Does the Arab Spring mean a cold winter for intelligence gathering?

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Interesting article in the UK’s Guardian yesterday about how pleased Al Qaeda is with the “Arab Spring.” Former CIA boss in charge of pursuing Osama bin Laden, Mr. Michael Scheuer, says that the revolts in the Arab world are having a devastating effect on the intelligence networks of the US and UK.  The western powers have been caught between supporting the “freedom” movements in Egypt, Libya, etc. and seeing their cultivated contacts and networks in the “war on terror” shrivel up along with the failing regimes.  This would be, methinks, a big part of the half-hearted American gestures concerning the brutalities of Assad in Syria.  Pursuing carnal, worldly solutions to our national problems (versus wholeheartedly seeking the aid and deliverance only God can provide) can blur our vision of just who the good guys and the bad guys are.  “The enemy of my enemy is my friend,” you know, and all that rot.

Check it out here.

13 thoughts on “Does the Arab Spring mean a cold winter for intelligence gathering?

  1. As I recall, one of the Tejanos had an answer to “the enemy of my enemy is my friend” (in The Alamo, the recent edition): “Santa Ana just wants Texas. These disgraces want the whole world.”

    Ah, unfettered realpolitik!

  2. Michael O'Byrne

    The US and UK should not have become involved in this mess. They have made a rod for their own backs because the probability is that what will replace the brutal distators overthrown is going to be worse than what has been there. Are we not seeing prophecy being fulfilled? How long till the Arab/Muslim confederation and the king of the South appear? Even now those who in what could be called the provisional government have made it clear, despite the help they received from the US and UK they will not extradite the man
    found guilty of the Lockerbie bombing. But it appears that man is now close to death and there are now doubts on his guilt. Nevertheless there appears to be little doubt that the new Libyan leadership will be more hardline that Gadaffi. The fact that most of the rebels are bearded coupled with the fact that extremist Muslims are all bearded may be an indication, however slight, that militant Islam and the Muslim Brotherhood will wield power in Libya.

  3. texasborn

    Mr. Smith, I have seen the phrase “Arab Spring” mentioned on a couple of web sites but there was no explanation of what it meant, so I do not yet know what it means. Would you please elucidate it for us ignorant ones? Thank you. (I have not clicked on your two links yet; they may explain the meaning of the phrase.) Thanks! (Re: Prov. 9:9, last part)

  4. Michael O'Byrne

    I believe the term is applied to describe the current uprisings in the Middle East – rebellions supposed to be for Western-style democracy. The application of the word Spring to resistance to autocratic governments originated from events in Czechoslovakia in 1968 when moderate members of the Czech communist party and government wanted to present a fotre face of communism to the world. It was named the Prague Spring and it was led by Alexander Dubcek. The revolt was crushed by the Soviet Union when troops and tanks were sent in by Lenoid Breznev the then Soviet leader. Many more years of communist oppression followed.

  5. Michael O'Byrne

    One word mistyped. I meant to write ” softer “, instead I wrote ” fotre “. There must be a term for that. Dyslexia is the term for being unable to identify some letters and dyscalculus where numbers are concerned. But choosing the right letters and putting them in the wrong order? What is that called? Stupidity?

  6. texasborn

    Michael, the activity in which you engaged in your mistyping is not stupidity; it’s called “voluntary anagramming”–words put in a separate order than originally intended that may or may not form a recognized word in the typist’s language. (I’m being kind.) The most number of four-letter words in the English language that I have found from anagramming another four-letter word is three: POTS, TOPS AND OPTS. A funny acronym for the word “STOP” is “STOP TEMPTING OUR POLICE!” (:-[D)

  7. Michael O'Byrne

    TEXASBORN, Thank you for the explanation of my ” condition “. Not fatal I presume!
    And as for my explanation – I was more aware of that part of history as I was, in my
    days of youth and into years I ought to have been more mature and wise, a communist
    sympathiser. Looking for a better world by means that couldn’t deliver utopia, but
    did inflict oppression and slaughter of millions in countries and on peoples by the
    false secular and atheistic prophets and proponents of the false gospel of Karl Marx,
    Lenin, Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot and the other butchers. But the way of man is not going
    to bring that transformed world. The way of Jesus Christ will!

