You Heard it at GC&F First,?

There’s an Op-Ed today in the New York Times by guest columnist Olivier Roy (a professor at the modestly titled School for Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences) that more or less echoes exactly what Chevron wrote here on Tuesday concerning the London attacks. Once again, GC&F proves itself to be at the forefront of political commentary and/or dead presidential musings.

Interestingly, Slate’s Fred Kaplan makes a subtler point. At first blush, the article appears to advocate an expedited withdrawal from Iraq and Middle East, as Kaplan argues (with some research to back his contentions) that much of the recent terrorism centered in (or coming from) Iraq has more to do with nationalism than with religious fervor. I think, however, that Kaplan is pointing to a broader issue – that as much as the West has been deathly afraid of insulting Muslims with unfounded suspicion, most acts of terrorism from “fundamentalists” have little to do with Islam. Rather, while most fundamentalists may claim to use religious tenets at their moral justification, in actuality, they tend to attract more recruits by capitalizing on preexisting cultural hatred, namely anti-Western sentiment, anti-Americanism, and general disenfranchisement. As Kaplan notes, there are a lot of nationalistic and sectarian scores that are being settled (in Iraq), all of which conflate possible solutions to ending terror attacks, other than, you know, killing all of the terrorists. Again, I think that this point strengthens the case against appeasement put forth by Chevron and Roy.


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