Obama’s fault

| April 20, 2013

ROS sends us a link from the UK’s Telegraph entitled “Boston bombs: Obama lulled America into false confidence over terror threat”.

Mr Obama and his intelligence community know the threat from al-Qaeda affiliates, but have chosen to downplay it to the US public.

Even when that fight does directly touch on American lives, as it did last September when the US ambassador to Libya was murdered in Benghazi by an al-Qaeda linked group, the administration appears at pains to deny the connection.

Indeed, next week, America’s transportation authority is to relax rules on carrying knives on planes for the first time since the September 11 attacks.

But as many counter-terrorism experts have been saying – their voices often drowned out or ignored in favour of the pleasing simplicity of the Obama administration’s narrative – the threat from al-Qaeda is too amorphous and shifting to ever have been discounted.

I may well get criticized for it, but, I’m not ready to succumb to the easy excuse and blame Obama. On September 13th, 2001, two days after the attack on the Pentagon, I was a few miles away in Lafayette Park, across Pennsylvania Avenue from the White House. I just wanted to see how the city had changed in the opening days of the terror war. In the center of the park was one of those huge suitcases on wheels, left unattended. I approached a Park Policeman and told him about the bag. I didn’t expect bomb squads to swoop in with their robots and rope off the park while they investigated the luggage, but I also didn’t expect the reaction I got;

“Oh, we know whose bag that is”, was the answer. Having spent the eighties in Germany, I knew how people were supposed to react to suspicious stuff. I also know that police shouldn’t let the homeless leave their stuff unattended – they are the most susceptible to bribes to plant explosives. My point is this; no one ever really took terrorism seriously.

Yeah, there have been instances when airports and subway stations were closed due to suspicious packages, but I get the feeling that those instances were just to make it appear as if someone was doing their jobs because the fact that travelers were inconvenienced was Big News on Slow News Days. No one really took these things seriously, otherwise, someone would have noticed the Tsarnaev brothers drop off their deadly loads and confronted them or at least notified some the authorities that seemed to be nearby. But no one did that.

I doubt that they would have got away with it if I had seen it, because, like I said, I still have those instincts from being in Germany during the height of terrorism there. But, maybe we all learned a tough lesson on April 15th, 2013.

By the way, after I briskly left Lafayette Park, my wife and I took our first and only White House tour since there was no line and President Bush told the Secret Service that he wasn’t going to shut down the tours. So that was my personal “finger” to the terrorists.

Category: Terror War

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  1. This entire country is a soft Target. The only thing that has kept us somewhat safe is that we have an ocean between us and those that would like to do us harm.

  2. 261Med says:

    I agree you can’t blame that on Obama. I also agree that he has continued that narrative, if only to court the nation’s confirmation bias. If anyone is wondering why we can’t win a war and are vulnerable to these attacks, all you need do is walk down the street, and look and listen. This nation has no idea it is at war. We have been encouraged all along to go on about our business as if nothing is going on. This nation can win any war if it commits to it fully, and it can lose this war if it continues to half ass it.

  3. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    Let’s say there are two a-holes running for the offices of president and vice president. We’ll call them obama and biden. They are elected and are widely and deservedly despised and ridiculed for their inept leadership, among other shortcomings. They want to continue in office and run for re-election. And, sonovagun, they are re-elected! Their ineptness continues and worsens in some respects. For instance, their Dept of Justice illegally sells guns to drug gangs, guns that are used in killings. Their Dept of State, for reasons unknown, fails to protect an ambassador and others from foreseeable harm. As a result, people die but the inept ones, through their selected spokespeople, try to sidestep any accountability. And they succeed. The a-holes’ foreign policy is unknown after years in office but evidence suggests it is to foment rebellion and appease terrorists. One day, bombs explode in Boston. No one admits to having failed. In fact, gov’t is applauded for its post-attack efforts. Who is to blame? Is it the a-holes? No, it can’t be because they were a known liability before their re-election. No, the fault belongs to every single SOB who either voted for them last election or failed to show up to vote against them.

  4. Sigma66 says:

    I spoke to DHS friend here in DC before he went up to Boston with the investigation team and he pointed out that running events are just about the only place where you can leave a bag unattended and no one questions it because it’s the practice of the runners to leave their bags at the finish line so they can pick them up at the end of the race.

    As someone who has a boxed gift-doll scooped up by the bomb squad when I left it unattended next to my car while I was unloading groceries I found the above unbelievable.

