Charles Krauthammer wrote the following piece about a week before Obama's most recent "I have to have my face on tv" speech regarding our security and the Christmas Day terrorist attempt. Since I cannot stand to watch him (I have the exact same aversion to him talking as I did to Bush, only I didn't need Dramamine with Bush like I do with Obama's constant head-swiveling teleprompter reading the times I have had to watch him), I have to go by transcripts, though those are soporific. Nothing like a good double cappuccino to help me through those moments.
Fortunately, there are others who can stand to watch them, one of whom is Mr. Krauthammer himself. Here is his impression of Obama's speech on terrorism and the Christmas Day attempt:
It makes this piece, A Terrorist War Obama Has Denied, even more prescient:
Janet Napolitano -- former Arizona governor, now overmatched secretary of homeland security -- will forever be remembered for having said of the attempt to bring down an airliner over Detroit: "The system worked." The attacker's concerned father had warned U.S. authorities about his son's jihadist tendencies. The would-be bomber paid cash and checked no luggage on a transoceanic flight. He was nonetheless allowed to fly, and would have killed 288 people in the air alone, save for a faulty detonator and quick actions by a few passengers.
Heck of a job, Brownie.
That reference is even more appropriate when you consider the following:
Holy SMOKES - this is the head of Homeland Security?? Unbelievable. Krauthammer seems to think so, to:
The reason the country is uneasy about the Obama administration's response to this attack is a distinct sense of not just incompetence but incomprehension. 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.
Obama may have declared the war over. Unfortunately, al-Qaeda has not. Which gives new meaning to the term "asymmetric warfare."
And produces linguistic -- and logical -- oddities that littered Obama's public pronouncements following the Christmas Day attack. In his first statement, Obama referred to Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab as "an isolated extremist." This is the same president who, after the Fort Hood, Tex., shooting, warned us "against jumping to conclusions" -- code for daring to associate the mass murder there with Nidal Hasan's Islamist ideology. Yet, with Abdulmutallab, Obama jumped immediately to the conclusion, against all existing evidence, that the would-be bomber acted alone.
And even if Obama declares, "the buck stops with me," as it surely SHOULD - he is the president, after all - his unwillingness to acknowledge the reality of the world in which we live, is, well, frightening. The speech on Thursday did little to change that, not unlike the one he made shortly after the failed terrorist attempt. When he could get himself off the links, that is:
More jarring still were Obama's references to the terrorist as a "suspect" who "allegedly tried to ignite an explosive device." You can hear the echo of FDR: "Yesterday, December 7, 1941 -- a date which will live in infamy -- Japanese naval and air force suspects allegedly bombed Pearl Harbor."
Obama reassured the nation that this "suspect" had been charged. Reassurance? The president should be saying: We have captured an enemy combatant -- an illegal combatant under the laws of war: no uniform, direct attack on civilians -- and now to prevent future attacks, he is being interrogated regarding information he may have about al-Qaeda in Yemen.
Instead, Abdulmutallab is dispatched to some Detroit-area jail and immediately lawyered up. At which point -- surprise! -- he stops talking.
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.
The president said that this incident highlights "the nature of those who threaten our homeland." But the president is constantly denying the nature of those who threaten our homeland. On Tuesday, he referred five times to Abdulmutallab (and his terrorist ilk) as "extremist[s]."
A man who shoots abortion doctors is an extremist. An eco-fanatic who torches logging sites is an extremist. Abdulmutallab is not one of these. He is a jihadist. And unlike the guys who shoot abortion doctors, jihadists have cells all over the world; they blow up trains in London, nightclubs in Bali and airplanes over Detroit (if they can); and are openly pledged to war on America.
Any government can through laxity let someone slip through the cracks. But a government that refuses to admit that we are at war, indeed, refuses even to name the enemy -- jihadist is a word banished from the Obama lexicon -- turns laxity into a governing philosophy. (firstname.lastname@example.org)
As I said, his "the buck stops with me" did little to change that impression that we are, indeed, at war. Napolitano admitting she had no idea the extent of what Al Qaeda can do was shocking - I bet the average person in, say, Kansas, or just about anyone at your local 7-11, could tell you that Al Qaeda is a scary damn operation. What doesn't she, or Obama, get about that? What does it take to convince them?
Clearly, Obama has not yet been convinced by what this country has endured thus far, even in the last few months under his watch: Fort Hood and the soldiers and civilian killed there; Khost, Afghanistan and the CIA agents lost there; and the Christmas Day attempt. Frankly his speech did little to truly demonstrate the buck stopped with him. Rather, the intelligence community was clearly laid out by the president, yet not one person in the upper echelons lost their job. Not "Heckuva Job" Napolitano, not Brennan, not Leiter, not anyone. Huh. Already cheapening the whole, "Buck stops here" thing, if you ask me.
Until Obama is willing to admit, acknowledge, and deal with the reality of organized terrorism which has as its focus US, I shudder to think what can happen next...