So why exactly DID those guys fly planes into the World Trade Center on 9/11/01? Was it because:
(a) They hate our freedom.
(b) They are crazy: you cannot reason with terrorists.
(c) Muslims and Christians are at war. Muslims and Christians have always been at war.
If you answered (d) - none of the above - congratulations! You obviously didn't get your answer from the Karl Rove playbook.
In today's world, even those of us in the anti-war crowd acknowledge that the prospect of terrorism with sophisticated modern weapons is a genuine problem (whether it is actually a "war" or not). The question of terrorists' motivation is obviously fundamental to finding any solution to that problem.
And yet, quite astonishingly, there has been very little real debate of this important question. In fact, the Bush administration has done everything possible to stifle the debate, presenting misleading, over-simplified clichés in place of serious public discussion.
So perhaps we should be grateful that - albeit four and a half years too late, and in his own very "special" fashion - Rumsfeld has finally addressed this critical issue:
From time to time, one hears the claim that terrorist acts are reactions to particular American policies. That's not so. Their violence preceded by many years' operations in Afghanistan and Iraq, and their violence will not stop until their ideology is confronted.How Orwellian, eh? OF COURSE their violence "preceded operations in Afghanistan and Iraq" - those operations were (allegedly, anyway) a REACTION to their violence! And aren't those wars in Afghanistan and Iraq supposed to "confront" their ideology?
Does this guy even listen to what he says, or is he all mouth and no ears?