By Jedediah Bila, Author and Political Commentator
Christmas 2009 will always be remembered as a day American heroism shone brightly, as passengers and crew members aboard Northwest Airlines Flight 253 foiled an attempted terrorist attack by the thankfully incompetent Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab. President Obama and his team have a serious matter on their hands. Not only has Al Qaeda taken credit for the Christmas 2009 attempted attack, but the New York Daily News revealed that according to ABC News, Abdulmutallab “…told FBI agents that other operatives are being trained in Yemen and would soon attack.” In addition, FoxNews reported that Yemen’s foreign minister, Abu Bakr al-Qirbi, disclosed that Al Qaeda operatives and leaders in Yemen “…may actually plan attacks like the one we have just had in Detroit. There are maybe hundreds of them — 200, 300.” Let’s hope that Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano’s embarrassing statement to CNN’s Candy Crowley that the lack of success of the Christmas 2009 attempted attack proves that “the system worked,” is no indication of how the Obama camp will be handling the gravity of this matter. Of course Janet quickly changed her story within twenty-four hours, likely realizing the idiocy of what she had uttered and citing that her words had been taken out of context. See CQPolitics for the original interview transcript.
According to numerous reports, Abdulmutallab’s father released a statement claiming to have warned Nigerian security forces and U.S. Embassy officials over a month ago of his son’s radical religious leanings. Abdulmutallab was added to the United States government’s database of those with suspected links to terrorism, but not placed on the no-fly list. Slight oversight? I’d say so. Let’s see if Obama’s team is as eager to treat Abdulmutallab as a common American criminal as they are with respect to the 9/11 masterminds. Shall we grant Abdulmutallab a cozy New York City trial as well.
And now for the ultimate kicker: ABC News reported that “Two of the four leaders allegedly behind the al Qaeda plot to blow up a Northwest Airlines passenger jet over Detroit were released by the U.S. from the Guantanamo prison in November 2007, according to American officials and Department of Defense documents.” Wake up, Mr. President. WAKE. UP.
Obama’s address to the nation that came three days too late was bland, monotone, and devoid of the empowering energy that should characterize a speech by any American President whose citizens just escaped—by virtue of their heroism and the terrorist’s ineptitude—a deadly attack. I found it lifeless and unconvincing, his inability to instinctively call forth a fierce and necessary patriotism perhaps my greatest concern.
We are at war, President Obama. Our nation and its every guiding principle are under attack. If you love your country, I can’t think of a better time to start showing it.