The So-Called War on Terror

November 2006

We received a letter from Joe Furka of High Bridge, New Jersey: "You've done yeoman's work putting forth the argument that the war in Iraq is unjust. I hate you for it. As an ardent supporter of the war when it started, you've brought me kicking and screaming to see it in a light I never imagined -- and it sickens me. I'm left with one question: Can you offer your readers insights into how you think this ‘war on terror' could be fought justly?"

Yes, we'd be happy to. There would be no need for any U.S. "war on terror" if the U.S. had an evenhanded policy in the Middle East.

Before 9/11, Osama bin Laden and al-Qaeda had grievances against Israel for its presence in Jerusalem and its treatment of Palestinians. Listen to the 2004 9/11 Commission Report: The "mastermind of the 9/11 attacks" was Khalid Sheik Muhammed, and his "animus toward the United States stemmed…from his violent disagreement with U.S. foreign policy favoring Israel." And listen to Osama bin Laden's videotape of October 29, 2004, explaining the reasons for the 9/11 attack: "Our patience ran out and we saw the unjustice and inflexibility of the American-Israeli alliance toward our people in Palestine and Lebanon [prior to the war in the summer of 2006]…. Contrary to Bush's claim that we hate freedom, let him explain to us why we don't strike, for example, Sweden?"

Because the U.S. has not been a neutral and honest broker in the Mid-East and has overwhelmingly sided with Israel, radical Muslims have resorted to terror. And there are many imitators of Osama, and terror has spread far and wide. This is not good for America or the world. Both the Republican and Democratic parties -- in their majorities -- are stridently pro-Israel, and neither has an evenhanded policy in the Mid-East. All the U.S. would have to do is have a fair-minded policy in the Mid-East. Why is that so hard to do?

One answer, given by two academics of the realist conservative school of foreign policy, John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt, is that the Israel Lobby -- particularly the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) -- has a stranglehold on U.S. policy in the Mid-East (The London Review of Books, March 23, 2006). Of course, Mearsheimer and Walt were smeared as "anti-Semites." But they're said to be Jewish; however, we can't confirm that. Over the past thirty years, Israel has taken 33 percent of U.S. foreign aid.

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New Oxford Notes: November 2006

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Out of curiousity, my husband and I recently (Oct. 2006) attended a talk at my church titled, "What you should know about Islam." (My analysis is on my blog at

The professor who gave the talk said this about Osama bin Laden: After the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center, OBL went on record to say that the reason for his planned attack against the U.S. was because Turkey had ended the Caliphate in 1920 or whatever.

So much for blaming the U.S. "foreign policy."

In order to argue against the war on terror, one would need to possess complete knowledge of every terrorist threat against the U.S.

I contend that the U.S. Intelligence knows way, way more than they will ever disclose to the public, that the war on terror is based upon this intelligence, and that suits me fine.

I also contend that rather than the war in Iraq creating more terrorists, the war has brought them, the terrorists, out into the open. The war has propelled their dirty little plots against liberty.

If this doesn't get posted I blame this stupid New Oxford Review server.
Posted by: marriage5team
October 27, 2006 09:36 PM EDT
"...this stupid New Oxford Review server"? What is that supposed to mean?

marriage5team's reasoning is fallacious at best. If the CIA knows "way, way more" super-secret stuff about terrorism than Average Joe sucking down his Coke at McDonalds, does that necessarily justify invading and occupying a foreign country? That's akin to justifying the Final Solution by saying that Hitler's SS knew "way, way more" about the Jews than the average kraut-forking Kermit.

Most American and Britons who oppose the Iraq War aren't denying there are terrorist who want to kill and terrorize innocent civilians from and in the US, UK and elsewhere. They simply oppose the method of the so-called 'War on Terror.' You don't even have to be a believer in the Catholic just war doctrine to be able to look at the 'fruits' of the US invasion and occupation to realize it has been a complete mess, a complete failure -- and an immoral waste of more than one billion dollars each week.

At the same time, it is facile to think that if our Yahoos in Office just change US foreign policy overnight and do "the right thing" everything will just be peachy, and Osama and his gang will start singing the praises of America.

Islam has created irrational enemies of the West, and those enemies are expansionist; the thing to do would be to keep them out of the US and UK and other non-Islamic nations.
Posted by: nortemp
October 30, 2006 06:38 AM EST
And keep US (as a nation) out of THEIRS.

"The victory will come not by conquering Mecca for America, but by disengaging America from Mecca and by excluding Mecca from America."

