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February 19, 2014

Iran, Iraq and Syria — Jihad Part 2

Threat Assessment — Coming to a U.S. Theater Near You

“A universal peace, it is to be feared, is in the catalogue of events, which will never exist but in the imaginations of visionary philosophers, or in the breasts of benevolent enthusiasts.” –James Madison (1792)

Despite all the Obama administration’s chest-thumping and backslapping about al-Qa'ida’s defeat and retreat, the threat of an attack on our homeland, either with WMD or a strike on critical infrastructure, though temporarily contained during the Bush years, is re-emerging with a vengeance.

In his 2013 State of the Union address, Barack Hussein Obama claimed, “The organization that attacked us on 9/11 is a shadow of itself.”

In his 2014 SOTU, Obama claimed “we put al-Qa'ida’s core leadership on a path to defeat,” but added, “the threat has evolved as al-Qa'ida affiliates and other extremists take root in different parts of the world.”

Indeed it has. And indeed they have.

This week, Secretary of State John Kerry issued dire warnings about “another weapon of mass destruction, perhaps even the world’s most fierce weapon of mass destruction.”

Oh, wait, in context he actually said, “Climate change can now be considered another weapon of mass destruction…” and then mocked anyone with a dissenting opinion: “President Obama and I … do not have time for a meeting anywhere of the Flat Earth Society.” (Have you noticed that Obama and company are using the catch-all term “climate change” amid the Arctic blasts hammering the nation, instead of “global warming”?)

So, with North Korea having gone nuclear, and with Iran soon to follow, and with Syria refusing to relinquish Saddam’s WMD (smuggled into Syria prior to Operation Iraqi Freedom), Kerry focuses on the weather while Obama plays golf with the rich and famous at Rancho Mirage in California.

The boundless capacity of their combined foreign policy ineptitude would be laughable if the eventual and inevitable consequences were not so dire.

So what are those consequences?

Let’s sample some of the testimony from the House and Senate annual threat-assessment hearings this past week.

In the Senate, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, a retired Air Force Lt. General, was the most learned witness among many. Saxby Chambliss (R-GA), Vice Chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, asked Gen. Clapper, “How would you characterize the probability of an al-Qa'ida-sponsored or inspired attack against the U.S. homeland today, as compared to 2001?”

Clapper responded, “I can’t say the threat is any less. … Al-Qa'ida is morphing and franchising itself … The ideological center of al-Qa'ida movement I think still remains in the FATA, but the operational locus and the locus for operational planning has dispersed. There are some five different franchises at least, and in 12 countries, that this movement has morphed into. And we see sort of chapters of it, of course, in Yemen, Somalia, in North Africa, in Syria. … And what’s going on there … is very, very worrisome. Aspirationally, the al-Nusra Front, to name one, does have aspirations for attacks on the [U.S.] homeland.” 
Wasn’t Obama’s “Syrian deal” supposed to cap off that “very, very worrisome” terrorist threat – you know, after all that “red line” and “game-changer” rhetoric about WMD? And where did Syria get chemical WMD?

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Recall if you will that in 2002, ours was the first national publication to quote sources indicating that some of Saddam’s “non-existent” WMD went into Syria. A year later, Gen. Clapper, then the former director of the Defense Intelligence Agency and current director of the National Imagery and Mapping Agency, confirmed that U.S. surveillance satellites captured images of vehicle traffic dispersing WMD materiel to urban locations in Iraq and moving large quantities into Syria as well.

“Those below the senior leadership saw what was coming, and I think they went to extraordinary lengths to [dispose, destroy and disperse] the evidence,” said Gen. Clapper. “By the time that we got to a lot of these facilities … there wasn’t that much there to look at. There was clearly an effort to disperse, bury and conceal certain equipment prior to inspections.” Clapper added that there was “no question” that truck convoys moved WMD materiel into Syria.

Some folks still insist Iraq had no WMD – you remember, “Bush lied and people died”?

Over in the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, CIA Director John Brennan testified that al-Qa'ida is now using camps in both Syria and Iraq to “develop capabilities” which are a direct threat to the U.S. homeland.

“We are concerned about the use of Syrian territory by the al-Qa'ida organization to recruit individuals and develop the capability … to use Syria as a launching pad,” said Brennan. “There are [training] camps inside both Iraq and Syria that are used by al-Qa'ida to develop capabilities that are applicable both in the theater as well as beyond.”