    As the head El Al security said of how we do things here, we don’t have a security system, we have a system for bothering people…

  5. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    Look, the immediate causation could be guarded against if we were all willing to be patted down and our belongings searched at every public event; if we were willing to be bussed from faraway parking lots to large public events. It ain’t happening and I hope that it never does. So, what’s to be done? People–common citizens must remain vigilant. Police must be responsive. and our government better damn get serious when it comes to who it allows to enter and to remain in our country. Instead, just the opposite is happening. The gov’t is good at bothering people ( thanks, Sigma66!) and scared to death of calling a spade a spade. That’s the problem, right there. I don’t want to live in a police state. I want a reasonably smart and vigilant citzenry and gov’t.

  6. Devtun says:

    Rep Peter King of New York wants to increase surveillance of the Muslim community. Yes, its not PC and Pete will be getting alot of hate, but i’m betting many many people left, right, and center are thinking the same thing. How many more of them are out there?

    FNC Neil Cavuto is reporting an 18 yr old in Chicago has been arrested by FBI for alleged support of terrorist activities.

  7. OldSoldier54 says:

    @1,2,3&4

    Yep.

  8. Veritas Omnia Vincit says:

    I was quite surprised to find that box cutters would be allowed on planes again…was there a real problem with box assembly and disassembly during flights over the last 12 years that we are all unaware of? If I can’t take 5 ounces of Listerine on board what makes anyone think a box cutter would again be a good idea? I keep my camera batteries in a tube sock in my carry on in case someone heads towards the cockpit door who should not, but box cutters seems just plain stupid to me…

    Obama is not to blame for Boston, that’s wrong and i agree with Jonn. But he ought to step in on this small knives/box cutters allowed again on a plane…or else the next time a plane is taken he will be to blame….and the TSA thinking box cutters were okay again but an old guy in wheel chair needs his ass monitored? We need a security agency that actually provides security and not just employment for half wits and degenerates at the airport…

  9. USMCE8Ret says:

    @5 – I agree, but I’ll take it a step further based on other comments posted here.

    If you recall, Americans were generally on board on the outset of troops stepping off to war, then after a few years of fighting, the American public lost interest and went on about their daily lives in pursuit of comfort. There was a level of expectation that both Iraq and Afghanistan would be taken care of in short order. I said it 11 years ago that this nation does not have the intestinal fortitude or conviction to see it through because it takes effort. For those who have served are clearly the exception because a majority of us have served in both theaters, on numerous occasions. I just hope it is for naught. We don’t live in a culture anymore where any effort is required to achieve success (but I don’t point fingers to anyone who regularly subscribes to this blog). I hope someday I will be proven wrong, but for the time being, we’ll have to endure the “fundamental change” that was promised, and that truly sucks.

  10. RunPatRun says:

    I was on the DC Metro to a meeting on Monday morning, packed like a can of sardines and had a passing thought, what if one of these riders is a suicide bomber? I quickly pushed the thought aside.

    We are a soft target. A race with tight security, the Army Ten Miler, still has lax volunteers screening runners entering corrals. I run it every year and have seen improvements…but still too many opportunities. Won’t say anything else on that event.

    We need to take on the mindset of Europe during the 70s and 80s, (and Israel). Not sure how or when this will take hold. Hopefully soon.

  11. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    @10. The good news is that you can profile and trust your instincts. Granted, you can’t be in all train cars to check all of the other riders out but you can atleast know who is in your car. Don’t stand near the olive-skinned male who is between the ages of 16 and 40, unless he is wearing a crucifix or bling.

  12. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    Correction to cmt 11.
    “…unless he is wearing a crucifix, a yamaka, or bling.”

  13. FatCircles0311 says:

    I really don’t understand the point of this article. The premise really wasn’t discussed other than mentioning the latest example of lax security policies. It would have been much better if instead he used the numerous examples of attacks that occurred and how the administration has chosen to lie and deceive the public regarding them. That would have supported his valid observation much more than what he used.

    Obama didn’t get lucky this time. That’s the difference between this and the other times. A plane blowing up at Detroit Metro airport for example was a heart beat away from happening. The same goes with that vehicle IED in NYC. The attitude hasn’t changed since then except for not immediately mirandizing the surviving terrorists with the latest successful attack.

