The devastating impact of the Obama administration’s dismantling of America’s national security and intelligence capabilities has once again come home to roost. We’ve had three terrorist attacks on American soil in Obama’s first 11 months in office. Thankfully we were spared a catastrophic outcome on Christmas Day.
Obama and his coven of leftist lawyers seek to criminalize the war against radical Islamist terrorists, treating their institutional demise as a matter best suited to the federal courts. Al Qaeda operatives appear unimpressed with the presidential threats of federal prosecution, having stepped up their efforts in Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia, Yemen and in the United States.
America learned a costly lesson on September 11, 2001. Or at least most of us did. The Obama administration gives every appearance of ignoring that particular historical lesson.
It was not by mere chance that the Bush administration kept this country relatively free from terrorist attack in the wake of 9-11, after the anthrax attacks, the beltway snipers and the shooting at the El Al ticket counter at Los Angeles International Airport. Taking the fight to the terrorists took its toll on al Qaeda.
An aggressive intelligence gathering apparatus played a foundational role in the successful effort. It wasn’t about punishment or jurisprudence for terrorists. It was about taking out radicalized Islamists determined to kill as many innocent Americans as possible. It’s a strategy that worked.
Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano’s idea of a successful strategy to combat terrorism appears to include relying on a faulty detonator and a scene out of Moulin Rouge complete with a flying Dutchman hurling himself at the exploding terrorist. Go figure.
Obama’s minions are systematically shutting down America’s ability to obtain vital information about terrorism plots that could foil another 9-11. Exhibit A: Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the braggadocios 23-year old Nigerian terrorist panty bomber, was afforded a lawyer on the public dime as a priority. Never mind the 25 other terrorists in Yemen he was attempting to rat out to authorities. Advise him of his right to remain silent and get this al Qaeda terrorist a lawyer before we learn anything really important.
Abdulmutallab was charged with attempting to blow up an aircraft, a federal crime that carries a 20-year sentence.
Former Vice President Dick Cheney rendered a scorching assessment of President Obama’s strategy that bears repeating in full.
“As I’ve watched the events of the last few days it is clear once again that President Obama is trying to pretend we are not at war,” Cheney told Politico. “He seems to think if he has a low-key response to an attempt to blow up an airliner and kill hundreds of people, we won’t be at war. He seems to think if he gives terrorists the rights of Americans, lets them lawyer up and reads them their Miranda rights, we won’t be at war. He seems to think if we bring the mastermind of September 11 to New York, give him a lawyer and trial in civilian court, we won’t be at war.”
“He seems to think if he closes Guantanamo and releases the hard-core Al Qaeda-trained terrorists still there, we won’t be at war,” Cheney said. “He seems to think if he gets rid of the words, ‘war on terror,’ we won’t be at war. But we are at war and when President Obama pretends we aren’t, it makes us less safe. Why doesn’t he want to admit we’re at war? It doesn’t fit with the view of the world he brought with him to the Oval Office. It doesn’t fit with what seems to be the goal of his presidency — social transformation — the restructuring of American society. President Obama’s first object and his highest responsibility must be to defend us against an enemy that knows we are at war.”
House Republican leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) also came out swinging yesterday in response to the abject failure of the president’s lax national security policy.
“The terrorist plot to bring down Northwest Airlines Flight 253 exposed a near-catastrophic failure at every level of our government,” Boehner said. “We’re fighting a war on terror, and this was a terrorist act. Our first priority should be gaining intelligence to help prevent the next attack. The threat we face is real, and we don’t need to downplay it. We need to do a better job of connecting the dots and putting in place a homeland security and intelligence plan that helps prevent future attacks before they ever get off the ground. We know al Qaeda is plotting more attacks, and our security depends on gaining critical intelligence and connecting those dots.
“The Administration’s response following this attempted attack is consistent with its dangerous decision to close the terrorist prison at Guantanamo Bay and bring Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and other 9-11 terrorists to trial in the United States through civilian courts, rather than the military commissions already in place,” Boehner said. “We know the decision to close this prison has not stopped al Qaeda from plotting attacks on Americans, turning these terrorists over to other countries is not working, and we shouldn’t import them into the United States. It’s time for the President to halt terrorist transfers to other countries, including Yemen, and to reevaluate his decision to close the prison at Guantanamo.”
Republican Study Committee Chairman Tom Price (R-Ga.) warned strongly against the disastrous stance the Obama administration is taking.
“As our nation was once again targeted by extremism, this is a time for great resolve and strong presidential leadership,” Price said. “The slow trickle of troubling information, bizarre statements from administration officials, and a staggered response from the President, however, do not instill confidence that the White House appreciates the gravity of this situation.”
“This event should open the eyes of the administration to the real threat that continues to permeate around the world,” Price continued. “The President must recognize that we are at war with a murderous enemy who will not relent because we heed political correctness, acquiesce to international calls for deference, or close the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay. While the President has long indicated that he believes terrorism can be treated as a simple law enforcement matter, rather than as acts of war, this near horrific disaster should dispel any such naïveté or reckless notion.”
“The fact that this plot was disrupted by courageous passengers without loss of life is a blessing and now provides the President an opportunity to refocus his efforts on defeating terrorism wherever it may be fomenting,” Price concluded. “We hope this is an opportunity the President takes seriously and we look forward to working closely with the administration to ensure bureaucracy never gets in the way of security again.”