FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Where’s Osama?

by Nelson P. Valdés

Let us suppose, for a moment that Osama Bin Laden had something to do with the events of September 11.

Let us suppose, also, that he understood how the United States government would react.

Let us suppose that he, like those who actually implemented the September 11 attacks, were concerned with Saudi Arabia since most of the parties involved were born there. Moreover, Saudi Arabia is important because: a) it has a strategic amount of oil on which the US depends, b) the Saudi royal family is split, one faction supported the Taliban and the other is thoroughly corrupt c) Mecca and Medina–the two sacred places of Islam, happen to be in Saudi Arabia.

So where could Osama bin Laden be today? Afghanistan? Hardly.

Assuming that bin Laden and associates will use their many years of guerrilla war experience, then they should understand the military value of symbolic actions and the use of the global mass media.

Imagine the symbolic value of Osama bin Laden within Mecca.

Let us consider the benefits from Osama bin Laden’s perspective:

The moment it is announced that Osama bin Laden is inside Saudi Arabia and in the most sacred Mosque of Islam, havoc will follow. The U.S. war effort will have to be reassessed. If the war on Afghanistan was unleashed to capture bin Laden, then — will a war be waged against Saudi Arabia as well?

Probably the stock market and the price of oil will not escape such news either. The political stability of Saudi Arabia will be a black box that no one could decipher.

The Saudi government would be compelled to act, yet would be frozen by the political consequences of taking proactive military measures at Mecca or Medina.

The United States government would be tempted to use its military forces within the Arabian peninsula but indecision could be expected, for immediate action could create very serious consequences throughout the Muslim world.

The potential political and economic crises confronting the United States government could unleash a major debate within the ranks of U.S. conservatives on what to do. It is doubtful that the consensus of waging war could be continued.

It would not be surprising if recriminations surfaced within the country as people asked about the capabilities of the “intelligence” community.

The world community could conclude that the policy makers in the United States, including its intelligence agencies, had totally mishandled the aftermath of the September 11 tragedy.

What ensues thereafter would be certainly hard to imagine.

Nelson Valdes is a professor of sociology at the University of New Mexico.

Nelson P. Valdes is Professor Emeritus at the University of New Mexico.

More articles by:

CounterPunch Magazine

minimag-edit

bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550

zen economics

March 30, 2017
William R. Polk
What Must be Done in the Time of Trump
Howard Lisnoff
Enough of Russia! There’s an Epidemic of Despair in the US
Ralph Nader
Crash of Trumpcare Opens Door to Full Medicare for All
Carol Polsgrove
Gorsuch and the Power of the Executive: Behind the Congressional Stage, a Legal Drama Unfolds
Michael J. Sainato
Fox News Should Finally Dump Bill O’Reilly
Kenneth Surin
Former NC Governor Pat McCory’s Job Search Not Going Well
Binoy Kampmark
The Price of Liberation: Slaughtering Civilians in Mosul
Bruce Lesnick
Good Morning America!
William Binney and Ray McGovern
The Surveillance State Behind Russia-gate: Will Trump Take on the Spooks?
Jill Richardson
Gutting Climate Protections Won’t Bring Back Coal Jobs
Robert Pillsbury
Maybe It’s Time for Russia to Send Us a Wake-Up Call
Prudence Crowther
Swamp Rats Sue Trump
March 29, 2017
Jeffrey Sommers
Donald Trump and Steve Bannon: Real Threats More Serious Than Fake News Trafficked by Media
David Kowalski
Does Washington Want to Start a New War in the Balkans?
Patrick Cockburn
Bloodbath in West Mosul: Civilians Being Shot by Both ISIS and Iraqi Troops
Ron Forthofer
War and Propaganda
Matthew Stevenson
Letter From Phnom Penh
James Bovard
Peanuts Prove Congress is Incorrigible
Thomas Knapp
Presidential Golf Breaks: Good For America
Binoy Kampmark
Disaster as Joy: Cyclone Debbie Strikes
Peter Tatchell
Human Rights are Animal Rights!
George Wuerthner
Livestock Grazing vs. the Sage Grouse
Jesse Jackson
Trump Should Form a Bipartisan Coalition to Get Real Reforms
Thomas Mountain
Rwanda Indicts French Generals for 1994 Genocide
Clancy Sigal
President of Pain
Andrew Stewart
President Gina Raimondo?
Lawrence Wittner
Can Our Social Institutions Catch Up with Advances in Science and Technology?
March 28, 2017
Mike Whitney
Ending Syria’s Nightmare will Take Pressure From Below 
Mark Kernan
Memory Against Forgetting: the Resonance of Bloody Sunday
John McMurtry
Fake News: the Unravelling of US Empire From Within
Ron Jacobs
Mad Dog, Meet Eris, Queen of Strife
Michael J. Sainato
State Dept. Condemns Attacks on Russian Peaceful Protests, Ignores Those in America
Ted Rall
Five Things the Democrats Could Do to Save Their Party (But Probably Won’t)
Linn Washington Jr.
Judge Neil Gorsuch’s Hiring Practices: Privilege or Prejudice?
Philippe Marlière
Benoît Hamon, the Socialist Presidential Hopeful, is Good News for the French Left
Norman Pollack
Political Cannibalism: Eating America’s Vitals
Bruce Mastron
Obamacare? Trumpcare? Why Not Cubacare?
David Macaray
Hollywood Screen and TV Writers Call for Strike Vote
Christian Sorensen
We’ve Let Capitalism Kill the Planet
Rodolfo Acuna
What We Don’t Want to Know
Binoy Kampmark
The Futility of the Electronics Ban
Andrew Moss
Why ICE Raids Imperil Us All
March 27, 2017
Robert Hunziker
A Record-Setting Climate Going Bonkers
Frank Stricker
Why $15 an Hour Should be the Absolute Minimum Minimum Wage
Melvin Goodman
The Disappearance of Bipartisanship on the Intelligence Committees
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail