Updated: Jun 5, 2019
'If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles.' - Sun Tzu
In as complex a geopolitical climate as the middle east has been for thousands of years, few places on earth merit the the effort and attention to the study of its history.
International affairs that have and will affect countless generations to come have played out on the sands of countries like Iraq and Afghanistan.
Though despite there being ample and easily accessible knowledge on these matters, there are those who have chosen to remain ignorant on the issues that very directly affect us.
On 11 September, 2001 08:46 EDT, a Boeing 767 was flown into the North Tower of the World Trade Center.
By the end of the day, 2,976 innocent people would lose their lives along with countless more deaths of first responders in the coming months and years from toxic exposure.
Yet only 16 years later a generation is being raised that has very little knowledge of the events that changed not only modern American History, but the entire structure of the Middle East.
Ignorance in all it's bliss blames American interference in foreign affairs for the attacks. As if they somehow deserved the attacks as a repercussion to their middle eastern mingling.
There are thousands of student activists proclaiming these blatant lies as absolute truth, encouraged by their champagne socialist teachers veiling their hatred for America with false narratives and virtue signalling.
Here's a fact.
There was not a single American soldier in Afghanistan before the Towers fell.
There was not a single American drone flying through Afghan skies before 2,976 people were murdered.
To fully understand the true motives behind the attacks, you have to understand the motives of the man who planned them.
'Usama ibn Mohammed ibn Awad ibn Ladin', Anglicized as 'Osama Bin Laden', and known to Special Operations Group members as UBL, was the architect behind the September 11th attacks.
Born in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia in 1957, UBL's father was Yemeni Mohammed bin Awad bin Laden, a billionaire construction magnate with close ties to the Saudi royal family, of whom UBL inherited over 25 million dollars in his later years.
Bin Laden was raised as a devout Sunni Muslim, dropping out of economics and business administration at King Abdulaziz University to study the Islamic religion, where he was involved in both interpreting the Quran and jihad.
After dropping out of post-secondary in 1979, bin Laden went to Pakistan and used money and machinery from his own construction company to help the Mujahideen resistance in the Soviet war in Afghanistan.
By 1984, bin Laden established Maktab al-Khidamat, which funnelled money, arms and fighters from around the Arab world into Afghanistan. Through al-Khadamat, bin Laden's inherited family fortune paid for air tickets and accommodation, paid for paperwork with Pakistani authorities and provided other such services for the jihadi fighters.
Bin Laden established camps inside Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in Pakistan and trained volunteers from across the Muslim world to fight against the Soviet-backed regime, the Democratic Republic of Afghanistan; he would also participate in some combat activity, such as the Battle of Jaji. It was during this time that he became idolized by many Arabs.
By 1988, bin Laden had split from Maktab al-Khidamat to create al-Qaeda.
Notes of a meeting of bin Laden and others on August 20, 1988 indicate that al-Qaeda was a formal group by that time: "Basically an organized Islamic faction, its goal is to lift the word of God, to make his religion victorious."
Following the Soviet Union's withdrawal from Afghanistan in February 1989, Osama bin Laden returned to Saudi Arabia in 1990 as a hero of jihad. Along with his Arab legion, he was thought to have "brought down the mighty superpower" of the Soviet Union.
However, The Iraqi invasion of Kuwait under Saddam Hussein on August 2, 1990, put the Saudi kingdom and the royal family at risk, leading to a power shift that would eventually cripple bin Laden's idolized name.
With Iraqi forces on the Saudi border, Bin Laden met with King Fahd, and Saudi Defense Minister Sultan, telling them not to depend on non-Muslim assistance from the United States and others, and offering to help defend Saudi Arabia with his Arab legion.
Bin Laden's offer was rebuffed, and the Saudi monarchy invited the deployment of U.S. forces in Saudi territory.
The U.S. 82nd Airborne Division then landed in the north-eastern Saudi city of Dhahran and was deployed in the desert barely 400 miles from Medina.
