Michael Ledeen argues that Iran is trying to engineer a Bush defeat through their latest actions, including capturing three British naval vessels. He’s arguing that the Iranians will attack Iraqi ports, raise the price of oil, all in order to defeat Bush.
Looking at the terrorist actions of the past few weeks, I think he’s dead on. The terrorists know that if Bush is reelected it will be a mandate for his actions in the war on terrorism. It will mean that the restrictions that have prevented every single attempted attack on the US will remain. It means that the US will continue to fight against them across the globe. It means that they can no longer hide behind the UN.
That is why the terrorists are attacking the US with IEDs. They know that a direct engagement will never work, but they know that enough casualties and the US will run. This has been bin Laden’s strategy from the very beginning. This is why the terrorists are implicating the Saudis in their attacks – they know that useful idiots like Michael Moore will use that as proof that Bush is really a terror master himself. That’s why they’re attacking oil – to weaken the US economy and create a sense of discontent with the American people. It’s a clear strategy designed to unseat Bush and bring the war on terror to an abrupt start.
The terrorists would love nothing more than a return to the feckless and impotent foreign policy of the Clinton years in which a few cruise missile strikes substitute for actually fighting the terrorists where they live. They know that if they can play on the aversion to casualties and force doubt into the minds of the electorate, they can do politically what they could not militarily – defeat the United States.
Unfortunately it seems that bin Laden knows the US far better than we know ourselves.