Sergei Borisov: A “plot theory” looked at in Middle East

The USA is trying hard to win the Moslems over, but it seems to fail so far. Although Americans believe that Osama bin Laden was the chief mastermind behind the terrorist attacks, many in the Islamic world are inclined to a different point of view. According to the Christian Science Monitor, the “Israeli plot theory” has become most popular with Islamic countries. In this version, the terrorist attacks on America were organized by the Israeli Mossad intelligence service. The covert Israeli operation on US soil may have been designed to turn mass public opinion against Palestinian Arabs via an apparent terrorist attack on US interests that would give Israel the green light to implement a large scale military onslaught against the Palestinian Arab population.

Americans feel that they are hopelessly losing the PR battle unfolded after September 11th. They have to take pains to turn the Moslem minds and souls in the needed direction. After each message issued by bin Laden calling on Islam adherents to launch another battle with the infidels, American diplomats have to come out with refutations. But the “plot theories” are circulating even at the government level. Including the countries that Americans count to be their allies. There is nothing new in those theories. The Mossad has always been held responsible for many woes. Lack of proof of bin Laden’s guilt only generates new versions. Arab newspapers in many countries claim that the attacks against the USA were the work of Zionists who control the world economy, mass media, and politics. President Bush has become a hero of one of those theories – the terrorist attacks and the subsequent war in Afghanistan have allegedly played into his hands. In this way, the people are supposed to forget about the torturous vote counts during the presidential election.

Also, Arab analysts do not forget the Japanese trace. In their view, the WTC buildings were destroyed by Japanese kamikazes, thus avenging themselves for Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombardments. Besides, American “people militia” members may have reacted in such a cruel way to the assassination of Timothy McWeigh, Arab commentators say. There are rumours circulating in the Middle East that the attacks may have been organized in Russia and China, the countries that oppose US plans to build a new space shield.

According to the Christian Science Monitor, the plot theories are easily born in countries where the news flows is under tight government control. Analysts have to read between lines and be guided by the ancient “qui prodest” formula.

Americans have nothing to offer the public to counter those unfounded theories. Trying to affect the Moslems’ overall sentiment, the US government hires PR experts from private firms. The experts are given tasks that are almost impossible to solve. Many Arabs in the Middle East can hardly perceive of the USA striving for a just and lasting peace in the region. On the contrary, the Moslems think that America wages a war against Islam to ensure Israel’s security. In this context, President Bush’s words of a “crusade” are being mentioned. Even if the American PR efforts succeeds in reorienting Arab minds at the government level, those efforts will hardly change anything on the streets. The most peculiar theory being discussed at this level is the “warning theory." Jews allegedly were warned against turning up at work at the World Trade Center on September 11th. In this version, the terrorist attacks were prepared by the Mossad in order to force the US together with Israel to launch a joint campaign against Islam in Afghanistan and Palestine. Few believe that Osama could organize such large-scale attacks sitting in his cave. The September 11th attacks are described as being too sophisticated for a lone terrorist group to execute. This attack required a high level of military precision and the resources of an advanced intelligence agency. In addition, the attackers would have needed to be extremely familiar with both air force one flight operations, civil airline flight paths, and aerial assault tactics on sensitive US cities like Washington. Until America presents direct proof of bin Laden’s guilt, he must be held innocent, the Moslems rightfully think. A psychological war is part of the war against the Taliban. The more Americans lose on the PR front, the harder it is for them to fight in the mountains of Afghanistan.

Sergei Borisov PRAVDA.Ru

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