The fallout from 9/11

September 11, 2006

The following appeared on, but with a subtle change: they edited out a sentence.

I wrote:

“Al-Qaeda appears to be more and more a figment of some fevered State Department staffer’s brain, because it is not a small group of extremists, but practically the entire Ummah, the Mohammedan community, that is up against America.”

They took out the last phrase, which makes that a dangling sentence that does not make sense. It now reads:

“Al-Qaeda appears to be more and more a figment of some fevered State Department staffer’s brain, because it is not a small group of extremists.”

This is intriguing, as my statement was reasonably factual. Opinion poll after opinion poll shows that the Mohammedan-on-the-street anywhere is rather unhappy with the US.

Here’s the entire article:


The fallout from 9/11/2001, five years later

Rajeev Srinivasan on the event that transformed American self-perception

I have been observing the ritual self-flagellations and mumbling-of-platitudes every year for the past four years on the anniversary of the World Trade Center bombings. This year too, I expect more of the same, but the fact is that tragedy has turned into farce, to paraphrase the inevitable Karl Marx.


For, when the tragedy struck, it appeared to me that it was “Pearl Harbor Redux” . For one brief, shining, moment, we had all become Americans, in sympathy. I expected, naively as it turns out, that America would rise to the occasion, as it did to their forced entry into the Second World War. I have always had a considerable admiration for what the natives refer to as a ‘can-do’ spirit. I thought the Marines would ride to the rescue, and that this tragedy would show the steel that America was made of.

Alas, five years on it transpires that America has made a complete mess of things. The crowning glory in this sad tale of incompetence (and worse) was an astonishing news report in the Washington Post of September 6th, 2006: “Pakistan reaches peace accord with pro-Taliban militas”

Consider the implications: America’s favorite “ally in the war on terror” is, in plain sight, saying that they are willing to dance with the Taliban again. This, after much blood, sweat and treasure have been expended on bringing some semblance of civilization to Afghanistan, after several years of medieval, barbarian rule by the Taliban.


The fact remains, of course, that the Taliban are a creation of Pakistan’s ISI, and what were allegedly Taliban’s fighting forces were simply Pakistani troops who had exchanged their uniforms for the baggy pants of the militia. As I have remarked more than once, it was rather startling that the Taliban – an alleged ‘Mohammedan seminary student militia’ – could so suddenly learn to fly planes and drive tanks.


This is also not the first time that the Americans have allowed themselves to be hoodwinked by the Pakistanis. There was the time during the Afghan campaign when they allowed Pakistan to evacuate a large number of senior officers who had been active Taliban. I found it astonishing – it was either extreme naivete, or their capture by the Northern Alliance would have caused some American skeletons to tumble out of closets, as I remarked in my column “What happened at Kunduz?”


It is hard to believe that it is naivete, not several years later. It is probably the result of a cynical calculation by the US State Department that the Pakistanis will remain useful mercenaries for their plans to win a “Great Game” of their own, checkmating the Russians and the Chinese in the quest for Central Asian oil and gas. The extreme enthusiasm, and the noises made often by Americans about the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan pipeline add substance to this theory.


The astonishing collusion of the Americans with the Musharraf coverup on the A Q Khan nuclear Wal-Mart is something else that causes the impartial observer to question whether the US is serious about controlling proliferation – especially when nukes can easily fall into the hands of wild-eyed Mohammedan fundamentalists in Pakistan – or whether there is more than meets the eye to all this.


It is abundantly clear that Pakistan is the epicenter of almost all acts of Mohammedan terrorism regardless of where it takes place in the world. All the suicide bombers and other dangerous specimens have, it always turns out, been to Pakistan to be ‘trained’ at the schools of jihad that have sprouted there..


In fact, a very good case can be made that the true ‘axis of evil’ is Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and China. Pakistan is the supplier of fanatics, Saudi Arabia the money-bags, and China the strategist using the ‘clash of civilizations’ to weaken its enemies such as the US and India; China has declared that Pakistan is “China’s Israel”, that is, a proxy.


