Borrowing a page from North Vietnamese General Vo Nguyen Giap, Osama bin Laden is making the US and European "peace" movement an instrument of his strategy.
The al Qaeda leader's most recent tape, aired on Al Jazeera April 15, "appeared to mark a new strategy of trying to manipulate antiwar sentiment in Europe to bring pressure on governments that support the United States," according to the Washington Post.
Spanish voters' election of an anti-American socialist in the days following the March train bombings in Madrid encouraged al Qaeda. In his tape, the Post reports, "Bin Laden refers to demonstrations in Europe as 'positive interaction' and mentions 'opinion polls, which indicate that most European peoples want peace.'"
Bin Laden is openly trying to exploit politicial divisions in Europe and the US in the way that General Giap counted on the American "peace" movement to weaken the American people's resolve even though they were winning the war. Former North Vietnamese General Staff officer Bui Tin once said that the "peace" movement was "essential to our strategy."
The open support of Hanoi by Jane Fonda, former Attorney General Ramsey Clark (now head of International ANSWER, which coordinates the largest protests) and others "gave us confidence that we should hold on in the face of battlefield reverses," Bui Tin said. "Through dissent and protest," the US "lost the ability to mobilize a will to win."