Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Hard Rain Journal 7-12-06: Sustainability = Security, Not Only Energy Security, But Also An End to Terrorism

What adds to the significance of Tuesday's terror attacks in Mumbai is that they were aimed not just at paralyzing India's financial and commercial capital, but at causing mass casualties and triggering communal tension. Terror struck Mumbai seven times in 11 minutes when the first-class compartments of local suburban trains were torn apart by powerful explosions. Close to 200 people were killed and more than 600 injured in the blasts. Mumbai is India's financial capital, and the near-simultaneous blasts happened between 6:24pm and 6:35pm - at the height of the evening rush hour. Mumbai's suburban train system is one of the busiest in the world, carrying more than 6 million commuters a day.
Sudha Ramachandran,Mumbai attacks: A New Spiral of Violence, Asia Times, 7-13-05

The Chechen rebel leader who claimed responsibility for the Beslan school massacre and the Moscow theatre siege has been killed....Shamil Basayev, who led the most violent wing of the Chechen separatist movement, had been killed overnight in the Russian republic of Ingushetia, to the west of Chechnya….Hundreds of civilians have been killed in more than a dozen operations for which he has claimed responsibility since then, most notoriously the 2002 Moscow theatre siege and the 2004 Beslan high school siege....Basayev justified his actions by pointing to Russia's brutal occupation of Chechnya, which is thought to have resulted in more than 200,000 deaths of Chechen civilians and military personnel. He described the ongoing Russian occupation as "genocide".
Beslan Terrorist Leader Killed, Reports Say, Guardian, 7-10-06

Hard Rain Journal 7-12-06: Sustainability = Security, Not Only Energy Security, But Also An End to Terrorism
Richard Power

The savage 7/11 commuter train attacks in Mumbai and the apparent death of Basayev in Ingushetia. stir intense feelings in me.

I was responsible for the security of 100,000 people in over 100 countries at the time of the London and Madrid subway attacks, the hotel bombing in Jakarta, the financial district bombings in Istanbul and Mumbai, the nightclub bombings in Bali and Casablanca, etc., as well as the Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami.

I spent three years traveling the globe, asking questions and proposing precautionary measures. Do you have a means to ascertain the status of everyone in your workforce in the event of a major terrorist attack on transportation in your city? Have you considered whether or not the building you occupy is a likely target? What would you do if your offices were obliterated tomorrow morning? Where would you begin? What do your people know about their personal responsibility for the physical security of your office? Have you empowered them about what they can do proactively in their personal lives? Have you counseled them on how to best prepare and protect their loved ones?

Don't worry about us," the responsible person in Istanbul told me, "we're secure." I asked, "Why's that?" "Because we're in the IBM building, next door to the Israeli embassy." Incedible niavety.

But in general, people are lost. They do not understand the big picture. And some of those who do understand it are intent on keeping you in the dark.

Here's something you need to know...

Energy security and global warming are interdependent problems. Sustainability is the key to overcoming both.

Furthermore, terrorism and energy security are interdependent problems. If you solve the problem of energy security in a real way, i.e., by embracing sustainability, you significantly reduce the threat of terrorism.

How could this be? By ending the struggle for geopolitical hegemony over oil and gas reserves. Follow the pipelines, and you will unwrapped the enigmas from inside the riddles. If you do not understand the relationship between terrorism and sustainability, then you do not understand the true nature of the menace that lurks in the shadows. And if you do not understand that, you will not emerge victorious. Indeed, you will not emerge at all.

Any real anti-terrorism agenda would not only address the who and the how, but also the why.

Three elements would go into such an agenda:

1) Smart, aggressive use of military, intelligence, and law enforcement capabilities

2) Sweeping national and international efforts to achieve true energy securty and independence through sustainability

3) Direct, substantive dedication of resources and will to the achievement of the UN Millennium Goals

Both terrorism and the religious hatred that fuels much of it would be significantly diminished by such by a program. Tragically, the current, so-called "Global War on Terror" (GWOT) only implements one half of the first of these three vital elements. It utilizes "military, intelligence and law enforcement capabilities" aggressively, but it does not do it smartly. And under its current political leadrship, the GWOT has done nothing about either the second or third vital element.

Here are two news items that indicate increasing numbers of people in business and government are waking up to the interdependent issues of energy security and sustainability (unfortunately, too many people are still way behind the learning curve on the interdependence of terrorism and energy security):

While no one is certain of the future effects of global warming, many businesses are already placing their bets.
Companies in a range of industries are starting to figure in the business impact of climate changes stemming from global warming, according to experts. The calculations go along two lines, depending on the industry: Corporations are either mitigating risk associated with climate changes or seeking out business opportunities in fields such as clean energy….Corporations "recognize there are tangible risks and tangible opportunities," said Fred Wellington, a senior financial analyst at think tank World Resources Institute. "It's not out of the need to be a socially responsible corporation….Climate change and policies to combat its impacts are going to fundamentally change the energy makeup of a lot of economies. As the shift away from fossil-based to more renewables happens, companies will win or lose depending on how that shift occurs," he said.

Martin LaMonica, Smart money eyes climate change, CNET, 7-10-06

Legislators from industrialised and emerging countries want the G8 heads of government to address climate change, clean energy and sustainable development when they gather next Monday in St Petersburg. The appeal coincides with Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov's remarks in Moscow that as host of this year's G8, Russian President Vladimir Putin had suggested putting energy security at the top of the summit agenda…. In a statement after two days of intensive discussions at the European Parliament, they said: "Climate security and energy security are inextricably linked. Energy efficiency and diversification of energy sources are key responses to both." Legislators came from the Group of eight (G8) countries -- Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Russia, the United States, Canada and Japan -- and the 'plus five' comprising Brazil, China, India, Mexico and South Africa. The call of legislators that form the 'G8 plus 5 climate change dialogue' is based on simple logic: Developing countries are expected to contribute 39 percent of global emissions by 2010, and independent estimates are that in the next 24 years 50 percent of global energy investment will be in developing countries. "There is no way out. In India we need energy for development and the only way is to find ways to reconcile development needs and environmental imperatives," said former Indian environment minister Suresh Prabhu.
Ramesh Jaura, Energy Security Yes, But Climate Security Too, Inter Press Service, 6-11-06


GS(3) Thunderbolt 6-11-06: When The Decider Decides to Do Nothing: What You May Not Know About Zarqawi and Won’t Hear on Network and Cable News

Words of Power #23: A Reality Check, What A Real World War on Terrorism Would Look Like, and a US Mid-Term Election Strategy

Words of Power #15: Bring Me the Head of Osama, Nero Fiddles while the Planet Burns, Religion as the Crystal Meth of the People, & The Democrats' Plans

Hard Rain Journal 6-27-06: Global Warming, Bush's Alleged "Incompetence," and the So-Called "Conservative" Agenda

Words of Power #20: Cusco, Kyoto and The Yellow Sand Storm

Words of Power #7: Global Warming Is A Security Threat To Your Family & Your Business

Richard Power is the founder of GS(3) Intelligence and His work focuses on the inter-related issues of security, sustainability and spirit, and how to overcome the challenges of terrorism, cyber crime, global warming, health emergencies, natural disasters, etc. You can reach him via e-mail: For more information, go to

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