George Landrith

Eight years of Clinton’s projected weakness invited the attacks of September 11, 2001. On Monday, September 10, 2001, few Americans were concerned that America had spent most the 1990’s projecting weakness.

For most of the 1990s, the White House could not muster any real or sustained interest projecting strength. After the 1992 bombing of the World Trade Center which killed six and wounded scores when terrorists unsuccessfully attempted to topple the towers with vans loaded with explosives, the White House treated the attack as a run-of-the-mill crime – akin to a liquor store robbery – but not as a national security threat. A man who drove an explosive truck was sent to jail while the terrorist cells that planned the attack continued their plans and struck again almost nine years later with vastly more devastating results.

In 1993, warlords killed 28 American soldiers and wounded 133 others who were keeping the peace and distributing food to a war-ravaged Somalia. On October 4, 1993 mobs dragged the dead bodies of three American soldiers through the streets of Mogadishu. We did nothing.

In 1998, terrorists bombed and leveled two American embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, killing 257 people and wounding over 5,000. In 2000, terrorist cells bombed the U.S.S. Cole, killing 17 sailors and nearly sinking the ship while it refueled. The White House denounced these attacks but did little else. Our enemies became emboldened and stronger. America became comparatively weaker.

By Monday, September 10, 2001, America had spent almost a decade telling its enemies in unmistakable terms – we are not prepared – we lack the will to defend ourselves – if you attack us, it is unlikely we will respond with anything more than a press release.

But by mid-morning on Tuesday, September 11, 2001, all of America for a brief time understood the need to follow George Washington’s advice -- be prepared and show strength. Will we repeat this error? It appears Obama is well on his way to doing precisely that. So one can fairly ask, what future attack is Obama’s policy and weakness inviting?

George Landrith

George Landrith is President of Frontiers of Freedom. Frontiers of Freedom was founded in 1994 by U.S. Senator Malcolm Wallop and is an educational institute whose mission is to promote conservative public policy based on the principles of individual freedom, peace through strength, limited government, free enterprise, and traditional American values as found in the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence.