PIVOT: Why Global Security Hinges on Mackinder’s Fulcrum


Taliban fighters from their Haqqani network. (Photo/The Guardian)

Leading from behind by following public opinion again, Barack Obama is making good on his promise for a complete military drawdown.

“This drawdown will continue,” he said, promising to complete his retreat by next year. “Our war in Afghanistan will be over.”

But what Obama fails to understand is that America’s effort for winning the peace will be in vain, so long as the Taliban are free to continue their own war from Afghanistan.

Obama Entangles Security

Missing from Obama’s rhetoric is any mention of the diabolical Haqqani network, a Foreign Terrorist Organization the Taliban claim as their own.

Labeled the most deadly insurgent group in Afghanistan, the Haqqani network is more important to the sustainment of al‐Qa’ida than any other element in their global war, or jihad, thus making the Taliban central to al‐Qa’ida’s goal, as explained by the National Counterterrorism Center:

Al-Qa‘ida’s declared goal is the establishment of a pan-Islamic caliphate throughout the Muslim world. Toward this end, al-Qa‘ida seeks to unite Muslims to fight the West, especially the United States.

Because of his hasty retreat, Obama may in fact be creating conditions for America’s eventual defeat, entangling the military, intelligence, and diplomatic communities in a more dangerous network of global conflict.

Mackinder’s Fulcrum for Prosperity

In a 1943 essay, geographer Halfrod Mackinder described, “A great feature of global geography: a girdle.”

mackinder-girdleHe said, “It begins as the Sahara desert, is followed as one moves eastward by the Arabian, Iranian, Tibetian, and Mongolian deserts.”

Mackinder went on to describe why he believed the global economy could be lifted with this girdle in a fulcrum made of Russia.

But what may be most striking, in retrospect, is not only how this fulcrum has Afghanistan near its center, but also how it correlates with the same areas in which al-Qa’ida is trying to expand its terrorist network.


Road to Safety, Happiness

What seems most likely to effect greater safety and happiness for posterity?

A victory that continues to fight for individual freedom in Afghanistan, where a diabolical network of folks now wait for the American military to retreat under Obama’s command.

After more than four years lost to Obama’s disastrous leading from behind, the time has come for real presidential leadership, dedicated to final victory in spite of all terror.

Join Me


UPDATE — Aug. 3, 2013, 9:24 PM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — Top U.S. officials met Saturday to review the threat of a terrorist attack that led to the weekend closure of 21 U.S. embassies and consulates in the Muslim world and a global travel warning to Americans.


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AP, “Top US officials meet to discuss embassy threat,” The Big Story, August 3, 2013, accessed August 4, 2013.

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John M. Collins, Military Geography: For Professionals and the Public (Washington: Brassey’s, 1998).

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Walter Lippmann, Public Opinion (New York: Free Press, 1997).

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Halford J. Mackinder, “The Round World and the Winning of the Peace,” Foreign Affairs 21, no. 4 (1943): 595-605.

Mark Mazzetti, Scott Shane and Alissa J. Rubin, “Brutal Haqqani Crime Clan Bedevils U.S. in Afghanistan,” The New York Times, September 24, 2011, A1.

Office of the Press Secretary, “Remarks by the President in the State of the Union Address,” The White House, February 12, 2013, accessed February 16, 2013.

Thomas Paine, Common Sense (Mineola: Dover Publications, 1997).

Presidential Debates: 1960 and 1976-2012, “Presidential Debate at the University of Mississippi in Oxford,” The American Presidency Project, September 26, 2008, accessed February 19, 2013.

Don Rassler and Vahid Brown, “The Haqqani Nexus and the Evolution of al-Qa’ida,” Combating Terrorism Center at West Point, July 13, 2011.

Review & Outlook, “The al Qaeda Franchise Threat,” The Wall Street Journal, May 1, 2013, A16.

Richard H. Shultz and Andrea J. Dew, Insurgents, Terrorists, and Militias: The Warriors of Contemporary Combat (New York: Columbia University Press, 2006).

Bret Stephens, “Afghanistan: Eyes Wide Shut,” The Wall Street Journal, June 29, 2010, accessed February 19, 2013.

Sun Tzu, “The Art of War,” in The Seven Military Classics of Ancient China, trans. Ralph D. Sawyer (Boulder: Westview Press, 1993).


Never forget (9/11/2001)


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