Refusing to recognize the “Great Game” by this trio, and in effect sticking its head in the sand, George Bush’s America is increasingly isolated in the world. It has thoroughly and comprehensively dissipated the great outpouring of sympathy from five years ago. America is looking more and more like a bully; the Pew Attitudes Survey a while ago showed the extreme animosity towards the country in particular among the citizens of some of its fondest allies, including the usual suspects Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and China.


Five years after 9/11/2001, America is bogged down in Iraq and Afghanistan and on the verge of invading Iran, if only it had enough troops; the price of oil is at an all-time high, thus adding windfall billions to Saudi Arabia’s budget for encouraging Wah’abi fundamentalism everywhere; the threat of Mohammedan terrorism has reached alarming levels all over the world. Israel’s air of invincibility has been punctured by the Hezbollah, and thus, by extension, Iran and Syria.


To paraphrase Ronald Reagan’s damning question to the Democrats some years ago, are Americans truly safer than they were five years ago? I would venture to say they are not. The “War on Terror” has been a dismal failure. Al-Qaeda appears to be more and more a figment of some fevered State Department staffer’s brain, because it is not a small group of extremists, but practically the entire Ummah, the Mohammedan community, that is up against America.


Huntington’s ‘clash of civilizations’ is upon us, and it is not pretty. 9/11 was only the first broadside, and America is vulnerable to more terror, as has been experienced by Indians and Europeans for years.




10 Responses to “The fallout from 9/11”

  1. udayakumar Says:

    Good one rajeev.I always wonder why the US don’t understand this.Iam not sure if the US can ever checkmate russia and china.The US is too old for these kind of games anymore.

  2. karigar Says:

    Thanks for the Rediff Column. Always invigorating to read your writings. [Given me a lot of valuable links over the years]

    My blog is at
    Current entry (especially the references there) might be of interest to you:

    Mushy thinks he now can (Be Pushy) : at

  3. karigar Says:

    Enjoyed reading you at rediff after a while.

    If you care, check out my blog entry:

  4. karigar Says:

    Your writing is always energizing, & also full of valuable references. One such deeply influential to me was that of Rajiv Malhotra.

    Keep up the good work

  5. benjamin777 Says:

    You should appear in the MSM, or at least on my favorite: RealClearPolitics!

  6. fnadeem Says:

    Just want to know from Rajeev, who launched Osama and Saddam, wasn’t it US itself? And who is strategist US or the so called 3 allies, as per Rajeev.

    Its that US is not able to gulp the fact that their own discoveries (Osama and Saddam) are backlashing against them. Moreover, US is a bit sympathetic towards Pakistan owing to the fact that it doesn’t want to loose the all the gains US is getting from Indo-Pak rivalry. Doesn’t India has terrorist in Narendra Modi, Bal Thackeray, L.K. Advani, Vinay Katyar et al. Or it will be better to say that the latter are a bunch of Snatandharm fundamentalist.

    Think broadly please!

  7. darkstorm Says:

    fnadeem, yep, see how fundamentalist modi, katiyar etc are. Very bad people. They are not secular you see. I wonder if you would have still called them fundamentalists if they were muslim, even if they were going around raping and slaughtering Hindus. And for reasons as trivial as cartoons drawn by someone who is not even remotely Hindu.

  8. shahryar Says:

    @Farrukh Nadeem

    Perhaps you should learn to think widely about what “fundamentalist” means!

    “Fundamentalist” describes a movement to return to what is considered the defining or founding principles of the religion.

    So you can only have fundamentalists among those who follow Abrahamic (revealed) faiths and who oppose all innovation since their religions were established. To the fundamentalist muslim, Muhammad is the only possible guide. However his life of banditry, pedophilia, homicide, etc. is not considered a good example by the rational.

  9. phamitus Says:

    Any specific reason why you refer to Muslims as Mohammedans? Why not just Muslims?

  10. underboss Says:

    A person is Muslim and unhappy with America means he’s al-Qaeda?

    The over one billion global Muslim population is al-Qaeda?

    Today’s poll shows over 70% of Americans are also unhappy with Bush and his troop “surge”. This is why the recent election pushed out Bush supporters and brought in those who opposed Bush policies. Bush is at his record low approval ratings. Are all these Americans also al-Qaeda?

    People are not happy with the foreign policies of the US government not america itself. That doesn’t make them al-Qaeda.

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