Calls to Jihad Are Said to Lure Hundreds of Militants Into Iraq

Discussion in 'Religion and Ethics' started by jimnyc, Nov 1, 2003.

  1. jimnyc
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    jimnyc ...

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    Don't these people have lives? Is there religious fervor so extreme that they will drop their lives and families to go on suicide attacks & sneak attacks?

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    LONDON, Oct. 31 Across Europe and the Middle East, young militant Muslim men are answering a call issued by Osama bin Laden and other extremists, and leaving home to join the fight against the American-led occupation in Iraq, according to senior counterterrorism officials based in six countries.

    The intelligence officials say that since late summer they have detected a growing stream of itinerant Muslim militants headed for Iraq. They estimate that hundreds of young men from an array of countries have now arrived in Iraq by crossing the Syrian or Iranian borders.

    But the officials say this influx is not necessarily evidence of coordination by Al Qaeda or other terrorist groups, since it remains unclear if the men are under the control of any one leader or what, if any, role they have had in the kind of deadly attacks that shook Baghdad on Monday. A European intelligence official called the foreign recruits "foot soldiers with limited or no training."

    http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tm...jihadaresaidtolurehundredsofmilitantsintoiraq
     
  2. Spirit_Soul
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    Lets say (hypothetically ofcourse) jimnyc,

    That you were a British citizen and got the news that some arab nation attacked France and won. Also, you have also heard that they will attack your country.

    You also hear that every other nation is afraid of it and it would probably destroy your world. Then, this guy comes up and says "any one who wants to fight to save our land and our ways and make them pay the price come and fight with me"

    Even though you don't know what this guy has in mind, you would probably believe him because he is a britisher... and go along with the idea.

    I am sure that you have seen the similarity between this scenario and the middle eastern one.

    The solution to such problems is not to increase more hate which only creates more partition and increases the problem, but the solution is to come to a mutual understanding or elect the leaders who do come to such an understanding.
     
  3. Bry
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    Thanks for the interesting post, jim,

    I'm not surprised, of course. For the Muslim world, as Spirit Soul says, the US represents a great threat to thier culture and life style. And apart from that, the instability in Iraq for them represents a chance to transform what was until recently a secular dictatorship into another Muslim theocracy, and it is toward that goal that they fight against the nation-building of the US. Interestingly, one of our strengths, technology, has turned into a thorn in the side of the government, which has long depended on the ignorance and lack of communication on the left to prevent massive mobilizations. The internet is becoming the weapon of choice of all forms of resistance: and we see it in the anti-war rallies especially in Europe which were able to draw many millions to the demonstrations on short notice thanks to their access to the internet. Even the media to a significant extent neglected to report on those movilizations before the people actually hit the streets to protest in record numbers. Obviously, the call to movilization of Muslims is also being aided by the same technology, and the call is generally "headless": there is no center of organization, which as I said before is the inevitable reaction to the US invasion: the popularization and de-centralization of the general defense against the US, the uncontrollable swelling of the ranks of people willing to sacrifice their lives in order to advance their ideology. Before Sept. 11, much of the Muslim world was quick to condemn terrorist actions of any type. That willingness has decreased dramatically when faced with an aggressive US which takes upon itself the responsibility of spreading its ideology and style of government and economy to other countries. I have even seen among my Muslim friends a shift of attitude: people that once admired the US and were thankful for the economic relations that existed between the US and their home countries have done an about face and now are extrememy angered by the policies of the US. It may be, as you have suggested, that there is considerable support within Iraq for the policies and new institutions which the US is trying to construct in Iraq, and that may be enough to offset the influx of militants which are arriving to fight against it, but that conflict will be long and difficult in any case, and could endure much longer than anyone has been willing to hypothesize. Afganistan is already a perfect example both past and present: the US, like the Soviets before them, is stuck there, and they are having to upgrade troop presence just to maintain control in the urban centers where they can still be said to maintain control at all.
     
