When it comes to battling those who want us dead, Obama’s approach echoes that old saying among Soviet laborers: “We pretend to work, and they pretend to pay us.”
There is a pretend quality to Obama’s stance on radical Islamic terrorism. It starts with his refusal to utter that phrase, preferring the meaningless term “violent extremists.” Well, at least those words do not make America’s enemies uncomfortable.
But it gets worse.
As The Weekly Standard’s Stephen Hayes and Thomas Jocelyn of the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies recently detailed in the Wall Street Journal, the May 2011 raid on Osama bin Laden’s Pakistani compound yielded one dead terror master and some one million documents. These included DVDs, ten hard drives, a dozen cell phones, and almost 100 thumb drives. A top Pentagon official called this “the single largest collection of senior terrorist materials ever.”
Analysts, including those at the Defense Intelligence Agency, quickly capitalized on this bonanza and generated some 400 separate reports.
However, as Hayes explains, “the senior DIA official who ran the project, Colonel Derek Harvey, says the intelligence community has fully analyzed less than 10 percent of the collection. Top DIA officials were told directly to stop providing analyses based on the bin Laden documents.” Why? This information refuted Obama’s boast that al-Qaeda was “on the run.”
“The administration had decided to end the war on terror, and no amount of new intelligence about threats from al Qaeda was going to change their minds,” Hayes added. “So they chose ignorance.”
One cannot imagine American GIs capturing a steamer trunk full of Adolf Hitler’s papers in 1944, and then being told by Team FDR to stand down while 90 percent of these treasures remained unread. One need not imagine an analogous scenario today. It actually happened.
Meanwhile, new revelations about accused Army deserter Bowe Bergdahl demonstrate Obama’s unseriousness about the Taliban. According to my colleague at the London Center for Policy Research, Lieutenant Colonel Tony Shaffer, the Naval Criminal Investigative Service in 2009 possessed “clear evidence that he [Bergdahl] was ‘going over to the other side,’ and he had a deliberate plan.” As Shaffer told Fox News’s Bill O’Reilly, “This came from the NCIS doing forensics on his computer, through both detailed debriefings of his platoon mates as well as going outside the wire” to interview local Afghans.
Shaffer added that NCIS believed that Bergdahl “did move out with a purpose, he had Afghan contacts, and he was actually trying to offer himself up to the Taliban.” Alternatively, NCIS thought that Bergdahl hoped to travel to Uzbekistan and “wanted to talk to Russian organized crime.”
Despite NCIS’s disturbing then-five-year-old report, National Security Adviser Susan Rice notoriously claimed last June 1 that Bergdahl “served the United States with honor and distinction.”
#related#Far worse, Obama negotiated with terrorists and swapped Bergdahl for five Guantanamo detainees, namely top Taliban commanders whom the primitive Islamofascist group relentlessly demanded by name. Obama sent these mass murderers to Qatar for one year. Three of them reportedly have violated their terms of release by attempting to re-connect with the Taliban. Regardless, come June, all five may go wherever they want. Most likely, they will fly to Afghanistan and resume sending Americans home in boxes.
Finally, Obama’s strategy against the Islamic State approaches criminal negligence.
“Right now, in our airstrikes in Iraq and Syria, of the twelve thousand sorties, three thousand of them actually drop weapons. Is that true?,” Senator John McCain (R., Ariz.) asked General Lloyd Austin, head of U.S. Central Command, at a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing last month.
Austin answered: “I think that’s about right, sir.”
“Don’t we put our pilots in great danger if they’re not going to drop weapons?” McCain wondered in astonishment. “Or are you going to have three out of four fighter sorties fly around in circles, and then return?”
The problem, says retired four-star Army general Jack Keane, is “the most restrictive rules of engagement our pilots have ever been asked to execute.”
The Washington Examiner’s Byron York explains that Obama “has ordered that civilian casualties — unavoidable in a bombing campaign — be kept to such an absolute minimum that military commanders have had to stay away from significant Islamic State targets.”
When the Islamic State first emerged, it traversed Iraqi and Syrian deserts in pick-up trucks. A few days of relentless bombing would have reduced these maggots to cinders. Instead, Obama’s daintiness let them seize territory the size of Great Britain. The group now has infiltrated Libya, Tunisia, and Yemen, sealed an alliance with Boko Haram in Nigeria, and much more.
Judicial Watch reports that the Islamic State operates a training camp just eight miles below America’s southern “border.” The conservative watchdogs cite Mexican military and police sources who say that they have discovered — near Ciudad Juarez — Muslim prayer rugs, documents in Arabic and Urdu, and “plans” of Fort Bliss Army Base in El Paso, Texas.
Homeland Security secretary Jeh Johnson told CBS’s 60 Minutes that at least 40 Americans who fought with the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria have come home. Half-comfortingly, Johnson said that “we have systems in place to track these individuals. But you can’t know everything.”
That’s life, as America’s lethally unserious “leader” pretends to fight radical Islamic terrorism.
— Deroy Murdock is a Manhattan-based Fox News contributor and a media fellow with the Hoover Institution on War, Revolution, and Peace at Stanford University.