March 02, 2007

GWOT = George W's Own Terrorism

What if it turns out that this whole "war on terror" thing was just cynical political spin? Wouldn't that be a big surprise.

Seriously, how many smart candidates are going to go into the 2008 US elections telling voters, "We still need to win the War On Terror"?

More likely they will be saying, "We need diplomacy, we need dialogue with radical Islamists, we need to change our misguided policies, we need to bring US troops home..."

To get some idea just how totally misguided this whole GWOT nonsense has been, check out this Independent article, How the war on terror made the world a more terrifying place:
Innocent people across the world are now paying the price of the "Iraq effect", with the loss of hundreds of lives directly linked to the invasion and occupation by American and British forces.

An authoritative US study of terrorist attacks after the invasion in 2003 contradicts the repeated denials of George Bush and Tony Blair that the war is not to blame for an upsurge in fundamentalist violence worldwide. The research is said to be the first to attempt to measure the "Iraq effect" on global terrorism. It found that the number killed in jihadist attacks around the world has risen dramatically since the Iraq war began in March 2003. The study compared the period between 11 September 2001 and the invasion of Iraq with the period since the invasion. The count - excluding the Arab-Israel conflict - shows the number of deaths due to terrorism rose from 729 to 5,420. As well as strikes in Europe, attacks have also increased in Chechnya and Kashmir since the invasion. The research was carried out by the Centre on Law and Security at the NYU Foundation for Mother Jones magazine.

Iraq was the catalyst for a ferocious fundamentalist backlash, according to the study, which says that the number of those killed by Islamists within Iraq rose from seven to 3,122. Afghanistan, invaded by US and British forces in direct response to the September 11 attacks, saw a rise from very few before 2003 to 802 since then. In the Chechen conflict, the toll rose from 234 to 497. In the Kashmir region, as well as India and Pakistan, the total rose from 182 to 489, and in Europe from none to 297.


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