"They are enemies of Islam, therefore we target them…we will continue to strike wherever we find an opportunity against non-Muslims."
Ahmed Marwat, Jundallah Spokesman
It wasn't just a one-off, slip of the tongue as he is prone to do. Barack Obama repeatedly assures America and the world that radical Islamic jihad has been reduced to little more than an inconvenient nuisance. Whether it is wishful thinking or outright denial, the harsh reality is far different than Obama's all-is-well fantasy.
Specifically, in the first few weeks following the September 11, 2012 assassination of Ambassador Chris Stevens, information officer Sean Smith, and former Navy SEALS Tyrone Woods and Glen Doherty in Benghazi, Libya, the President assured us al Qaeda was on the run dozens of times:
(CNSNews.com) – President Barack Obama has described al Qaeda as having been "decimated," "on the path to defeat" or some other variation at least 32 times since the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, according to White House transcripts. Read more
The White House continued the narrative at every opportunity for the next many months. Just in case someone had missed the point, the President went to the National Defense University in May, 2013 to declare that al Qaeda was "on the path to defeat," merely a "shell of its former self." He casually dismissed concern for al Qaeda affiliates that were sprouting like weeds in spring: "…not every collection of thugs that labels themselves al Qaeda will pose a credible threat to the United States." The "future of terrorism" would be limited to "more localized threats," he said. Obama had unilaterally reset the planet to pre-9/11 status.
Al Qaeda and all the al-Qaeda look-alikes apparently didn't get the memo.
On September 3, 2012 Vice-President Joe Biden issued this all-is-well proclamation: "Bin Laden is dead and General Motors is alive." Eight days later Ansar al-Sharia – a Libyan based al-Qaeda linked Islamic terrorist group – attacked the US diplomatic mission in Benghazi killing Ambassador Stephens, Smith, Woods, and Doherty.
Scoffing at a pledge by Obama to "bring to justice" the Benghazi murderers, Ansar al-Sharia establihed terrorist training camps right in Benghazi just months after the attack. The newly trained terrorists were to be sent to Syria to fight "with the al Qaeda backed, Al-Nursa Front."
In recent days we learned that "highly sensitive U.S. military equipment stored in Libya was stolen" by terrorists in raids on Special Forces bases last July and August. The weapons include "dozens of M4 rifles, night-vision technology and lasers used as aiming devices that are mounted on guns and can only be seen with night-vision equipment."
Understandably, our war fighters are horrified at this news. "This stuff is how we win wars. The enemy doesn't have that." Or, they didn't used to. "Bad guys can now shoot people at night with no signature," according to an unnamed military source.
Intelligence information – "chatter" – reached a level sufficient enough in August of this year that the Obama Administration issued an unprecedented global terror alert and closed 19 embassies and consulates plus 21 diplomatic missions across Asia and Africa.
The United States on Friday issued a worldwide travel alert to all Americans through Aug. 31 due to an unspecified al-Qaeda threat that led to embassy closures.
"The Department of State alerts U.S. citizens to the continued potential for terrorist attacks, particularly in the Middle East and North Africa, and possibly occurring in or emanating from the Arabian Peninsula," it said. Read more.
That episode was followed by a chilling message from Ayman al-Zawahri, the successor to Osama bin Laden on the twelfth anniversary of the 9/11/2001 terrorist attacks on New York and Washington, DC as well as the Benghazi diplomatic mission in 2013. Al-Zawahri called for more attacks against America "on its own soil."
The terror leader released an audio recording on Thursday, saying America’s hardly a "mythical power" and that Islamic holy warriors, or mujahedeen, can surely defeat the nation "on its own soil," The Associated Press reported.
He called on al Qaeda militants to set off a number of smaller attacks to "bleed" America’s finances, or go for another "big strike," like the Sept. 11, 2001, hit. His message: Al Qaeda forces should seek out any action that creates a "state of tension" in America. Read more.
The Obama Administration's denial extends beyond the confines of the West Wing. James Clapper, the Director of National Intelligence, stunned the House Intelligence Committee bydescribing the mother-of-all-terror-groups, the Muslim Brotherhood, as a "heterogeneous group, largely secular, which has eschewed violence."
This would be the same Muslim Brotherhood behind the slaughter of Christians and burning of churches in Egypt since the ouster of the MB chosen tyrant, Mohamed Morsi. The following account is from an August 14 report in National Review:
Egypt’s Copts and their churches are under siege as Islamists react to the military crackdown against pro-Muslim Brotherhood sit-ins. Several monasteries, churches, the Bible Society headquarters, a convent, and a Franciscan school have been burned, demolished or otherwise attacked in greater Cairo, Upper Egypt, Sinai and Suez, the independent MidEast Christian Newsis reporting in a series of detailed, horrific accounts.
Targets of the rioters are Orthodox, Catholic and Evangelical religious houses of worship and other religious sites, as well as private homes and property of the Christian minority. In some cases, Egypt’s security forces have protected the Christians from enflamed Islamist mobs; in many others they are failing to stop the mayhem. Several priests have also reportedly been assaulted. Read more
When asked for a reaction to the persecution of Egyptian Christians, Marie Hoff, an Obama State Department spokeswoman, said the Administration was "concerned" and having "dialogue" about the situation.
