No Islamists, No Jihad: New Obama National Security Strategy "Focuses" On Domestic Terror
President Obama's "new National Security strategy" will include a focus on terrorists at home. This presents a curious inconsistency that none other than John Brennan elucidates with a clarity that seems to escape himself and the rest of the administration.
"The president's national security strategy explicitly recognizes the threat to the United States posed by individuals radicalized here at home," said John Brennan, the National Security Council's counterterrorism and homeland security adviser, in a speech.
Mr. Brennan told an audience at the Center for Strategic and International Studies that "we have seen individuals, including U.S. citizens, armed with their U.S. passports, travel easily to extremist safe havens and return to America, their deadly plans disrupted by coordinated intelligence and law enforcement."
Mr. Brennan spoke on the eve of the release by the Obama administration of a new National Security Strategy report.The new strategy, according to Mr. Brennan, will continue the George W. Bush administration strategy of seeking to distinguish al Qaeda terrorism from the religion of Islam. Mr. Brennan specifically said the Obama administration would no longer use the terms "Islamist" and "jihadist" "because jihad is holy struggle, a legitimate tenet of Islam, meaning to purify oneself or one's community."
The problem is, if you ask the enemy (and even if you don't), he will tell you without pause or reservation that he is an Islamist seeking to impose his will forcably upon the West and America, killing as many as possible in the process. This is his jihad. He will tell you that with pride as well.
Yet we shrink from his language of "jihad" and "Islamist" at our great peril. For if we confuse, cloud or fail to identify the enemy, as a society and as a government, we will ultimately fall to defeat.
Clarity is critical. Language is vital. The Obama administration is sacrificing both.
An administration that shrinks from the language of the enemy while confidently touting to law enforcement that they must be vigilant for "right wing extremists" within instills neither confidence nor comfort. It does, however, politicize National Security to a revolting, disturbing level.
And when the American public loses first clarity and then confidence, National Security is weakened. Immensely.
Americans wonder, after the Islamists' jihadi attacks in the air above Detoit, on the streets of Times Square, on base at Fort Hood and outside the recruiting station at Little Rock, what is served from avoiding and ignoring what inspires our murderous enemy, Islamism and jihad?
What the administration fails to understand in its marketing of its language is that Americans see their own questions as rhetorical, and the Obama administration's reluctant discussions on National Security as merely rhetoric.
UPDATE: To read the redifinition of the US National Security Strategy, the original 52-page White House document is here: