Monday, January 4, 2010

Terrorism; and the Big Chill

1. The Global War"man made disasters""networks." One Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab tried to blow up Northwest Flight 253 from Amsterdam to Detroit on Christmas day. Abdulmutallab, a muslim from Nigeria, apparently was able to buy a one-way ticket for cash. His father had warned the US embassy about his extremist tendencies. By sheer luck, and the impatience of this terrorist in waiting sufficiently long for the chemicals to mix to be able to explode, the bomb never went off.

On the direction of our President, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano previously told us that we have a fight with "man made disasters." That is the kind of spin that they put on the logical, understandable expression of "war on terror." But "terror" was too closely associated with radical islam; and was definitely too closely associated with our former President Bush. Then, after the attempted blowing up of Flight 253, Secretary Napolitano tells us that the system worked like it should - because the bomb did not go off. Even the lamestream media could not tolerate that one; and she had to retract her statement a day later.

When we heard from our President we were told that: "Our nation is at war against a far reaching network of violence and hatred." That's it - we are at war against a "network." Is that like ABC or CBS or NBC? Is that the network? Obama WILL NOT say "terrorism" or "radical Islam" or "jihadists." He continues his stupid appeasement of the muslim world; even though a year later he has ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to show for his approach. Well, not nothing. Foreign leaders seem to think he is weak and indecisive. I wonder why! (On the other hand, Reagan called the Soviet Union the "evil empire." He was not afraid of insulting the Russians; and maybe even encouraged the dissidents. Obama gives great deference to a regime like Iran, which strengthens the Ayatollahs and fails to give needed moral support to the dissidents there. Reagan was feared. Bush was feared. Obama wants to be everyone's BFF - but no one fears him. A little fear in the right people is a good thing. You know, "talk softly, but carry a big stick." Too bad our President does not get that.) So what formerly antagonistic muslim country has warmed up to the US because of the Great Obama? Iran? No. Syria? No. The palestinians? No. Of course, the same applies to the formerly - and still - antagonistic non-muslim countries - No. Korea, Russia, Venezuela. I feel so much safer now!

Consistent with his appeasement and anti-Bush approach, he immediately decided to try Abdulmutallab in criminal court rather than as an enemy combatant. That, of course, gives him the right to an attorney and the right to remain silent. Although some might think that we might actually want to find out what he knows about others who may be planning further attacks. But no.

Obama's Deputy National Security Advisor, John Brennan, had this to say: "There was no single piece of intelligence or smoking gun if you will that said Mr. Abdulmutallab was going to carry out an attack against that aircraft." Well, you have a young muslim male (OMG - profiling!) whose father reported to US authorities that he had been influenced by extremists, who buys a one way ticket for cash, and was apparently known to the CIA before.

Now I recall after 9/11 some of the criticisms of Bush. He was on vacation in August and should have been in D.C. coordinating intelligence efforts - because when the head guy is away, people do not work as hard. Although I find that suggestion to be silly, this time Obama was away - and clearly did not rush back from his Hawaiian vacation after the Christmas day terrorist act. Also, Bush was blamed because our intelligence agencies were not sharing information in a way that would have allowed someone to connect all the dots. So Congress did what it always does to solve a problem - it created new bureaucracies. We got a new National Intelligence Director, the Department of Homeland Security and a new Counter terrorism unit. Personally, I thought it was ridiculous to think that creating new levels of bureaucracy would help improve our intelligence gathering and counter terrorism efforts. And clearly, those additional bureaucracies did NOTHING to prevent this current act of terrorism. Brennan had this to say: "There is no indication whatsoever that any agency or department was not trying to share information." Which, of course, misses the point entirely! So if everyone was cooperating and the system FAILED anyway - then maybe the problem was never the "system" in the first place. Maybe the problem is a failed mind-set.

My son just returned from a trip to Israel. He flew El Al - probably the No. 1 target for terrorists - yet the safest airline to fly. My son indicated the questioning by the El Al agents was more intense than ever. Yes, they do not just rely on x-ray screening or metal detectors. They ask questions - and they PROFILE! Why are you going to Israel? What's your Jewish background? What holidays do you celebrate? Where will you be staying? And the questions are often repeated to check for inconsistencies in the answers. Is the United States of America incapable of that same type of screening? Do we not have enough people that can be trained to do this type of screening? Or, does political correctness prevent us from doing what should be done (just like it prevented the Army from kicking out another murderous islamist terrorist - Major Hasan). So we will continue to give the same attention to elderly grandmothers and six year old girls that we should be giving to young men from muslim countries.

2. The Big Chill! Forget global warming. CNN reported today that "dangerously cold weather had much of the United States in its grip early Monday morning, with no relief in sight for the rest of the week." The cold temps went all the way down to Florida which had a hard freeze warning in effect. Parts of Louisiana and Florida were expecting temperature readings in the 20's; with possible new record lows being set there and in southern Georgia and Texas. Maybe that's why the left stopped referring to "global warming" and in its place put "climate change." Now, they just need to come up with an explanation as to how man's activities are causing the "global cooling." Problems, problems.