Is the impending war in Iraq an example of bellicose Offense or a precision Defense against a team of warriors already aiming their weapons at the innocent and unsuspecting?   Super Bowl Sunday in the United States offers a blueprint of Iraqi-U.S. strategy in a game of international cat and mouse, with the cat poised as the mouse and the mouse the cat.   Will the U.S. be ultimately called the Offense or Defense in the war on Terrorism.  See how Super Bowl Sunday will help you frame your answer.


Monday--January 27, 2003—Ground Zero Plus 502
Super Bowl Sunday Sets Framework For War On Iraq

Cliff McKenzie
   Editor, New York City Combat Correspondent News

GROUND ZERO, New York City, Jan. 27--The impending war on Iraq is not unlike the upset victory of the  Tampa Bay Buccaneers over the San Francisco Raiders.   It symbolizes how a great Defense can spoil the plans of a great Offense.

       World opinion has it that the United States is on the Offense, seeking to attack Iraq without justifiable provocation since no "smoking guns" have been issued as red flags from the U.N. weapons inspectors.   World opinion has it that the United States is acting as an aggressor, rushing to judgment against Saddam Hussein.
         But if the Super Bowl upset by the world's number one ranked defensive football team pitted against the world's number one ranked offensive team has any merit, it is a reminder that the United States is on a course to squelch the raging fires of Terrorism, not out to light them.
         Take the recent Super Bowl and cut it into anatomical pieces and see if there isn't a parallel between the Iraq-U.S. situation and the most-watched American sport with over 130 million viewers worldwide.

          The Oakland Raiders, considered the "bad guys" of football, have a reputation for "dirty play" in football.   Historically, they are rough, bellicose, and rack up the most penalties of any team in their aggressive march down the football field to victory.  Oakland's Coliseum is called "The Black Hole" and fans nicknamed "Violator" and "Darth Raider" lead other denizens of the Raider Nation in taunting opponents.

"Darth Raider"

          Not only on the field, but off the field, the Raiders team have been called the Terrorists of Football.  Numerous high schools in California banned their students wearing of Raiders clothing because it was a signet of violence, and used by gangs to intimidate other students.  Often, the black uniforms ignited conflicts between students, leading to knifings and use of other "weapons of mass destruction" such as handguns and drive by shootings where innocent victims were wounded or killed.
          The Raiders legacy, whether in Los Angeles or Oakland, carried with it the persona of a big bully who, standing over you, made you tremble.   On the football field, the Raider's reputation preceded them, often forcing their opponents into a state of defeat before the game began.

The "Violator"

          But that all changed yesterday.   The Tampa Bay Bucs smashed the myth that the Raider Nation ruled.  Before 67,603 fans at the Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, the Bucs held Oakland to 19 yards rushing and set a Super Bowl record with five interceptions, three of them returned for touchdowns in a blistering 48-21 defeat.
          Prior to Sunday's game, their MVP quarterback, Rich Gannon, had the best passing season in league history, racking up 4,700 yards and 26 touchdowns.  Tampa Bay, as a franchise, held the worst historic record, with the longest winless streak of 0-26 prior to the purchase of Jon Gruden as head coach.
         So how do the Bucs align with the astrology of the U.S.-Iraqi impending war?
         Look at Saddam Hussein.   He is part of the Raider Nation--a perpetual "bad guy" with a Terrorist reputation.   He swaggers about his country defying his neighbors, threatening everyone with his massing of arms and military forces, and his invasion over a decade ago of Kuwait.   He murders his own people with lethal gas when they revolt, killing over 50,000 of them, and then kicks out weapons inspectors and runs his country in the "dark" until the United States threatens him with war if he doesn't open his doors to the public and expose his thirst to build weapons of mass destruction.
         One might call all these actions "Acts of Offense."

         Offensively, Saddam Hussein has been trying to build an arsenal to blackmail and bully others around him, and enemies from afar.   In the Gulf War he spat SCUD missiles at Israel, and none of his neighbors trust him.   He would and has turned on them in a flash.  
         Under U.N. Resolution 1441 he agreed to disclose any and all weapons of mass destruction, but has turned the search for them into a fruitless treasure hunt, forcing U.N. inspectors to dig and grovel for information rather than have it disclosed in a open manner.   He has been Offensive in his dealings with agreements, hoping that his reputation will grind down world and national public opinion to a point of utter Complacency by the U.S. and British Defensive teams, who stand stalwart in their belief that unless his regime changes its policy of Offensive arms build up, his nation serves a great threat to the security of the Mid East.
        The recent warheads discovered by the weapons inspectors had skulls and crossbones plastered nearby, symbols of his Raider Nation status.

