It’s not necessary to agree with everything that is written in this article from the London Observer to find it a fascinating and perceptive read. Amongst the key ideas:
“…there seems to be a fundamental misunderstanding of where the sophistication of Jihad International comes from. It is not in its ingenious and despicable skill in butchering innocent civilians, or even in its apparently formidable organisational skills, which in reality may be far less formidable than assumed, but in syndicating and marketing its brand of terror. This is not the old terrorism of the IRA or ETA, with structures, doctrines and pseudo-military organization. What Bush and Blair and all their allies do not understand is that is the idea of al-Qaeda, not its physical reality, that is the key, an idea which has taken deep root in countries from Afghanistan to South East Asia and Africa.”
There’s a lot to this, I fear.