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Lecture 6: Micro Origin of 911 (I) – The Provocative Strategy of Al-Qaeda?. 17 th February 2003 (Monday). Session Arrangement. T1: 10:00-11:00am Room 4472 [s] T2A: 11:00-11:50am Room 1403 [k] T2B: 11:00-11:50am Room 4472 [s] T3A: 12:00-12:50pm Room 4472 [k]

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lecture 6 micro origin of 911 i the provocative strategy of al qaeda

Lecture 6: Micro Origin of 911 (I) –The Provocative Strategy of Al-Qaeda?

17th February 2003 (Monday)

session arrangement
Session Arrangement
  • T1: 10:00-11:00am Room 4472 [s]
  • T2A: 11:00-11:50am Room 1403 [k]
  • T2B: 11:00-11:50am Room 4472 [s]
  • T3A: 12:00-12:50pm Room 4472 [k]
  • T3B: 12:00-12:50pm Room 3301A [s]
macro vs micro origins
Macro Vs Micro Origins
  • George W Bush:

Why do they hate us so much?

  • Macro Origins:
    • Long-term Historical Development
    • Islamic Fundamentalism, Clash of Civilization, the American Pride…
  • Micro Origins:
    • Why was 911 arranged that way?
    • Why did Osama Bin Laden arrange the attack despite his expectation of American revenge?
    • Laden Conspiracy; Bush Conspiracy; No Conspiracies…
structure of lecture 6
Structure of Lecture 6:
  • Does the Methodology of 911 Matter?
  • 2 Possible Plans of Osama Bin Laden
  • Minimalist Plan: Omar Doctrine
  • Maximalist Plan: The Grand Strategy
  • Conclusion: The “Taoist Strategy”
alternatives of 911
Alternatives of 911
  • Assassination of President?
  • Overseas Bombing?
  • Ally with Anti-American Powers?
  • Self-strengthening Movement?
  • Cultural/ Psychological Attack?
does methodology matter
Does Methodology Matter?
  • Doesn’t matter: The Invisible Hands Theory
  • Does matters: The Marxist History
    • Capitalism  Imperialism  Socialism
    • Class Consciousness against Exploiters
  • Some Yes, Some No
    • Short-term Vs Long-term History
we can t truly understand the planners goals of the decision makers
We Can’t Truly Understand the Planners: Goals of the Decision-makers
  • Type 1: Goals on Paper
  • Type 2: Goals by Research
  • Type 3: Conspiracy Theories
    • Goals not-researchable
    • The American Conspiracy Theory
    • The Al-Qaeda Conspiracy Theory
  • Goals of Al-Qaeda: Which Level?
assigned readings
Assigned Readings
  • Main Text: Walter Laqueur: “Left, Right, and Beyond – the Changing Face of Terror” (H&R P.71-82)
  • Supplementary Text: Tariq Ali: The Clash of Fundamentalisms. Chapter 20: The September Surprise. (P.290-302).
the minimal argument
The Minimal Argument
  • Laden has more capabilities:
    • Unconventional Weapons
    • Jihad
    • The Trend of Escalation
  • “HK Military Expert”: “more to come”
  • Aim: To drive America out of the Middle East
the maximal argument
The Maximal Argument
  • Laden has no more capabilities:
    • The Vacuum of US Intelligence
    • Eradication of Al-Qaeda Headquarters
    • Lacking in Mass Destruction Weapons
  • Pentagon (e.g. Wesley Clark):
    • No more of the same scale
  • Aim: to change the world
precedence monroe doctrine 1825
Precedence: Monroe Doctrine (1825)
  • Latin America (Central + South America)
  • America’s Sphere of Interest
  • End of Napoleonic War (1815)

 End of Spanish Colonial Empire (1820s)

  • President James Monroe:

“America is America’s America” (1825)

the omar doctrine
The “Omar Doctrine”
  • “If American wants to root out terrorism and intimidation, then it should withdraw its force from the Gulf and demonstrate neutrality over the issue of Palestine.”

-- Omar, Head of Taliban (Sept 24 2001)

message from the omar doctrine
Message from the Omar Doctrine
  • “Middle East is Islam’s Middle East”
  • Osama Bin Laden’s Video Speeches
  • Omar instead of Laden:
    • Victim Vs Aggressor
grand strategy
“Grand Strategy”
  • Professor Paul Kennedy:

“Grand Strategy” in Cold War

  • “War of Unlimited Boundaries” by Chinese
  • Provocative Strategy
    • The strategy to unite the whole world against the United States
    • To provoke the Americans at 911
    • The Americans will fight back in an insane manner and angered the whole world
obl step 1 hysteria of america
OBL Step 1: Hysteria of America
  • Human Loss/ Civilian Loss

Vs Military Loss/ Assassination

  • Hysteria of Mass Opinion
    • Getting out from the Vietnam War Shadow
  • Hysteria of Government
  • Extremist Foreign Policies
  • Patriotism, Marginalization of Leftists
  • New McCarthyism against the Muslims…
obl step 2 alienation of arabic allies
OBL Step 2: Alienation of Arabic Allies
  • Sentiments of Muslims  Unification
  • Crisis of Pro-Western Arabic Governments
  • Coups d’etat?
    • Saudi Arabia: the money
      • Crown Prince Abdullah’s Dilemma
    • Pakistan: the nuclear arsenal
      • General Pervez Musharraf:
      • Military Dictatorship by American Endorsement + Popular Election
obl step 3 alienation of western allies
OBL Step 3:Alienation of Western Allies
  • Genuine Anti-war Movements
  • Convince American Allies of the “Next Step of America”: towards its allies as well
  • Neutralization of the Western Bloc
    • France: UN Veto power; The Uncompromising History…
    • Germany: Real Leader of Europe…
    • Turkey: Internal Security Concern…
obl step 4 revolution of world order
OBL Step 4: Revolution of World Order
  • Anti-Americanism as a New Culture:
    • Message from the Anti-war Demonstration
    • Message from the Internet
  • Experience of Cultural Revolution in China:
    • From “Great Disorder” to the “Great Order”
  • Assumptions under Chaos Theory
  • 2001-2003: Successful?
osama bin laden benefit of the doubt
Osama Bin Laden: Benefit of the Doubt
  • A “Calculative Planner”:

the planner who can see the outcome --

    • Computer Simulation/ RISK
    • McArthur: I’ll be Back!
  • A “Messianic Planner”:

the planner who can’t see the outcome --

    • “Statements of Wisdom”
    • Jesus: fall of Roman Empire
taoism in international relations
Taoism in International Relations
  • Philosophy of Lao Zi’s Tao Te Jing:
    • “The Way can be told is not the Way.” (Cp.1)
    • “The Weak conceal its ability to overcome the Strong.” (Cp.36)
  • Osama Bin Laden: Invite the American Invasion under Taoism?
analogy of the business world
Analogy of the Business World
  • Stock Market
  • Unfriendly bid by small potatoes 
  • Hysterias fight back by Tycoons 
  • Chain Effects: sympathy/ allies/ overreach of tycoons… favorable to small potatoes
  • Revolution of Stock Market
laden s grand strategy
…Laden’s Grand Strategy
  • An Unfinished Story
  • Patience!
the end

~~The End~~

Thank you for attending