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Interesting analysis by Abu Nuwas

Reader comment on item: Teach Arabic or Recruit Extremists?
in response to reader comment: SPEAKING IN FORKED TONGUES

Submitted by Geno M. (United States), Oct 20, 2008 at 13:59

I found Mr. Abu Nuwas' analysis thought provoking and well articulated. However, I also find myself questioning several of his conclusions. First --- and to paraphrase --- the notion that Russia poses "a greater existential threat to US national security than Al-Qaeda" strikes me as more than a bit spurious. Al-Qaeda, while tactically weakened, represents the spearhead of the Islamist legion whose prime objective is to destabilize Western powers in furtherance of sharia.

Like bin Laden, Al-Qaeda has become, more than anything else, a brand and an ethos. It is, quite literally, the center of the storm. Russia, mired in corruption and internal conflict has neither a cult-of-personality, like bin Laden, or a galvanizing ethos, like Al-Qaeda, propelling it against anyone, least of all the United States. There is no Red Manifesto in the belly of the Russian beast, such as occurred in the mid-Twentieth Century. Vladimir Putin is no bin Laden. Like China, Russia seems intent on creating wealth before power and comfort before conquest. When it comes down to brass tacks we represent a prototypical model for Russia, much more than a mortal foe.

Finally, while I concur that Arabic is endemically linked to Islam, this should not dissuade anyone from seeking to master the language. Because our key enemies rely on Arabic as their 'matris lingua" it is both useful and imperative that we develop proficiency equal to the challenge at hand.

Submitting....

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