Marching Toward Hell

Michael Scheuer’s Marching Toward Hell
was first published in hardcover in March 2008,
then in paperback, with an additional introduction, in February 2009.
This blog contains several excerpts:

Introduction to the Paperback Edition:
The More Things Change ...

[The last reference cited by this introduction is dated 2008-12-10;
the book was published about 2009-02-05,
so Scheuer evidently completed the introduction sometime in December 2008.

Among the passeges below are those that Scheuer cites as
those that caused the Jamestown Foundation
to demand his resignation as a Senior Fellow
(for his full explanation, see 2009-02-10-Scheuer, in particular, its para. 6).

All emphasis in these excerpts is added.]



both U.S. political parties are wholly owned subsidiaries
of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC)
and the Israeli government,

there is no large-scale U.S. military withdrawal from Iraq in the cards
under President-elect Obama’s administration or even in the foreseeable future.
If you doubt this, keep in mind the name Rahm Emanuel.
Slated to be the president-elect’s chief of staff, Mr. Emanuel
  1. has labored as a volunteer for AIPAC’s various anti-U.S. causes,

  2. strove to ensure the defeat of
    anti-Iraq War Democratic congressional candidates in 2006, and

  3. in 1991, as a 32-year-old U.S. citizen,
    chose to serve with the Israeli Defense Forces
    rather than volunteer to fight for the United States
    in the war against Saddam’s Iraq.


Americans will soon find that the recent presidential election
did nothing to change U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East,
and thus did nothing that will even begin
to sap the motivation and growth of our Islamist enemies.
The campaign itself was a model of foreign-policy deceit:
both Senator Obama and Senator McCain and their surrogates—
especially fierce Israel-firster Senator Joseph Lieberman—
stuck to
the old lie about how
al-Qaeda and its Islamist allies are attacking
because they hate
America’s freedoms, gender equality, movies, and elections.

And now, with the Democrats controlling the White House and Congress,
it will not be long before Americans begin to hear
the old saw about how terrorism is caused by
poverty, unemployment, bad health, illiteracy, and hopelessness
and how a huge, taxpayer-funded “New Deal” for the Muslim world
will solve the problem.
All of these conclusions are, of course, nonsense
[Scheuer discusses the Marshall Plan/New Deal “old saw” here.]
and the product of the minds of the moral cowards
who populate America’s bipartisan political elite.
The Islamist enemies are not
irrational, illiterate, and fanatic nihilists with bad teeth.
They are pious, rational, patient, adaptable, and Internet-loving men
who are motivated by
what the United States government has done in the Muslim world
for more than thirty-five years,

and not be what Americans believe and how they live and behave at home.
Though it seems unlikely that any U.S. politician will pay heed,
Islamists are motivated by the same U.S. interventionist foreign policies
that motivated them even before 1996,
when Osama bin Laden enumerated those policies
in al-Qaeda’s declaration of war on the United States:
  • U.S. military and civilian presence on the Arabian Peninsula

  • U.S. exploitation of Muslim energy resources

  • Unqualified U.S. support for Israel

  • The U.S. military presence in Muslim lands outside the Arabian Peninsula

  • U.S. support for anti-Muslim nations, especially India, Russia, and China

  • U.S. protection of Arab tyrannies, especially Saudi Arabia and Egypt
[Scheuer uses the pejorative “moral cowards” above.
I think it is more precise, and perhaps more accurate,
to attribute the problems of both speech and action to which he is referring
as being those of lackeys of feminism and/or Zionism.
It is either their loyalty to feminism and/or Zionism,
or their fear of retribution from those,
that prevent them from speaking truthfully and specifically
about why we are at war.]

Training in rocket science
is not required to understand the motivation of al-Qaeda and its allies—
they have described it in a flood of statements, books, essays, and interviews—
nor is it needed to understand that
more than three-quarters of Muslims worldwide
share bin Laden’s perception that
U.S. foreign policy is meant to undermine or destroy Islam.

It is
Washington’s prolonged bipartisan interventionism in the Muslim world
in forms ranging from
armed invasions to
Christian proselytizing to
feminist imperialism
not the lifestyle of Americans,
that has landed the United States in a war
it is losing across the board.

And, tragically,
President-elect Obama’s foreign-policy comments over the past year
seem to foreshadow a proclivity for war-causing, interventionist policies
in places where the United States has no discernible national interests at risk.
During the campaign, for example,
Obama—like McCain—could not contain his enthusiasm
for more U.S. overseas involvement.
  1. The Illinois senator welcomed the independence of Kosovo,
    thus joining McCain, other leaders in both parties,
    and the quite mad Europeans
    in lighting the fuse to the next Balkans’ war
    and committing America to resist
    an inevitable and justifiable Serbian invasion
    to reclaim that country’s most politically sacred territory.

