Winning: Al Qaeda Getting Tagged as Losers


October 18, 2005: The referendum on the Iraqi constitution is over, with a turnout of 63 percent, compared with 58 percent in the January elections to select the transitional government. The al Qaeda and Baathist terrorists launched a total of 13 attacks - compared with 347 during the January elections. Thus, for the fourth time in the past twelve months, al Qaeda has failed to halt an election in either Afghanistan or Iraq. The next elections, to select the parliament, are slated for December 15 pending the results of the referendum. The constitution appears to have been ratified.

The successful referendum underscores just how impotent al Qaeda has become since the attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001. Four years ago, al Qaeda was able to launch a coordinated attack that killed 3,000 people in the United States. Now, al Qaeda has proven unable to oppose the United States after American troops have liberated two countries in al Qaeda's backyard. These singular failures belie the claims of a quagmire coming from the mainstream media and critics of the Administration. Al Qaeda has been rejected by the people of Afghanistan and Iraq.

The American strategy of bringing democracy to Iraq is succeeding. So are the tactics that are being used to implement it. While the results are unknown, just the fact that the elections were held and were mostly violence-free is a victory in and of itself. The fact remains that the United States is achieving its objectives, while al Qaeda is not - al Qaeda is even failing to prevent the American objectives from being met. By any objective standard, al Qaeda is losing the war on terrorism in Iraq and Afghanistan. The only places they seem to be winning are in a number of newsrooms in the United States, and in Spain, where a series of bombs (combined with a major public relations misstep by the Spanish government) led to a change in government and Spanish withdrawal from Iraq.

This is not surprising. A number of the major media outlets have been focusing on the IED attack du jour, while missing the bigger picture. Also, since the failure to locate Iraq's weapons of mass destruction, the media has taken a line that the liberation of Iraq was not worth the casualties (which are half of the total of fatalities suffered by the allies on D-Day). The media's tendency to accentuate the negative has given al Qaeda a bit of a lifeline - their only hope for victory is that the anti-war movement, fuelled by the mainstream media, will wear down the political will of the United States. - Harold C. Hutchison (


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