Roots of jihad

Yemen, Dancing on the Heads of Snakes by Victoria Clark published in 2010.

“By 1994 a devout Zaydi politician was publicly lamenting its deplorable effects on Yemen: ‘Wahhabism is a child of [Saudi] imperialism and its spearhead in our country. Both are one and the same thing. How do we stand up to an enemy we don’t see? We are seeing imperialism in our country in its Islamic guise. In reality, we are fighting something which is more dangerous than imperialism.’ He was right. The spread of Wahhabism to Yemen would not matter so much if not for the fact–put very simply–global jihadism of the al-Qaeda kind is Saudi Wahhabism reinforced and made more intolerant by Salafism and finally rationalised into violence by fury at the West’s unjust handling of the Palestine question and disgust at the hypocritical manner in which the Kingdom’s Wahhabi religious establishment has tolerated the impious excesses of the royal family and the trampling of Islam’s Holy Places by infidel army boots since the first Gulf War.”

“If  Yemen is fast breeding jihadists, it is not because radical Islam has a special appeal for Yemenis, or because violence and intolerance are in their blood, but in large part because jihadist groups can afford to pay adherents who have no other means of earning a living.”

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US/Saudi similarities

The US uses Mexican labor to perform our low-paid labor while at the same time proposing to build a wall to keep illegal immigrants out of this country. Saudi Arabia does the same thing along its southern border with Yemen. Yemenis are invited into Saudi Arabia to perform the work Saudis don’t want to, while at the same time the Saudis are constructing a southern wall to keep Yemenis out of the country. Additionally, the Saudis with US support are fighting a war in Yemen to prevent Shiites from taking over the government of Yemen.

Duds

North Korea just launched three missiles toward Guam and all three were duds. Perhaps you missed it because the media are concentrating on something closer to home 24/7, Hurricane Harvey. Harvey and storms like it will do more damage to the US than North Korea ever will. We ought to be concentrating our efforts on protecting the homeland from the effects of climate change, a real threat than the hypothetical threat of a nuclear North Korea.

Hokum

Last night in his speech on Afghanistan, Donald Trump sounded almost presidential. However, what he said was incorrect. The US should withdraw from Afghanistan, not send more troops. In addition, he intends to get tough with Pakistan and invite greater Indian participation in Afghanistan. Pakistan regards India as its number one enemy, and Pakistan wants a friendly or neutral Afghanistan in its rear as it faces India. Pakistan will feel surrounded by its enemy India if India is more involved in Afghanistan and if the US allies itself with India against Pakistan.

This policy is likely to encourage more cooperation between Pakistan and North Korea, both nuclear powers with ties to China. Instead of a confrontation with only North Korea, the US is likely to be faced with confrontations with both Pakistan and North Korea. Not smart.

Shock and awe

Some on the right are saying that we will use shock and awe to overwhelm North Korea as we did at the beginning of the Iraq War. What they are overlooking is North Korea’s arsenal of artillery and rockets lined up north of the DMZ and pointed at US forces and others just south of the DMZ. Air power alone will not decide winners and losers if there is a Korean War 2.