Terrorism is a military tactic. Conventional armies use it all the time. So so the ragtag bands of irregulars who oppose them.
Like all military tactics, terrorism is rational, deployed in carefully-calculated doses aimed at achieving the one overriding objective of all military effort: to get the other side to stop fighting.
The so-called Global War on Terror (GWOT) has been accompanied by a septic tidal wave of propaganda designed to obscure the simple facts stated above. We are told that that terrorists are irrational fanatics bent on destruction for its own sake. That, of course, is why we must pursue an equally irrational war of vengeance against them.
This propaganda is designed to obscure the central question about any terrorist attack (or any other military operation or activity): Who benefits, and how? Instead, we are told that terrorists are irrational, hateful maniacs, and taught to ask: Why do they hate us? As Thomas Pynchon said: If they can get you asking the wrong questions, they don’t have to worry about the answers.
It should be obvious by now that anti-imperialist Islamists have derived no benefit from the series of terrorist attacks attributed to them over the past decade. On the contrary, it is their enemies — hard line U.S. imperialists and the state of Israel, not necessarily in that order — who have benefited.
Of the many ways in which GWOT terror attacks seem to work against anti-imperialist Islamists, the most noticeable is their scale. All terrorist groups know that terrorist incidents must be the right size — neither too big nor too small. If an attack is too big, it stimulates the enemy’s will to fight rather than sapping it; and if it is too small, it comes off as risible rather than frightening, like Spinal Tap’s miniature Stonehenge.
The funny thing about the GWOT attacks — well, one of the funny things — is their off-the-scale off-the-scaleishness. The GWOT-launcher, 9/11, was, by non-state-terror standards, humongous. Compared to it, all previous non-state-terror events were miniature Stonehenges. It quickly became the biggest event in history in terms of its impact on human consciousness (and more importantly the unconscious) with the possible exception of the crucifixion. And unlike the crucifixion, 9/11 impacted the global consciousness/unconconsious in a matter of minutes, not centuries.
9/11 was also grotesquely large in the disproportion between the means used and the amount of physical destruction wreaked. Two planes, we are told, brought down three of the biggest skycrapers in the world, obliterating them in seconds. And those planes, we are told, were commandeered with mere box-cutters. The brilliance and supreme competence of those who could wreak such massive destruction with such modest means would be nonpareil, had they actually done so.
Along with being outlandishly brilliant in their ability to pull off such an operation, the 19 box-cutter-wielding Arabs would have been monumentally, historically, over-the-top stupid to have wanted to. While a wave of small-scale terror in the US might have sapped the American public’s will to continue running roughshod over the Middle East and paying for Zionist genocide, a gigantic, spectacular attack like 9/11 predictably had opposite consequences. Thus the Arab-Muslim perpetrators of 9/11, had there been any, would have been the most brilliant morons ever to walk the earth.
The years immediately after 9/11 witnessed a series of similar attacks in which the scale of destruction wildly exceeded the means of the alleged perpetrators, and the benefits accrued to the enemies of the alleged perpetrators.
In the 2002 Bali bombing, a mere car bomb supposedly blew up a hotel and killed over 200 people. Many features of the blast, including the five-foot-deep crater in the roadbed, looked like they had been caused by a micro-nuke. Indonesian spiritual leader Abu Bakr Bashir, among others, has stated that at least one of the explosions was a micro-nuke, and blamed US, Australian and Israeli intelligence agencies.
In Madrid and London, huge bombs blasted the metal train floors upward. How did the London bombers, supposedly carrying backpack bombs made out of drug-store peroxide, do that? Could bombs under the trains have been planted by professionals — members of the security services?
In Mumbai, the 2006 train bombing that killed 209 people, and the 2008 attacks that killed 173, consolidated the radical Hindu-Zionist alliance that is at war with Islam in the Indian subcontinent, and energized bellicose anti-Islam and anti-Pakistan policies. Who benefited from this grand-scale carnage?
Here in the post-9/11 USA, we have been spared subsequent oversized terror attacks. Instead, we are now being subjected to a minature-Stonehenge wave of terror–ludicrous little fizzles like “underwear bombs” that can’t possibly blow up, propane tanks in Times Square that don’t go off, and so on. If these events were reported honestly and given (lack of) attention proportionate to their (un)importance, they wouldn’t even register as a blip on the radar screen of collective consciousness. Is the Zionist-dominated corporate media turning these minature Stonehenges into looming monuments of terror, in order to brainwash Americans into continuing the battle against Israel’s enemies?
The war on terror is a dressing room in which everything you try on is either a hundred sizes too big or a thousand sizes too small. Nothing fits, nothing makes sense, but we’re supposed to pretend everything is normal and the naked emperor is sporting fine apparel.
We’d better expose the phony “war on terror” before they decide to shelve the absurd little fizzles and return to implausibly big bangs.