Don’t you love the Bush doctrine of preemptive war?
Preemptive action to root out al-Qaeda? Sure!:
BBC now admits al-Qaeda never existed
Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) Sunday said that Yemen could be the ground of America’s next overseas war if Washington does not take preemptive action to root out al-Qaeda interests there.
Lieberman, who helms the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, said on “Fox News Sunday” that the U.S. will have to take an active approach in Yemen after multiple recent terrorist attacks on the U.S. were linked back to the Middle Eastern nation.
The Connecticut senator said that an administration official told him that “Iraq was yesterday’s war, Afghanistan is today’s war. If we don’t act preemptively, Yemen will be tomorrow’s war.”
Lieberman, who is known to be hawkish on security issues, said that Yemen needs to be a focal point because two recent attacks were linked back to a growing al-Qaeda presence there.
Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan — the Army officer who killed 13 people in a shooting rampage at Fort Hood in November — was linked to Anwar al-Awlaki, a radical Muslim cleric now based in Yemen.
The senator said that Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the 23-year-old Nigerian accused of attempting to set off a plastic-explosive device aboard a Northwest Airlines flight from Amsterdam to Detroit on Friday, “reached out to Yemen” but was “not sure” if he contacted al-Awlaki. Abdulmutallab reportedly told authorities he traveled to Yemen and met al-Qaida figures there.
The U.S. earlier this month launched cruise missiles at two al-Qaeda targets in Yemen. The attacks represented a major escalation of U.S. efforts against al-Qaeda in Yemen.
Sen. Arlen Specter (D-Pa.), also on Fox, agreed that preemptive strikes should be “one [option] we ought to be considering” but added that “it’s a big, complex subject.”
Concerns about Yemen as a breeding ground for extremists have quickly grown since Christmas Day, when Abdulmutallab attempted his attack but was foiled by passengers and crew.
Lieberman praised the Obama administration for reaching out to the government in Yemen about extremism there. But he said that the administration should not release the 90 Yemenis now being held at the military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
The White House is attempting to close down the base by releasing some detainees and eventually transferring others to a facility in Illinois.
Lieberman also keyed in on internal improvements on security watch lists, saying the government should cast its net wider in order to stop potential terrorists from boarding planes.
“We have to be able to, in our age, put 500,000 names on a computer and have everyone that’s trying to come to the U.S. go through that list,” he said. “That doesn’t mean they’re convicted of any wrongdoing, but it would be basis enough to take this guy out of the line in Amsterdam and do a full body check.”
By Jordan Fabian – 12/27/09 09:53 AM ET
Source: The Hill
The endless war on terror:
– Obama: ‘I will promise you this, that if we have not gotten our troops out by the time I am President, it is the first thing I will do. I will get our troops home. We will bring an end to this war. You can take that to the bank.’
Murray asserts that the primary motivation for US and British military involvement in central Asia has to do with large natural gas deposits in Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. As evidence, he points to the plans to build a natural gas pipeline through Afghanistan that would allow Western oil companies to avoid Russia and Iran when transporting natural gas out of the region.
Murray alleged that in the late 1990s the Uzbek ambassador to the US met with then-Texas Governor George W. Bush to discuss a pipeline for the region, and out of that meeting came agreements that would see Texas-based Enron gain the rights to Uzbekistan’s natural gas deposits, while oil company Unocal worked on developing the Trans-Afghanistan pipeline.
“The consultant who was organizing this for Unocal was a certain Mr. Karzai, who is now president of Afghanistan,” Murray noted.
“There are designs of this pipeline, and if you look at the deployment of US forces in Afghanistan, as against other NATO country forces in Afghanistan, you’ll see that undoubtedly the US forces are positioned to guard the pipeline route. It’s what it’s about. It’s about money, it’s about oil, it’s not about democracy.”
“I have lost understanding of and confidence in the strategic purposes of the United States’ presence in Afghanistan,” he wrote Sept. 10 in a four-page letter to the department’s head of personnel. “I have doubts and reservations about our current strategy and planned future strategy, but my resignation is based not upon how we are pursuing this war, but why and to what end.”
“I’m not much for this war. I’m not sure it’s worth all those lives lost,” said Sergeant Christian Richardson as we walked across corn fields that will soon be ploughed up to plant a spring crop of opium poppy.
Opium production rate has soared to 6,900 tons in Afghanistan in the past 10 years ‘despite‘ the presence of 100,000 foreign troops in the country for nearly eight years.
A report by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime said on Wednesday that Afghanistan produces 92 percent of the world’s opium that has devastating global consequences.
The UN report also noted that Afghanistan’s illegal opium production is worth 65 billion dollars.
The heroin and opium market feeds 15 million addicts, with Europe, Russia and Iran consuming half the supply, UNODC reported.
– Top US commander in Afghanistan: The Taliban have gained the upper hand:
The Taliban have gained the upper hand in Afghanistan, the top American commander there said, forcing the U.S. to change its strategy in the eight-year-old conflict by increasing the number of troops in heavily populated areas like the volatile southern city of Kandahar, the insurgency’s spiritual home. Gen. Stanley McChrystal warned that means U.S. casualties, already running at record levels, will remain high for months to come.
(Source: The Wall Street Journal)