  8. I was thinking that it started somewhere in the middle of two brotherw (troube) that is. Satan got in the middle of it and one brother killed another. Pretty much we have had war of one type or another ever since. I knw that my thoughts are not inline with the topic but, this is what the topic and the replys made me think of.

  9. Thomas

    Further evidence that God has withdrawn, or is withdrawing, His blessings and His protective hand from over our peoples. The sorts of misfortunes that others used to suffer to ensure we stayed on top are now happening to us as others ascend, or at least move into a position more conducive to their ascent.

    Off topic, followed a couple of links from the Arab Spring page, one on the new muscular Jesus http://www.guardian.co.uk/theguardian/2011/aug/26/jesus-macho-makeover

    and the other on the impact of Steve Jobs
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2011/aug/27/steve-jobs-apple-ipod-ipad

    which were interesting in their own right.

  10. Michael O'Byrne

    LINDALOOLOOKINGAHEAD, You have the kernel of it all. Satan delights in sowing the spirit of envy, suspicion, competitiveness and covetousness into our minds – the very hallmarks of his own character. It was this attitude that led to his rebellion against God and he has always had it toward mankind. At the first opportunity after the creation of Adam and Eve he attacked and subtly influenced Eve’s thinking slyly blending his with hers. Did he not influence her to envy God, cause her to suspect God’s motives, induce her into competing for God’s knowledge of good and evil which is certainly convetousness? Adam sinned by failing to counsel Eve and command her not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Can there be any doubt that as a result of being cast out of the Garden of Eden and being prevented from getting near to and eating of the tree of life that the blame game started between this first husband and wife? Surely this was the start of the so-called battle between the sexes? Satan’s attitudes have been with us ever since. But true Christians who have the mind that was in Christ Jesus have the opposite way of thinking. It is that of outgoing love and concern – the give and not the take mentality – and of the way of life of God. In the end God’s way will prevail!

  11. Michael O'Byrne

    Thomas, You are so right in saying God is withdrawing His blessings and protective hand from over our [ the Israelite descended ] peoples and that’s becaise we have rejected Him -His commandments, laws and statutes. This is especially of the the US, UK, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa – those of the British diaspora. I found the Guardian article offensive because of the image of Jesus per se and the fact there was an attempt to present a picture of Him in the first place. But the new ” muscular ” Jesus being presented by deceived people – a kind of ” Chuck Norris “, the macho Texas Ranger with a penchant for the violent arrest of criminals – is the very anthesis of the false mild-mannered, meek and wimpish Jesus people have been spoon-fed for centuries. Jesus was not the aggressive super anti-hero the current batch of false prophets is presenting just as the one we grew up with was a dangerous and decepetive myth. Sadly too many people will be fooled by the new ” image ” as milllions upon millions were led astray by the old ” idol.

    idol “.

  12. Well, that “macho Jesus” portrait was bizarre to say the least. But the concept does get something right: the kind of physique Jesus would’ve developed as a “carpenter” (in our terms more like a general contractor, which included stonemasonry for example).

    I think it was in COG-AIC’s Vision Magazine that I saw a blurb about what serious scholars have been proposing in the light of both the demands of Jesus’ trade and the anthropology that’s been done concerning the Jews of the time. Fascinatingly in the light of the following prophecy (which I don’t think was mentioned in context, although I could be wrong), one scholar inferred that Jesus would’ve been “as tough as a tree root and about as attractive”. Which, of course, the portrait given in that Guardian article didn’t quite match…they couldn’t quite get away from the ancient composite of several pagan gods in his countenance and hair style.

    (Isaiah 53:2 RSV) For he grew up before him like a young plant, and like a root out of dry ground;
    he had no form or comeliness that we should look at him, and no beauty that we should desire him.

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