The belief systems of Western leaders, in particular those of the United States, are difficult to fathom. Any semblance of commonsense is masked behind indoctrinated arrogance, totally blinding the owners to obvious flaws in their thinking.
It’s as though they’ve drawn all their reasoning from re-runs of Mickey Mouse cartoons, or the early animated feature films of Walt Disney.
Take U.S. General Stanley McChrystal as, perhaps, the perfect example.
McChrystal is peeved he hasn’t been able to get his hands on Osama bin Laden. The al Qaeda leader is obviously a thorn in the American general’s side. McChrystal’s cap would gain a very exotic feather were he to apprehend America’s No 1 enemy, and the general can’t resist talking about bin Laden at every opportunity.
Giving testimony to the U.S Congress recently, General McChrystal told them:
I don’t think that we can finally defeat al-Qaeda until he [bin Laden] is captured or killed. I believe he is an iconic figure at this point, whose survival emboldens al-Qaeda as a franchising organisation across the world.”
The US ambassador to Afghanistan, Karl Eikenberry, supported this view, stating the capture or killing of bin Laden was key to stabilizing Afghanistan:
[It’s]……important to the American people – indeed, the people of the world – that one day Osama Bin Laden is either captured or killed, brought to justice”.
Can these people, living in their high-powered isolation from real life, truly believe the eradication of one man will cause the whole structure of al Qaeda to collapse? Have they no idea what it is these people are fighting for? We may not approve of their bloody methods, their contempt for innocent lives, but their cause is as real to the members of al Qaeda as McChrystal’s and Eikenberry’s are to them and their political bosses.
The U.S. military high command appears to think it’s fighting some medieval-style war. Kill the enemy’s king and you’ve won the day. Osama bin Laden is more than a leader, or king, to al Qaeda. He’s a figurehead. One day he’ll be their greatest martyr. It matters not whether he dies in his bed; from a U.S. sniper’s bullet, or rots in an American jail. Except that, in either of the latter cases, retribution may be far more traumatic than ever was 9/11.
Why does Karl Eikenberry believe it’s “important to the people of the world” that this man is eradicated? It’s not important to me. Why is bin Laden so ‘under the skin’ of most Americans? George Bush and Co blamed him for 9/11. Later, everyone from the CIA upwards screamed that Kalid Sheikh Mohammed was the mastermind behind those attacks. Perhaps bin Laden is important to Americans today for the same reason Saddam Hussein was in 2003?
America needs its whipping boys.
The very large number of affiliated Muslim groups that make up al Qaeda are fighting to prevent any further spread of American imperialism across their lands. Osama bin Laden has always maintained that. His primary battle was originally with the Saudi rulers for, as he saw it, desecrating holy lands by allowing American troops to be stationed there. That battlefront has grown broader over the years.
Osama bin Laden cannot live forever. His death, by whatever means, will initially turn him into a Muslim martyr; as years go by he’ll become a legend, maybe even, eventually, another Muslim prophet. Al Qaeda will continue, and feed off his memory, just as it draws succor from the man today.
U.S. General Stanley McChrystal, and US ambassador to Afghanistan, Karl Eikenberry, are living their own little dreams, where America is the good fairy of the world, and any opposition can only come from the wicked witches.
But, what’s wrong with that, you may ask? After all, it worked well for Walt Disney.
 “Gen McChrystal: Bin Laden is key to al-Qaeda defeat” BBC December 9th 2009
Filed under: Wishing on a star