Friday, June 30, 2006

The Next Front in the War on Terror

FNC just announced Bin Laden will release another tape in the next half hour dealing with Iraq and Somalia. You all know how I feel about Iraq - that we ARE winning and will be gradually withdrawing troops over the next several years as the Iraqi government assumes and asserts control.

I want to focus on Somalia, which is the next Clinton-era mess we'll be cleaning up. I'm not party to any classified information to that end, just reading the tea leaves as reported on the evening news.

The good news is that our invasion of Iraq not only removed Hussein from power, but it also denied the terrorists fleeing our alliance in Afghanistan a safe haven in a relatively modern country with vast oil resources. Had we not removed Hussein, they'd be operating from Iraq today with governmental protection and the economic freedom to move money to support their terrorism world wide. Had we not invaded, the panty waists in the Security Council would have found a way to lift sanctions on Hussein and he'd have free reign to regenerate his own form of terror. We already know AQ was operating in Iraq, and he'd have had to establish an unholy, unwanted, but unavoidable alliance with them in order to maintain control of his own country. Today, we're there and the only thing Al Queda can do is use hit-and-run tactics to try to tie us down.

To one extent, that tactic has worked. They have used an "economy of force" mission in Iraq under the direction of Zarqawi and others to keep a lot more of our troops there longer than we'd have liked. We've been working behind the scenes to try to cut them off from other potential safe havens in other parts of northern & eastern Africa, but we aren't in Somalia any more.

Meanwhile, Al Queda has been very busy building the next best safe haven they can. They have taken control of large parts of Somalia. Terrorists have probably been flocking to Somalia ever since Zarqawi's first letter to Bin Laden bitching about his inability to make headway against us in Iraq. Bin Laden isn't going to confront us where we are strong, so he directed Zarqawi to fight the good fight while AQ began building strength in the chaotic hell-hole Somalia has increasingly become since we ran away from trying to civilize it under the Clinton administration.

Al Queda has begun to institute Taliban-esque Sharia law in Somalia and tighten the bindings on the people there. They will establish a totalitarian Islamic sultanate in Somalia and establish it as the safe haven they lost in Afghanistan and were unable to create in Iraq. They may, in the end, be stronger in Somalia than they were in Iraq because we won't have the battle-tested Mujaheddin that kicked the Russians out of Afghanistan as allies to help defeat the terrorist regime that is building in Somalia.

The one disadvantage they'll have is a lack of an indigenous source of major funding. In Afghanistan they had narco-trafficking money that these alleged Islamic fundamentalists relied on heavily. Had they been able to move into Iraq, they'd have siphoned off a lot of money from the oil industry (in fact, Al Queda in Iraq is largely funded from oil industry corruption today). Somalia has neither a developed oil industry nor a cosmically large narco-industry from which to derive funding. My guess is that they will attempt to use human trafficking as their source of funding from Somalia, merely because the one thing Somalia has is a helluva lot of people without productive means of supporting their families. Non-Islamic Africans will face a new slavery and AQ will be the slave traders.

Note: AQ has already tried piracy and that hasn't worked out too well for them, en toto.

Regardless, Al Queda has established substantial control over Somalia. They are already imposing Sharia law in the capitol we vacated after the "Blackhawk Down" incident. There are reports in the press of an influx of foreign Islamic terrorists and terrorism training camps in the sticks.

Meanwhile, the Pakistanis and the Afghan coalition are tightening the noose on the remaining Taliban and AQ holdouts in the mountainous areas of Eastern Afghanistan and Western Pakistan.

It's only a matter of time before Bin Laden and his principal confidants end up drinking tea in the deserts, hovels, and jungles of Africa.

The war on terror will be long, and I think the next place we confront it will be Somalia.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

It may be tea leaf reading but it certainly has the ring of logical truth to it. I think the President said back in 2001, "it will be a long drawn out war" or words to that effect and you have reiterated it. Essentially, it gives the promise of chasing them across the globe eradicating safe havens...long, drawn out. What concerns me is not the ability of the best military force on earth to deal with this but the staying power of the American people.

Have added your blog to my dailing reading. Appreciate your insights.

3:40 PM  
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