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The Enemy Wears No Jersey

Much is still being made about former President Clinton's appearance with Chris Wallace this past weekend. At first glance, one may think Tom Joscelyn is also making political hay on this in his latest titled Warning Signs. But if the reader digests the entire article and successfully reaches his conclusion, something entirely different emerges.

He begins the article quoting former First Lady Hillary Clinton defending her husband saying, "I'm certain that if my husband and his national security team had been shown a classified report entitled 'Bin Laden Determined To Attack Inside the United States' he would have taken it more seriously than history suggests it was taken by our current president and his national security team." Joscelyn shows otherwise.

The report goes on to list three examples of "information that was shared with senior U.S. Government officials, but was not made available to the American public because of its national security classification." This information was "explicit about the gravity and immediacy of the threat posed by Bin Laden" and included "a classified document" signed by President Clinton in December 1998, which read in part:

"The Intelligence Community has strong indications that Bin Laden intends to conduct or sponsor attacks inside the United States."

This conclusion was based on numerous threads of evidence. Beginning in 1998 the U.S. intelligence community received regular reporting concerning not only al Qaeda's determination to carry out attacks in the United States but that the terror group also planned to hijack civilian aircraft. Some of the reporting even specifically referenced the World Trade Center.

But this alone is still not the point, as Joscelyn later also notes intelligence reported after President Bush's 2000 election as well as the inherited intelligence above.

The politicization of the conflict deposited at our feet five years ago - in a manner that could not be denied, with 3,000 dead and precious little to bury - continues to hinder this nation's ability to defend itself. Given the nature of the enemy, this defense is necessarily forward-leaning and aggressive in nature.

Yet, considering the current political climate, al-Qaeda would be wise not to attack on American soil. We're doing a fairly adequate job of ripping ourselves apart at the seams without their further input. To that end and within that context, Joscelyn's conclusion is spot on.

That's the real point in all of this. Prior to September 11, 2001, no one in the U.S. Government--Republican or Democrat--did enough to stop the terrorist threat from metastasizing on U.S. soil.

Until Americans outright demand that the Republican and Democrat parties acknowledge that al-Qaeda is the enemy, along with other like-minded Islamists, and not the Democrat or Republican Party, we will slowly cede victory to the Islamist terrorists and the states that support them.

Enough.

The enemy wears neither a red nor blue jersey. Nor is he particularly fond of symbolic elephants or donkeys. The enemy waves neither a blue nor red banner in November.

The enemy flies the black banner of jihad. Daily.

America, please take note.

3 Comments

Make no mistake about it, President Clinton is still trying to save his presidency from the critique of history. No matter how many secret reports he claims, the fact remains that nothing was done to alert or increase or enforce security measures----business as usual. And so 19 people, many with dubious backgrounds were allowed to board planes though airport security measures in effect at that time should have stopped most of them. Though 9-11 happened on Bush's watch, the Clinton administration's failures are the root cause.

P.S. Though it may sound like it, I'm no Republican apologist.

I have so much to say about this subject, but absolutely do not have the time to expound fully.

The politicization of the conflict deposited at our feet five years ago - - - continues to hinder this nation’s ability to defend itself.

How true that statement is! And sadly, it seems that the polarized American electorate would rather argue and point fingers than to tackle the very real problems that we still face when it comes to the security of our Nation.

Having said that though, my opinion is that there has been a thread of "not paying attention" to the threats that goes back more than 30 years, with politicians of both parties involved. That thread includes the moment in time on September 10, 2001 when John Ashcroft denied FBI requests for additional funding for translators and analysts.

Jay - I would agree that the thread is much longer than any recent administration. We were caught with our pants down, despite the many warnings. The questions - in my view - are not how that happened (that'll be analyzed years after I'm sure), but are we doing anything better and different now, do we have the will to defend our nation and, finally, does our political, psychological and moral understanding of ourselves and the enemy serve our interests or theirs.