I recently had a conversation with someone on the subject of foreign policy and the wars that we are involved with in the Middle East.
I would like to just say that a number of years ago, I caught on to Dr. Paul's foreign policy views and how out of control it has become. I rather recently read "Blowback" by Chalmers Johnson, where he (Chalmers) explains the consequences of our military empire around the world and how it actually harms us in the long run. I would also like to explain that I am in agreement with Dr. Paul that we shouldn't be nation building in Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen, Libya, Pakistan, etc. That we shouldn't have 600 hundred bases (Ron's wrong on his assessment of 900) in 130 nations because it makes us less safe, bankrupts us, and stretches us too thinly (sp?) around the world. I agree that we should only go to war with a Declaration of War. I also agree that our actions in the Middle East have contributed to Al Qaeda's success in recruiting members.
Although I agree with all of this, could Dr. Paul be misreading the threat of radical Islam? Why I bring this up is because of what I originally said, that I had a discussion with someone who advertised the idea that it is not our actions, rather that Islamists have a history of invading other nations and trying to impose their religion and religious laws onto other nations (Spain, France, England, etc.) The guy used the Ottoman Empire as an example and the fact that Monaco has come under threat from radical Islam. I countered his argument on the Otto Empire with the fact that any and every empire tries to impose their will on foreign lands and lands that they invade. But with regards to his Monaco statement, I didn't know enough on the subject to repudiate him. Moreover, I know there are radical groups in Indonesia, Philippines, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Lebanon, Syria, among others that threaten the people. This brings me to the question that is the title of this thread, could Dr. Paul be wrong or underestimate the threat of radical Islam?
Now, I want to say that I know that there are other radical terrorist groups all over the world, in Russia, eastern Europe, and possibly in this country, but I feel there is a bigger threat/emphasis on Islam than any other (maybe promoted by our media).
I want to finish by saying that I side with Dr. Paul on this issue, but am beginning to question where I stand on this issue as it relates to the actual threat and whether our actions are just one aspect of many that leads to these terrorist actions. This does not mean that all the things that I agree with Dr. Paul on, with regards to foreign policy (as listed above) I would disagree with. I am saying just on the potential threat of radical Islam and how it translates into terrorism.
If you could answer: could Dr. Paul be wrong or underestimate the threat of radical Islam?
And please, no generalities. I would like this to be a very potent discussion with information and analysis.