Thursday, November 15, 2012

The way to defeat terrorists

Delawareonline, (A Gannett Company), has an interesting article entitled "Killing from the sky is no way to defeat terrorists". I wanted to post a comment there in response but this site, as some others I have found, provides for comments only through a Facebook login. Since I decline to participate in Facebook, I am barred from posting my comment there. I will post it here instead. Use the above link to view the original article. Here is what I would have posted:

So the correct approach is neither conventional invade, overthrow and occupy warfare nor assassination and subversion but "greater diplomatic engagement, economic aid and support for civil society". Those means have, of course, already been applied to an extent. The core recommendation here lies in the word "greater". Is it then just a matter of adding more funding and scaling up operations or must "greater" also mean smarter and if so then in what way? How do we know, in any case, that this will be any more effective than the other approaches taken. Might our actions represent meddling in the view of foreign populations and provoke even more anti-American terrorism? Wasn't that in part how Al Qaeda got started? Maybe the best defense is defense. Guard our borders, protect our infrastructure, keep an eye out. Perhaps this combined with care to not unnecessarily give foreigners grudges against us for terrorists to exploit will cause terrorism to wither for lack of motivation and opportunities for effective action.

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