I don’t think anyone seriously doubts that Islamic radicals often carry out attacks for the purpose of influencing votes in Western democracies. The railway bombings in Spain, just a few days in advance of an election that ousted a pro-American government and put the Socialists in power, are an obvious example. On a broader scale, it seems clear that the attacks carried out on American forces by al Qaeda and other terrorist groups in Iraq have little or nothing to do with any tangible military objective, but rather are intended to influence American public opinion, with the goal of electing antiwar politicians here in the U.S.
Currently, a good illustration of this phenomenon is on display in Afghanistan, where the Taliban, knowing that Germany’s Parliament will vote on Friday on that country’s participation in the NATO effort there, has unleashed a series of attacks against Germans:
A large-scale terror campaign has been launched against German soldiers in Afghanistan to negatively influence Friday