International

Flypaper

Mark Steyn in the Spectator reports that the presence of Coalition troops in Iraq is neccessary to act as flypaper to Al-Qa’eda.

My distinguished former colleague, the dean of Canadian columnists David Warren, brilliantly characterised what’s going on in Iraq as ‘carefully hung flypaper’. In other words, the US occupation of Iraq is bringing Saudis and other Islamonutters out of the surrounding swamps — and that’s a good thing. If they’re really so eager to strike at the Great Satan, better they attack its soldiers in Iraq than its commuters on the Golden Gate Bridge.

And, whaddayaknow, they’re falling for it. On al-Arabiya TV in Dubai, an al-Qa’eda affiliate insisted they, and not Saddam, were behind the attacks in Iraq. ‘I swear by God no one from his followers carried out any jihad operations like he claims,’ chuntered the spokesterrorist. ‘They are a result of our brothers in jihad.’ Plenty of room for both on that flypaper, boys.

He also concludes that the war against terror is being won.

In 2001, the Islamists killed thousands of Westerners in New York and Washington. In 2002, they killed hundreds of Westerners, but not in the West itself, only in jurisdictions like Bali. In 2003, they killed dozens — not Westerners, but their co-religionists in Morocco and Saudi Arabia. The Bush cordon sanitaire has been drawn tighter and tighter. Meanwhile, the allegedly explosive Arab street has been quieter than Acacia Gardens in Pinner on a Wednesday afternoon

He may be right about both these matters and I suspect he is. It’s just a shame that the debate about the war on terror in Britain can’t seem to take the legitimate issue of the security of the world into consideration because everyone is too busy arguing over how long it would take an Iraqi Scud to launch. Angels on the head of a pin anybody ?

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