2) “Seems to me that the essential differences between military action and law enforcement are (1) the ferocity of the action . and (2) the designation of the opponentbined these add an element of pre-emption, a enemy soldier can be killed because of the possibility he will cause harm. “
To me, the goal is to reduce incidents of terrorism as much as possible, and the plan of action is to arrest or kill as many as possible while starving them of recruits
I disagree. Law payday loans Nebraska enforcement can certainly be just as ferocious, as any inner city police officer who has participated in “busts” can attest to. You are correct however, in that the primary objective is detention, not death of the enemy. although death is an option. I also disagree that the designation of the opponent need be different. Jose Pedilla was arrested by law enforcement, not military action. I do not see how their designation need differ from that of any other terrorist. As for pre-emption, again there is no difference in my opinion, at least from my understanding of the term. Preparing to commit a crime is still illegal, as is conspiracy to commit a crime, provided the evidence is there. How many terrorists have been pre-emtively caught by Israeli authorities over the past several years? How many terrorists have been arrested throughout Europe and the United States before committing any terrorist activity? I do not know exactly, but I know enough to not be concerned out some inability to act pre-emtively in a law enforcement environment.
3) “We like to view the terrorists as wild eyed fanatics, unrepresentative of Islam. My reading of the Koran suggests that they are closer to their religous scripture than we are prepared to accept. In any event, when combined with 30 years of mind poisoning propaganda and a largely uneducated populace, I think this conflict has greater religious impetus than we like to comprehend.”
Your assessment of the situation is most likely a correct one (although I do believe that it is a total perversion of Islam and not an accurate representation of it). However, that only makes it all the more urgent that we identify a goal in this war, and then design some plan of action to achieve that goal. To get back to my original point, it is my belief that the attack on Iraq has achieved neither of these objectives that could have otherwise been more closely obtained. I further contend that the war on Iraq did the exact opposite, and indeed aided the terrorists in ways that I have described before. At this point, I can only hope that in 10 years, I will have been proven wrong.
4) “It is worth noting that the increased moderation of both Pakistan and Saudi Arabia appears to be more the result of nearby successful application of overhelming military force and a crackdown on religous zeal, than it is of more traditional policial and economic change.”
Ditto with Richard Reid, and numerous others
You are quite correct. Both societies have dictatorial leaders that have the authority and the will to violently crack down on fundamentalists and try to change their societies. However, such reform in ANY form is happening from within, and thus does not generate the same kind of counterproductive resentment that would only reinforce the perceptions of a hostile population. I know, it sucks, but it is simply a reality that oppression from one’s own “kind” does not generate the hostility that so-called liberation does from the United States. It’s unfair, but that is the situation and if we want to fight terrorism, we have to recognize this fundamental reality.