November 14, 2009

My prediction: More terror attacks...

I recently read an interesting book, The Battle: A New History of Waterloo. It was very useful in explaining something about 18th Century battles that I vaguely knew, but hadn't focused on. Those battles never started with a big all-out attack. Rather, two armies would start grinding at each other here and there in a small way. Like a fire in damp grass that flares up and then dies down, as Clausewitz put it. In those days each commander could see the enemy forces in the distance, and could draw conclusions from how they reacted to artillery fire or probing attacks. (And of course the officers involved in the attacks would report back on what they were seeing—and they would often get close enough to "see the whites of their eyes!") There was a kind of "body language" to armies and their various divisions and battalions that could convey weakness or resolve.

Napoleon watched the allied lines at Waterloo, waiting for flinching or wavering. That would be his moment to launch a powerful attack against that point. And Wellington, who was on the defensive, watched for the same thing, and would shore up weak sections of his line with battalions from his reserve. (On a modern battlefield things are very different. If you peek out and actually see other people, probably nothing much is happening. If you see no one, duck!)

The funny thing is that war we are in—if war it should be called—has brought us back to the time when our "body language" of aggression or weakness is being watched, scrutinized, by cold and bitter eyes. The slaughter by Major Hasan was a probing attack. It doesn't matter whether Major Hasan was formally a terrorist or totally a nut-job one-man-show. The effect is the same.

And Obama flinched. That's the simple fact. He has just told the world that he is weak, and doesn't want to fight. He's doing the same thing with Afghanistan. So he—and all of us—are going to be hit.

Terrorists do things for a purpose. One of the things they want is to force us out of Afghanistan. Therefore the correct response to Hasan's attack would have been to announce that we are sending an extra 5,000 troops to Afghanistan forthwith. (And we should take Anwar Al Awlaki's scalp, of course.) But instead Obama has chosen to do what will cause more people, including Americans, to be killed. He should have said that if you mess with Americans you're gonna get a poke in the eye with his eye-poking stick. Instead he has told them clearly that violence will get them things they want.

On of the odd things about Joe Biden's political Tourette's Syndrome is that he sometimes blurts out the truth... without being taken seriously of course. Remember this?...

Barack's been tested, and has failed...

Correct response:

Terrorists turned to grease spot in Yemen.

* Update: This is just armchair theorizin', but I think that if Bush were still President, Major Hasan would not have "gone Muslim." My guess is that he's totally in tune with jihadi thought patterns, whether or not he gets direct input. And that it's 'in the air" right now that Obama's looking like a weak sister, and isn't going to hit back. I don't think they thought like that about Bush at all. He's a man, and showed it in Afghanistan, Iraq, and especially with the Surge, doubling down when things got tough. Even if Hasan is crazy, well, living in the big city one notices that crazies usually aren't as crazy as they look. They never seem to harass the guy who's going to punch them in the nose!

Posted by John Weidner at November 14, 2009 12:38 PM
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