A February 17, 2011 Washington Post story demonstrated how the U.S. military’s utter failure of imagination engendered the delusive — and dangerous — belief that U.S. largesse would solve a millennium of Afghan Muslim hatred of Jews and other infidels, and the related historic use of mosques to foment and physically supply murderous jihadism. In Kabul’s largest and most famous “blue” mosque, a distinguished cleric, Enayatullah Balegh, pledged support for “any plan that can defeat” foreign military forces in Afghanistan, excoriating what he called “the political power of these children of Jews.” Balegh, who is also a professor of Islamic law at Kabul University, stated in an interview, “I don’t think even a single Afghan is happy with the presence of the foreign military forces here.”
As a Pentagon expert on Islamic law, former Major Stephen Coughlin, observed in 2007:
If the Enemy in the War on Terror (WOT) states that he fights jihad in furtherance of Islamic causes that includes the imposition of Sharia law and the re-establishment of the Caliphate; And Islamic law on jihad exists and is available in English; Then Professionals with WOT responsibilities have an affirmative, personal, professional duty to know the enemy that includes ALL the knowable facts associated with the law of jihad.
Coughlin, a well-trained lawyer, further argued that such understanding by our military leaders is obligatory if they are to uphold their essential commission.
The Red Team report’s acknowledgement, no matter how buried, of Islam’s role in shaping the attitudes and actions of our allies and enemies can help us understand why Afghans are increasingly murdering their U.S. trainers and allies — and free us from the perilous politically correct puffery pitched by General Allen and his pusillanimous peers.