The Muslims Want to Destroy Mecca

The destruction of Mecca: Saudi hardliners are wiping out their own heritage,” by , The Independent, 6 August 2005, http://news.independent.co.uk/world/middle_east/article304029.ece (from Radio Active Chief through Jim River Report).

A while ago I defending Representative Tancredo’s remarks that the obliteration of Mecca may be a useful deterrent against al Qaeda.

I knew there were Americans who wanted to see destroyed. However, I didn’t know that the Wahabi Muslim anti-Mecca movement is so strong!

Historic Mecca, the cradle of Islam, is being buried in an unprecedented onslaught by religious zealots.

Almost all of the rich and multi-layered history of the holy city is gone. The Washington-based Gulf Institute estimates that 95 per cent of millennium-old buildings have been demolished in the past two decades.

Now the actual birthplace of the Prophet Mohamed is facing the bulldozers, with the connivance of Saudi religious authorities whose hardline interpretation of Islam is compelling them to wipe out their own heritage.

Many commentators call Mecca “the most holy city in .” The Wahabis would call that idolatry. And kill anyone who believes that.

The driving force behind the demolition campaign that has transformed these cities is Wahhabism. This, the austere state faith of Saudi Arabia, was imported by the al-Saud tribal chieftains when they conquered the region in the 1920s.

The motive behind the destruction is the Wahhabists’ fanatical fear that places of historical and religious interest could give rise to idolatry or polytheism, the worship of multiple and potentially equal gods.

The practice of idolatry in Saudi Arabia remains, in principle at least, punishable by beheading. This same literalism mandates that advertising posters can and need to be altered. The walls of Jeddah are adorned with ads featuring people deliberately missing an eye or with a foot painted over. These contrived imperfections are the most glaring sign of an orthodoxy that tolerates nothing which fosters adulation of the graven image. Nothing can, or can be seen to, interfere with a person’s devotion to Allah.

If the Saudi Wahabis treat their own history like that, what hope is there for the Shia of Saudi-Occupied East Arabia?

Update: More thoughts at Riding Sun.

SecretWar (5GW)

U.S. Military Wanted to Provoke War With Cuba,” by David Ruppe, ABC News, 1 May 2001.

Fifth Generation Warfare?,” by William Lind, On War #53, 3 February 2004, http://www.d-n-i.net/lind/lind_2_03_04.htm (from ZenPundit).

Limitations of 5GW,” by Curtis Gale Weeks, Phatic Communion, 2 August 2005, http://www.phaticcommunion.com/archives/2005/08/limitations_of.php.

Conspiracies & the London Bombings,” interview of Alex Jones by George Noory, Coast to Coast AM, 2 August 2005, http://www.coasttocoastam.com/shows/2005/08/02.html.

Over the past few weeks, I have been talking about 5th Generation Warfare (5GW). 5GW, or SecretWar, is the next generation of warfare from the 4GW, which was created by Mao and Ho. SecretWar relies on conspiracy to shape what an enemy observes.

On August 2nd, Curtis of Phatic Communion wrote an essay on the nature of 5GW. On the same day, Arab-American radio host and veteran George Noory interviewed Alex Jones on the possibility that America is under attack from a blinding conspiracy right now. Curtis’ speculations on the nature of a possible SecretWar work nicely with Noory’s and Jones’ claims of an ongoing secret war, so as I respond to Curtis I will quote from the Noory-Jones interview.

I have been delinquent in my blogging, for the last however many days, because recent discussions concerning “fifth-generation warfare” have left me unsatisfied to the point that other considerations, on other topics, have seemed pointless. Often when I’m in a muddle, I withdraw to Emerson and others, in an effort to reacquaint myself with all the old arguments that have thus far shaped my outlook (pro- or con-); and certain irregularities in the discussion of 5GW seem to have been clarified in my reading of those works.

First and foremost, the consideration that 5GW entities would likely be small but determined forces seemed too fanciful: Small 5GW forces would defeat whole societies; but, whole societies are composed of many small forces.

Later on in the article Curtis explains how a small force can defeat a large culture, but it is also important to see why a 5GW or SecretWar army will be small.

I won’t go into the generations of conflict right now, but I will quite from William Lind, the genius who invented the concept of “generations of warfare” in the first place

One simple test for whether or not something constitutes a generational shift is that, absent a vast disparity in size, an army from a previous generation cannot beat a force from the new generation. The Second Generation French Army of 1940 could not defeat the Third Generation Wehrmacht, even thought the French had more tanks and better tanks than the Germans. The reason I do not think the wars of the French Revolution and Napoleon mark a generational shift is that Wellington consistently beat the French, and the British Army he led remained very much an 18th century army.”

