What is the state of U.S. intelligence since President Obama succeeded President Bush in 2009?
Twelve years ago this morning Usama bin Laden's al Qaeda carried out the deadliest attack against Americans on American soil since Americans turned on each other in the War Between the States. Thirty months ago, UBL was killed by U.S. Navy Seals in Pakistan. One year ago today, terrorists carried out the deadliest attack on a U.S. embassy since two were bombed in Africa in 1998.
One of the first acts of President George W. Bush after his post-Florida-recount-electoral-affirmation Inauguration was to direct National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice to commission a plan to eliminate al Qaeda's safe haven in the terror-nation state of Afghanistan:
“The president said, ‘You know I’m tired of swatting at flies, I need a strategy to eliminate these guys,’” recalls Rice.
Thankfully, the CIA strategy, swiftly executed by U.S. armed forces to remove the Taliban from power and eliminate Core al Qaeda's safe harbor soon after 9/11, was placed on the Oval Office desk on September 10, 2001. Sadly, the terrorism-as-mere-crime paradigm, including the Gorelick Wall erected by the Clinton Adminstration between CIA and FBI intel (and that had allowed Mohammed Atta et al to plot airplanes-as-missiles hijackings while frequenting sports and strip clubs in Atlanta and other U.S. metro suburbs over the previous 2-plus years) remained in place.
President Bush rendered the Clinton-Janet Reno-Gorelick Wall asunder, empowered the FBI and NSA to prevent terror attacks on the homeland rather than wait to issue indictments after the fact, broke up remaining al Qaeda terror cells still sleeping in the Lower Forty-Eight, and killed or captured tens of thousands of al Qaeda-camp trained terrorists in Afghanistan and Iraq.
The result: Zero successful terror attacks on United States soil Bush's watch after 9/11 until Nidal Malik Hasan killed 13 and wounded 30 at Fort Hood, Texas, nearly 10 months after President Barack Hussein Obama was inaugurated. Obama's Defense Department dubbed the mass murder by an Army Major openly sympathetic to jihadists that its politically correct Military Police failed to stop, a "workplace incident" lest anyone think their Commander-in-Chief isn't just as diligent as his predecessor against terrorist...er ah...extremists. Then came close calls with Underwear and Times Square would-be bombers before the successful "marathon incident" that killed three and injured at least 264 others.
Meanwhile, Obama was busy leaving no footprint behind in Iraq, promising a date certain withdrawal from Afghanistan, installing Muslim Brotherhoods in Egypt and begging for unconditional meetings with Iranian Mullahs.
What President Obama would not abide was the capture and enhanced interrogation, of terrorists hence the return to drone-swats at flies with intel gathered by the Bush Administration. Even arguably his greatest accomplishment as President, the capture of Osama bin Laden, was made possible only by gathering intel on UBL's chauffeur while staying the course in Iraq before the surge and then waterboarding those to whom that intel led.
Yes, President Obama has rightfully continued the NSA meta-data and other communication-with-known-terrorists information, but given his use of the IRS as a political tool, Americans rightfully don't trust this Chief Executive with much more than what books they checked out recently at the public library.
But possibly even more disturbing than his return to swatting at flies in the intel-darkness and what Obama deems "phony scandals", even including his failures to provide oft-requested adequate security in Benghazi; attempt to rescue U.S. personnel there when under attack; and provide truthful non-anti-Muslim-video explanations in the aftermath, concerns what keeps him up at night.
President Obama did not tell Bob Woodward in an interview for his "Obama's Wars that preventing another 9/11 on American soil is his number one priority. Rather, the man charged with protecting America said:
"We can absorb a terrorist attack. We'll do everything we can to prevent it, but even a 9/11, even the biggest attack ever. . . we absorbed it and we are stronger."
A classified exercise in May showed that the government was woefully unprepared to deal with a nuclear terrorist attack in the United States.
Earth to Obama: We will always be woefully unprepared to deal with a nuclear terrorist attack. No matter if you hire half of all Americans to be first responders for the other radiated-half, we would still be unprepared for all that death. This is why we should have kept bases in Iraq and should capture and swab the noses of terrorists with water.
It appears that the intel that dwindled after President Bush left the Oval Office concerns the occupant of that office and not just the volume and quality of information being gathered to prevent more 9/11s at the behest of the Commander-in-Chief.
Mike DeVine‘s Right.com
“One man with courage makes a majority.” – Andrew Jackson