August 8, 2013
Run Away, Run Away!
Well there's something on which we can all agree: When the resurgent al-Qaeda threatens a massive terrorist attack against the United States, we had better initiate a drastic response! And about time.
Alas, the "drastic response" Congress and the Barack H. Obama administration have in mind is for the United States to flee the MIddle East, shutting down all our embassies and consulates across all the hot spots threatened by al Qaeda -- a.k.a., the strong horse:
Sen. Richard J. Durbin, Illinois Democrat, said that more than 25 of the country’s embassies around the world are particularly vulnerable, according to a briefing senators recently received from Vice President Joseph R. Biden.
“We need to know and realize we’re living in an increasingly dangerous world, and this specific threat that we’ve been briefed on over and over again has reached a new level,” Mr. Durbin said.
The U.S. posts that will remain closed for the week include embassies and consulates in Jordan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Yemen, Libya and Somalia.
I don't know how they missed Iraq, Dubai, Mexico, and the Cayman Islands; don't they deserve a panicked rout as well?
What exactly do they mean by saying our diplomatic missions will be "closed?" Does that mean they will be completely deserted? Left with an undefended skeleton crew? Turned over to native Mohammedans? Any way you slice it, it means that whatever level of "security" existed before the closure, it will necessarily be significantly degraded during the closure.
So let's think this through. By evacuating and shuttering the embassies, to whatever extent we do, we lower the risk of another Behghzai during closure; if all the top officials leave, none will be left to be slain by terrorists.
But on the other hand, by withdrawing all security and leaving the buildings defenseless (or defended by the natives who mostly dislike us anyway), al-Qaeda can roll over as many abandoned embassies and consulates as they please, even burning them to ashes. And then what? When President B.O. finally feels embolded enough to attempt to reoccupy said embassies -- where exactly will we go, if the physical structures have been razed? Any temporary or substitute diplomatic mission will of necessity be even less secure than the ones we will have given up.
(For that matter, al-Qaeda could leave the buildings intact, but booby-trap them, or bury huge bombs to be exploded after the boot-quaking Americans retuirn.)
So even if terrorists can't kill American embassy officials (or not right away), they nevertheless can force us out of that vital region: Our "temporary" vacation from the Middle East could turn into a permanent exodus back into Fortress America. And Paulite left-libertarians to the contrary notwithstanding, we cannot defend the homeland -- solely from within the homeland.
Without a forward deployment, without the capability of going on the offense against our enemies, without strongholds in every potential battleground, the vaunted "Fortress America" will crumble in the onslaught. We fight them in Yemen and Iraq so we don't have to fight them in Minneapolis and Los Angeles. If we withdraw within our own little fortress of solitude, the entire American homeland will become al-Qaeda's playground.
Funnily enough, the only senator speaking out against a cowards' march out of Arabia is the evil Republican "neocon," Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC, 92%):
Republicans and Democrats alike agreed that shutting down the embassies and consulates was the right move in light of the intelligence.
But Sen. Lindsey Graham, South Carolina Republican, cautioned against allowing the United States to be driven out of the Middle East completely, as resurgent elements of the global al Qaeda network reconstitute themselves in the volatile region.
"Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, al Qaeda in Iraq, al-Nusra, all of them have one thing in common: They want to drive the West out of the Mideast and take over these Muslim countries and create an al Qaeda-type religious entity in the place of what exists today," Mr. Graham said on CNN’s "State of the Union." "So this is an effort to terrorize us, to drive us out of the Mideast."
Has it occurred to anyone in the present administration or in Congress -- other than Lindsay the Bold -- that instead of running, we might try using some of that standing military we seem to support?
Bill Kristol puts it all in a nuthouse:
Four years ago President Obama gave a much heralded speech as outreach to the Muslim world," Kristol said during a panel discussion. "And now, four years later we are closing embassies throughout the Muslim world. A year ago, the president said al-Qaida is on the run. And now we seem to be on the run.
Miss W. yet?
Hatched by Dafydd on this day, August 8, 2013, at the time of 1:09 PM
The following hissed in response by: mdgiles
This has little or nothing to do with actual danger to embassies. It has a lot to do with showing how much we need the NSA spying on everything.
The following hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh
I confess I hadn't realized this aspect of the most embarassing rout. I caught the incompetence, befuddlement, and cowardice elements, but not the clumsy retroactive justification: "See? See? That's why we had to spy on everyone on the world, including Americans, you unObamunist hater!"
The above hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh at August 11, 2013 3:08 PM
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