Yep. All Muslims want to kill all Americans. We have to be over there so they don't come over here. Whatever.
I've met a few Muslims, and as far as I could tell, none of them wanted to kill even a single American. In fact, some of them seemed like pretty decent people. What's really amazing is that none of them were terrorists. They were just ordinary people trying to make a living right here in America without shooting anyone or blowing anything up.
Terrorists are bullies, and like all other bullies, they harass you for one of two reasons: to provoke a fight or to prevent a fight. Call them the Fighting Bully and the Intimidating Bully. Saddam Hussein seemed to be of the latter sort. So too are most governments, including those of Afghanistan and Iraq. They use violence to cow and pacify. For the most part, we have absolutely nothing to worry about from them. They make a lot of noise about the Great Devil in the West, because we are a useful tool to keep their people in a state of perpetual fear. It's the same way Washington uses al Qaeda and the Taliban. They scream and threaten, and their people might dance in the streets when our buildings burn down, but most of them aren't so stupid as to want real war with us. If you stand up to the Intimidating Bully, he will almost always back down. If he doesn't, then spill some blood. Learn to speak his language, and he'll start to listen.
If the media reports are to be believed, then Osama bin Ladin is the other sort of bully, the kind who wants to fight. They pick at you until you lash out, providing them with a public excuse to try to really hurt you. This is the kind of bully who won't back down if you stick up for yourself. Unfortunately, he's almost always more than you can handle, or at least he believes he is, which is often just as bad. You can do one of two things with the Fighting Bully. You can put him down hard or you can change the rules. Don't give him the reaction he wants. Give him something completely unexpected. Does he want a military showdown? Offer him Jelly Bellies with one hand, while your other hand pays someone else to knock him over the head from behind.
The Bush method of dealing with terrorists is stupid. If the party line on 9/11 is accurate then a war in the Middle East is exactly what al Qaeda wanted. Iraq was never a threat to the United States, neither was the Taliban. Operation Iraqi Freedom never had anything to do with anyone's freedom--especially not ours--and everything to do with pride and greed. Ron Paul's take on foreign policy is exactly right on this. If you aren't going to declare war and execute it ruthlessly, then get the heck out. Offer Afghanistan some Jelly Bellies and issue some letters of marque and reprisal. Smuggle in a few truckloads of Cosmo every month. That would really teach them.
Now we have two probably unwinnable wars going on, wide open borders, and every reason in the world for a thousand and one Arabian terrorists to want to cross them. We went over there so we wouldn't have to fight them over here? That's the stupidest thing I've ever heard.
The truth is that Bush and company want to keep you scared. They make up boogeymen so you'll cower under your blanky and cry for Big Brother to make you safe. They never intended to free Iraq or to defeat terror. They intended to promote terror, because Bush is every bit the Intimidating Bully.