Wednesday, July 06, 2005

General Wallace Gregson is Right 

But in this Administration, he'll probably end up losing his job for telling it like it is.

This war has a popular label and a political label, but it’s not accurate,” said Gregson. “Terrorism is a means of power projection, it’s a weapon, it’s a tool of war. Think of it as our enemy’s stealth bomber. This is no more a war on terrorism than World War II was a war on submarines. It’s not just semantics . . . Words have meaning. And these words are leading us down to the wrong concept.”

Gregson added, “What we’re fighting is an insurgency defined as a popular movement that seeks to change the status quo through violence, subversion, propaganda, terrorism or other military action. But it’s different from other national insurgencies that we’ve known in the past. This one is networked thanks to the wonders of technology. It’s primarily ideologically driven, fundamentalist and extremist.”


“It’s a collection or a confederation of movements empowered by regional and global fundamentalist extremist insurgents,” Gregson said. “You can borrow an old phrase and say they think globally and act locally.”

[...] “The center of gravity, the decisive terrain in this war is the vast majority of people who are not directly involved but whose support, willing or coerced, is necessary to insurgent operations around the world,” he said. “Hearts and minds are more important than capturing and killing people.”

“The main thrust of my remarks was that we know we’re stuck with the name, it’s going to be the global war on terrorism. . . . But even though we’ve got that name out there, we’ve got to at least in the security community and then further on through the greater world . . . explain what we’re about here and get it into something that is properly categorized and puts us on the side of the angels in various areas.”

We have a chance to start winning this war here and walk it back into the Middle East, but we can’t just continue to admire the problem,” Gregson said. “We have to start doing something and we have to start walking the propaganda back in the other direction and get ourselves on the right side of this issue.”

Providing doctors, engineers, dentists, veterinarians and other aid to enhance the lives of people living in very troubled parts of the world is “often far more important than projecting some type of force,” Gregson said.


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