Bin Laden publicly denounced Saudi dependence on the U.S. military, arguing the two holiest shrines of Islam, Mecca and Medina, the cities in which the Prophet Mohamed received and recited Allah's message, should only be defended by Muslims.
Bin Laden continued to speak publicly against the Saudi government, for which the Saudis banished him.
In 1992 he went to live in exile in Sudan.
There in Sudan, bin Laden established a new base for Mujahideen operations in Khartoum.
During his time in Sudan, he heavily invested in the infrastructure, in agriculture and businesses. He was the Sudan agent for the British firm Hunting Surveys, and built roads using the same bulldozers he had employed to construct mountain tracks in Afghanistan. Many of his labourers were the same fighters who had been his comrades in the war against the Soviet Union.
He continued to criticize King Fahd of Saudi Arabia. In response, in 1994 Fahd stripped bin Laden of his Saudi citizenship and persuaded his family to cut off his $7 million a year stipend.
The U.S. State Department accused Sudan of being a "sponsor of international terrorism" and bin Laden of operating "terrorist training camps in the Sudanese desert".
The Sudanese wanted to engage with the U.S. but American officials refused to meet with them because of them providing sanctuary to Bin Laden.
In late 1995, when Bin Laden was still in Sudan, the State Department and the Central Intelligence Agency learned that Sudanese officials were discussing with the Saudi government the possibility of expelling Bin Laden.
U.S. Ambassador Timothy Carney encouraged the Sudanese to pursue this course. The Saudis, however, did not want Bin Laden, giving as their reason their revocation of his citizenship.
Due to the increasing pressure on Sudan from Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and the United States, bin Laden was permitted to leave for a country of his choice. He chose to return to Jalalabad, Afghanistan aboard a chartered flight on May 18, 1996.
According to the 9/11 Commission, the expulsion from Sudan significantly weakened bin Laden and his organization. Various sources report that bin Laden lost $300 million.
In Sudan; the government seized his construction equipment, and bin Laden was forced to liquidate his businesses, land, home and even his horses.
Having lost his idolized status among the Arab world, and having been replaced by the Americans as the protection for the Saudi Royal family, bin Laden was left with nothing.
Despite the assurance of President George H. W. Bush to King Fahd in 1990, that all U.S. forces based in Saudi Arabia would be withdrawn once the Iraqi threat had been dealt with, by 1996 the Americans were still there.
Bin Laden's view was that "the 'evils' of the Middle East arose from America's attempt to take over the region and from its support for Israel. Saudi Arabia had been turned into 'an American colony" he was quoted as saying in a radio interview on Al-Jazeera.
In August 1996, he declared war against the United States.
Bin Laden believed that the Islamic world was in crisis and that the complete restoration of Sharia law would be the only way to "set things right" in the Muslim world.
According to former CIA analyst Michael Scheuer, who led the CIA's hunt for Osama bin Laden, the al-Qaeda leader was motivated by a belief that U.S. foreign policy has oppressed, killed, or otherwise harmed Muslims in the Middle East.
This all despite the fact that US alliances with Saudi Arabia not only brought stability to the region, but further deterred Iraqi aggression.
Bin Laden criticized the U.S. for its secular form of governance, calling upon Americans to convert to Islam and "reject the immoral acts of fornication, homosexuality, intoxicants, gambling, and usury", in a published letter through his Al-Qaeda network.
Fueled by relgious rage, and the humiliation of exile from the Royal Saudi's that his family once called close friends, bin Laden orchestrated the September 11th attacks that would kill 2,976 people.
Ten years later, on May 2, 2011, shortly after 1:00 am local time in Abbottabad, Pakistan - UBL was killed by Naval Special Warfare Development Group operators.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jozef Lalka is a former Infantryman with the Canadian Armed Forces and founder of War Doll. Since releasing from the military, Jozef continues to rigorously train and expand his knowledge of a variety of weapons platforms and tactics.
Having earned a diploma in Media & Video production, Jozef works as a graphic designer, photographer and videographer while pursing a passion for current global conflicts and how they relate to historical events.