Superfly smart guy Xian Brose (Oh! He got game baybee!) has an interesting obit on the end of The War On Terror. Well, at least the end of that name. The killing of jerks, creeps and intolerant militants will sweetly continue as Great Satan sweetly continues to hound and confound her enemies.
"Have you heard? The war is over! The "Global War on Terror," that is. At least for speechwriters at the Defense Department:
"Reports that the phrase was being retired have been circulating for some time amongst senior administration officials, and this morning speechwriters and other staff were notified via this e-mail to use "Overseas Contingency Operation" instead. "
So this means an end to preemptive strikes against "gathering threats", no more hard slogging on the "central fronts" (either Afghanistan or Iraq), a quick resolution to that whole Guantanomo problem, and no more need for the president to worry about what authorities he has to detain "enemy combatants", or whatever you want to call them?
Well, no, no, no, and no."
The new name - "Overseas Contingency Operation" while terrible may be way better than the idea of the Global Struggle Against Violent Extremism.
Consider - of all the things to " convince the more conspiratorial minds in the Muslim world that the United States really was a bunch of Christian crusaders out to conquer and convert them, this was it."
"There were good reasons to make this change, now as then. If you think this conflict is more akin to a "global counterinsurgency," as I came to believe, and as Secretary Condoleezza Rice both stated and wrote as recently as last year, then it is less a military struggle with a political component than a political struggle with a military component. "
"Overseas Contingency Operations" is a lot like an ancient dVd of the pow! zap! Batman show.
Must. Stay. Awake.
"There is a trade-off, however. Dropping the war talk may build support for the mission abroad, or at least make it more tolerable, but it may reduce support for it at home. Regardless of what we call it, to be successful in this conflict requires significant domestic spending and unprecedented, often controversial authorities, even by Obama's standards, as he is learning.
Mobilizing and maintaining public support for these commitments is in large part why the War on Terror was proclaimed in the first place.
"We could speak of fights, and confrontations, and violent extremism, and everyone would know what we were talking about. The policies wouldn't change. And we would avoid signalling that the most powerful nation on earth was at war with Islam, which though obviously wrong, most Muslims believed nonetheless. "
"The Obama administration has now made this trade off, whether it knows it or not, and it did so most likely for "Anything But Bush" reasons above all. That said, it's a trade off I'm comfortable with, even though I would never, ever refer again to the "Overseas Contingency Operation." Ever.
What matters most are Obama's policies, and with all due respect to Dick Cheney, I am less worried by the largely symbolic changes I've seen on that front -- for now at least."
Art - "Great Satan's War on Terror"