  14. DaveO says:

    Some things to note:

    We’ve got, below the political-appointee level, exactly the same intelligence services today as we had on 9/11/2001. The main difference is the rank and file CIA isn’t busy leaking secrets to undermine Bush’s reform efforts. While the CIA won the battle and remained a self-serving special interest group, overal the CIA lost the war by being thwarted by DIA, State, and a lot of civilians who went online, into the terrorist chatrooms and gathered intelligence – which shut down a number of foreign and domest terrorist efforts.

    The differences between Bush’s prosecution of the war against terrorists and Obama’s are 2: political appointees (usually the rich, indolent Red Diaper children of 60s radicals) and the guiding philosophy: from National Security/Wartime (doing everything to win) to the ‘Terror is a Law Enforcement Problem’ philosophy which in reality is more a war of rhetoric between prosecutors and defense attorneys. The battleground is the court of the Federal Judge of choice, not wherever real terrorists reside.

    The Red Diapers aren’t capable of protecting that which they were raised to hate and overthrow. The Law Enforcement philosophy means the Government Civilians expect lawyers to rewrite the rules and regulations so that the civilian doesn’t get sued and ‘do the wrong thing.’ In the meantime, everyone sits on their hands and expects TSA to protect the USA.

  15. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    @14. Loved that last paragraph DaveO. I think you knocked it out of the park and into the next zip code.

  16. A Proud Infidel says:

    @#14, *WHACK!* Home Run!!!

  17. @ #3 2/17 AirCav – Amen to that!!!

  18. @ #7 Old Soldier – I can hardly wait until we begin using the ‘M’ word or the ‘I’ word to describe Muslims or Islamists /s off

  19. Ex-PH2 says:

    I don’t blame Obama or Bush for anything. If people in this country weren’t so complacent, and didn’t have such short attention spans and an almost-intentional ability to forget the lessons that should have been learned by Pearl Harbor, the Tylenol murders, the Oklahoma City bombing, the truck bombing of the World Trade Center, all of which are basically any attack on our home turf, then perhaps these kinds of things might not happen.

    When the IRA was using every opportunity to create destruction, people in the UK did not become complacent. They still are not complacent, because they know it can happen again at any time, e.g., the idiot that tried to drive a Jeep Cherokee loaded with explosives into Glasgow Airport’s terminal. We’ve led a rather protected existence in this country for a very long time. The flash mobs of teenagers rampaging through Ford City Mall a few weeks ago and just recently trying to cause a disturbance on Michigan Avenue are trickles compared to what has happened elsewhere in this world. Except for the Oklahoma City truck bomb and the hijackers in 2001, we really haven’t had anything like Pearl Harbor happen in decades. Even this random act of violence by a pair of disgruntled ‘big losers’ (their uncle’s words) is small by comparison.

    What does it take to get people to stop being complacent, meaning you think that no one would dare? Are people in this country actually naive enough to think that no one would dare attack us or engage in mass murder? Yes. It keeps happening, but no one gets at the root of the problem.

    And while I’m at it, more stupid laws won’t put a stop to this kind of thing. If they did stop it, no one would reach into your car and grab your purse while you’re waiting in line at the car wash.

    This will blow over just like everything else has. People will go back to crossing the street into oncoming traffic with their eyes glued to their smartphones instead of watching where they’re going. Complacency will rule again.

  20. MAJMike says:

    Again, I ask, why do we get better press coverage of U.S. events from the Limey Press than from our own ink-stained wretches?

    Guess we all know why. I can’t help but state the obvious.

  21. NHSparky says:

    This country as a whole has no concept of the word “sacrifice.” Ask someone what they gave up compared to what our parents or grandparents sacrificed in WWII. Don’t be surprised by the silence.

  22. Hayabusa says:

    I’m pretty happy to bash Obama about virtually anything, because I despise everything about him. But I agree that, based on what we’ve seen to date, we can’t really personally blame him for this terrorist attack. I mean, truthfully, it’s really impossible to prevent every single attack. We have to be lucky every single time, and the terrorists only have to get lucky once.

  23. Medic261 says:

    @18 You mean Hadjis? Hadjis are bad umkay.

  24. jonp says:

    A terrorist attack by a determined individual is just about impossible to stop so I do think it is silly to blame Obama for any single instance. It is undeniable that he not only put incompetent political appointees into his administration to head agencies that deal with it on the basis of diversity and not competence. He and they have not treated terrorism seriously and have consistently adopted a “don’t worry be happy we are in an awesome, golden time because of me” attitude which serves no-one. If this had happened 5 years ago under Bush we would have had the MSM and the usual Democrat suspects immediately screeching that it was Bush’s fault. They are kinda silent here are they not?

