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Al Qaeda Attacks Spain

Terrorist attacks killed over 190 people in Spain on March 11th, the two-and-a-half year anniversary of the Sept. 11th attacks. Initial reports blamed it on the ETA separatist movement, but it wasn't their style and there has been a somewhat credible claim of responsibility by Al Qaeda. It is in their style — multiple simultaneous attacks, the symbolic significance (of the date in this case), and the size of the death toll.

Al Qaeda does not just hate the United States and Israel. By their own declaration, this is an ideological war. The kind of culture they want to create — remember Afghanistan? — is incompatible with Western civilization. We are all heathens and must convert or die. They are unwilling to coexist. Peaceful coexistence is a Western value that they do not share; it is repugnant to them.

The whole of Western civilization is their enemy, and they will attack wherever they are able. New York City, Bali, and Madrid are all targets. They call the United States the Great Satan, but do not confuse being the most prominent target with being the only target.

This war has never been about "what we did to them" to "deserve" their hatred. It has always been about their failed, death-worshiping ideology. If you're still searching for a reason they would attack Spain, check your premises.

UPDATE 2004-03-13 05:02:09 UTC: Maybe Al Qaeda hasn't claimed responsibility after all — textual analysis of the claim suggests that it's not authentic. (Via EconoPundit.)

P.S., the attack occured 912 days after 9/11, not 911 days. Yes it's close enough to be sorta spooky, but let's not all turn into numerologists, okay?

Tiny Island