No place else to put it

From CNN:

Al Qaeda is stepping up efforts to sneak terrorists into the U.S. and has rebuilt most of its capability to strike here, an intelligence estimate states, according to The Associated Press.

Just so we understand,

1. we have given up our protection against search and seizure because the Executive Branch now conducts searches without even retroactively getting a FISA warrant;
2. we have given up the historical moral authority we had of having never attacked a nation that did not first attack us or our allies;
3. we no longer honor the Geneva Convention;
4. we no longer forbid torture;
5. we have traded our nation’s largest surpluss for its largest deficit; and
6. we have sacrificed 3000 plus soldiers on the field of battle.

All for what? For what noble cause? To protect us from Al Qaeda. These things seem to have nothing to do with stopping Al Qaeda. And now, we learn that in fact they have nothing to do with stopping Al Qaeda.

We have given up everything for nothing.

I feel like I am going to throw up. I can only hope this report is some false propoganda from the administration hoping to increase his poll numbers. I would hope it hasn’t really all been for nothing.

5 replies on “No place else to put it”

I skimmed the Stratfor report and you’re right it is much more nuanced. In general, I hope CNN has been duped by an effort from the White House to scare the Congress into appropriating money faster. It is amazing that such use of propoganda by the Exec. would be my preference over the other option. But it is true when the other option is everything sacrificed and nothing gained.

I’m just asking the question, I sincerely do not pretend to know the answer: does George Bush deserve any credit for keeping suicide bombers from attacking the US over the last 6 years? If he gets out of his presidency without a single American life on domestic soil lost due to terrorism (which seems likely at this stage), does he get *any* credit?

I think he’s done so much bad, I really do. But over time, as the years build up, as we approach a decade since 9/11, I have to acknowledge that I would have guessed the chances of no second terrorism death in the US through the end of a second Bush term would be zero.

I hate having to disclaim so much, but I’m stuck with it: he’s a bum. He’s anti-science in a scary, Ted Kazcinzki kind of way; he’s done a lot to imbalance our trilateral system of government, and his vice president has defined his job to be part of the legislative branch. But we can acknowledge some good, right?

3600 dead in Iraq, none dead in the US. I think that’s one check mark on his side, right?

does George Bush deserve any credit for keeping suicide bombers from attacking the US over the last 6 years?

I think we just don’t know. We now know that Bill Clinton did way more to prevent terrorist attacks following the first bombings than any of us knew about. The notion that he was tracking Bin Ladin but worried too much about national soverienty to kill Bin Ladin is funny to me because my take away is that he was much more on the case than I knew.

I think it is almost a given that similar things are true of President Bush.

Of course, there was a lot of time between the first and second bombing of the trade towers. The subway bombings in the UK weren’t on American soil, but they were on the soil of close allies working with us all the way.

Also, the strategy of creating a place far away from American soil where it is easier to kill Americans, and thus because most things take the path of least resistance the killings occur there rather than here, doesn’t sound like a winning plan. Particularly because eventually we’ll leave there and the folks will be better at killing us.

In any case, it would be ridiculous to assume that the only reason we have not been, to quote Cheney, “hit again,” is because Al Qaida takes years to regroup and not because of action from the United States. We likely will not know in our lifetime which has been the major cause and thus how much credit Bush deserves.

I just wanted to preserve the notion that amongst all the bad, and there’s plenty of it, that we haven’t taken another hit is significant. and surprising actually.

I think you are exactly right, we are likely never to know. And when we do know what was done toward the effort of domestic security, there’ll be all sorts of reasons to interpret it multiple ways: some people believe Reagan stood on the Eastern shore of Maine and solely and bodily held back the entire invading armies of the Eastern Bloc; others believe he fell asleep at Camp David while the waning influence of Jimmy Carter’s bureaucracies made an impossible mess of the Communist’s plans until they imploded under their own weight.

I just can’t stand the argument that because Bush appointed super-conservative judges, invaded a country because of an independent notion of world affairs, doesn’t understand science, was willing to grab too much Executive authority and ignore America’s traditional values of liberty, he automatically also failed at everything else. that just isn’t true. If you blame him for your fallen arches on shoddy evidence, you rob the rest of the argument, which is too important. That we have a superstition-based law governing the most promising medical research right now is just too important to lose sight of for stupid reasons — not that this bears directly on your original question, I think it’s entirely valid and vital to question whether the deaths of 3600 soldiers has accomplished the right things.

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