We should all be a little terrified that incoming House Intel Chair Silvestre Reyes (D-TX) not only thinks we should ramp up troop levels in Iraq, but doesn’t seem to know Hezbollah from a hole in the ground, at least to judge from his abject failure of this impromptu quiz offered up by an enterprising reporter for Congressional Quarterly:
We warmed up with a long discussion about intelligence issues and Iraq. And then we veered into terrorism’s major players.To me, it’s like asking about Catholics and Protestants in Northern Ireland: Who’s on what side?
The dialogue went like this:
Al Qaeda is what, I asked, Sunni or Shia?
“Al Qaeda, they have both,” Reyes said. “You’re talking about predominately?”
“Sure,” I said, not knowing what else to say.
“Predominantly — probably Shiite,” he ventured.
He couldn’t have been more wrong.
Al Qaeda is profoundly Sunni. If a Shiite showed up at an al Qaeda club house, they’d slice off his head and use it for a soccer ball.
That’s because the extremist Sunnis who make up a l Qaeda consider all Shiites to be heretics.
Al Qaeda’s Sunni roots account for its very existence. Osama bin Laden and his followers believe the Saudi Royal family besmirched the true faith through their corruption and alliance with the United States, particularly allowing U.S. troops on Saudi soil.
It’s been five years since these Muslim extremists flew hijacked airliners into the World Trade Center.
Is it too much to ask that our intelligence overseers know who they are?
And Hezbollah? I asked him. What are they?