Originally Posted by MJ1970
OK. So you disagree with his opinion and assessment. This does not make him un-American or anti-American.
Originally Posted by Camp David
If Koppel merely disagrees with the war or disagrees with the policy behind the war I would not have made the assertion I advanced. However, Koppel went way beyond that in his statement. Indeed, Ted Koppel advances the wild accusation that our servicemen and servicewomen are playing into bin Laden's hands, and the sacrifice made by these servicemen and servicewomen wasted
Originally Posted by MJ1970 First, I would argue that he's right insofar as US government policy goes. The servicemen are following orders. If they have played into bin Laden's hands" it's a result of US government military policy, strategy and tactics. Second, this claim of the effort being wasted is a reasonable claim. It is an open question whether or not their efforts have achieved the goals they set out to (hint they probably haven't since the "goals" were never really specified clearly.)
I'm with mj here. Koppel's comments are not unAmerican, and you have the right to label Koppel as such---but you are wrong. You also incorrectly state that Koppel advances the wild accusation that "our servicemen and servicewomen are playing into bin Laden's hands, and the sacrifice made by these servicemen and servicewomen wasted." Koppel makes no such assertion:
The goal of any organized terrorist attack is to goad a vastly more powerful enemy into an excessive response. And over the past nine years, the United States has blundered into the 9/11 snare with one overreaction after another. Bin Laden deserves to be the object of our hostility, national anguish and contempt, and he deserves to be taken seriously as a canny tactician. But much of what he has achieved we have done, and continue to do, to ourselves.Bin Laden does not deserve that we, even inadvertently, fulfill so many of his unimagined dreams.
[T]he insidious thing about terrorism is that there is no such thing as absolute security. Each incident provokes the contemplation of something worse to come. The Bush administration convinced itself that the minds that conspired to turn passenger jets into ballistic missiles might discover the means to arm such "missiles" with chemical, biological or nuclear payloads. This became the existential nightmare that led, in short order, to a progression of unsubstantiated assumptions: that Saddam Hussein had developed weapons of mass destruction, including nuclear weapons; that there was a connection between the Iraqi leader and al-Qaeda.
Bin Laden had nothing to do with fostering these misconceptions. None of this had any real connection to 9/11. There was no group known as "al-Qaeda in Iraq" at that time. But the political climate of the moment overcame whatever flaccid opposition there was to invading Iraq, and the United States marched into a second theater of war, one that would prove far more intractable and painful and draining than its supporters had envisioned.
As for the 100,000 U.S. troops in or headed for Afghanistan, many of them will be there for years to come, too -- not because of America's commitment to a functioning democracy there; even less because of what would happen to Afghan girls and women if the Taliban were to regain control. The reason is nuclear weapons. Pakistan has an arsenal of 60 to 100 nuclear warheads. Were any of those to fall into the hands of al-Qaeda's fundamentalist allies in Pakistan, there is no telling what the consequences might be.
Again, this dilemma is partly of our own making. America's war on terrorism is widely perceived throughout Pakistan as a war on Islam. A muscular Islamic fundamentalism is gaining ground there and threatening the stability of the government, upon which we depend to guarantee the security of those nuclear weapons. Since a robust U.S. military presence in Pakistan is untenable for the government in Islamabad, however, tens of thousands of U.S. troops are likely to remain parked next door in Afghanistan for some time.
Our society finds truth too strong a medicine to digest undiluted. In its purest form, truth is not a polite tap on the shoulder. It is a howling reproach.
SOME REVIEWS OF KOPPEL'S WASHINGTON POST OP-EDWhy Ted Koppel's Op-Ed on 9/11 Matters
SEP 10 2010, 11:05 AM ET
Chris Good The Atlantic
http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/...matters/62778/Plain Talk: Koppels right -- bin Ladens a happy man
Koppel's, however, is unique in one regard: it has been difficult for Americans to analyze 9/11 dispassionately--the very reason, one could say, that America's response to the attacks were so marred as Koppel describes it--and Koppel is known as a dispassionate voice, respected as a deliverer of unbiased, straight news during his career......
Koppel's voice lends dispassionate weight to the discussion of 9/11 because he is, for the most part, disconnected from the emotions of 9/11. It's taboo in many circles to attempt to analyze 9/11 dispassionately. Saying things like Koppel said are considered, by some, to be blasphemous. The fact that he said them probably won't change the debate over 9/11, but if it does, it will move the center of gravity of this debate a millimeter away from the emotion of anger and the prime goal in pursuing al Qaeda--stated by Presidents Bush and Obama alike--of revenge.
Dave Zweifel, Capital Times editor emeritus | Posted: Monday, September 20, 2010 4:55 am
Koppel sees the vitriolic debate over a mosque near the World Trade Center site and the obscure minister in Florida threatening to burn copies of the Quran as lowering Americas image in the world and playing into the hands of bin Laden extremists.
The goal of any organized terrorist attack is to goad a vastly more powerful enemy into an excessive response. And over the past nine years, the United States has blundered into the 9/11 snare with one over-reaction after another, he said, pointing to the invasion of Iraq as the first major mistake.
Through the initial spending of a few hundred thousand dollars, training and then sacrificing 19 of his foot soldiers, bin Laden has watched his relatively tiny and all but anonymous organization of a few hundred zealots turn into the most recognized international franchise since McDonalds. Could any enemy of the United States have achieved more with less? he asks.
Hes precisely to the point. Instead of coming together as we did following 9/11 and using our energy to make our nation stronger and safer, weve devolved into a divisive and often paranoid society that sees neighbors as enemies and fellow citizens as suspects.
We question historically held values like freedom of religion, were not so sure about freedom of the press, we refuse to listen to opposing views, we shout down those with whom we disagree. As Koppel said, were in chaos.
If this is what America has become, bin Laden must be ecstatic.
Originally Posted by MJ1970
You reserve the right to express your opinion of his opinion, but you cross the line if you claim a factual nature of your opinion.