See all those security lines? Just because al Qaeda’s recent attacks haven’t succeeded doesn’t mean the terrorist group’s overall strategy is failing.
BY DAVEED GARTENSTEIN-ROSS | NOVEMBER 23, 2010
“Two Nokia phones, $150 each, two HP printers, $300 each, plus shipping, transportation and other miscellaneous expenses add up to a total bill of $4,200. That is all what Operation Hemorrhage cost us… On the other hand this supposedly ‘foiled plot’, as some of our enemies would like to call [it], will without a doubt cost America and other Western countries billions of dollars in new security measures.”Thus begins the lead article in the latest issue of Inspire, the English-language online magazine produced by al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), the jihadi group’s Yemen branch, which was released Saturday. The cover features a photo of a UPS plane and the striking headline: “$4,200.” It is referring to the recent cartridge-bomb plot, and specifically the great disparity between the cost of executing a terrorist attack and the cost to Western countries of defending against asymmetric warfare — costs now numbering in the billions of dollars a year and climbing. The magazine warns that future attacks will be “smaller, but more frequent” — an approach that “some may refer to as the strategy of a thousand cuts.”
The slick packaging may be new, but al Qaeda’s emphasis on bleeding the U.S. economy is not.Read rest of article online….
Phi Beta Iota: Immediately after 9/11, calculating only the public and ethically-sound costs to the US, it was known that the US was spending $500,000 to every dollar being spent by Al Qaeda–the reality is also that a good portion of Al Qaeda’s dollars, like those of the Taliban, come from the US in the first place. A few years later we calculated that the ratio was closer to $2.5 million per dollar. Most recently it has been documented that it costs the US taxpayer $50 million for each Taliban BODY–EACH BODY. For all practical purposes, the USA has no strategy, no coherent policy architecture, no intelligence community, and no departments of defense of homeland security–good people trapped in a bad system are bit-players in a tragedy that will only get worse absent the restoration of integrity to the electoral process, the intelligence process, the governance process, and the national security process. Nothing now being done is actually “in the public interest.” Dollars are being spent for the benefit of those receiving the dollars, and are in no substantive way connected to the actual public interest of those providing the dollars–who are being further burdened with massive debt being mounted “in their name” but not in their interest. 2012 will be most interesting convergence to emergence opportunity for humanity.