The cherry blossoms have begun to appear in Washington D.C. Professional hockey and basketball teams are vying for spots in their respective playoff series. The Taliban announced the beginning of their spring offensive. Yes, it truly is that time of year when man's thoughts turn to love.
Wait a second. The Taliban have announced the beginning of their spring offensive. In a two-page statement, the Taliban said that beginning Sunday they would launch attacks on military bases, convoys and Afghan officials, including members of the government's peace council, who are working to reconcile with top insurgent leaders. Where was the grainy video or poorly recorded voice message about death to America? Sure, I understand it's all implied, but now that the leadership council of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, as the Taliban refer to themselves, are announcing their plans for terror in advance, it won't seem nearly as scary. Think of "Blair Witch Project 2." Once we all understood that the first one was just a cleverly concocted, made-on-the-cheap horror movie, the sequel was never going to have the impact of the first one. It's a little like trying to sneak up on someone while wearing corduroy pants: it's a giveaway.
It is the part of the war on terror that really does work. By shining a light on the monsters, we make them less terrifying. As soon as you start imagining the meeting that had to take place to come up with the title "Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan," then you start appreciating just how human these folks probably are. The fear of a suicide bombing is lessened ever so slightly by the image of a member of the Taliban searching in his desk drawer for a post-it on which he could write the names of possible martyrs.
Then again, there's not much we can do about taking the fright out of a few pounds of C-4. Maybe they should be taking their cues from the U.S. Navy Seals.