It was a mess when Ambassador Stevens was there, and was killed, but is it getting worse?:
‘As Westerners evacuate Libya’s eastern city of Benghazi, Islamist militias—whose fighters apparently number in the thousands—are moving in.’
The destabilization of Libya post-Gadhafi has also added to the destabilization of Algeria, and Mali as well. Our policies and the assumptions behind them are not lining up well with conditions on the ground. This can help create the vacuum that invites the real radicals in.
What difference does it make? Well, quite a bit actually, for troop morale, for protecting our interests, pursuing our interests, and making and executing good policy with enough realism to not put ourselves in worse positions.
***Comments are very much worth a read.
Want to understand Islamism better and the forces in the region which will require much better policy out of us? Totten mentions checking out Sayyid Qutb. A must read.
Totten’s new book: Where The West Ends.
Do you have a few minutes? Lawrence Wright At The New Yorker: ‘The Man Behind Bin Laden’…From Slate: ‘In Aleppo, Syria, Mohamed Atta Thought He Could Build The Ideal Islamic City’…Link sent in by a reader to Alexander Hitchens essay: As American As Apple Pie: How Anwar al-Awlaki Became The Face Of Western Jihad…Christopher Hitchens At Slate: ‘Lord Haw Haw And Anwar Al-Awlaki’…From The AP: ‘Al-Awlaki: From Voice For Jihad To Al-Qaida Figure’…Repost-’”The Rebellion Within” At The New Yorker: Dr. Fadl and Al Qaeda’
Dexter Filkins Book On Afghanistan And Iraq: “The Forever War”…Repost-’Dexter Filkins In The NY Times: The Long Road To Chaos In Pakistan’…Lara Logan On Afghanistan Via Youtube: ’2012 BGA Annual Luncheon Keynote Speech’
See related pieces on this site: Paul Berman At The New Republic: ‘From September 11 to the Arab Spring: Do Ideas Matter?’…From Foreign Affairs: ‘Al Qaeda After Attiyya’…
Eli Lake At The Daily Beast: ‘U.S. Officials Knew Libya Attacks Were Work of Al Qaeda Affiliates’ From The BBC Via Michael Totten: ‘Libya: Islamist Militia Bases Stormed In Benghazi’
Via Reuters: ‘U.S. Ambassador To Libya Killed In Benghazi Attack’