Sep 4, 2006

The Terrorist threat at home...are people still buying what the Shrub is selling?

John Mueller has an article up on Foreign Affairs website. The title is" Is there still a terrorist threat?" The Shrub has recently suggested that if we don't fight the terrorists across the big pond, they will follow us home and attack us here. Mr. Mueller doubts that, is how I read his article. He brings up the point that there haven't been any terrorist hits on our soil in the past five years. Our current fuckwits remind of of this fact at least once a they not?

Ah, but as Mr. Mueller points out, there wasn't any attacks on our soil the five years previous to 9/11 either, at a time, when, as Mr. Mueller points out, when the United States was doing much less to protect itself. A small snip of Mr. Mueller's article:

"On the first page of its founding manifesto, the massively funded Department of Homeland Security intones, "Today's terrorists can strike at any place, at any time, and with virtually any weapon."
But if it is so easy to pull off an attack and if terrorists are so demonically competent, why have they not done it? Why have they not been sniping at people in shopping centers, collapsing tunnels, poisoning the food supply, cutting electrical lines, derailing trains, blowing up oil pipelines, causing massive traffic jams, or exploiting the countless other vulnerabilities that, according to security experts, could so easily be exploited?"

One would think so least I do. I mean, they hit Israel, Spain and countless other countries abroad, but they haven't hit us here. And lord knows they haven't broken up a legitimate plot to do us in yet on our own soil...but, as Mr. Mueller mentions: "If al Qaeda operatives are as determined and inventive as assumed, they should be here by now. If they are not yet here, they must not be trying very hard or must be far less dedicated, diabolical, and competent than the common image would suggest."

Mr. Mueller has some valid points..and this one particularly sticks out in my mind: "It is also sometimes suggested that the terrorists are now too busy killing Americans and others in Iraq to devote the time, manpower, or energy necessary to pull off similar deeds in the United States. But terrorists with al Qaeda sympathies or sensibilities have managed to carry out attacks in Egypt, Jordan, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Spain, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and elsewhere in the past three years; not every single potential bomb thrower has joined the fray in Iraq."-Makes sense, does it not? Then, your going to love this next part, my dear reader:

"Intelligence estimates in 2002 held that there were as many as 5,000 al Qaeda terrorists and supporters in the United States. However, a secret FBI report in 2005 wistfully noted that although the bureau had managed to arrest a few bad guys here and there after more than three years of intense and well-funded hunting, it had been unable to identify a single true al Qaeda sleeper cell anywhere in the country. Thousands of people in the United States have had their overseas communications monitored under a controversial warrantless surveillance program. Of these, fewer than ten U.S. citizens or residents per year have aroused enough suspicion to impel the agencies spying on them to seek warrants authorizing surveillance of their domestic communications as well; none of this activity, it appears, has led to an indictment on any charge whatever. In addition to massive eavesdropping and detention programs, every year some 30,000 "national security letters" are issued without judicial review, forcing businesses and other institutions to disclose confidential information about their customers without telling anyone they have done so. That process has generated thousands of leads that, when pursued, have led nowhere. Some 80,000 Arab and Muslim immigrants have been subjected to fingerprinting and registration, another 8,000 have been called in for interviews with the FBI, and over 5,000 foreign nationals have been imprisoned in initiatives designed to prevent terrorism. This activity, notes the Georgetown University law professor David Cole, has not resulted in a single conviction for a terrorist crime. In fact, only a small number of people picked up on terrorism charges -- always to great official fanfare -- have been convicted at all, and almost all of these convictions have been for other infractions, particularly immigration violations. Some of those convicted have clearly been mental cases or simply flaunting jihadist bravado -- rattling on about taking down the Brooklyn Bridge with a blowtorch, blowing up the Sears Tower if only they could get to Chicago, beheading the prime minister of Canada, or flooding lower Manhattan by somehow doing something terrible to one of those tunnels."

I would like to add a new study conducted by a private research group at Syracuse University, found that federal prosecutors have declined to prosecute two of every three international terrorism cases brought to them by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and other agencies since 2001.

The rest of the article is quite good. I would like to suggest that everyone read it...both of my regular readers anyway. Its a very logical assessment of all the evil, scary, fearmongering ideas our elected officials have been bombarding us with since 9/11...and how full of shit they are.

And while your at it, you might find this recent AP poll quite shows that:
1. 46 percent of americans, are confident that bin Laden will ever be caught
2. 43 percent, say they're embarrassed by the U.S. image overseas.

Or this CNN poll might interest you, it shows:
"Just 35 percent of 1,033 adults polled say they favor the war in Iraq; 61 percent say they oppose it -- the highest opposition noted in any CNN poll since the conflict began more than three years ago."

In the run-up to the November elections, they are going to hammer the hell out of us about terrorists, the war in Iraq, and how it all ties together...change the course this November, my dear reader..

Vote Democratic..lets try something that doesn't include warmongering and fear factors.

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