In his book “Eternal Battle Against Evil,” Paul R. Chabot calls for readers to join him in a never-ending jihad. I use that word because there’s no word in English that as effectively connotes the religious struggle (or holy war) described. And while within the Muslim world there are nuances of meaning to that term, there’s no doubt that Chabot’s struggle focuses on the militant form of jihad.
I am a Christian who believes that both God and Satan exists. I believe man is comprised of both good and evil. For humanity to survive, the good must promise eternal hostility against evil, for we have no other choice. The fight is often scary, bloody, and unknown. As I learned going through a law enforcement academy, one must never, ever, ever give up! If you give up, it’s the end! The bad guys win! (p. xxi)
The book promises to supply “a comprehensive strategy to fight terrorists, drug cartels, pirates, gangs, & organized crime,” but doesn’t even come close to delivering on that promise. Rather than a comprehensive strategy, Chabot proposes a single-minded focus on violent battle without even discussing whether underlying problems exist and can be solved through other means (or at all, for that matter). Anything other than fighting, in his mind, is negotiating with evil, which he won’t countenance.
We must not give up this fight. In fact, we must fight harder and smarter, operating at the speed of light with a global with a global strategy that provides no mercy to evil. This is not a time for negotiations, as some have suggested; rather it is time to take the fight directly to the heart of the enemy and beyond–allowing no safe passages, no neutral territory. […]
The only thing free people should extend to evil is a sword into its heart–zero negotiation. (p. 12) […]
There is zero room to negotiate with the enemy. They respond and respct to only one thing, – an equal or high level of violence brought against them. (p. 58)
This is the real fatal flaw in the book, for while fighting a drug trafficking organization may be effective in damaging that particular drug trafficking organization, it will do nothing to change the black market conditions that give rise to such an organization. And while fighting Al Qaeda may do damage to a terrorist organization, it’s still critical to understand the political conditions that give rise to and fuel such an organization.
If what you desire is unending violence and battles (even if they’re unnecessary), then Chabot’s simplistic world-view could be appealing. But to anyone who is civilized–who desires peace and justice–Chabot’s call is not only horrific and destructive, but… dare I say it… evil.
When it comes to Chabot’s love of violence, everything else is secondary. Check this out from the introduction:
Serving as an intelligence officer for an elite group of joint special operations forces, I often came across a quote by George Orwell that so many of the young soldiers I met held dear to their hearts, “People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.” (p. xxi)
Again, note the love of violence and the glee of calling up this quote from Orwell. One problem — Orwell never said it. This quote has been widely attributed to Orwell, but there’s no evidence of it in any of his writings. And it doesn’t fit Orwell’s world-view at all. Orwell certainly wasn’t opposed to necessary war (and even fought himself), but he also wasn’t a cheerleader for mindless government-sponsored violence.
The closest phrase that researchers have been able to find in Orwell’s writings is this quote about Kipling:
â€œHe [Kipling] sees clearly that men can only be highly civilized while other men, inevitably less civilized, are there to guard and feed them.â€ George Orwell, â€œRudyard Kiplingâ€ (1942)
And the meaning of this phrase in context is not even close to the pro-rough-violence quote that Chabot loves so well.
Fact is, Orwell had some things to say about people like Paul Chabot, particularly in Orwell’s “Notes on Nationalism”
All nationalists have the power of not seeing resemblances between similar sets of facts. A British Tory will defend self-determination in Europe and oppose it in India with no feeling of inconsistency. Actions are held to be good or bad, not on their own merits, but according to who does them, and there is almost no kind of outrage–torture, the use of hostages, forced labour, mass deportations, imprisonment without trial, forgery, assassination, the bombing of civilians–which does not change its moral colour when it is committed by ‘our’ side.
A bit of a false start to promote such a motivating quote to the theme of his book, only to find out it isn’t a real quote. So how does he continue from there?
A few pages later in the book, Chabot shares this story:
While serving in Iraq as an intelligence officer with Special Forces units from our allied nations, I often came across a quote by George Orsell that these soldiers held close to their heart, “People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.” (p. 12)
Whoah. Deja vu.
Another failure of the book’s promise is that it doesn’t really address in any comprehensive form the various evil organizations that it lists.
Three-fourths of the book is specifically about the Arellano-Felix Drug Trafficking Organization (constantly referred to as “AF-DTO”). If you wanted detailed information about the organizational structure of the AF-DTO, then this book is for you (once you throw away all the eternal battle crap). There are charts–dozens of charts–about the AF-DTO. There are brief passages about terrorist organizations and other criminal gangs, but the book is really about the AF-DTO.