  2. After the Russia-Georgia war,
    he also agreed with McCain and most of the U.S. political elite that
    getting Georgia into NATO ought to be a priority,
    as if all of them are willing to sacrifice U.S. soldiers
    for an unfulfillable security guarantee
    like the one Britain gave Poland in 1939.

  3. And like all AIPAC-influenced U.S. politicians,

    Obama spent the last six months of the campaign
    dancing the Tel Aviv Two-Step,

    pledging in essence to protect and support Israel
    as if it were a state in the American union—
    this to secure Jewish voters and campaign contributions.
    He thereby built on President George W. Bush’s policy of ensuring that
    Americans will pay with their taxes and children’s lives
    to be involved in the Israel-Arab war,
    in which no genuine U.S. national security concern is at stake.

Miscellaneous Articles

There has to be a better way
By June Bower
Creston News Advertiser, 2009-12-03

President Obama’s decision
to substantially increase the number of American troops in Afghanistan
was not the decision I wanted to hear.

I was pretty sure he was headed in that direction
when I heard him say recently he wanted to finish the job.
With almost 100,000 troops assigned to
the task of fighting the war in Afghanistan,
he and his generals apparently believe we can win.
I just don’t know what they mean by “winning”
or what the president meant by “finishing the job.”

I wish now I hadn’t just read a book called
“Marching Toward Hell – America and Islam After Iraq” by Michael Scheuer.
If he’s right about how Islamist terrorists think,
we are in a world of hurt with this so-called new strategy for Afghanistan.

Scheuer is a 22-year CIA veteran,
and currently a professor of security studies at Georgetown University.
From 1996 to 1999, he served as chief of the bin Laden CIA unit,
and later worked as a special adviser to that unit from 2001 to 2004.
He begins his book with the premise that
even 200,000 or more troops would have only the slightest chance of succeeding
at what he calls Washington’s Afghan nation-building project.

Scheuer believes American politicians
have failed miserably in understanding the enemy.

Conservative leaders tell us terrorists
are jealous of our liberty, freedom and democratic elections,

liberal leaders tell us terrorism is caused by
poverty, poor health, illiteracy and hopelessness.

Scheuer calls both these premises nonsense.

He says the last four administrations have failed to understand
the one universal motivating factor of Muslims:
their Islamic faith.
This faith guides everything they do,
and is more pervasive and durable in its influence on
individuals, personal relationships, community affairs
and international relations
than any of the other great religions of the world.

According to Scheuer and other terrorism experts,
Osama bin Laden attacked America
because he and his followers didn’t want us in their region.
They had been angry ever since the Gulf War in 1991
when western nations drove Saddam out of Kuwait.
They didn’t like Saddam particularly, but, more importantly,
they resented mightily us being on their soil.

When the U.S. continued to maintain a military presence in the region,
bin Laden’s followers began to attack Americans around the world as early as 1992.
Scheuer says al-Qaida’s 9-11 attack
was a defensive reaction to U.S. foreign policy in the Muslim world.
They wanted us out of Arabian territory then;
they continue to want us out today.

But, now, we’ve just signed on for another three years of occupation,
which is just going to make Muslims hate us even more.

Scheuer says for us to believe we can turn Islamic nations into democracies
is ridiculous
and he blasts the Bush administration
for not having the slightest understanding of Islamist theology and history
before invading Iraq.
He scoffs at the idea that
we can create democracy in Iraq and Afghanistan in three or four short years
and says it shows a frightening ignorance even of our own history,
pointing out that Americans had 150 years of self-governing experience
before the Declaration of Independence was ever signed.

Since 1989, western diplomats have been obsessed with
building western-style secular democracies
in places where they are not wanted.
Scheuer had predicted
U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East
would not change with the election of Barack Obama,
and after listening to the president’s speech Tuesday night,
I’m afraid he was right.

I was hoping Obama would withdraw troops
and find better ways of protecting America.
I thought we could better protect ourselves from terrorists
by fiercely guarding our own borders and beefing up intelligence and security.
I wanted to concentrate on ending our dependence on foreign oil
instead of trying to protect our access to oil in the Arabian Peninsula.

I wanted to save the $1 million it costs us annually
to keep each individual soldier engaged in war.

I wanted to save the billions we’re spending in Iraq and Afghanistan
rebuilding their schools, government buildings, roads, bridges and electrical systems,
and use it for our own schools, buildings, bridges and electrical systems.
I didn’t want our children to suffer decades of war
that has resulted in so little gain
but cost us dearly in life, limb and treasure.

[I would differ with Ms. Bower here.
I would like to see the money saved by defunding the US/Muslim wars
used to reduce the annual federal deficit.]

As I listened to the president’s speech,
I thought how much his words echoed those of the previous administration,
and I was very disappointed.

Our founding fathers warned against military intervention abroad,
but we continue today to fight wars in foreign lands
and to believe we can win over Muslim hearts and minds
while occupying their nations.

We create more enemies every day we remain there.
Why is that so hard for Washington to understand?

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