US to war to win and show the world that he is a go-getter; but the Al Qaeda engaged the war ready to die for a cause, hence the war would never have ended. Besides, Al Qaeda numbers have rather continued to swell. On the other hand, Bush would have declared the war without a time frame.

First, he set out to "smoke" out Bin Laden from his hideout. He failed and Bin Laden became a hero and an icon to most Arabs, attracting many of them to become militants of the Al Qaeda.
Then, Bush committed yet another blunder by pinning on Saddam Hussein a bogus crime of possession of weapons of mass destruction, WMDs.

In spite of the report of the weapons inspection mission that there were no WMDs, Bush went ahead and, this time around, actually succeeded in ‘smoking’ out Saddam and killing him in a very shameful way – by hanging. That, inadvertently, taught Al Qaeda and the Taliban that, whether they died by hanging or suicide bombing; death is death. Also, the courage that Saddam demonstrated when he was being hanged again drew admiration from Iraqis and the rest of the Arab world.

By not finding the WMDs and proceeding to kill Saddam, and Bush’s assertion that, "if you are not with us, you are against us," sank into people of Saddam’s race that the West dreaded them and was out to exterminate them. This played further into the illogical logic of dying (through suicide bombing) to defend their race.

It also drove home the fact that Bush Jr. was settling a personal grudge; that of his father Bush Sr., missing death in Saddam’s hands. Criticised, Bush Jr. claimed that he was removing a dictator to infuse democracy in Iraq. But, after that, call as we did, wave as we did, to indicate to him that Africa was infested with more dangerous dictators who have equally subverted democracy, he won’t hear or look. If he had only looked in my direction, he would have seen the real stuff of which dictators are made… 

Different Strategies

In Art, we were taught that if you were assigned to paint a picture brown and there was no brown paint around, but black and red, and you did not know that in the right doses, the two blend into a fine mix of brown, then, you were not cut for an artist. Don’t they say that only a fool or a mad man would apply the same approach and obtain the same unexpected results and continue applying it?

Our forebears tell us that in our area, a judge used a very simple means to arrest growing crime. The Mbembe man is a very proud man. In those days, if a Mbembe man went to prison and came back, it was part of his glory. He would challenge his peers: "Have you ever eaten garri and okra for a whole month; have you ever won a white uniform for one year? Other tribesmen admired them and committed crimes to be sent to prison. Some served several times in prison and were regarded as heroes.  Crime seemed to be recycled and recurrent and growing: imprisonment was not a deterrent.

Then, the judge discovered that the Mbembe man made his wives to understand that he was the strongest man. He would let them strap babies on their backs and carry two 20-litre containers each on their heads and trek from Mbembe  to Nkambe (some 40km), while he would be moving behind and introducing them to anyone who cared to listen. A new sentence was devised, where, upon passing judgement, the judge would summon the would-be sentenced man’s wives. The man would be thrashed until he cried in front of his wives. The rising crime wave was abated.
Are We Together?

    Add a Comment

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *