Is it maybe time to listen to the terrorists desires?

Bin Laden, in his new tape, said, “your security is not in the hands of Kerry or Bush or al-Qaida. Your security is in your own hands”.

Why can’t we do that? Why can’t we take our security in our own hands. Why do we have to have the sentiment Bush stated: “Americans will not be intimidated or influenced by an enemy of our country”? Why don’t we listen to what these people want and heed it? I don’t think they’re asknig for anything ridiculous, are they? Aren’t they just asking the U.S. and its allies to get the F out of the Middle East and stop taking their oil? Don’t they just want their own freedom and the ability to enjoy the wealth that comes from their own land? Why can’t we just save everyone’s lives and happiness by putting our own money and resources into coming up with alternative fuel sources?

What am I missing?

PCow: Why don’t we listen to what these people want and heed it?

Who are “these people”?

Of course we should be listening to what rational, law-abiding people in the Middle East and other parts of the Muslim world want. That’s required by our principles of national sovereignty and human rights.

That doesn’t mean that it’s easy to implement the things that they might want, given the tensions among repressive governments, dictatorial theocrats, impoverished populations, and various political and social movements. The US “getting the F out of the Middle East” will not automatically make the people there independent, free, and prosperous.

Nonetheless, we definitely ought to be making more efforts to improve the situation, e.g. by leaning harder on repressive governments such as the Saudis and reducing our dependency on their oil supplies. And it would be good if we refrained from invading countries that aren’t attacking us.

However, that does NOT mean that we have to regard mass-murdering terrorists as legitimate spokespersons for the people of the Middle East. We should pay attention to the valid grievances and demands of the people who aren’t trying to influence our policy by blowing up thousands of our innocent civilians. If we show more respect for the desires of terrorists than to those of decent people just because the terrorists are scarier and more attention-grabbing, shame on us.

You’re missing what bin Laden really wants. He, and others like him, don’t “just want their freedom”. They want a fundamentalist Islamic state, where women are forced to wear burkhas and homosexuals are executed and the stock market is illegal. And he wants Israel to be destroyed and all the Zionists killed.

He has already published his motives for attacking us.

Perhaps you will excuse me, but it seems your assumption that bin Laden and the other terrorists just want to live and let live is more than slightly naive.

It is literally true that bin Laden and the terrorists hate us and hate our freedoms. He has stated so, fairly clearly. He also hates and wants to destroy Israel. Therefore, as long as we remain a free and secular state, and Israel continues to exist, he and his ilk will continue to attack us.

Or until bin Laden and his ilk are dead. May God have mercy on bin Laden, and admit him into heaven. As soon as possible.


Try reading up on Danegeld. Then study the build-up to WW2.

I did ask “what am I missing?” I am aware that I am missing something - a lot even. More than that I’m frightened for the survival of our world. I can’t imagine how we can fight a bunch of terrorists. By killing them we create more. Yours and Kimstu’s points are excellent and I thank you for your responses.
I don’t think it was necessary to insult me.

Obviously, killing terrorists doesn’t create more terrorists. But killing innocent people in the name of fighting terrorism creates more recruits for those that remain. Butting into centuries old squabbles under the guise of exercizing moral leadership while you yourself are morally bereft is another bad idea. To mollify one group is to alienate another, and create new terrorists of the opposite ideology to replace the old. The world will survive. Whether terrorists do depends upon our vigilance. Bush’s approach is utterly Neanderthal in its conception. By crippling American’s freedom with his quasi-martial law initiatives, he is robbing America of its greatest defenders: free people who jealously guard their liberty and their property. I think one fellow I heard had the right idea: instead of stripping Americans down to nothing as they board planes, hand each of them a gun.

I didn’t mean to insult you, and I am sorry if I came across that way.

It is not always true that killing terrorists makes more of them. It is sometimes true, but that depends on the supply of people willing to die for a cause. This number is not unlimited.

Most Muslims are not terrorists. Killing bin Laden is not going to turn them into terrorists. The notion that every terrorist is a hydra head is eventually a Ponzi scheme applied to national security.

Our conquest of Iraq (and Afghanistan) have already worked the other way. Libya, for example, has agreed to disarm from WMD, and thus another source of support for terrorism has been reduced or eliminated.

Although it is probably true that we can never have zero terrorism, it is also probably true that much can be done to defend ourselves against it. Killing bin Laden is something to do as well.


Ever hear of the expression “give someone an inch, and they will take a mile”? Let’s say the US competely moved all of our troops out of the middle east, and stopped all military aid to Israel. Do you think that people who think flying airliners into buildings is a valid means of political expression are going to say “well, that’s enough, our goals are reached, no more blowing up stuff” or are they going say “Well, the American pig-dogs gave in that easily? Maybe if we blow up a few car bombs next to populated areas, they will give us more.”

Once you pay Danegeld, you never get rid of the Dane.

The reason we pay attention to the Saudi regime – a bunch of human-rights-violating autocratic scum – is because (a) they give us lots of money, and (b) they come to the negotiating table wearing nice suits and talk to us in a civilized manner, instead of blowing up buildings full of innocent people.

Seems to me we’d be kind of obligated to listen to people who came to the negotiating table wearing nice suits (even if they kept their dishdashas) and were willing to speak in a civilized manner.

In fact, if we get rid of Bush, they might not even have to give us lots of money to get listened to.

But I’m firmly against negotiating with homicidal maniacs, except insofar as to get them to hold still while the sniper draws a bead.

Time to listen to the terrorists was 1970-1990 when they were our allies.

Little late to be thinking about it now.

Osama has no intention of stopping his jihad regardless of what we do. However, he hopes that by making it seem like we have a choice that if we enact policies that benefit him, he will stop. Not true.

Let the school bully have your lunch money once and… he won’t bother you anymore! Right !? :rolleyes:


As long as Osama keeps the petroleum flowing… :smiley:

The counter point is … would the US stop meddling with Middle East affairs if terrorists stopped existing ? What would it take for Americans to feel they don’t have to screw around ? I doubt americans or terrorists are willing to contemplate why they are doing what they are doing.

the OP should be re-phrased: Not “is it time to listen to the terrorists desires.”
It should be “time to listen to the terrorists threats

Why can’t we do that? Why can’t we take our security in our own hands.


We are…by killing terrorists.

Because acting like a big pussy only encourages aggression.

I want a new car and a big house…doesn’t mean I’m going to get it.

  1. It’s not the terrorists oil
  2. Terrorists do not speak for all of the Middle East
  3. We aren’t “taking” their oil.

First of all, Osama already has wealth so that’s not the issue.
Second, we aren’t the ones taking away their freedom
Finally, the “freedom” they want is the freedom to create an Islamic fundamentalist state

Because even if we do that, we still will need oil far into the immediate future.
Basically it is not simply an issue of lets all be nice and everyone will behave.

A lot.

helping to create the conditions for a sustainable middle class will go a long way to alleviate the root cause of terrorism (being poor with no future). Lexus and the Olive Tree by Thomas Friedman: There has been no war between two countries that have McDonalds.

Appeasement is a dumb policy, but I don’t think that’s what the OP is referring to. Maybe we could take some of those 200+ billins and counting money being spent on Iraq and actually help build a solid economy, ya know kinda like the Marshall Plan that created those terrorist hotbeds of Germany and Japan post WW2.

That’s right. That’s why when I walk down the street, I punch everyone I see looking at me in the face. It lets them know not to f* with me, or I’ll punch them in the face.

Whose oil is it? As I understand, the bin Ladens own a lot of that oil.


Semi-true. We were importing their oil. Now we’ve destroyed their oil industry and are having them import oil in order to pay for rebuilding the industry we destroyed.

Sounds like an episode of MAS*H

That is true, they have been taking away their own freedoms for a long time. Then there was that time when we helped them try to stop people from taking away their freedoms, then we started taking away their freedoms and they got a little peeved.

And the freedom we want is for them to choose between McDonalds and Burger King

I thought this wasn’t about taking their oil?


Nope. It is an issue of decades of terrible foreign policy decision making and diplomatic failures leading to a revolution. Only it isn’t an internal revolution like we’re all used to, it is an international revolution, and we have no clue how to fight that - and we are failing badly in our attempts to do so.

I’d be careful at taking what Osama said as “terrorist demands”. I’d say he is talking of what most Arabs and Muslims view as legitimate reasons for complaining about the US and using them as his “reasons”.

Just because Osama wants X doesn’t mean X isn’t something Arabs are right about whining.

Who is or is not to blame for the problems of the Middle East is irrelavant.

If we, as a nation, give a private individual or private organization the status & dignity of a nation, & negotiate with them as equals, we open the door to a diaster.

Every two-bit freak who can tie two sticks of dynamite together will believe that he can make demands on the US Government & get them. Demands to change laws, to alter policy, to re-write the Constitution—anything and everything!

And there will be so many attacks our socirty really will be torn apart.


Osama gets nothing. But a bullet.

There is only one way to deal with terrorists and mass murderers. That way is to hunt them down and kill them. You have to be relentless and ruthless, showing them the same mercy they show to their victims (none).
Listening to them and giving in only would encourage more of the same, just like when terrorists were hijacking planes to Cuba and other places.
You don’t reason with maniacs. Chamberlain tried appeasement (peace in our time) 50 years ago and it still doesn’t work.
Cut them off, isolate them, starve them out and then kill them.