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Tuesday, December 30, 2014

This is What Happens When You Ban Words

Those of you that have read 1984 may remember that one of the goals of Big Brother was to slowly reduce the number of words in the language in order to control how people thought; the idea being that if people could not express an idea, they could not think it. Now we get a peek into how this works in real life. 

Ever since 9/11, our government had been deluding itself, and trying to delude Americans that we are not at war with Islam. Fine, Islam is a broad umbrella and we certainly weren't battling all Islamic sects or nations. But the government went further than this to decree that we could not associate Islam with terrorism or the motives of terrorists.

In 2009, we had the Ft. Hood massacre, whose perpetrator has clearly stated numerous times that he was motivated by Islam. The New York Post observed after the fact:
In the wake of the terrorist strike on our soldiers at Fort Hood, one individual’s still missing in action: Our commander in chief. The massacre’s 51 casualties, including 13 dead, were insufficient to drag President Obama away from the White House Happy Hour. 
We just saw the worst terror attack on America since 9/11. And Obama couldn’t adjust his schedule to support our grieving troops. 
Instead, we got his subtle defense of the perp: Unwilling to use the word “terror,” let alone the phrase “Islamist terror,” Obama warned us not to “rush to judgment.” 
A Muslim fanatic, known to the FBI as a fan of suicide bombers and to colleagues as an opponent of our government, coolly buys weapons, heads to a military facility he knows will be packed with unsuspecting soldiers, waits for the crowd to thicken, then shouts, “Allah is great!” and guns down 51 patriots, calmly reloading among the dead and dying. 
But don’t rush to judgment.
From an article by CNS News in July 2010:
The Obama administration’s reluctance to acknowledge and confront the religious motivation behind Islamist terrorism is not helping the counter-terror effort, leading experts warn in a new report.

The administration’s recently released National Security Strategy (NSS) defines the enemy as “al-Qaeda and its terrorist affiliates,” but Washington Institute for Near East Policy report argues that it is a bigger one – “the extremist ideology that fuels and supports Islamist violence.”

Authors J. Scott Carpenter, Matthew Levitt, Steven Simon and Juan Zarate contend that just because ideology is not the only driving force behind violent Islamic terrorism does not mean it can be ignored.

Instead, the administration should recognize Islamism as “the key ideological driver” behind the threat posed by al-Qaeda and other radical Islamist groups, and prioritize an effort to combat the ideology, they say.

“To be sure, officials need to make very clear that they do not consider Islam itself a danger, only the distorted version of Islam perpetrated by radical extremists. But they – and, in particular, the president – must also come to terms with the fact that individuals implicated in each of the recently exposed plots in the United States were imbued with a common radical ethos.”

In keeping with President Obama’s agenda of reaching out to the Islamic world administration officials have moved away from terminology that could cause offense when discussing violent terrorism or extremism.
 In June 2013, Paul Murphy wrote at The American Thinker:
"Don't Invoke Islam: Although the al-Qaida network exploits religious sentiments and tries to use religion to justify its actions, we should treat it as an illegitimate political organization, both terrorist and criminal." 
-- From 'Words that Work and Words that Don't: A Guide for Counterterrorism Communication'. 
In the last week or so President Obama visited the National Defence University in order to re-express, or revaluate, America's broad goals and commitments in its 'war against terror' (a phrase he -- now? -- rejects).  
Predictably, Obama said that 'the United States is not at war with Islam'. Nonetheless, Obama is simply reiterating a stance he has held since he became president. In fact his position is based upon, or, more correctly, it is best expressed by, a document which dates back to 2008; a year before he became president. That document is called 'Words that Work and Words that Don't: A Guide for Counterterrorism Communication' which can be found on the website of The Investigative Project on Terrorism. 'Words that Work,' produced by the State Department's Counterterrorism Communications Center, found that Islam and terrorism are not linked.

 So that's official! Islamism or militant Islam and terrorism are not linked either. There is absolutely no connection whatsoever between Islam, in any of its forms, and terrorism. The only thing that is linked to terrorism are various 'death cults' or 'sects'. This is now the truth according to Barack Obama too. Obama ordered a revision of America's National Security Strategy, around three years ago, so as to erase all possible connections between Islam and terrorism. That is, between Islam and anything violent.
 
This is thought control. It's all really about words; not about realities or actions.
Specifically, the phrase 'Islamic radicalism' has been erased from much -- or all! -- American governmental discourse. And if the words no longer exist, then surely the realities can't exist either -- at least not according to the postmodern logic of the American Government.
So now we get to present day, and I read the following in an article from Robert Stacy McCain on how to win wars (quoting a New York Times article):
Maj. Gen. Michael K. Nagata, commander of American Special Operations forces in the Middle East, sought help this summer in solving an urgent problem for the American military: What makes the Islamic State so dangerous? 
Trying to decipher this complex enemy — a hybrid terrorist organization and a conventional army — is such a conundrum that General Nagata assembled an unofficial brain trust outside the traditional realms of expertise within the Pentagon, State Department and intelligence agencies, in search of fresh ideas and inspiration. . . . 
We do not understand the movement, and until we do, we are not going to defeat it,” he said, according to the confidential minutes of a conference call he held with the experts. “We have not defeated the idea. We do not even understand the idea.” . . . 
This month, Lisa Monaco, Mr. Obama’s counterterrorism and homeland security adviser, said the increasing effort by the Islamic State to branch out to countries like Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Lebanon and Libya “is a huge area of concern.” About 1,000 foreign fighters flock to Iraq and Syria every month, American intelligence officials say, most to join arms with ISIS. . . .
(Underline mine).

The Pentagon cannot link Islam with terrorism and the result is that our military leaders now cannot understand the motivations of ISIS. Whether or not the top ISIS leaders believe it, the rank and file are convinced that they are doing the work of Allah, and will usher in the era of the Mahdi. Everything they do flows from this.

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