Retired Lt. Col. and Fox News Strategic Analyst Ralph Peters said that the US must avoid nation building and overlitigating the war on terror and instead “leave behind smoking ruins and crying widows” on Friday’s “O’Reilly Factor” on the Fox News Channel.
Peters said the plan for fighting war is “one, you accept that you are in a war. Two, you name the enemy: Islamist terrorists. Three, you get the lawyers off the battlefield and out of the targeting cell. You accept there will be collateral damage, and do you not apologize for it, you do not nation build. You don’t hold — try to hold ground. You go wherever in the world the terrorists are and you kill them. You do your best to exterminate them, and then you leave, and you leave behind smoking ruins and crying widows. If in five or ten years they reconstitute and you have got to go back, you go back and you do the same thing and you never never never send American troops into a war you don’t mean to win.” And “be as merciless as the enemy, if you’re not willing to do that, they will win.”
When asked about how to deal with state sponsors of terrorism, he argued “we have 2,000 years of recorded history of religious insurgencies, the only thing that has worked in 2,000 years is killing them. Now, as far as countries that don’t want to play ball, very simple. Pakistan doesn’t want to crack down on the Haqqani Network, we tell them ‘we are going to go in and take them out, and if you get in our way, we are going to smack your military down’…in a war you fight to win, you don’t worry about political correctness. The jihadis will do anything to win, and we’re worried about our table manners.”
Peters concluded that while “France’s policies have been stupid,” they weren’t to blame for the terrorist attacks inside the country.
Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett
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