Friday, March 03, 2006

Jane Hamsher quotes from the subscription only strafor report (via Gosprey). She writes that when she reads it "I always feel like I'm getting a look into the belly of the beast." I have not had that dubious pleasure until now and I am amazed at how beastly the beast seems to be.

The point here is not to argue the merits of the Dubai ports deal, but rather to place the business deal in the context of the U.S. grand strategy. That strategy is, again, to split the Islamic world into its component parts, induce divisions by manipulating differences, and to create coalitions based on particular needs. This is, currently, about the only strategy the United States has going for it -- and if it can't use commercial relations as an inducement in the Muslim world, that is quite a weapon to lose.


"In effect, Bush's strategy and his domestic politics have intersected with potential fratricidal force. The fact is that the U.S. strategy of dividing the Muslim world and playing one part off against the other is a defensible and sophisticated strategy -- even if does not, in the end, turn out to be successful (and who can tell about that?) This is not the strategy the United States started with; the strategy emerged out of the failures in Iraq in 2003. But whatever its origins, it is the strategy that is being used, and it is not a foolish strategy.

The problem is that the political coalition has eroded to the point that Bush needs all of his factions, and this policy -- particularly because of the visceral nature of the ports issue -- is cutting into the heart of his coalition. The general problem is this: The administration has provided no framework for understanding the connection between a destroyed mosque dome in As Samarra, an attack against a crucial oil facility in Saudi Arabia, and the UAE buyout of a British ports-management firm. Rather than being discussed in the light of a single, integrated strategy, these appear to be random, disparate and uncoordinated events.


So the strategy is to "induce [Moslem] "divisions" the aim being "dividing the Muslim world" and has something to do with "a destroyed mosque dome in As Samarra." I hope that the author of the piece is simply an idiot who doesn't understand that his words imply that he considers the destruction of the "mosque dome in As Samarra" to be a victory a success for the strategy. It certainly divided Moslems. I can't quite convince myself that it is impossible that this writer is so evil that he actually wants a Shi'ite vs Sunni war of religion. Certainly that is what he is saying. Could he possibly mean it ?

Of course he wouldn't be the first. Zarqawi's stated aim is exactly that.

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