Every once in a while Dad refers to me as a “terrorist”. Now I wasn’t altogether real sure what bein’ a terrorist meant until I overheard him explainin’ it to the Missus one day. It was kinda complicated but she seemed to understand most of it.
He started by talkin’ about that Usama bin Laden guy. Back around 1989 bin Laden formed this militant Islamist organization, al-Qaeda (which means “the base”), and had himself installed as the Emir (or commander) since it was mainly his idea and he was the driving financial resource. It’s a non-state but multinational network of Sunni Muslims that push a movement for global jihad and a real strict interpretation of sharia law. They’ve created a few fatwas (binding religious edicts) even though they aren’t even bona fide spiritual leaders.
Dad said that since UBL was terminated those al-Qaeda boys are runnin’ around like chickens with their heads cut off; always lookin’ up for Predator drones with Hellfire missiles or a team of Navy SEALs droppin’ in to take out another leader. They’re slippery and still gettin’ help from governments in Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia and a couple other miserable places.
Dad says that thanks to guys like Hank Crumpton and Cofer Black who got the CIA on the right track a few years ago, he thinks they’ll be screwin’ up al-Qaeda’s plans for quite a while.
Then there’s them Taliban fellas (Dad says that Taliban means “students”) in Afghanistan. They’re radical Islamists, too, who got their start in the early to mid-nineties. Their honcho is a guy named Mullah Mohammed Omar. Before them, these guys were feuding warlords who formed the Mujahideen to get the Soviets out of their country. Not all the Pashtun tribes subscribed to this fundamentalist regime (President Hamid Karzai’s father was a Pashtun chief and was killed by the Taliban) and were glad to boot ‘em out of power after a couple of years.
It was only natural that them Taliban and al-Qaeda boys would end up in cahoots.
The Taliban wants us out of their country so they can party like its 1012 (instead of 2012). And al-Qaeda wants to cause problems on a global scale because they think everybody but them is an infidel.
Dad says that if we can ever get ol’ Omar to sit down and talk, a lot of the Taliban problems would go away.
There’s also them Hezbollah goobers runnin’ around the Levant. They’re militant Shi’a Muslims that get their support mostly from Iran and Syria. (Dad don’t have much good to say about that Syrian connection. I heard him mumblin’ ‘bout his 201 file and havin’ too many bad memories in Syria. He said he’d be glad to go back to bein’ a GS-13 (whatever that is) and do it all again, though, as long he had a handful of Cipro tablets!)
Dad said that our CIA SAD boys, a few good DIA operatives and our DOD special forces do a nice job of cooperatin’ with each other these days to smack these bad boys around. He said that Israel’s Shin Bet (domestic security agency, kinda like our FBI), Aman (military intelligence, like our DIA) and Mossad (foreign intelligence, like our CIA) are ‘bout the best there are at keepin’ ‘em busy, too.
Even with all that explainin’, I think the kitty, Miss Lula Belle, still figures I’m a terrorist, too.