Saturday, July 16, 2005

Incredible Carnage

Reports vary, but yesterday between six and ten suicide bombings occurred in Baghdad, Iraq. Dozens were killed; scores more were injured. The pace of bombings in Iraq has been ratcheting ever upward, culminating--so far--in Friday's incredible carnage.

On PBS's Washington Week program, ABC's Martha Raddatz pointed out that between 1980 and 2003 there were 315 suicide bombings worldwide. In the last year and a half, there have been 500 suicide bombings in Iraq alone. Raddatz also said that 800 Iraqis, including Iraqi police, are being killed each month.

We can only conclude that George W. Bush is right: Iraq is the central front in the war on terrorism. Bush has made it so. Bush's incursion has taken Iraq from being a country with minimal terrorist activity under Saddam Hussein to one of the most violent places on the planet today. As always, the Iraqi people are the principal victims.

By far most--perhaps all--of the suicide bombers are foreigners, who stream into Iraq in large numbers. The naive and simple minded view this as a good thing: "we" get to fight the terrorists "over there" instead of on American soil. Iraq is thus a messy but necessary killing field where America occupies and destroys the Islamic jihadists.

It is hard to fathom how any intelligent person could take this notion seriously. The supply of potential suicide bombers is essentially unlimited. Radical, militant Islam grows in size and scope with each affront. America's invasion and subsequent occupation of Iraq has been one of the largest affronts imaginable, causing the worldwide metastasization of the Islamic terrorism cancer. Many, though certainly not all, analysts view the recent subway bombings in London as a direct consequence of the war. America's turn will also come.

At the inception of the war, common sense suggested, and terrorism experts predicted, that the invasion of Iraq would be a recruiting boon for al Qaeda, its friends, and its sympathizers. Can we view the Iraq suicide bombings as other than a spectacular confirmation of this prediction?

Copyright (C) 2005 James Michael Brennan, All Rights Reserved


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