So a 5GW will be small because a every generation has a greater economy of force than the one before it. If a SecretWar army couldn’t be substantially smaller than a 4GW army, then SecretWar wouldn’t be 5GW at all.

Back to Curtis:

Secondly, if attacking the intelligence is the primary modus operandi of the 5GW force, that force would need to be, er, quite intelligent indeed in order to have any hope of success. Intelligence can take many forms, but whatever form is operative would need to be highly developed. Moreover, that intelligence would need an extraordinary understanding — a fundamental comprehension — of the targeted society or force.

Yes and no. Winners aren’t stupid, but that does not mean that a winner needs to intellectually understand either his opponent or his strategy. Victory often comes from fingertip feeling or “fingerspitzengefuhl. A winning warrior needs good implicit knowledge than explicit knowledge, because intuition is used more often than decision making.

Thirdly, as mentioned in my last entry on 5GW, no society is homogenous. Any 5GW entity would need to target the most influential members of a society (thereby spreading the 5GWarrior’s influence, as with a megaphone or a ripple effect) in an effort to influence that society’s dominant decision makers, or would need to create situations most likely to influence those who vote for or otherwise support the decision makers — but in an open society such as America’s, or indeed almost certainly in any society, individuals or groups of individuals will exist who are not so easily fooled: the disenfranchised, the sub- and counter-cultural groups — in short: those who do not subscribe to the worldviews shared by most members of that society.

Compare with Alex Jones:

“The establishment lied about the new world order, they lied about their plants to build a one world government, they lied about their plants to tax the internet, they lied about their plans for cloning, they lied about Prozac and Ritalin, they lied about sodium chloride, they lied about mercury in the vaccines, they lied about depleted uranium, they lied about 9/11, they lied about Oklahoma City, they lied about the first world trade center, so now, just automatically, people are being skeptical and not believing the official line. And I say that’s very healthy. “

Some 5GW discussion has addressed the types of defense required to protect a society from fifth-generation warfare. >The greatest defense is the overwhelming unlikelihood that all the people will be fooled all the time, and it is a natural defense.

I disagree. As Curtis previously said, “Any 5GW entity would need to target the most influential members of a society.” Universal buy-in has never been a prerequisite for power.

To see how an open society would fight a SecretWar, consider a core competency chart

secretwar_conspiracy_md
Core Competencies of Open Society and Secret Warriors
Compare to Tight and Loose Networks

The point of greatest resistance for an Open Society attacking SecretWarriors is in the realm of Secret Networks.

A good Open Society warrior might overcome this difference, training to use secret networks to his advantage…

But a great Open Society warrior will force his enemy to fight in the way that gives Open Society forces an unfair advantage, and SecretWarriors an unfair disadvantage.

SecretWarriors fight best in the shadows and worst in the light, so the defending Open Society warrior must make the SecretWarriors fight in the light. The best defense against SecretWar is open government. The more the public can know about the government, the quickly any “conspiracies” or would-be conspiracies will be exposed. This will degenerate the SecretWarrior army into a political faction or party — something open society routinely deals with on the terms of the society.

Back to Curtis:

The chance that some small but highly organized force will have the intelligence and knowledge required to fool most of the people of a much larger society most of the time is similarly small. Larger 5GW forces (say, nations), though they may have a larger supply of highly intelligent operatives or masterminds, will draw more attention because they have more fingers and more fingerprints: another strike against 5GW activity.

True, but int he same way the chance that some small but effectively organized force will have the intelligence and knowledge required to fight a decades-long guerrilla war is small. That’s why America only had lost three 4GWs, not four-hundred.

The greatest weakness for a democratic society in combating 5GW — say, America — is the doctrine of “majority rule.” Those who do not participate in the system or indeed who oppose the political system also do not wield the power that has been concentrated (consecrated) at the topmost level of that majority. A 5GW force, should one of sufficient ability ever form, would only need to influence the majority and the leaders of that majority

To quote Alex Jones

“I’m not saying George Bush is behind 9/11. I’m saying interests that control George Bush, interest that control Bill Clinton, interests that basically own our politicians like pieces of real estate, they did.”

