I was recently asked the question about the war against Islamic terrorism: What else do I suggest?
Identify the enemy. Start with the known facts. Islam is at war against the modern national government. This is being seen all over the world. It is particularly active in Pakistan and Yemen, although we are seeing this in many other countries as well. Somalia is on the verge of falling to an Islamic ideology.
Islam as a system of governance has been around for a long time. Islam has plenty of legal scholars that are willing and available. Islam is also a very repressive legal system. Repressive systems are generally easy to set up and get running whenever a chaotic situation emerges. Order can be established quickly, although the price in personal choice and freedom tends to be very high. Although this is a short-term fix, human nature is that we want order and stability quickly. After all, if you are not able to eat, or people are dying, it is difficult to think about what your children will face after they grow up. We cannot make people chose. What we can do is prevent governmental support for Islamic organizations that flourish in such conditions.
The Islamic ‘terrorist’ organizations that we mainly see and hear about are the Islamic ‘army’ in action. They may vary to some degree on what part of Islam they emphasize, but in general they want to install Islamic law and an Islamic system of governance. This ‘army’ is not going to submit. They will have to be defeated openly, in battle. We will win only if we choose the battlefield and not allow them to decide where we will be hit. That will occur frequently enough. The desert is ideal for our mechanized units. And Islam was founded and spread out from the desert. It is best to fight the army of Islam there.
The Islamic terror organizations frequently work against any host government where they reside. We will do well to help these governments. Mainly, these will be internal fights, although our interests lie on the side of the modern government’s authority. Where we can be of greatest help and impact is against governments that are supporting the armed Islamic organizations that represent the Islamic army.
I have found that the best way to begin difficult projects is to tackle the easy and obvious jobs first. It is known that Syria and Iran are supporting terrorist organizations. Other countries are doing so as well, but these two governments are very obvious and influential. Syria is the easier of the two for many reasons. Before the war against terrorism is won, the governments of Iran and Syria will have been changed. I find it very difficult to believe that these changes will come without warfare. Invasion is about the only option that will succeed. Please note that I find this very unlikely due to political factors.
War does not provide very many good things to talk about. One thing that it does tend to do is define the opponents and the issues. One of the greatest problems we face when dealing with Islamic terrorism is in knowing who they are and who supports them. The invasion of Iraq ‘created’ many new enemies. I agree to a limited degree with this statement. I believe that many who supported our enemies decided to ‘go public’. Just because we had many more enemies than were previously believed did not necessarily make them ‘new’ enemies. Many joined the fight to protect that way of life. This is human nature and we cannot avoid it.
The removal of the governments of Syria and Iran will force many unknown supporters out into the open. This is the number one rule of war: Know thy enemy. If you can see him, you can deal with him. Is this not the greatest problem fighting these guys? Knowing who they are and who supports them?
If time was on our side, I do not believe that it would be necessary to force the issue in this way. However, it is only a matter of time before one of these Islamic terrorist organizations obtains an effective WMD. Most likely this will occur because of some assistance from a government. The only way I know of to stop it before it occurs is to get rid of the known governments and see what else shakes loose. War is hell. At least this way, it would be much smaller and controllable than if WMD were being deployed.