Thursday, December 02, 2004

I hate to say I told you so...

I’ve been saying from the git-go to anyone who would listen that this “they hate us for our freedom” bullshit the president has been projectile-vomiting at us since 9/11/02 is just that. They don’t hate us for our freedom. They could give a shit about our freedom. They hate us for our policies, namely our blind, stubborn, unquestioning support of every time Israel farts, and our military bases in Saudi Arabia. That’s about it.

A just-released report of the Defence Science Board Taskforce on Strategic Communication - the product of a Pentagon advisory panel - delivered in September, confirms this opinion. Its 102 pages were not made public in the presidential campaign, but, barely noticed by the US press, silently slipped on to a Pentagon website on Thanksgiving eve.

Sidney Blumenthal writes about this report in The Guardian, a British periodical:

“The taskforce of military, diplomatic, academic and business experts, assigned to develop strategy for communications in the "global war on terrorism", had unfettered access, denied to journalists, to the inner workings of the national security apparatus. There was no intent to contribute to public debate, much less political controversy; the report was for internal consumption only.

“…What emerges is an indictment of an expanding and unmitigated disaster based on stubborn ignorance of the world and failed concepts that bear little relation to empirical reality, except insofar as they confirm and incite gathering hatred among Muslims.

“The Bush administration, according to the defence science board, has misconceived a war on terrorism in the image of the cold war. However, the struggle is not the west versus Islam; while we blindly call this a ‘war on terrorism’, Muslims ‘ … see a history-shaking movement of Islamic restoration’ against ‘apostate’ Arab regimes allied with the US - an agenda hidden within the official rubric of a 'war on terrorism'".

“… So the US projects Iraqis and other Arabs as people to be liberated, like those ‘oppressed by Soviet rule’. And the US accepts authoritarian Arab regimes as allies against the ‘radical fighters’. All this is nothing less than a gigantic ‘strategic mistake’.

“‘There is no yearning-to-be-liberated-by-the-US groundswell among Muslim societies - except to be liberated perhaps from what they see as apostate tyrannies that the US so determinedly promotes and defends. … Muslims do not 'hate our freedom', but rather they hate our policies.’ As a result, jihadists have been able to transform themselves from marginal figures in the Muslim world into defenders against invasion, with a following of millions.

“‘Thus the critical problem in American public diplomacy directed toward the Muslim … is a fundamental problem of credibility. Simply, there is none - the United States is without a working channel of communication to the world of Muslims ... Inevitably, therefore, whatever Americans do and say only serves the party that has both the message and the 'loud and clear' channel: the enemy.’

“Almost three months ago, the board delivered its report to the White House, [b]ut…it has received no word back. The report has been ignored by those to whom its recommendations are directed.

“For the Bush administration, expert analysis is extraneous, as it is making clear to national security professionals in its partisan scapegoating of the CIA. Experts can only be expert in telling the White House what it wants to hear. Expertise is valued not for the evidence it offers for correction, but for propaganda and validation. But no one, not in the White House, Congress or the dwindling coalition of the willing, can claim the catastrophe has not been foretold by the best and most objective minds commissioned by the Pentagon - perhaps for the last time.”

Sidney Blumenthal, a former senior adviser to President Clinton, is Washington bureau chief of

Excerpted from © Guardian Newspapers Limited 2004.


Blogger Grace Reid said...

Dear Proud Pinko,
I think you're marvelous.

I've been trying half the day to find the Science Board taskforce report. It was posted on a Pentagon site around Thanksgiving. Can you give me any help?

I have a site at:

There is a letter from the people of Fallujah:several organizations of Teachers, Tribal Leaders, the Shura Council , the Bar Association, through the President of the Study Centre of Human Rights and Democracy forwarded an urgent appeal to the Secretary General of the United Nations. You can find it here:

Thanks. Happy Christmas to you and yours,


12:41 PM  
Blogger Grace Reid said...

ok I found it, the 229 page Defence Science Board report is at:

8:33 AM  

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