(Serge Trifkovic, writing in "Defeating Jihad : How the War on Terror May Yet Be Won in Spite of Ourselves").
Posted by: Mike Ezzo
October 31, 2006 10:12 PM EST
I would suggest that anyone truly interested in the reasons for the terrorist attacks around the world by the radical Islamists read "Because They Hate" by Brigitte Gabriel, and see "Obsession" a new documentary that was recently previewed on a special on Fox News. I am sorry, but you guys just don't get it right in your editorial policy. God Bless. Posted by: Victoriar29
November 06, 2006 10:48 AM EST
It is possible, Victoria, to understand well the threat posed by Islam (radical or otherwise) AND oppose the US invasion and occupation of Iraq. It seems anyone and everyone who points out that Islam is a threat (which is correct) to the US and the West, makes the giant leap of faith to support the US-led invasion and occupation. This is nonsensical. If it made sense, we would occupy Saudi Arabia and try to turn it in to Switzerland. Posted by: nortemp
November 07, 2006 06:11 AM EST
Good explanation of Just War-an infallible doctrine found in Catechism.

Thanks for your yoeman work as always!

Most of the so-called 9/11 hijackers came from nations we still have big money deals with, inc oil.

As to anything Fox News puts out-please, don't be deceived by the GOP front news group.

Saying they "hate" is demonization without even asking "why"? Read this article above, that is why anyone there is not thanking us for killing them, destroying their lives and supporting Zionism.

I can see the old Americanist heresy still alive and well with some NOR readers.

BTW-some of the Bin Ladin tapes are faked-hmm, wonder by who. If Forrest Gump can meet Kennedy and LBJ, perhaps--no, of course not--a Govt intent on Empire might be able to try faking too.

Victoriar29 needs to realize that she is following Prots eschatology, mixed with rabid flag waving nationalism.

Flush Rush, Sanity from Hannity-keep reading NOR and get real.
Posted by: catholicresistence
November 09, 2006 03:48 PM EST
"I contend that the U.S. Intelligence knows way, way more than they will ever disclose to the public, that the war on terror is based upon this intelligence, and that suits me fine.......or whatever.

So, a Govt w/agenda can do whatever and you do not want to know anything about it?

Some "liberty".

Gee, why do "they" hate us, thats right-our apathy and blind support for Prots eschatology led Empire building. Robertson and Bohemian attendee Bush scare the hell out of me more than the few radical Muslims. BTW-Govt has come out saying Iraq has led to more instability and death.

Catholic or Prots eschatologist??

or whatever..................
Posted by: catholicresistence
November 09, 2006 03:53 PM EST
Thanks for this article. As always you are right on target. We must remain Catholics true and true, not "cafeteria" Catholics, who like the liberal or neo-con menu, not the only true and nutritious menu out there: the Catechism of the Catholic Church.

God bless,
Tom Zabiega
Posted by: tzabiega
November 26, 2006 08:59 PM EST
It is a late comment, but let me use an analogy, in support of NOR's position.

I can give two examples. In the summer I live in a suburban area of upstate NY. Every summer we find a few hornest hests, with the little cretures doing their thing. like the Arabs did, for thousands of years (with the exception of the Turks, who moved almost to Vienna, and occupied parts of Hungary for 150 years) So the West went after htme and colonized their peoples and natural resources. Then we supported the creation of Israel in an inhabited area. According to international law only uninhabited areas are free for the taking.

Try to disturb the hornets nest, and see how fast you can run.

Or, tere is another example. In the winter we rae in Florida, where the hornets' equivalents are the red fire ants. Again, they do their thing - but when you disturb them, again, you better run.

How come we are so smart and cant learn from nature that certain things are better left alone?

By the way, before 9/11, when was the last time we were attacked: In WW I we provoked the Germans with the Lusitania incident, because we were itching to get into the war. In WW II we provoked Japan, for the same reason. Or do you remember the Tonkin Bay incident, that never happened, to get us into another war?

We are a peaceful nation, and if the powers that be want t get us into a conflict, they have to manufacture an excuse. Was 9/11 provoked for the same reason?
Posted by: Blueskies
February 08, 2007 12:58 AM EST
The "stupid NOR server" - the last time I tried to post, your server did not post it. Also, I was misquoted by a poster. I never said 'that suits me fine...or whatever.' I did not have the precise date of the end of the Ottoman empire and so I wrote, '1920 or whatever.' Sheesh.

You guys have the gall to compare President Bush and our American government to the SS? That's sick.
Posted by: marriage5team
March 04, 2007 10:30 PM EST
The article is fundamenatlly flawed when it states that there would be no need for a war on terror if we had an even-handed policy in the Middle East. That suggests that the Islamic facists are on the warpath because of being oppressed by Israel. Islamic terrorists are killing people in Southeast Asia, Indonesia, and other areas that have absolutely no connection to Israel or Jews> No, no, Israel and the Jews are not the cause of Islamic terrorism. We were attacked because these people hate freedom, Christianity and the West. They seek Islamic hegemony throughout the world and they must be stopped. Posted by: RockySullivan
October 16, 2007 08:55 PM EDT
Amen to Rocky...

It's a good thing Polish, Austrian and German forces led by King Sobieski of Poland - and NOT the editors of NOR - were at the gates of Vienna to stop the Ottoman empire Sept. 11, 1683, or else we all might be Muslim already...
Posted by: daweeds
September 10, 2008 01:47 AM EDT
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