  4. jimnyc
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    jimnyc ...

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    Good post, Bry, but let me tell you where I have a problem with this (the jihad, not your post).

    What countries are all of these "insurgents" coming from? Do they have miltaries in those countries? And if so, why hasn't their military went to Iraq? And lastly, why don't we see American citizens going to countries and blowing people up when they have a problem with their actions?

    Imagine what our lives in the USA would be like if the citizens armed themselves with grenades and suicide vehicles to take care of all societies problems. This is not something that just started with Iraq, although it has increased. Suicide bombings and "jihad" have become a standard of life for a lot of Muslims. I applaud people for standing up for what they believe in, but there's got to be a better way to get your message across.

    I know you'll come back and ask why the USA didn't show restraint, but these are 2 different types of actions. One is by a military unit who's primary goal was to remove Saddam and Co. from power and any left over extremists that try to capitalize on the disarray. We had targets, and everyone agrees that these targets needed to be removed. The extremists target is pretty much anything that moves, including citizens and volunteers.
     
  5. Bry
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    Thanks for the reply, jim.

    Yeah, I don't exactly agree with the concept of jihad either, though I think the Western press overemphasizes the influence of these "calls to jihad" on people who in many cases would be joining the cause with or without explicit religious incitment. But I haven't seen any polls of said insurgents that might verify the relative impact of the concept of "jihad" on their decision. :D

    The article you posted suggested (and I'm not surprised) that insurgents are streaming to Iraq not just from countries in the middle east and southeast asia, but also from Europe. One would have to think that wherever there are people that might sympathize with the cause, so too are their people leaving to join it.

    As for asking about the militaries of their respective countries (limiting ourselves, obviously, to those which hale from Muslim countries that might be said to having an interest in defending Iraq), I suppose you are suggesting that it would be much more respectable if they joined a regular army and that regular army presented itself in a respectable way for aniquilation by the US military. Jejeje. I haven't really worked out how I feel about this. Obviously, i don't like the idea of "civilians" being specifically targeted, but on the other hand it only makes sense to me that when faced with an military force unbeatable by conventional means, that someone would quite logically turn to unconventional means to inflict injury by whatever means possible. Just because they know they can't beat the US on the battlefield doesn't mean they're going to shrug their shoulders and go home. They will hurt us by whatever means necessary. And at least in the Iraq, by far the majority of unconventional attacks have been on military / political targets. The whole question of targeting civilians is more specific to what is happening in Palestine / Israel.

    As for Americans volunteering for some blow-em-up activities in support for whatever ideological cause they believe in, well in general Americans are far to comfortable staying right where they are, but it is not unheard of (what's his name that joined the Taliban). My brother-in-law spent two years in the late eighties in Nicaragua fighting against the Contras. (He saw little or no real action, but he was willing to go to support a cause he believed in.) In the thirties, a brigade of volunteers came to Spain from the US to help fight a losing battle defending the republic from the fascist rebellion. They were known as the Lincoln Brigade, and many of them lost their lives defending Madrid to the last. Obviously, it's a pretty obscure case, but it's not unheard of that Americans would join foreign fights for causes they believe in.

    I know it sounds a little sensationalist, but I have heard muttering in the US about revolutions. Hell, it's one of the NRAs farourite propoganda slogans: they're fighting for the right to bear arms, because they might need to protect themselves from their own government someday. hmmm. The US has the most heavily armed citizenry in the world, but for the most part they limit the use of those pistols to blowing the heads off their wives when they catch them giving head to the tennis pro in the sauna at the club. That's just a joke, but Americans are very complacent politically speaking. Say what you will about the elections in 2000, I'm very surprised their wasn't more of an outcry. But most of the "Democrats" polled, at a certain point, just wanted to get the damn thing over with and didn't care if that meant flipping a coin or (worse)sending it to be decided by a conservative Supreme Court. Hell, even Joel Lieberman wanted to throw in the towel. So much for Democracy. In the US, protests too have become a total joke. The "Million Man March" didn't make 250,000. Here in Madrid, there are protests every week, and it is not unusual for those protests to break the 500,000 mark, and that in a city the size of Washington DC. (I'm not, of course, recommending that Americans put their rifles and pistols to more political uses, but I am suggesting that even in a situation that would appear to merit such a reaction, complacency would get the best of them. Unless, of course, it was a problem of satelite TV reception, in which case, look out.) To sum, Muslim's aren't complacent, because they really believe that complacence is no longer acceptable. And some of them are violent because some of them believe violence is called for. But at the end of the day, a Muslim is just as capable of rational thought as anyone else, and I believe many of them have arrived at the conclusion that violence is necessary by rational means.

