Sunday, January 03, 2016

Their own creation

The American political media apparatus spent two weeks discussing the possibility -- false when it was first proposed by Hillary Clinton -- that ISIS might use Donald Trump as a recruitment tool in a video. Now they're reporting the news that the Somali al Qaeda affiliate al Shabaab (which is not ISIS, but anyway) had the idea of putting Donald Trump in one of their videos! As usual, the self-sustaining idiocy is obscuring the substantive information. In this case, the star of the al Shabaab video is not Trump, but Anwar al-Awlaki, the man who was inspiring Islamist terrorist attacks long before inspiring terrorist attacks was formally declared a thing. The fact that al-Awlaki's influence has clearly jumped the Gulf of Aden from Yemen to Somalia illustrates again a point laid out in this New York Times Sunday magazine piece from a few months ago: President Obama's drone strike against al-Awlaki was both constitutionally dubious and strategically a mistake, since his influence has only grown since his death.

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