In the face of what humanity is dealing with these days, incompetence might be history’s biggest word. OMG, is it true there’s no one running our ship?
This article is short. Who’s got the time to dig into friggin’ $trillions war culture? But between the lines, its conclusion is freaky on a lot of levels.
…the former head of the CIA’s Bin Laden Unit shares his thoughts with us on Afghanistan, Bin Laden’s current status and the importance of questioning the rhetoric of Western leaders.
A couple tidbits came to mind:
Of course there’s bizarre and caustic islands and crowds appearing, from Morocco to Mindanao, and one cause is our neglect. I spent the evening with one of Kuwait’s media chiefs many years ago, drinking good rum while encouraging him to set up a Muslim version of Sesame Street. Producing lo-cost media, 1000s of product, could encourage an apolitical culture of learning rather than deferring to myth dominated by oligarch. Salmon Rushdie commented the other day that dropping millions of Nintendo across the Islamist geography would do more than the State and Pentagon have ever dreamed.
I think civilian powers can do a great deal. The retired ambassador of Guatemala and I put together a proposal which I managed to get to James Baker during Reagan, not directly but through the Brown Group, a Whitehouse-directed outside team popular in its day.
Mullahs controlled spice trade. One of the premier is cardamom which is used daily in coffee as a ritual to ‘cleanse the breath’ prior to prayers. It’s like a religious currency and gives much power in local circles. Central America is a top producer. Top cardamom berries are shipped across Islam while we get the smaller ‘leftovers’ in our market.
We argued that organizing a neutral supply, breaking containers into small lots along 100s of Muslim ports would dilute mullah influence and local oligarchs, building a simpler merchant system rather than mosque control. They mulled on it for a few days but called back and said, “Nice approach but not at this time….” We missed that small chance at good relations.
Lack of adequate response to various bell curves and hockey sticks.
We’ll figure it out, I suppose. Energy, waste, poison versus sustenance and prosperity, but there’s plenty of goofy days ahead. Would be nice to get a grip on the fools and thieves though. Petty dominance. They scramble for the pickings and wreck our focus.
A stronger goodwill rather than pepper and argument could keep us on track. But we haven’t spelled out where we’re going or how to get there. We need that. Don’t have it. Have you noticed? I guess we don’t know. It’s up to the ‘new guys’ to bring better tech and workable ventures and the ‘old guys’ just gotta soften up the rigid structures and relentless pilfering. Camel, needles, geesh. Darn near like prairie pioneering all over again.