Thursday, January 12, 2012

Haq the Hack

Maybe you would prefer us to

take a piece of Central Africa or Uruguay?

Not Egypt, thank you,

we tried that once and it was not a success

--Little Drummer Girl

And when the planes and tanks and guns

have done all that they can do

And the mighty bombs have rained and failed

Still the helpful hand above,

on the weapon made of love

And against him none on earth prevail

--Weapon of Prayer
, Notting Hillbillies

The war advocates will hail the conviction of Haq as yet another glorious blow against Terror, but Ranger doesn't see it that way, according to U.S. Army terrorism doctrine:

"A Pakistani man convicted on terrorism charges has been sentenced to more than four years in jail in the United States over a plot to smuggle a member of the Pakistani Taliban into the country.

"'Haq conspired with others to smuggle into the United States an individual who was believed to be a member of a foreign terrorist organisation,' Assistant Attorney General Lanny Breuer said in a statement:

"Such conduct presents a serious threat to our national security."

"The US Justice Department said undercover law enforcement agents had directed 'confidential sources' to contact the three men —then residing in Ecuador —to request help in smuggling a fictitious individual, said to be a member of the Pakistani Taliban, into the United States" (US Sentences Pakistani over Taliban Smuggling Plot).

Haq was small potatoes, and when a U.S. Department of Justice prosecutor believes that a crazy wannabe or petty profiteer is a threat to our internal security, we have lost our way. Were these three men convicted as "material supporters" simply dupes, fools, wannabes, opportunists our for a quick buck, or were they operational assets? We will look at terrorist doctrine to make the determination.

While a Subject Matter Expert in Terrorism Counteraction (TC/A), Ranger was privileged to be mentored by Lieutenant Colonel Preston Funkhouser, and he co-wrote with Major Jim Holden-Rhodes a U.S. Army training circular entitled, "Intelligence Analysis in Terrorism Counteraction". He knows a thing or two about terrorism.

Let us begin with an entry class,
"Terrorist Organization and Tactics". Ranger's version differs from what you will see from Jack Baeur's "24", The Unit or NCIS.

A triangle represents the gross strata of a terrorist organization; within that hierarchy there are sub-units and inter-connected cells, aimed at minimizing their exposure to government counter-policies. At the apex, the smallest number are "active operational assets"; the middle is composed of the "active support", while the base represents the "passive support".

Think Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Pakistan or any other harbor for terrorists: Can the U.S. jail every active and passive supporter of terrorism, especially that of the Islamic extremist stripe? When 50% of Egypt's new Parliament is 50% Islamic Brotherhood and 25% radical Islamist, quashing that impulse is not a likely prospect.

These three men were not members of the tip of the pyramid; the cellular organization of terror groups would not countenance such bumbling activity. The Central Intelligence Agency, Defense Intelligence Agency and Homeland Security may recruit idiots off the street, but a serious terror unit will NEVER associate on any level with a person that has not risen through the pyramid, thereby proving their longitudinal loyalty.

The only exception is when a patsy is needed to take the fall.

Since retiring, Ranger has modified a small portion of his thinking regarding the tip of the pyramid -- the operational elements of the current threat, which we will call "al Qaeda", though he uneasily hangs that tag. It seems that U.S. laws attacking the material support for terrorism are useless to breaking up the operational capabilities of any organization. It is analogous to killing a cook in a U.S. mess hall and expecting that action to obstruct a combat Brigade from being operational.

The tip will include a political arm which blends into the active portion of the unit. There will be a bleed-over effect, and these people are often legitimate or semi-legitimate outlets for the group, as Sinn Fein was for the Irish Republican Army, for example.

In addition, there is a military wing along with the Holy Grail -- the key personnel forming the backbone and operational assets of the group. (Operational leaders need not be shooters, and therefore are not subject to battlefield loss.) The brains may reside in the active support; the political and military wings may coordinate to conduct operations beyond the scope and abilities of the military wing operating alone.

That is when you see operations like those of 9-11-01.

NEXT: More on operational assets and organization configuration.

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Anonymous CholoAzul said...


Every bit as relevant back then.

Thursday, January 12, 2012 at 1:09:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Ghost Dansing said...

Weapon Of Prayer

Thursday, January 12, 2012 at 5:44:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...

