Friday, September 7, 2007

Bin Ladin Why Now?

So now if you oppose the war and support the Democrats who are calling for us to leave Iraq, you side with Osama bin Ladin.

Excuse me, but this stinks. The timing after so long an absense--especially since we are told that it was taped in June. The content; the beard thing; the odd residue of his earlier comments; the goading reference to Democrats; the encouragement to Islamic radicals to keep on fighting to drive us out of Iraq? The whole thing is as if scripted to tilt the case pending before Congress in favor of extending the surge.

Bin Ladin and Al Qaeda have not once attempted to directly influence a US election or major policy decision. There've been other tapes, but on them, Al Qaeda is what it is. I've wondered why they haven't tried direct influence, and conclude that it's because they can't figure out how the dynamics would play out. If they attacked us, would they encourage support for Bush or discourage it? If they appealed to us to defeat Bush, would we all rush to elect him? If they appealed to us to support Bush, would we try to second-guess them and conclude that we must support him anyway, or would we rush to vote for Democrats? It's just too tricky to call. Quirky, complicated stuff, any effort by a foreign enemy to orchestrate our domestic sensibilities.

Al Qaeda is many things--hateful things that we must fight in appropriate places--but it isn't stupid.

The Bush administration is many things, too, but it is stupid. Wouldn't it be just like it to try some ham-fisted stunt that totally insults the intelligence of the American people? Say, some stunt like this one? Maybe the whole thing's a fake, or maybe it's real enough and the part that stinks is the timing of its release. I don't know.

But still yet again one more time, I have the feeling that I'm being played.