Saturday, August 7, 2010

Variations on a theme

A comment I left at tdaxp in June 2005:

We are in a 4GW war with Islamic fundementalists. This is a state vs. a non-state actor. And this is not only a war that involves violent action, but it's also a war of ideas. The challenge that we face is in providing an alternative vision to what the jihadists are providing. Now there's been a lot of talk on blogs about the inadequacies of American public diplomacy. The reality is that we don't have time to wait for the politicians and bureaucrats in public diplomacy to get with the program. So what if another level were created, another level made up of non-state actors within the US, that were designed to fight the ideological war (no violence that's the state's monopoly). These organizations would not be subject to the political and bureaucratic labyrinths, but would pursue the ideological war independently. They would be entrepreneurial and able to adapt and respond quickly as circumstances changed. Al Qaeda has adapted itself to take advantage of the characteristics of our free society. What if we marshalled the characteristics of the free society to our benefit? The entrepreneurship, decentralization, the "chaos" of civil society.

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