  25. Ex-PH2 says:

    @Jonp, yes, I hear crickets, too. I expect to see more blatant attempts like these, as copycats crawl out of the woodwork (unfortunately).

  26. Old Trooper says:

    @8: Box cutters/pocket knives should have never been able to be the tools of hijacking to begin with, however, we had been conditioned/indoctrinated to “do what the hijackers said and everything would be fine”. Since that time, several have tried to do shit and have ended up getting a beatdown there and then, as it should have been to begin with. I don’t blame Obama for the Boston bombing, or any other terrorist attack. We have to realize that we will never be able to stop every attack and we have been fortunate that our domestic LEO/FBI have been able to thwart many attacks with the help of the public and incompetence of the attackers. The law of averages caught up to us, however, having a bunch of chuckleheads that wish/desire/announce that it was perpetrated by ideological enemies of Obama and progressives to gain some sort of upper hand politically doesn’t do anyone any favors, either, just as a terrorist attack against our embassies was blamed on some obscure youtube video that no one had seen before it was blamed. That can be blamed on Obama and the progressives in the administration and the media. They want us to be looking to blame something/someone other than what/who it is and why they are doing it. That’s where we need to come together and realize that jihadis are going to continue to attack us for who we are, not for a movie, cartoon, song, tv show, etc.

    Plus, I am sick and tired of all the excuses being made for this little bastard by progressives all over the place. I’ve had family members making sympathetic statements for this asshole and saying we need to have a heart, it wasn’t his fault, his brother influenced him into doing this, etc. Fuck him; get him healed up, try him, then execute him.

  27. NHSparky says:

    Jonp…as has been noted, administrations come and go, but the BUREAUCRACY lives forever.

    Nothing will change until you change that.

  28. Ex-PH2 says:

    Get rid of the clutter and get back to basics. Time for housecleaning.

  29. B Woodman says:

    #9 USMCE8Ret,
    Don’t blame the troops for the problems that the politicians cause. The troops have the will and the tools and the ability to win any war, any where, any time. But all that means nothing when those same troops are ham-strung and hog-tied by political silly “mommy may I” ROEs.
    Shades of VietNam. Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it. We are living in that history loop, because of the historical ignorance of our present Krop of Kongressional Kritters.

  30. MAJMike says:

    @29 — Roger that!! Big time!!

  31. WOTN says:

    While neither Obama, nor Bush, are directly responsible for the Boston attack, the Telegraph has a point in saying that this Administration has indeed increased complacency in the people, by portraying the enemy as defeated, by refusing to acknowledge that so many attempted or successful attacks in the US were terrorists, and Bush did fail in not providing the American people a role in the War. He failed to tell them to be vigilant, to be situational aware, even though it was necessary for them to unafraid. He failed, in his understanding of why fighting al-Qaeda in Iraq, to present his case to the American people, and that allowed his partisan opponents to define the argument. http://waronterrornews.typepad.com/ps/2013/04/terrorists-have-not-ended-the-war.html

  32. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    Fox News website’s opening paragraph right now:
    “As investigators search for a motive in the Boston Marathon bombings that left 3 dead and more than 180 injured, 19-year-old suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is ‘in no condition to be interrogated’ yet, Boston’s police commissioner says.”

    Investigators are searching for a motive? I wonder if CAP is leading the investigation.

  33. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    I certainly hope that was an intern’s big chance at writing copy. I hate to think that a legitimate writer at Fox or any investigator believes that the motive was, oh, a jilted and angry lover, a disappointing showing in the marathon, a drug deal gone bad, a frustrated job seeker, or murderous passion prompted by a video no one has seen.

  34. WOTN says:

    2/17, many MSM commentators are “wondering” what the motive could have been. And they are finding “experts” who are saying it was probably some terrible experience of his youth that “made him” do it, just as they were suggesting when they were saying it was most likely a “domestic” terrorist.

    Heavily discounted is any chance that the Massachusetts funded (partially) Mosque had any role in the “self-” islamization of the “angelic” kids, or that their Chechen heritage of brutal islamist terrorism could have had anything to do with these “Russians” falling prey to things they watched or posted on the internet. I have hardly heard the MSM mention that Chechens were fighting with Al-Qaeda, against the US in 2001, as well as today. So far it looks like their Uncle Tsarni has the clearest picture of it.

  35. OWB says:

    Unfortunately, the buck stops with the guy occupying the oval office, whether it is entirely justified or not. He is the one who sets the priorities for everyone else in the executive branch.