Media Warns of Grave GOP Danger
The Christmas Day terrorist attack on Flight 253 was an actual disaster that never occurred thanks to luck (the bomb's detonators were faulty) and to heroism (a Dutch passenger, Jasper Schuringa, literally jumped over rows of passengers to nab the terrorist, subdue him, and save lives).
The averted Christmas Day attack, though, is turning into a political disaster for the Obama administration and the Democratic Left. Political disaster looms because the American people rightly want to know how a terrorist like Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, with detonators and explosives in hand, ever managed to get on Flight 253 -- especially after the terrorist's own father had warned the U.S. embassy in Nigeria about the dangers posed by his son.
The American people also want to know what the Obama administration is doing to prevent future Abdulmutallabs from blowing up planes and American cities.
Republican elected officials, consequently, have finally found their voice and thus are asking politically inconvenient questions about how the administration has handled -- or mishandled -- the war on terror. Questions like:
• Has the Obama administration's ban on enhanced interrogations, and its pledge to investigate and prosecute past enhanced interrogations, resulted in lax counterterrorism efforts, which might otherwise have prevented Abdulmutallab from boarding the plane?
• Did the Obama administration opt to cede Abdulmutallab to the courts and his ACLU-loving lawyers vice interrogating him about his terrorist connections and knowledge?
• How much actionable intelligence was lost -- and how many terror plots might have been averted -- because the Obama administration opted to treat the Christmas Day terrorist attack as a law enforcement matter rather than an incident of war?
• Does the Obama administration truly recognize that America is at war with al-Qaeda and the terror masters; or does it still view terrorism as an issue best delegated to the courts and the criminal justice system?
Of course, the Obama administration and the Democratic Left don't like these questions, which threaten to expose their soft underbelly and show that the emperor has no clothes. That's why they've enlisted their allies in the big media to fight back.
The Washington Post, for instance, editorialized yesterday against "a groundless campaign to portray Mr. Obama as soft on terror." "Soft on terror?" exclaimed the Post. "Not this president"!
The New York Times, naturally, agrees. "The Republicans," they whined, "predictably seized on the [Dec. 25 terror] plot for political advantage by absurdly accusing Mr. Obama of being weak on national security."
"What is needed now," intoned the Times, "is what was needed after 9/11: a clearheaded, non-politicized assessment of what went wrong and non-hysterical remedies that work this time."
Not to be outdone, ABC News also chimed in with a supposedly fair "news story" (as opposed to an editorial or commentary) with this headline: "Unlike 9/11, Partisanship Worse After Christmas Attack: In Wake of Attack on Northwest Flight 253, Partisan Sniping on Capitol Hill Amplified."
In fact, as we're now learning, whatever domestic political comity existed after 9/11 was never supported by the Democratic Left, which is reflexively opposed to the war on terror.
Indeed, with or without Iraq, the Democratic Left opposed the Patriot Act, opposed Guantanamo, opposed enhanced interrogations, opposed profiling, opposed preemptive military action (to extinguish looming threats), and opposed supporting democracy movements (in Iran, the Middle East and elsewhere). And they're still opposed to these commonsense measures!
The Obama administration's record on these issues has been, at best, a mixed bag. In part, the administration has bowed to political reality and to what is administratively feasible. That's why, for instance, Obama has yet to close Guantanamo (though he insists that he still will).