On Jan. 28, Libyan terrorist Abu Laith al-Libi, No. 3 in al-Qaida, was killed by a missile strike in Pakistan's Waziristan province. The weapon is widely presumed to have been fired from a U.S. unmanned aerial vehicle. On Feb. 27, Ayman al-Zawahri, No. 2 in Osama bin Laden's worldwide organization, vowed vengeance in a 10-minute video placed on radical Islamic Web sites: "No chief of ours had died a natural death, nor has our blood been spilled without a response." What that response might be we may never know until after it has happened. And that's not all.
On Feb. 12, Imad Mughniyah, the man responsible for murdering and kidnapping hundreds of Americans in Lebanon and elsewhere, was killed when his car exploded in Damascus, Syria. Both Israel and the United States have been blamed for the terror chieftain's death. Since then, Hezbollah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah has promised to "avenge our martyred brother." Mohammad Ali Jafari, commander of Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, has vowed "retribution," and Ayatollah Khomeini has pledged "destruction on the illegal Zionist entity and their supporters."
Two days after Mughniyah's fiery demise, the Iranians canceled a previously scheduled "private discussion" with U.S. officials in Baghdad about the situation in Iraq. On Feb. 20, at a rally in Bandar Abbas, Iran, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad described Israel as "filthy bacteria" and lashed out at nations that have allowed it to grow. Then Feb. 23, the theocrats running Tehran warned of "firm reprisals" against any country trying to impose new sanctions on Iran for proceeding with their nuclear program. Since then, the Iranian regime has confirmed that the March 2 visit by Ahmadinejad to Baghdad will be "historic for the changes it will bring to the region."
That's just what these "leaders" are saying in public. What they may or may not be saying in private about plans for attacks against American citizens we may not know until it is too late. For that, we can thank Madam Pelosi and her decision to postpone action on the PAA.
Those who claim that this delay won't hurt us should heed the warning proffered this week by Maj. Gen. Amos Yadlin, the chief of Israeli military intelligence. Testifying before the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee Feb. 26, the normally tight-lipped general forecast: "Hezbollah will likely time its reprisals for the 40th day of mourning for its commander, Imad Mughniyah. That will be March 22-23."
Terror leaders such as those in Afghanistan, Pakistan or Tehran, who want to know our secrets, need only subscribe to The Washington Post or The New York Times. For the United States, the mission of finding out what our enemies are planning to do to us before they have a chance to do it always has been a challenge. That task has become far more difficult because of the Democrats running our House of Representatives. "Don't worry, be happy," indeed.
Oliver North is a nationally syndicated columnist, the host of War Stories on the Fox News Channel, the author of the new novel Heroes Proved and the co-founder of Freedom Alliance, an organization that provides college scholarships to the children of U.S. military personnel killed or permanently disabled in the line of duty. Join Oliver North in Israel by going to www.olivernorthisrael.com.
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