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The New Osama

John on May 20, 2006 at 12:17 pm

Powerline links to an excellent cover story in the Weekly Standard on the subject of President Ahmadinejad of Iran. The piece, by Hillel Fradkin, emphasizes the social and religious meaning of Ahmadinejad’s recent letter to Presidnet Bush. Fradkin notes that despite having no religious authority in a nation where religion and authority are synonymous, Ahmadinejad has nevertheless laid claim to being leader of the radical Muslim world.

Ahmadinejad has attempted to step into bin Laden’s place as the leader of the radical Islamic movement, as the man with the will and capacity to challenge and threaten the United States. Ahmadinejad has already enjoyed some success in parts of the Muslim world. This has been accompanied by the resurgence of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt and especially Palestine, where Hamas won control of the Palestinian Authority. This has permitted him to assert, as he does in his letter, that the forces of radical Islam–or, as he would have it, simply Islam–are on a roll. Ahmadinejad has bent every effort to support and join forces with Hamas and may well succeed. And, as always, he has Hezbollah in Lebanon at his disposal.

From all these developments, the radical movement has gained renewed confidence in the claim, first put forward by Osama bin Laden, that its adversaries, principally the United States, do not have the stomach for a long fight, or even a short one. Islam’s enemies can and will be pushed back and defeated by radical forces, because the latter, unlike their enemies, do not fear death and even welcome it. They can even, as Ahmadinejad recently said, accept the possibility of nuclear war as a necessity of the struggle. Altogether the spirits of the radical Islamic movement are high, and Ahmadinejad is the most powerful voice of that spirit.

Given that this is the same man who has declared his intention to build a nuclear arsenal, I think we have a great deal to worry about here. The only think more dangerous than a man like Osama is a man like Osama with nukes.

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Category: Islamic Jihad |

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