That’s how a SecretWar would happen – the President wouldn’t be a SecretWarrior, but he would be a tool of the SecretWarrior.

or indeed create a majority will via stimuli such as catastrophes (“natural” or man-made), and sit back to watch the application of a force which it knows will rebound on that society.

Alex Jones believed this happened with the 7/7 and 7/21 London transit attacks

“We know the government was funding it. We know the government had had warnings. We know the government was running drills. We got them!”

The close to a SecretWar that we know of was the proposed Operation Northwoods

“In the early 1960s, America’s top military leaders reportedly drafted plans to kill innocent people and commit acts of terrorism in U.S. cities to create public support for a war against Cuba.

“Code named Operation Northwoods, the plans reportedly included the possible assassination of Cuban émigrés, sinking boats of Cuban refugees on the high seas, hijacking planes, blowing up a U.S. ship, and even orchestrating violent terrorism in U.S. cities.

The plans were developed as ways to trick the American public and the international community into supporting a war to oust Cuba’s then new leader, communist Fidel Castro.”

More from Curtis Gale Weeks:

The disenfranchised (whether by self-determination or by exterior exclusion), the subcultural or countercultural elements, the criminals and hermits of a society, are likely to be the canaries in the mine: A 5GW force will use the weight of the dominant segment(s) of society against that society and not waste effort on the seemingly powerless members of that society, and the oddball elements of a society are more likely to be sensitive to changes in the majority opinion than those who hold the majority opinion. (I’m not excluding the 5GW potential for using criminal elements and homeland terrorists against a society, however.)

The problem with “subcultural or counter-cultural elements” to warn society about a SecretWar attack is that they will be ignored. Alex Jones, George Noory, and the rest of the 9/11 conspiracy theorists are warning us of a textbook SecretWar right now:

“”When we say ‘the government’ we’re oversimplifying. There are corporate interests that are bigger than most governments that basically can steer and manipulate our government — the largest and most powerful in the world — and their goal is to expand that control over our population, to basically use us as an engine of global domination. This has been stated in major public white papers by different sectors of the elite. So when I talk about ‘the government’ engaging in different criminal activities, we’re talking about very small, clandestine groups within intelligence and security agencies — but — those small clandestine groups are up at the very top of the pyramidal power structure, and so through compartmentalization they’re able to manipulate and steer our society
“”Isn’t it also accurate, though, to say rather than ‘government,’ ‘a group of individuals who are doing something for their own sinister means’?”
“”Absolutely…. People all the time say, ‘Well, a ‘grand conspiracy with the whole government?” I’m in the government! My husband’s in the government! Are you saying they’re evil?’ Absolutely not.”

and society ignores them.

Any real SecretWar attack met with warnings that are lost in the background noise is the same as a SecretWar without warning.

I can easily imagine the formation of a counter-5GW development in a targeted society: If a small 5GW attacker succeeds in manipulating the wielders of conventional power and the conventional power brokers, a small 5GW defender may mobilize within the targeted society. The oddness of such an event is quite pertinent: The 5GW defender may or may not know of the true attacker; but either way, the defender may appear to be attacking the dominant elements of the society to which he belongs. (Those dominant elements have already been motivated to follow a self-destructive path, if a 5GW attacker has been successful.)

Again, the best defense against SecretWar is Open Government.

A brilliant 5GW attack might indeed include, perhaps will require?, instigation of civil war, particularly if the targeted society is a large, highly developed and complex society; but then, perhaps there would still exist the possibility that the counter-5GW force will win and then turn on the original attacking 5GW force?

An interesting thought. If a SecretNetwork could “latch on” to visible political movements (say, neocons and theocons), the SecretWarriors will benefit from polarization as the ideologies they are subverting benefit from it.

Barnett v. Cole on Iranian Involvement in Anti-Iraqi Terrorism

Al-Zawahiri, Bush and Aljazeera,” by Juan Cole, Informed Comment, 5 August 2005, http://www.juancole.com/2005/08/fool-me-once-shame-on-you-fool-me-cant.html.

Tehran has the veto over peace in Iraq …,” by Thomas Barnet, Thomas P.M. Barnett :: Weblog, 6 August 2005, http://www.thomaspmbarnett.com/weblog/archives2/002120.html.