Jon Gruden was a former Raider's coach and knew the team's playbook

         Now, let's take the United States.   Like Tampa Bay coach Jon Gruden, the U.S. and its ally, Great Britain, have read Saddam Hussein's playbook.    Gruden was the former coach of the Raiders.  He knew how they thought, what they ate, and what kind of air they liked to breathe.
         When Gruden was purchased from the Raiders for $8 million, plus some  two first and second draft choices,  Malcolm Glazer, owner of the Bucs, knew he was buying intelligence as well as leadership skill.   He purchased the "Secret Code" to the inner workings of the Raider's Terrorism system.  His bet paid off.
          Nothing is more devastating to an Offense than a insider's Defense against it.   When someone knows what the other person is thinking, planning, preparing to do, he or she can counter that plan by injecting obstacles and infiltrating the Offensive Security with effective counter measures that demoralize those seeking to dominate.
         A good example is someone who is pointing a gun at you.   While on the surface it might appear that person has the Offense, the greatest Defense is for the "victim" to act first.  By slapping the gun away, or drawing and shooting one's own gun, the Offense is often thwarted.   The reason?   It takes a person a measurable time to react to any action.   The person holding the gun has to react to the surprise attack on his Offense.   The time it takes for that response is the advantage.
         In police shootings when a criminal is holding a gun on an officer, and an officer draws and shoots, there is often the cry of "foul play" that the police couldn't possibly surprise an attacker with a gun held on them.  But it is the reaction time of the attacker that works against them.  He who moves first wins, for the speed to act is usually faster than the reaction time.  It is that slight edge of Defensive Offense that gave the Bucs the ruling power on the field during the Super Bowl.
        It is the same power that the U.S. will have when it counter-attacks Iraq.
        But the world suggests that the U.S. is the aggressor in this dangerous game of stopping the Terrorism of Saddam Hussein.

Saddam Hussein is an Offensive threat to the world's security

       This weekend Secretary of State Colin L. Powell spoke to business, political and religious leaders at World Economic Forum in the Swiss Alps.  He stood firmly on the position that the United States would go to war with Iraq even if its European allies would not join the fight.  He was peppered with questions regarding why the U.S. would not allow Saddam Hussein more time to comply.  His blunt reply was:  "How much time does Iraq need to answer these questions?"
         Echoing his rhetorical answer is Tony Blair, Prime Minister of Great Britain.  As public opinion in England drifts down against supporting the U.S., Blair is holding fast to what his critics call his "politics of conviction."   Blair, as President Bush, is convinced that Iraq is an Offensive threat to the security of the world--that unless it is stopped it will continue its drive to amass and eventually deploy weapons of mass destruction.
         Both leaders seem to have read Saddam Hussein's playbook.  They know it is a matter only of time before the leader will launch his next move, one of destruction either in the form of overt or covert Terrorism.
         Jon Gruder knew the Raiders were going to attack in the air.   His team "read their plays" as though they were written on the giant screens revealing the plays to the stadium and world.  He stopped them cold in their tracks, proving once more the power of a great Defense over a great Offense.

