It’s like chess: next move is Al Qaeda’s

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, May 4, 2011

America has killed its enemy No. 1. Now, we are at a heightened state of alert and U.S. facilities around the world are bracing for retaliation. While it feels good to have killed the mastermind of 9/11, we should understand how Al Qaeda works before declaring the terror organization dead.

Below is an excerpt from a book review I wrote in October 2010 summarizing the book “Al Qaeda” by Jane Corbin:

“Corbin takes nearly two-thirds of her book to lay out the strategy behind Al-Qaeda and the American opposition to Osama…because the Al-Qaeda network is like an amoeba, ever changing. Also, the United States finds itself in an interesting predicament summed up by a quote at the beginning of one of her chapters from one of Osama’s mentors: ‘if they kill him they will create a thousand bin Ladens, you will see!’ This quote, above all else, illustrates the tough position America is in when it comes to ridding the world of Osama…If he is eliminated, there will be many who will jockey for the position and title of ‘Leader of the Muslim world.’ As these rogue elements compete for influence and authority, hundreds and even thousands of

innocents will be caught in the crossfire.”

The Al Qaeda network is so loosely organized that killing its head, bin Laden, will not effectively destroy the organization; rather, it will galvanize those under him to further the cause and fight for power.

I will use a truly American example to demonstrate my point. Imagine Al Qaeda as a McDonald’s franchise with a CEO (bin Laden) at the head and hundreds of franchise owners (the heads of al Qaeda groups.) The franchise owners pay homage to the CEO, listen to major company announcements, and operate under the logo of the company. However, it is the franchise owner who puts the lights on every day and manages the local employees.

Now, when the CEO dies, the franchise owners will still turn the lights on and do their jobs. In fact, now the company is looking for a new CEO and it’s probably going to be the franchise owner who can show the rest of the global company that he has the best franchise in the world.

None of this is a problem when we are talking about serving hamburgers and milkshakes like in this McDonald’s analogy; however, in the case of Al Qaeda we are talking about mass murder and terror acts inflicted on government institutions and innocent civilians.

Stay vigilant and understand that just as America did not stop operating when JFK was killed neither will Al Qaeda. We are beginning a new chapter in the cultural war between the West and radical Islam. However, this time America is divided politically, weak economically, and stretched militarily. In essence, America is exactly where Osama bin Laden wanted us: fighting amongst each other, unwilling to solve our domestic issues, and unable to be the world’s policeman.

God Bless America.

The last bite…

In a contrast of history, this weekend I went to the World War II Museum twice. The museum is celebrating the American victory over communism: another battle between Good vs. Evil. As we celebrate this American “victory” over terror, let us remember all of those who have died to protect the greatest nation on earth. I give our men and women in uniform 5 (out of 5) crumbs!

Buddy Boe, a resident of LaPlace, is a former parish administrator and is well known on the local political (and food) scenes. His column appears every Wednesday in L’Observateur.