Blogs > Cliopatria > Tom Friedman's Terror Prediction

Apr 15, 2005 1:50 pm

Tom Friedman's Terror Prediction

In the NYT the other day Tom Friedman worried out loud that the terrorists who hate us are going to want to strike us at home now that we appear to be winning in Iraq. Unable to beat us in Iraq, they will be inclined to inflict a humiliating punishment on us to cover their own defeat.

Maybe he's right. Maybe not. It's as plausible a theory as any I've heard. But of course we don't really know what the terrorists are thinking, do we?

Trying to guess what they are thinking is the job of the CIA.

We would do well to focus on something else, I'd suggest. And that is trying to figure out how to drive a wedge between terrorists and the broader Muslim community of the Middle East.

That should be the top priority of the American government in foreign policy.

And the one thing I worry about is this. Is it likely we can achieve this goal as long as we have a largely Christian army in the middle of the largely Muslim Middle East?

Not bloody likely.

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mark safranski - 4/15/2005


The Bangladeshis and Nigerians tend to be quite deployable for peacekeeping operations in return for certain considerations - sort of like the Hessians and Swiss Guards but without the flashy parade ground presence.

Seriously, the Muslim army will have to built from the ground up in Iraq and Afghanistan. It can be done, particularly in Iraq, but it is a slow and unglamorous process that can't be rushed if we want units that will stand and fight instead of making like ARVN.