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David Brooks in the NYT

Reported by Nancy - July 26, 2004 -

David Brooks had an excellent op-ed piece in the New York Times, about the final report from the 9/11 Commission.

Here's an excerpt:

We are facing, the report notes, a loose confederation of people who believe in a perverted stream of Islam that stretches from Ibn Taimaya to Sayyid Qutb. Terrorism is just the means they use to win converts to their cause. It seems like a small distinction - emphasizing ideology instead of terror - but it makes all the difference, because if you don't define your problem correctly, you can't contemplate a strategy for victory. ... We also need to mount our own ideological counteroffensive. The commissioners recommend that the U.S. should be much more critical of autocratic regimes, even friendly ones, simply to demonstrate our principles. They suggest we set up a fund to build secondary schools across Muslim states, and admit many more students into our own. ...

Comment: You don't have to agree with every one of Brooks' theses or conclusions, but it's a good jumping-off point for more dialogue about why the way we're waging this "War on Terror" is (or is not) doomed to fail.