Reply to Marc Cooper

Louis Proyect lnp3 at
Fri Sep 13 17:40:56 MDT 2002

Jon Johanning wrote:

> Yes, but, unless you have another theory about 9/11, it was done by
> al-Qaeda, and it was certainly a significant event, whatever else
> might be said about it. I would be interested in a "deeper analysis"
> of al-Qaeda, if you have one.

My analysis of al-Qaeda? This is a Islamic-narodnik formation that
recruits from oil state petty-bourgeoisie elements radicalized by:

--a sharp decrease in income ("In the oil boom years of the late 1970's
and early 1980's, Prince Khalid's family presided over a country whose
per capita income rocketed to $22,000. It is now roughly one-third

--resentment over imperialist presence in the traditional holy land of

--resentment over Zionism.

--resentment over the continuing suffering of Iraq.

People like Hitchens, Cooper and Alterman make the case, which is
disseminated like a drumbeat by the mainstream media, that this is about
clerical fascism, hatred of Disneyland and Madonna videos, etc. This is
from bin-Laden's statement last October. If this sounds like simon-pure
cultural conservatism to you, then we have to agree to disagree:

"Millions of innocent children are being killed as I speak. They are
being killed in Iraq without committing any sins, and we don't hear
condemnation or a fatwa [religious decree] from the rulers. In these
days, Israeli tanks infest Palestine--in Jenin, Ramallah, Rafah, Beit
Jalla, and other places in the land of Islam--and we don't hear anyone
raising his voice or moving a limb.

"When the sword comes down [on America], after 80 years, hypocrisy rears
its ugly head. They deplore and they lament for those killers, who have
abused the blood, honor and sanctuaries of Muslims. The least that can
be said about those people is that they are debauched. They have
followed injustice. They supported the butcher over the victim, the
oppressor over the innocent child. May God show them his wrath and give
them what they deserve.

"I say that the situation is clear and obvious after this event, after
the senior officials have spoken in America, starting with the head of
infidels worldwide, Bush, and those with him. They have come out in
force with their men and have turned even the countries that belong to
Islam to this treachery, and they want to wag their tail at God, to
fight Islam, to suppress people in the name of terrorism."


Louis Proyect

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