David Ignatius, writing in the WP, discusses "The Fading Jihadists," a theory put forth by Marc Sageman in his book, Leaderless Jihad. Sageman is a former CIA agent and was a case officer running spies in Pakistan and then became a forensic psychiatrist. He has studied scientific data on more than 500 Islamic terrorists -- to understand who they are, why they attack and how to stop them.
His theory is that we have been scaring ourselves into exaggerating the terrorism threat -- and then by our unwise actions in Iraq making the problem worse. He attacks head-on the central thesis of the Bush administration, echoed increasingly by Republican presidential candidate John McCain, that, as McCain's Web site puts it, the United States is facing "a dangerous, relentless enemy in the War against Islamic Extremists" spawned by al-Qaeda.
If this theory is, in fact, dead-on correct, then John McCain ought to pack up and go back to Arizona and enjoy the time off.