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October 18, 2004
More Evidence Of The Obvious

The Washington Post reports that investigators into the Madrid bombings this year have uncovered new evidence that the Islamic terrorists that attacked the Spanish transportation system specifically intended to warp the election three days later:

Seven months after bombs exploded aboard morning commuter trains in Madrid, killing 191 people, the precise motives of the attackers remain unclear. But new evidence, including wiretap transcripts, has lent support to a theory that the strike was carefully timed to take place three days before a national election in hopes of influencing Spanish voters to reject a government that sent troops to Iraq. ...

Newly disclosed wiretaps of an alleged organizer of the bombings expressing glee that "the dog Aznar" had been put out of office have prompted some analysts here to conclude that the perpetrators sought to try to bring about specific reactions through the attacks.

Obviously, it's good to be precise and to verify theories as exhaustively as possible. But is it really news to hear that the Islamists wanted to change the course of the Spanish election in order to force them out of Iraq? Apparently it is with the victors of the election, who want to rewrite history so that their Socialist movement can be seen as a glorious deliverer, rather than the accidental recipient of a craven response to an attack:

The current Socialist government has insisted the attacks were not intended to change the outcome of the election and has accused opponents of using such inferences to question its victory. "There is no evidence to indicate the intention of the terrorists was really to change the Spanish government," said a Socialist Party spokesman, who spoke only on condition of anonymity. "You can't go looking for motives behind terrorist activity. Terrorists always act when and how they can. Spaniards went to the polls on March 14 and voted in an adult, free way and decided to vote against the PP government" and for the Socialist government, he said.

In the end, as Keith Richburg notes, it matters little about motivation, only results. After seeing the electoral shift in Spain, Osama bin Laden moved immediately to offer a cease-fire to anyone who would follow Spain's path to capitulation and urged his followers to duplicate the Madrid strategy with all of America's allies. Spanish capitulation led to the bombing of the Australian embassy in Indonesia, but appeared to invigorate the Aussies instead of cowing them. In the next couple of weeks, it may lead to another attack in the US itself.

Will we capitulate like the Spaniards? That answer, unfortunately, is nowhere near as obvious.

Sphere It Digg! View blog reactions
Posted by Ed Morrissey at October 18, 2004 6:36 AM

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» Dog Bites Man in Spain from The Key Monk
Of course, the Spanish Socialists deny any connection between the attacks, the Socialists' demagoguing of those attacks to play upon the fears of the Spaniards before the election, and their electoral victory . . . [Read More]

Tracked on October 18, 2004 10:01 AM

» Investigation Finds Al Qaida Wanted to Influence Spains Election from InTheBullpen.com
It appears that everything that we already assumed, the attack was intended to effect the elections, has been confirmed by this investigation. There was no doubt that the attack was politically motivated since incumbent Prime Minister Jose Maria Aznar ... [Read More]

Tracked on October 18, 2004 10:14 AM

» Do Spanish Socialista Agree with George Bush? from The Sundries Shack
Captain's Quarters has an article today that shows evidence that the Madrid bombings were designed to change the outcome of their elections. Well, this really isn't news to anyone who is paying even halfhearted attention to the news, though it's nic... [Read More]

Tracked on October 18, 2004 12:56 PM

» Too late for terror to derail Bush from Brain Shavings
There's just one week to go. Lately there's been speculation about whether a terror attack might occur on American soil before Election Day, and if so, what effect it might have on the outcome of the presidential election. I've been mulling this over a... [Read More]

Tracked on October 26, 2004 1:50 PM



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