Michael Scheuer argues that the Iraq War has been a huge setback to the United States' War on Terror, making the enemy stronger and altering the geopolitical landscape in ways that are profoundly harmful to US interests and security concerns.
A twenty-two-year CIA counterterrorism officer, Michael Scheuer headed the agency's Osama bin Laden unit, managed its covert-action operations, and authored its rendition program.
In 2004, frustrated with the shortcomings of the 9/11 commission, Scheuer left his position at the CIA so that he could warn the American people of the dangers we still face from terrorist attacks and how we can correct the mistakes of the past in order to protect ourselves in the future.
In his new book, Marching Toward Hell: America and Islam After Iraq, Scheuer takes on the questions of "What went wrong?" and "How can we fix this?" and proposes a plan to salvage the damage that has already been done and get American strategy back on track- World Affairs Council of Northern California
Major James M. Myatt
Major General James M. "Mike" Myatt has achieved prominence in the military resulting in national recognition by his peers and radiating to his alma mater. Mike has served his country with honor and has the distinction of being the youngest man in the history of the Marine Corps to be promoted to the rank of General.
Michael Scheuer is a twenty-plus-year CIA counterterrorism officer who was involved in managing some of the United States' largest and most important covert action programs in the Islamic world.
From 1996 to 1999, he served as the chief of the Osama bin Laden tracking unit at the Counterterrorist Center. He then worked as Special Adviser to the Chief of the bin Laden unit from September 2001 to November 2004, and was the first chief of the US government's rendition program.
He resigned from the CIA in 2004. He is the author of the 2004 New York Times bestseller Imperial Hubris, and is currently an Adjunct Professor of Security Studies at Georgetown University and a Senior Fellow at the Jamestown Foundation, writing regularly for its online publication Global Terrorism Analysis.
Michael Scheuer points to specific U.S. foreign policy as the motivation for Osama bin Laden's terrorism, not a hatred for freedom and liberty. He also expresses fear that the remaining presidential candidates will only continue the status quo.
Say I'm working at N.S.A. Somebody
puts a code on my desk, something nobody
else can break. So I take a shot at
it and maybe I break it. And I'm real
happy with myself, 'cause I did my job
well. But maybe that code was the
location of some rebel army in North
Africa or the Middle East. Once they
have that location, they bomb the
village where the rebels were hiding
and fifteen hundred people I never had
a problem with get killed.
Now the politicians are sayin' "send
in the Marines to secure the area"
'cause they don't give a shit. It
won't be their kid over there, gettin'
shot. Just like it wasn't them when
their number got called, 'cause they
were pullin' a tour in the National
Guard. It'll be some guy from Southie
takin' shrapnel in the ass. And he
comes home to find that the plant he
used to work at got exported to the
country he just got back from.
And the guy who put the shrapnel in
his ass got his old job, 'cause he'll
work for fifteen cents a day and no
Meanwhile my buddy from Southie realizes
the only reason he was over there was
so we could install a government that
would sell us oil at a good price.
And of course the oil companies used
the skirmish to scare up oil prices so
they could turn a quick buck. A cute,
little ancillary benefit for them but
it ain't helping my buddy at two-fifty
a gallon. And naturally they're takin'
their sweet time bringin' the oil back
and maybe even took the liberty of
hiring an alcoholic skipper who likes
to drink seven and sevens and play
slalom with the icebergs and it ain't
too long 'til he hits one, spills the
oil, and kills all the sea-life in the
North Atlantic. So my buddy's out of
work and he can't afford to drive so
he's got to walk to the job interviews
which sucks 'cause the shrapnel in his
ass is givin' him chronic hemorrhoids.
And meanwhile he's starvin' 'cause every
time he tries to get a bite to eat the
only blue-plate special they're servin'
is North Atlantic scrod with Quaker State.
So what'd I think? I'm holdin' out
for somethin' better. I figure I'll
eliminate the middle man. Why not
just shoot my buddy, take his job and
give it to his sworn enemy, hike up
gas prices, bomb a village, club a
baby seal, hit the hash pipe and join
the National Guard? Christ, I could
be elected President.