On September 23, 2013 two suicide bombers attacked the crowded All Saints' Anglican Church in Peshawar, Pakistan killing 85 and wounding 140. Jundallah, a group linked to the Pakistani Taliban, claimed responsibility. The strike was supposed to be retaliation for US drone strikes against terrorist targets. "They are enemies of Islam, therefore we target them," said a Jundallah spokesman. "Until and unless the drone strikes are stopped, we will continue to strike wherever we find an opportunity against non-Muslims."
The Taliban to which Jundallah is linked is al Qaeda's partner in terror based in Afghanistan. This would be the same Taliban that the Obama Administration entered into "secret peace talks" with in early 2011. Unsurprisingly those negotiations haven't gone so well. Undeterred, however, in July of this year the Obama Administration released five Taliban prisoners from the Guantanamo Military Prison as a carrot to get the Taliban back to the bargaining table. Ynetnews.com reports that "a top U.S. official said the prisoners were released under the condition that they will not engage in any violent activity."
Really? A promise from terrorists to not engage in terror?
Three weeks ago the upscale Westgate Mall in Nairobi, Kenya was attacked by members of the Somalia based al-Qaeda affiliate al-Shabab. At least 67 people were killed in the 80 hours of horror as the Islamic extremists executed "unarmed men, women and children as they tried to hide or flee." NBC News reports that "two or three" of the al-Shabab terrorists are Americans with ties to Somalia according to Kenyan officials.
That's not too surprising. In 2010, Mexico "mistakenly" released from prison 23 Somalis with "possible ties" to terrorist groups. After their release, the shady group disappeared but was expected to be headed straight to the American border. Included in the group was "Mohamed Osman Noor, 35, of Somalia, who U.S. officials suspect has strong ties to Al-Shabaab Mujahideen," according to the Washington Examiner. There have been no reports of the whereabouts of the group since the release from the Mexican jail.
Al-Shabab is one of the al Qaeda knockoffs that the Administration has soft pedaled. "For the past two years, al-Shabab, which is linked to al-Qaeda, has been considered by many U.S. officials and analysts to be all but defeated," reported the Washington Post. In the wake of the Nairobi mall massacre that assessment has changed to, "They only want to kill," according to a Kenyan official.
Similarly, the New York Times recalled the consequences of past mistakes:
The American government has learned the hard way what happens if it does not contain groups responsible for faraway attacks. In 1998, the then-relatively unknown group called Al Qaeda simultaneously attacked the United States embassies here and in Tanzania, killing hundreds and following up a few years later with the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.
The Shabab militant group, which has pledged allegiance to Al Qaeda and taken responsibility for killing more than 60 civilians at the mall, is considered an especially dangerous threat because more than two dozen young American men are already learning terrorist tactics in Somalia. So far, this has been a one-way pipeline, but the fear is that some battle-hardened militants could come home with their American passports to strike on American soil.
Nidal Hasan shouted "Allahu Akbar" as he slaughtered 13 co-workers at Ft. Hood on November 5, 2009. Nonetheless, four years later, the Obama Administration still refuses to define the attack an act of radical Islamic terror; instead insisting it was just "workplace violence."
Following the Boston Marathon bombing attack, Joe Biden dismissively referred to the Chechnya born Tsarnaev brothers as "knock-off jihadis." Making it clear he was also representing the President's position, Biden said he wanted "to make it clear that there is not this sort of gigantic, coordinated network run by al Qaeda that has cells all around the country."
That was likely little solace to the victims, their families and a nation shaken by the attack. And, Biden's assertions aside, federal prosecutors in the case confirm that the Tsarnaev brothers were "inspired by al-Qaeda" and the attacks were "payback for U.S. military action in Muslim countries."
An extensive analytical new report, "The new face of terror," in The Economist, debunks Biden's minimization of the "network:"
"Yet the inconvenient truth is that, in the past 18 months, despite the relentless pummelling it has received and the defeats it has suffered, al-Qaeda and its jihadist allies have staged an extraordinary comeback. The terrorist network now holds sway over more territory and is recruiting more fighters than any time in its 25-year history." (Emphasis added)
"How much should Western complacency be blamed for this stunning revival (by jihadist terror groups)?" asks The Economist. "Quite a bit," they conclude, and specifically call out the "wishful thinking" of the President as a major strategic failure. "Mr. Obama must reconsider," they warn.
True enough, thanks to the skill and courage of US Special Forces, Osama bin Laden was taken out and numerous others high valued terrorists have been killed or captured, including Abu Anas al Libi, wanted for the 1998 bombing of US Embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, who was nabbed in Libya last week.
To his limited credit, the President at least used the word "terrorist" in his recent address at the United Nations, but he could quite go the distance. The U.S. "will work to address the root causes of terror," he said without even hinting at what those "causes" might be. Radicalized Islamic jihadis, madrasas that poison the minds of children, regimes that harbor terrorist groups were unmentioned.
It's highly likely, however, that many of the UN delegates remembered Obama's 2009 "apology" speech in Strasbourg, France mere weeks after his first inaugural. Obama apologized to the world for all the "times where America has shown arrogance and been dismissive, even derisive."
Is that the "root cause" he meant? Does he believe it is all America's fault? The world was left to wonder and fill in the blank.
Obama did, however, proclaim to the UN delegates that "the world is more stable than it was five years ago." Where? More of his "wishful thinking" as The Economist article noted.
"We're in a World War, but nobody on our side will admit it," says Dr. Michael Ledeen, internationally renowned scholar and expert on radical Islamic terror and the Middle East. Unlike Obama's wishful thinking, that's the truth.