Gruden, a Master of Defense, celebrates his team's success

        Vigilance is all about Offensive Thinking and Offensive Actions.
         It recognizes that Terrorism--Fear, Intimidation and Complacency will attack the heart and soul of both a person and a nation.   France and Germany, two former major allies in wars against Terrorism, have elected to become Nations of Complacency.  They want the U.S. and Britain to stop aggressive actions to thwart Hussein, and suggest that the war in Iraq is ill-timed and unnecessary.
        Either they aren't reading Hussein's playbook, or, they want to believe the threat of Iraq's historic Offensive actions will evaporate.   They don't want to just sit on the sidelines and watch, they want to give up their seats and pretend the Super Bowl of Terrorism isn't being played.
        Blair has elected to put Principles before Pragmatism.   Despite risking his political future by opposing public opinion in his country, Blair clings to the belief that ridding Terrorism's threat is more important than conceding to the Complacency of politics.   The Sunday Times of London reported that 68 percent  of those surveyed felt there wasn't sufficient evidence to justify war.  Blair, in concert with President Bush, recognizes that nations who are Offensive in acts of Terrorism risk the security of the world when allowed to amass weapons of mass destruction they will turn on the innocent and vulnerable.
      In the Super Bowl, coach Gruden knew the Raiders were going to use certain tactics to win the game.   In Iraq, President Bush and Prime Minister Blair know that Saddam Hussein will today, or tomorrow, spread the virus of Terrorism in as many forms as possible--biochemical, nuclear or conventional.
      More importantly, the Complacency of the world to sit back and let Terrorist nations like Iraq build its weapons of mass destruction in violation of treaties and agreements to the contrary, is an insult to the intelligence of a sane world.   But people and nations don't like confrontation until they are forced into it.
      Most people prefer to wait until their houses are robbed, or their daughters are raped, or their neighborhoods infested by drugs, or their cars are hijacked, or their water systems are polluted by chemicals, or their borders are attacked by foreign enemies before they rally their support.
      Germany and France are far too busy trying to be the "good guys" to everybody, and to juggle all the political plates that favor their leadership's political security, to walk out on the edge of the Politics by Conviction plank and stand in the cold of Complacent public opinion and denounce those who would kill and maim and murder on a whim.
       They would prefer to twist the actions of America and the support of Great Britain into Acts of Aggression rather Acts of Vigilance--acts intended to stop the Offensive thrust of Terrorism, acts of Defense rather than Offense.
       While Jon Gruder was heaped with accolades for winning the Super Bowl, the real tribute for leadership must be given to Malcolm Glazer who had the Courage, Conviction and took the Right Actions necessary to buy Jon Gruder from the Raiders.   He took Defensive Action against the Offensive Threat of being beaten by the Raiders--the Terrorists of football.

Malcolm Glazer welcoming Jon Gruder to Tampa Bay

      Malcolm Glazer is the real hero of Super Bowl Sunday.   He stood up as Tony Blair and President Bush against obvious criticism that he was paying far too much for a coach who had never won a major championship of the ilk of the Super Bowl.   I'm sure there were those among his advisors who thought his decision flew in the face of "pragmatism."  He gave up two first-round draft choices, and two second-round draft choices, and then, to top it off, put $8 million in Al Davis' hands to buy the Raider's coach.  Plus, he then had to pay Jon Gruder on top of it all.
       America and Britain are betting billions of dollars and thousands of American and British lives that they can beat Terrorism on the great global playing field.  They face the Terrorism of other nation's Fear, Intimidation and Complacency in their quest, plus that of their own citizens who daily drop their support and choose to turn their backs on the obvious growth of Terrorism's cancer among rogue nations.
       It is as if the world has gone blind to the Politics of Conviction, as if the Parents of Vigilance who espouse to a child "not to take rides from strangers" turn their backs when a stranger drives up and opens the door to their children.  

It appears the world is blind, deaf and dumb to the Politics of Conviction

      The world will know no peace until Defensive Vigilance Actions overpower Offensive Terrorist Actions.
       Malcolm Glazer invested in the Children's Children's Children's future of Tampa Bay.   He bet that the Terrorism of losing could be eradicated by the Victory of Vigilance.   He quashed Complacency, Fear and Intimidation and planted the seeds of Courage, Conviction and Right Actions into his team by bringing to it a leader whom he believed would stand on his convictions, and employ the greatest of all tools to fight the Terrorism of losing on the gridiron--Defense.
       Today, the Super Bowl of Terrorism will be won by the Politics of Conviction flying in the face of Global Complacency.
       It will be won by those who are willing to "pay the price of Vigilance."

Celebrating  the Victory of Vigilant Defense

     The nations who oppose the actions of the United States and Great Britain should make a call to Malcolm Glazer and ask him which strategy works best--"waiting" or "acting."
        Perhaps Colin Powell should bring Malcolm Glazer with him to negotiate with other nations.  If they won't listen to him, I'm sure they will to Malcolm Glazer.


Jan. 26--My Big Fat Greek Wedding & Terrorism

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