James Carafano asks: Pop Quiz Mr. President: Why Did You Fail?
Back to that in just a moment, because Charles Krauthammer's column from yesterday goes a long way in answering that question. The first step in solving a problem is admitting its existence, and unfortunately for America, Obama is still in denial of terrorism:
Denial doesn't make sense, and can't work:
From the very beginning, President Obama has relentlessly tried to play down and deny the nature of the terrorist threat we continue to face. Napolitano renames terrorism "man-caused disasters." Obama goes abroad and pledges to cleanse America of its post-9/11 counterterrorist sins. Hence, Guantanamo will close, CIA interrogators will face a special prosecutor, and Khalid Sheik Mohammed will bask in a civilian trial in New York -- a trifecta of political correctness and image management.
And just to make sure even the dimmest understand, Obama banishes the term "war on terror." It's over -- that is, if it ever existed.
RTR. Also along these lines, read Jennifer Rubin's No Mystery.
This absurdity renders hollow Obama's declaration that "we will not rest until we find all who were involved." Once we've given Abdulmutallab the right to remain silent, we have gratuitously forfeited our right to find out from him precisely who else was involved, namely those who trained, instructed, armed and sent him.
This is all quite mad even in Obama's terms. He sends 30,000 troops to fight terror overseas, yet if any terrorists come to attack us here, they are magically transformed from enemy into defendant.
The logic is perverse. If we find Abdulmutallab in an al-Qaeda training camp in Yemen, where he is merely preparing for a terror attack, we snuff him out with a Predator -- no judge, no jury, no qualms. But if we catch him in the United States in the very act of mass murder, he instantly acquires protection not just from execution by drone but even from interrogation.
Back to Mr. Carafano:
Read the rest. No one wants the president to fail in this regard. But how can this weak horse lead us through a crisis he doesn't believe is real?
Here is what the president did not explain: This is the same system that stopped the London-based terrorist plot in 2006. On that occasion, intelligence connected the dots; counterterrorism agents penetrated the conspiracy; Homeland Security developed countermeasures; and with international partners the U.S. took down the terrorists before any bomber got near a plane.
Obama had the same system at his disposal as the last president. One built between 2002 and 2008 in the aftermath of the first wave of terrorist attacks– 9/11; the anthrax letters; and Richard Reid, the shoe bomber. A system that President Bush drove day-in and day-out, 24-7-365 to find and stop terrorist threats before they got off the ground. That’s why the 2006 plot and 26 other plots since 9/11 (21 under the Bush presidency) were found out and stopped. What Obama did not explain is how it worked for the last president, but failed for him.
Systems will never be perfect. The enemy keeps changing its tactics—innovating, improvising, adopting. There will also always be gaps, miscues, and mistakes. That’s the nature of how government works. There is no better antidote for these problems than leadership from the top. A leader that establishes the priority; sets the right tone; demands results; and then follows-up.
And as usual, he lies. Mark Steyn:
The president can’t tell an allegedly alleged suspect (which is what he is in Obama fantasy-land) from an enemy combatant (which is what he is in cold hard reality). But worse than the complacent cop-show jargonizing was a phrase it’s hard to read as anything other than a deliberate attempt to mislead the public: The president referred to the Knickerbomber as an “isolated extremist.” By this time, it was already clear that young Umar had been radicalized by jihadist networks in London and fast-tracked to training in Yemen by terror operatives who understood the potentially high value of a Westernized Muslim with excellent English from a respectable family. Yet President Obama tried to pass him off as some sort of lone misfit who wakes up one morning and goes bananas. Could happen to anyone. [RTR]That fiction is perfectly consistent with his terrorism-denying world view. Perhaps it's time for a summit to solve the "isolated extremist" problem. See my "predictions" and those of my betters at Cassy Fiano's.
Hold the presses -- this just in: Damage control time: Obama ties bomber to Al Qaeda in his Saturday address. In the face of the criticism of his weak responses, he's assumed a defensive posture. As always, he calls his critics "partisan" and accuses them of playing politics, though even Maureen "Heck of a job, Barry" Dowd found his belated responses wanting, and his own staff played the worst kind of politics with this issue. But anyway:
Sowing division is Obama's specialty. He portrays himself as the only serious, responsible person in the room, and contends that any criticism of him or his policies is motivated not by what's best for the country but by petty politics or something even worse.
Mr. Obama noted that he used the term “war” in his inaugural speech on his first day in office. “On that day, I also made it very clear, our nation is at war against a far-reaching network of violence and hatred, and that we will do whatever it takes to defeat them and defend our country, even as we uphold the values that have always distinguished America among nations,” he said. “And make no mistake, that’s exactly what we’ve been doing.”
Mr. Obama defended his policies as tough but reasonable, and called for an end to the sniping that both parties have engaged in since the Christmas episode. “As we go forward, let us remember this — our adversaries are those who would attack our country, not our fellow Americans, not each other,” Mr. Obama said.
He added: “Instead of succumbing to partisanship and division, let’s summon the unity that this moment demands. Let’s work together, with a seriousness of purpose, to do what must be done to keep our country safe.”
And just for the record, this is misleading:
“We’re learning more about the suspect,” Mr. Obama said in the Saturday address. “We know that he traveled to Yemen, a country grappling with crushing poverty and deadly insurgencies. It appears that he joined an affiliate of Al Qaeda and that this group, Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, trained him, equipped him with those explosives and directed him to attack that plane headed for America.”Captain Underpants, according to reports, never experienced any poverty, crushing or otherwise.
*Update: What did Obama know and when did he know it?
As Jim Hoft says, "If he was a Republican this would be the headline for the next 10 weeks…"
*Edited on 1/3 to add link to another relevant Jennifer Rubin post: Third Time is the Charm?
Also adding link to Archer at Truth and Commonsense, who asks:
Will somebody please explain to me the downside for the terrorists in bringing all the attacks to America from now on?
Linked at Michelle Malkin (buzzworthy)
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