    As for a better way to get your message across, I'm not sure. From their point of view, the US invaded a sovereign nation, and now they'll be damned if their going to stand by while the US errects whatever political and economic model suits it. I can see how they might think that writing their congressman might not be enough. Personally, I'd love to see the Iraqi's freely construct some form of Democracy, because I think it would be a great experiment, and potentially a great model. Muslims have too often gotten the shit end of the stick from their leaders, it would be interesting to see what they can do if given a real opportunity to form a government democratically.

    No, I won't come back and ask why the USA didn't show restraint here, but that is what I think they should have done. For now, and for the purposes of this conversation, I'm content to discuss, now that we're in it, where do we go from here? As I said above, though, I think by far the majority of the targets of the resistance have been military / political, with a few obvious exceptions. Do you have data to show otherwise?
     
  6. Creek
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    I'm on it Bry...The data comming in will show otherwize...but please don't quote me on that..:)

    Creek
     
  7. jimnyc
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    jimnyc ...

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    I think the key word here is "political". They are blowing up just as many political targets as military targets, and the last time I checked the people involved in politics were "citizens". When you purposely target someone who isn't actively violent, and hasn't lifted a finger in your direction, that is murder. I suppose it's ok since they are fed up with the USA and they want to make a statement. Unfortunately for them, the statement they are making is that they still live like savages, and should be treated as such.
     
  8. Bry
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    Er?

    Maybe I just dreamed those mega bombs dropped from B1s that smashed into a restaurant where Saddam was suspected to be eating. Perhaps it may be said that the moment we went after Sadam, a political target, was the same moment that we showed the least amount of concern for collateral civilian casualties. Obviously, political targets are fair game, even by our own rules. So I guess we'd all better pick up a leg bone and start gnawing now that we've all been identified as savages.

    And I thought you'd come up with some difficult examples like going after the Red Cross and other aid organizations. :D Which I think is contemptible, of course, but from the information I've seen, it's the exception and not the rule.
     
  9. jimnyc
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    jimnyc ...

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    I think Saddam was also the leader of Iraq's army, no? I guess you were dreaming and forgot that too. :rolleyes:

    The more you try to put the US soldiers on the same level as the terrorist bombers, the more you lose your credibility.
     
  10. Bry
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    Sorry, but I don't see the line you're drawing, you'll have to be more clear. Is Bush a politician or a military leader? Does the fact that our military in theory needs their budget approved by Congress make them military targets or civilian targets? I'm not dreaming, jim. As far as I know, political figures are acceptable military objectives, and as far as I know that goes for us as well as them. Maybe I'm wrong about that, in which case a line still needs to be drawn, because I'm seeing seas of grey area here.

    You may feel I'm loosing credibility, but you certainly haven't demonstrated it. US soldiers do not merit more respect than any other type of soldier simply for being from the US. And they have shown time and again that they are just as capable of heinous crimes as any other type of soldier, and lest you forget, Vietnam has provided us with so many examples of this that books have been written on the subject.

    I hope you haven't taken my quipping tone as disrespectful to your posts, as nothing could have been farther from my intention. But this last post of yours was not exactly substantive. Or are you content with a response that doesn't go farther than to imply that I'm not in touch with reality and I'm losing credibility?
     

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