"Wendell, may I comment on that? That’s really an extraordinary statement. That’s an extraordinary statement, as someone who lived through the attack of September 11, that we invited the attack because we were attacking Iraq. I don’t think I’ve heard that before, and I’ve heard some pretty absurd explanations for September 11th.
"And I would ask the congressman to withdraw that comment and tell us that he didn’t really mean that."
— Former New York City Mayor Giuliani, responding in the May 15th Republican presidential debate to Rep. Ron Paul, who suggested Islamic terrorism is fueled by U.S. military interventionism.
"It reminded me of the Saudi Prince that gave me the $10 million. [Rep. Ron Paul] did the same thing. It is America’s fault the way America has outreach in the world. Look, it’s real simple what happened. These people came here and killed us because of our freedom of religion, because of our freedom for women, because they hate us…. The reality is if you are confused about this, I think you’ve put our country in much greater jeopardy. "
~ Rudy Giuliani, in a Fox News interview, minutes after the debate
Maybe Rudy Giuliani had a point. After some reflection, I think he was right to be outraged.
It is outrageous to suggest that when we bomb people, they would get mad at us. I mean, it’s not like foreigners have feelings.
It’s outrageous for Ron Paul to expect Rudy Giuliani to have ever "heard that before," even though he could have read the same perspective in the 9/11 Report. After all, he was only the mayor — the chief executive — of New York City during the 9/11 attacks, the worst terrorist attack in American history. Why would anyone suggest he needed to read the official government report on the attacks?
Since it’s outrageous to expect Rudy Giuliani to have to read the 9/11 Report, it’s also outrageous to think that he would have read the part of the 9/11 Report where they outline the principle of blowback in great detail. Heck, he’s only trying to be President of the United States. It’s not like he needs to know about the long-term implications of our foreign policy.
Giuliani is right that we don’t really need to know anything more about our enemies in the Iraq war. Chinese military strategist Sun Tsu counseled: "If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat." But losing half the battles in a war is good enough. It’s outrageous to suggest that Giuliani would need to have read Sun Tsu in order to pursue a war. Again, he’s only running for President of the United States, and it’s not as if he’s trying to be "commander-in-chief" of the military.
We know why the 9/11 attacks occurred. "These people came here and killed us because of our freedom of religion, because of our freedom for women, because they hate us." They hate freedom around the world, and this explains the recent rash of spectacular Islamic terrorist attacks against other free nations that mind their own business, such as Switzerland, Singapore, and Sweden. "Islamo-fascists" target non-interventionist free countries because they hate their freedom too.
To suggest Islamic terrorists don’t target Switzerland and haven’t scored major incidents against the Swiss is outrageous.
It’s outrageous to suggest our war against Iraq was a war of aggression. Everyone this side of Sean Hannity knows that the Iraqis shot at American soldiers while American tanks were rolling through the deserts of Iraq. That was an attack on United States territory. And didn’t Iraqi missiles occasionally fire at American bombers as they flattened buildings in Baghdad? These are clear examples of overt acts of Iraqi aggression against American territory.
To suggest that a nation’s army standing on its own ground and pointing it’s weapons straight up in the air is not an act of aggression against the United States is outrageous.
It’s outrageous to suggest that Iraq had a right to defend its own territory or to suggest that America did not have a national security interest in Iraq. The whole world is our security interest, and under no circumstances can a U.S. President engage in military aggression. To suggest it is even theoretically possible is outrageous.
And besides, it’s outrageous to suggest that the United States had no justification for invading Iraq in the first place.
Everyone at National Review and the Weekly Standard knows that there were "ties" between Saddam Hussein and al Qaeda before the war, and that our intelligence agencies reported before the war that the sum of these "ties" consisted of Hussein keeping tabs on his enemies. But "ties" are ties, and that’s all we needed to justify the war.
To point out that the United States government — which in the 1980s had Osama bin Ladin on the CIA payroll in Afghanistan — had stronger ties to al Qaeda than Iraq is outrageous.
And it’s also outrageous to point out the case of Osama bin Ladin as an example of the CIA concept of "blowback."
Anyone who points out blowback caused by presidential military misadventures is clearly saying that the terrorists were right, and that the American people deserved the 9/11 attacks. For Rep. Ron Paul to criticize poor decisions by presidential policymakers and say he is not blaming the American people for 9/11 is outrageous. If you criticize policy-makers, you are criticizing the people. Policymakers are the people — the only people that matter, anyway. Either you are on the side of the Bush Administration — the people — or you are on the side of the terrorists. Rep. Ron Paul should know that.
It is outrageously rude to point out the CIA concept of blowback, and that the 9/11 Commission validated the idea. And it’s outrageous to point out something other than the Bush Administration’s risible, comic book premise that terrorists never kill for any reason other than a philosophical opposition to freedom.
And finally, it’s outrageous for people who want to bring the troops home safely to say they "support the troops." The only ones who support the troops are the ones who want to put them in harm’s way and get them killed.
Yeah, Rudy Giuliani has a right to be outraged. Why shouldn’t he be? Ron Paul is pointing out facts that make Giuliani look outrageous.
Thomas R. Eddlem [send him mail] is not only a sarcastic S.O.B., he’s also a conservative radio talk show host and Legislative Action Director for RightSourceOnline.com. He writes for LewRockwell.com, Pro Libertate and Antiwar.com.