Why are we in Yemen?
I don't normally construct blog posts around comments on the previous blog post, but nothing makes my point here better than what the offensively named CityOfBrothalyThugs said about the issue of waging global drone warfare against al-Qaeda. COBT wrote:
They better line up a whole air force of drones now. Not only do we have to worry about Iraq and Afghanistan, but also Yemen, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Somalia, and other African nations which are becoming part of the Axis of Terror.
WASHINGTON — In the midst of two unfinished major wars, the United States has quietly opened a third, largely covert front against Al Qaeda in Yemen.
A year ago, the Central Intelligence Agency sent several of its top field operatives with counterterrorism experience to the country, according a former top agency official. At the same time, some of the most secretive Special Operations commandos have begun training Yemeni security forces in counterterrorism tactics, senior military officers said.
One of the results so far is this.
Think about it, people -- why does radical Islamic extremism spread from nation to nation like wildfire? How many of these radicalized Muslims in Yemen or Nigeria were suspecptible to recruitment against the United States after a decade of boneheaded and shortsighted moves by us, highlighted by the unwarranted invasion of an Islamic nation, Iraq, the detention and torture of Muslims, some of whom were innocent, at Guantanamo, and now the widespread death of civilians in aerial warfare that has been continued by President Obama. Where does it stop? -- there are dozens of nations with large Muslim populations from west Africa to Indonesia and beyond. When do we start shooting missiles into the suburbs of Toronto? Or into Dearborn?
If the anti-terrorism politices that were launched by President Bush and Dick Cheney -- many of which have been adopted by Obama -- were such a brilliant plan, the number of terrorists and the list of nations plagued by terrorism would be shrinking, not growing. Right? The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. That's why it's time to re-think the military and other components of our anti-terror strategy, starting from scratch.
If the world is to become a more peaceful place in 2010, our best hope is with the democracy fighters in Iran, not through death from a machine at high altitude.