You both knew it was the Louvin Bros. -- bravo. I saw the tune on an old gospel list of many war songs.

I just loved the new group's name ...

Thursday, January 12, 2012 at 7:38:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Meanwhile, The USMC is doing its best to widen the base of the pyramid:


"they may have just slaughtered those guys and that's fine...but...."

Really, Ollie? Just fine? oorah! Who were those guys? The dead shot up guys that were getting pissed on, I mean. I don't see any web gear or weapons on or near the bodies. maybe these were removed and are off camera. maybe. But isn't it is wonderful to have Ollie North define for us what is "outside the norm".

Thursday, January 12, 2012 at 8:06:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


As usual he is full of shit. I am kind of insulted that they would have someone of Ollie's background explaining these things to us while acting as an apologist for the USMC. It's almost like......a sick joke? An subtle admission that these things are not "outside the norm"? I don't know, I can't quite put my finger on it....

Put a bunch of high testosterone, highly trained, highly indoctrinated, volunteer killers in a foreign land and guess what, they will kill the indig.s.

The USMC is an excellent fighting force. The best (sorry Jim). If you have a fanatical obvious enemy fielding a uniformed army,prepared for set piece battle, like the Japanese circa WW2, then there is no better outfit to send in to assualt and kill them all than the USMC.

Unfortunately, that ethos, which made the Marines so successful in the pacific in WW2 is still drilled into every grunt's head today (and grunt culture reinforces it constantly); when a more delicate approach is needed (who cared if Marines yanking gold teeth out of jap corpes was SOP?).

I guaruntee this was not an isolated incident. In fact, it is common enough that these particular Marines apparently didn't think video recording the event was something to avoid doing.

The base of the pyramid will expand - has been expanding - as a result of this and many other incidents. From the base there will be talent that rises up to the apex. It is a perpetual cycle.

There is no end to this given the current approach.

All of the suicide bombers tell me that "they are deliberately showing us that they aren't afraid of death. Not being afraid of death, how will Marines scare them? And the only way for the Marines to succeed is to kill 'em all;hich they would be happy to do if so ordered. But we aren't going to issue that order because that would be a genocide (religiocide?) that would make Hitler look normal; if not mild.

So we use entrapment to bust some punk ass America hating petty profiteer because we are grasping at straws trying desperately to look like we are tough and gaining ground and doing something...anything.

The solution must come ultimately through diplomacy. Give them enough of what they want that they will self police their own radical elements; perhaps even cooperating with us if, for no other reason, than to perserve what they are getting and is in their best interest and is working for them. When everyone has guns and no one is afraid of using them it is usually better to deal than to steal.

What do these guys want? OBL was pretty direct about his demands. maybe he was a psychotic liar and would go on commanding terrorist attacks even if he got it all. Maybe. But what did he, as spokesman for AQ ask for? US military out of Muslim lands. OK. Why not grant that? End of "apostate" gov'ts in the ME. That is their business and recent events seem to be heading towards a an end of the old regimes and a more prominent presence of fundementalist groups in power (e.g. Egypt, Hamas, etc). So that is going to happen any how. What else oh yeah, Israel. We could back off supporting Israel unless they act like the democracy they are supposed to be; granting rights to non-jewish citizens and making good in other aspects concerning Arabs/Palistinians. And we could stop screwing with Iran as thy pose no threat to us.

In return they contract to sell us the oil they need to sell. Otherwise, live and let live. The USA gets back to the business of taking care of its own internal problems.

Some people with power and means stand to lose a lot of money in this scenario. There is a job for the Marine snipers - and they can piss on those guys too.


Thursday, January 12, 2012 at 8:07:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

i've done a post on the pissing contest.
i will not cmt until after it's posted.
Lisa is out of town so i'll be behind the news cycle, but that's where i belong.

Friday, January 13, 2012 at 8:53:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

Ollie North does a piece in SOF mag every month. read it sometime.
he's a wind up doll.
if he's what a Marine should be then you're in trouble.
remember he's an Academy grad and not just a avg Marine.
my take on this incident should be predictable.

in this Haq article there is one avenue of approach that i have deliberately left in my logic/analysis to see if anybody catches it. it's a key alternate analysis to my viewpoint.

by now you can be my understudy.

Friday, January 13, 2012 at 8:58:00 AM GMT-5  

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