Playing Into Osama bin Laden’s Hand

I have long argued the following:

Never mind the fact that the stupid decision on 3/19/2003 was seen by Osama bin Laden as a gift from God. Why? It gave bin Laden American boots on the ground in a Muslim land. But Five Deferment Dick doesn’t get that.

Apparently, a certain rightwing troll doesn’t get this either. So let me turn the microphone over to Reed Hundt:

“Al-Qaeda functions on the basis that they think they can break our will.” So says the Vice President. But isn’t it more likely that Al-Qaeda intends to draw the United States into unending battles that drain our treasury, weaken our military, distract our foreign policy, and yet never reverse our willingness to go on fighting. It’s the American will to fight without end and arguably without judgment or flexibility that Al-Qaeda is counting on, isn’t it? Dealt with as a small, criminal, despicable, subhuman gang, Al-Qaeda has minimal stature in geopolitics. Elevated into a titanic global opponent by the rhetoric of a contest of national will, Al-Qaeda is lifted to a level of prominence, and probably fund-raising and recruiting, that it could not reach on its own. That’s the contrary view to the Vice President.

Well said Reed, but we should note that many others have realized the same – even before that stupid decision on 3/19/2003. Alas, we are ruled by idiots like George W. Bush and Dick Cheney who seem to have their own cheerleading squad constituted by rightwing trolls even dumber than they are.

Update: Josh Marshall points us towards a piece James Fallow wrote last year:

Documents captured after 9/11 showed that bin Laden hoped to provoke the United States into an invasion and occupation that would entail all the complications that have arisen in Iraq. His only error was to think that the place where Americans would get stuck would be Afghanistan. Bin Laden also hoped that such an entrapment would drain the United States financially. Many al-Qaeda documents refer to the importance of sapping American economic strength as a step toward reducing America’s ability to throw its weight around in the Middle East.

Josh calls Dick Cheney a goof and “too dangerously incompetent to have in any position of authority, let alone the vice presidency”. I would suggest Josh is being very kind.