Saturday, June 25, 2011

Now that would have been some marketing meeting!


If this marketing meeting had taken place, about the only thing that could rival it would be Lenny Bruce's "Religion Inc."


Seems the former Big Cheese of al Qaeda, Osama bin Laden, was fretting that his creation of terrorism and murder was losing its marketing punch.

Osama wanted new name for al-Qaida to repair image 

As Osama bin Laden watched his terrorist organization get picked apart, he lamented in his final writings that al-Qaida was suffering from a marketing problem. His group was killing too many Muslims and that was bad for business. The West was winning the public relations fight.


The problem with the name al-Qaida, bin Laden wrote in a letter recovered from his compound in Pakistan, was that it lacked a religious element, something to convince Muslims worldwide that they are in a holy war with America.

Maybe something like Taifat al-Tawhed Wal-Jihad, meaning Monotheism and Jihad Group, would do the trick, he wrote. Or Jama'at I'Adat al-Khilafat al-Rashida, meaning Restoration of the Caliphate Group.

As bin Laden saw it, the problem was that the group's full name, al-Qaida al-Jihad, for The Base of Holy War, had become short-handed as simply al-Qaida. Lopping off the word "jihad," bin Laden wrote, allowed the West to "claim deceptively that they are not at war with Islam." Maybe it was time for al-Qaida to bring back its original name.

I don't know.

Coca Cola didn't get very far with its "New Coke" efforts.

Then again, how would you like to be the young ad exec handling the account? 

But wait! ... There's more! 

OBL was also getting all Jack-Lemmon-Save-The-Tiger, bemoaning the younger generation:

In one letter sent to Zawahri within the past year or so, bin Laden said al-Qaida's image was suffering because of attacks that have killed Muslims, particularly in Iraq, officials said. In other journal entries and letters, they said, bin Laden wrote that he was frustrated that many of his trusted longtime comrades, whom he'd fought alongside in Afghanistan, had been killed or captured.

Using his courier system, bin Laden could still exercise some operational control over al-Qaida. But increasingly the men he was directing were younger and inexperienced. Frequently, the generals who had vouched for these young fighters were dead or in prison. And bin Laden, unable to leave his walled compound and with no phone or Internet access, was annoyed that he did not know so many people in his own organization.

Guess he didn't apply to be on Undercover Boss.

This ranks up there, before we get too derisive, with our own government labeling the killing of innocent civilians as "collateral damage."

Cue up "Que Sera Sera."


Bonus Riffs 

(Cross-posted at The Garlic.)

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