Finally, the book fails in that it promises to show “how we can fight back and turn the tide for all humanity.”
Here’s the entire guts of the book:
- Evil organizations are extremely resilient and able to adapt.
- In order to fight them, we have to be resilient as well.
That’s it. It’s repeated ad nauseam, complete with more charts and chapter upon chapter re-stating the same thing while promising to give the secret in the next chapter, which turns out to be more of the same repeated in a different way.
There are moments of bizarre irony, such as this passage:
The AF-DTO is an incredible recruiting machine. It not only recruits gang members, as described earlier, but also college graduates and non-drug users to facilitate its business operations. It recruits in great numbers and can easily replace members killed or arrested. The AF-DTO offers much higher salaries to recruits compared to legitimate employment wages in Mexico.
Note the disconnect from reality. Chabot seems to understand that these are not all evil people prior to their recruitment into the organizations. He also sees that the organization has incredible financial resources to do all this hiring, but fails the follow the economic lesson to its logical conclusion–take away the black market profits and the organization no longer can recruit such high numbers at such high pay.
There is absolutely no acknowledgement of the existence of economic factors influencing the development of drug trafficking operations or the possibility of market alternatives that might change the equation. All he has to offer is violence. It’s a simplistic and uneducated view.
Interspersed throughout the book are 21 “testimonials,” often giving personal accounts of major operations. In addition to fleshing out the book and providing additional stories, some of them seemed to be included in order to make Chabot look more intelligent in comparison, such as the one by Ronald E. Brooks–a first class ignoramus and long-term President of the U.S. National Narcotics Officers Association, who contributed this over-the-top rhetoric:
Ironically, the events of 9/11 overshadowed a different kind of attack–chemical attacks that occur each day in cities and towns in the form of death-dealing illegal drug trafficking. (p. 276)
Or former DEA Director of International Operations Michael S. Vigil, who wrote:
Thousands of people die every single year through the world due to the harm brought on by illegal drugs–far more than those killed on that fateful day in September 2001. […]
How do we tell other nations to “say no to drugs and drug production,” when we have States in America, like California, that continue to allow the hoax of medical marijuana. Marijuana is both grown and sold, openly, without prosecution. We need to get our own house in order! One way to do that is to stop the smoke and mirrors of medical marijuana. (p. 235)
Chabot himself can’t avoid jumping in on the culture war (after all, any kind of war is his thing):
… when a society’s morals and values degrade, the resurgance of evil’s temptations rise. You can see it globally through the tearing of the moral fabric–including efforts to legalize drugs and prostitution and the glamorization of actors, performers and politicians who advocate the very things we, as parents, tell our children not to do. (p. 284)
No nuance. In his world, legalization=negotiation and he doesn’t negotiate with evil. Not even a chance of discussing options. He’s on a clear jihad.
When you picked up my book, you made a deision to learn about an enemy. Now that you are at the end of my book, you should demand an answer to this one question, “What can I do to help?” Ask God to provide you with His guidance. we’re in this eternal battle against evil. Where are you needed most in this fight and what can you contribute? It could be on the battlefield carrying a sword, charging the enemy, or it could be in a classroom teaching children the basic value of life and moral principles. (p. 283)
Chabot claims to be a Christian (he even talks in the book about having been personally given a direct sign from God once), and the book is filled with biblical references and quotes. But it’s mostly Old Testament-style violence and war mongering. It’s really pathetic watching him try to recreate Jesus in his own image (you know, the actual “Christ” in “Christian”) in a vain effort to make quotes from the Gospels support his violent and blood-thirsty desires.
The book is heavily illustrated with images of terrorists and DTO personnel, and… 42 pictures of Paul Chabot.
Note: Paul Chabot constantly refers to himself as Dr. Paul R. Chabot. I do not use that salutation. Part of it is because where I work, we only use that salutation for medical doctors. For those with an advanced degree, we append the Ph.D after the name when it refers to their scholarly activities. For example, I might say: “Joe Smith, Ph.D., gave a lecture about public policy.” On the other hand, I wouldn’t say “Joe Smith, Ph.D., is in the bathroom taking a crap.” In a similar vein, I won’t don’t use the term “Paul R. Chabot, Ph.D.,” in relation to this book.
A shorter adaptation of this review has been posted at Amazon.com. Please feel free to go there and upvote the review.