Diana Ralph

Islamophobia and the "War on Terror": the Continuing Pretext for U.S. Imperial Conquest

(Seven Stories Press of New York is publishing an affordable softcover version of the invaluable scholarly volume, The Hidden History of 9-11. Here is their page dedicated to this updated second edition. To promote the book, Seven Stories has allowed us to publish an online version of the chapter by Professor Diana Ralph, dealing with the historical roots of "international terrorism", Islamophobia, and imperial aggression. This chapter is typical of the scholarly detail in "Hidden History". If you enjoy this chapter, please consider pre-ordering at Amazon, or Powell's, or ordering directly from the Seven Stories website. Anyone interested in purchasing a bulk quantity should email Lars: lars@sevenstories.com )

© Diana Ralph, Ph.D.


The 9-11 attacks were the pretext which sold the myth of evil Muslim terrorists imminently threatening Americans. That tale allowed the Cheney-led members of the Project for the New American Century (PNAC) to implement their 1990 DPG plan for world control. The “war on terror” has nothing to do with protecting the U.S. and world’s people from “terrorists”, and everything to do with securing the American empire abroad and muzzling democracy and human rights at home. Designed to inspire popular support for U.S. wars of world conquest, it is modeled on Islamophobic stereotypes, policies, and political structures developed by the Israeli Likkud and Bush Sr. since 1979. To defeat this plan, we must overcome our Islamophobic fear of “terrorists” and stand in solidarity with Muslims.

1. Why a 9-11 Pretext?

…the War against Terror is not really about terror….It’s about a superpower’s self destructive impulse toward supremacy, stranglehold, global hegemony. (Arundathi Roy, 2004, p. 34).

Researchers are uncovering extensive, credible evidence that the official account of the 9-11 attacks is untenable. Although al Qaeda may have had the resources to get hijackers onto planes with box cutters, it did not have the power to shut down FBI investigations of the suspected hijackers, to set up distracting war games on 9-11-01, to issue stand-down orders preventing effective military response, or to cause two WTC towers plus Building 7 to collapse using demolition explosives (Griffin, 2004; 2005). Western intelligence knew about the 9-11 attack plans as early as 1995, and may have facilitated and exploited them for their own ends. Some suggest that the U.S. may even have directly planned and carried them out flying the planes by remote control.1 Regardless of whether it simply facilitated the attacks or carried them out themselves, there is little doubt that the U.S. was involved (Ahmed, 2002, pp. 82-83).

If this is true, we need to ask, why would U.S. leaders risk such a colossal crime against the American people? What was the motive? What is the real agenda behind the “war on terror”? Is the security of Western (non-Muslim) people really threatened by Muslim fundamentalists, or have Muslims just replaced “communists” in the role of “enemy”?

This chapter explores the real motives and the Islamophobic cover story which underly the U.S. “war on terror”. It focuses on the inter-twined histories of Dick Cheney’s plan for world control and Benjamin Netanyahu’s campaign for a “war on terror” against those critical of Israel and the United States. The “war on terror” distorts the concepts of “terrorism” and “security” in order to frighten Americans into sacrificing their actual security and into colluding in an unprecedented imperial campaign for world control. It poses a false dichotomy between “radical” and “moderate” Muslims, demonizing them when it is convenient for Western powers, and rewarding them as “moderates” when they serve Western interests, regardless of their actual ideologies or practices. Both for Muslims worldwide and those living in Western countries, the consequences have been catastrophic.

1979 - The Birth Year of "International Terrorism"

Recent research by authors Nafeez Ahmed, and Diana Ralph, points to the year 1979 as a turning point for Western policy that on the one hand began to facilitate covert warfare and destabilization via the Mujihadeen in Afghanistan, and on the other began to propagate a meme that has become known as "International Terrorism". Most recently, Ahmed gave a talk at the Indian YMCA in London that reiterates his focus on that year.(1)

1979 was definitely pivotal for the United States, as the CIA convinced President Jimmy Carter to sign off on covert operations in Afghanistan, before the Soviet invasion, that would ultimately produce "al Qaeda".(2) Research that dates back to 1982 reveals that at the same time that the CIA was incubating the nascent 'Arab Foreign Legion' in Afghanistan, in Israel, some familiar names were busily framing the concept of "International Terrorism" at the 'Jerusalem Conference on International Terrorism'. A paper by a student named Phillip Paul titled, “International Terrorism”: The Propaganda War, (available at the San Francisco State University Library for review), has been cited separately by independent researcher Diana Ralph as well as Ahmed.

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