Dr. Thomas Barnett seems to accept claims that Iran is supporting anti-Shia terrorists in Iraq…

I said in the Feb issue of Esquire, I say it again:

Some Bombs Used in Iraq Are Made in Iran, U.S. Says

By ERIC SCHMITT

Published: August 6, 2005

WASHINGTON, Aug. 5 – Many of the new, more sophisticated roadside bombs used to attack American and government forces in Iraq have been designed in Iran and shipped in from there, United States military and intelligence officials said Friday, raising the prospect of increased foreign help for Iraqi insurgents.

American commanders say the deadlier bombs could become more common as insurgent bomb makers learn the techniques to make the weapons themselves in Iraq.

But just as troubling is that the spread of the new weapons seems to suggest a new and unusual area of cooperation between Iranian Shiites and Iraqi Sunnis to drive American forces out – a possibility that the commanders said they could make little sense of given the increasing violence between the sects in Iraq …

You can say this is not good. I say it’s as good as we choose to make it.

… while Dr. Juan Cole is skeptical

Do you notice how Hizbullah (Hezbollah), which is Shiite, is in southern Lebanon, way over in the west of the map, on the Mediterranean? Do you notice how northeastern Iran (also Shiite) is way over to the east of the map, near the Caspian sea? Do you notice how there isn’t any way to get from Lebanon to Iran except through Syria and then Turkey? Do you notice how there isn’t any way to get from Lebanon to Iraq except via Syria or Syria-and-Jordan? (You could fly, but if the Lebanese government is permitting air transport of 500 pound bombs out of Beirut, we have other problems than just some Iraqi arms smuggling).

Do you notice how there are 250,000 tons of missing munitions in Iraq, such that it is not necessary for the Baath military intelligence to import very many from elsewhere?

Do you notice how the US military has not captured any Lebanese Hizbullah in the company of Sunni guerrillas in Iraq? Do you notice how only the Baathist ex-Minister of the Interior, Falah al-Naqib, an appointee of CIA asset Iyad Allawi, ever alleged that he had captured Lebanese Hizbullah in Iraq? (Do you notice how Allawi’s Minister of Defense, Baathist Hazem Shaalan, charged that Iran was Iraq’s number one enemy when he was briefly in power last year?)

Do you notice how there are two, count them, two, Iraqi organizations called “Hezbollah” (which just means “party of God”) and how Americans frequently are confused and think these are the Lebanese party, which they are not?

Do you notice how the US military has not captured any Iranians in the Sunni Arab provinces of Anbar, Salahuddin, etc.? (Occasionally Iranian pilgrims have been captured in Shiite areas, where they threw in with Shiite militants.)

Do you notice how the US military has captured lots of Sunni Saudis, Jordanians, Egyptians, Sudanese, etc.?

Do you notice how the Sunni guerrillas talk nasty about the Shiites and blow them up and slit their throats? Do you notice how some people are depending on you not to know that radical Shiites and extremist Sunnis don’t like each other?

Apparently, so is the Iraqi Government

medium_jaafarikhatami.jpg
Iraq’s Prime Minister, Iran’s President

Iraq’s defence minister, on a landmark visit to Iran, called Thursday for reconciliation between the two neighbours and former arch-foes and pledged not to allow Iraqi soil to be used for attacks against the Islamic republic.

“We have come here to turn a painful page and to open another,” Saadun al-Dulaimi said at a press conference with Iranian counterpart Ali Shamkhani.

I have come to Iran to ask forgiveness for what Saddam Hussein has done,” he said, referring to Saddam’s attack on Iran in 1980 that sparked a bitter eight-year war and led to hundreds of thousands of deaths.

Dulaimi pledged that the two sides would begin military and anti-terrorist cooperation, but nevertheless asserted it was too soon for US and other foriegn troops to pull out of his country.

Iran is concerned about the US military presence on its borders and has repeatedly called for their withdrawal, but Dulaimi asserted that “given the present situation, if foreign forces leave Iraq there will be nothing but chaos and more trouble.”

“Iraq will not be a source of insecurity and instability for any of its neighbors. Nobody can use its soil to attack Iraq’s neighbors,” Dulaimi insisted, in response to Iranian concerns over a possible American attack.

Tensions between Iran and the US are high over Washington’s claims the clerical regime here is seeking to arm itself with nuclear weapons. Tehran has also been accused of backing Iraqi insurgents and Palestinian militants.

Shamkhani announced the formation of joint committees for military cooperation, the fight against terrorism, clearing minefields and investigating the missing soldiers from the 1980-1988 between Iran and Saddam’s Iraq.

The military committee is aimed at “equipping the Iraqi army … to create an independent and self-sufficient Iraqi army”, he said.