Asked by House Intelligence Chairman Mike Rogers (R-MI), “Do you believe [they] present a real threat to the United States of America?” Brennan replied, “I do.”

So, after so much blood and treasure have been spilled and spent in Iraq and Afghanistan to contain the jihadi threat, how is it that this peril has re-emerged and is now as great a threat to our homeland as it was back on 9/11, 2001?

Primarily because Obama and his national security neophytes don’t seem to understand that the terrorist threat isn’t limited to “core al-Qa'ida,” or its “splinter groups, affiliates and franchises.” Instead, it’s about a lethal global conflict between the competing ideologies of Liberty and tyranny – a conflict that continues unabated.

Our enemy is not limited to al-Qa'ida. Instead, it involves a global network of Islamofascist groups which combine to form what we long ago coined “Jihadistan,” a borderless nation of Islamist jihadis with global reach who have their collective sights set on Americans at home and abroad.

Government and media analysts alike, will assert that there is no connection between Jihadi attacks in the West and Islam, calling assailants “lone wolf” actors. That assertion is patently false. These attacks are directly tied to worldwide Jihad by way of the Qur'an, the foundational fabric linking all Islamist violence. Describing Islamists** as “lone wolf” actors or “radicalized” constitutes a lethal misunderstanding of the Jihadi threat. Describing their attacks as “criminal activity” or “workplace violence,” as the Obama administration classified the Ft. Hood attack, is asinine.

Fact is, American-born Islamists, such as Louis Farrakhan, Anwar al-Awlaki, Sheikh Ibrahim and other self-appointed clerics, have galvanized their following by preaching hatred for America. And other American Muslin leaders, who would like to be perceived as legitimate representatives of Islam, offer little condemnation of Islamic violence. Their silence is deafening.

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In brief, the “Islamic World” of the Q'uran recognizes no political borders. Though the “pre-Medina” suras of the Q'uran do not support acts of terrorism or mass murder, the “post-Mecca” suras of the Q'uran and the Hadith (Mohammed’s teachings) authorize jihad, or “holy war,” against all “the enemies of God.” All orthodox Muslims are bound by the combined “pre-Medina” and “post-Mecca” Q'uran. For the record, these “enemies” or “infidels” are all those who refute any teachings of Mohammed.

While Christians, Muslims and Jews can live side by side in peace, Islamists by definition will never make peace with Christians and Jews, or adherents of any other religions. This is why Arab-Israeli “peace agreements” have been signed under every administration since the formation of Israel, and why none of them have lasted more than 48 hours.

Where to from here?

Ahead of his election in 2008, Barack Obama declared, “Let me be as clear as I can be. I intend to end this war [in Iraq and Afghanistan]. My first day in office I will bring the Joint Chiefs of Staff in and I will give them a new mission and that is to end this war – responsibly, deliberately, but decisively.”

In his 2012 re-election campaign, Obama reiterated, “[W]e’ve been able to decimate al-Qa'ida. … Al-Qa'ida has been decimated, Osama bin Laden is dead.” (Of course, it was precisely this dishonest “al-Qa'ida is on the run” campaign theme that made it necessary for Obama’s political operatives to change the narrative talking points about the Benghazi terrorist attack on September 11, 2012.)

In a high-profile speech at the National Defense University last year, Obama outlined his perception of the war against Jihadistan: “This war, like all wars, must end. Al-Qa'ida in Afghanistan and Pakistan is on the path to defeat. Their remaining operatives spend more time thinking about their own safety than plotting against us.”

In his latest State of the Union, Obama congratulated himself for “ending those wars.”

But the only way to end a war “responsibly, deliberately and decisively” is by way of victory. As noted by Dennis Prager, “The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have not ended. Only America’s involvement has ended…” We have retreated from Iraq, and our retreat from Afghanistan will soon be complete.

How have these withdrawals worked out?

General Clapper concludes, “Looking back over my more than half a century in intelligence, I have not experienced a time when we’ve been beset by more crises and threats around the globe.”

Add to that assessment the emerging nuclear capabilities of the Islamic Republic of Iran, unabated by the latest “deal” Obama struck in secret to lift sanctions, ostensibly in return for Iran’s agreement to cease and desist its uranium enrichment program. “With our allies and partners,” Obama claims, “we’re engaged in negotiations to see if we can peacefully achieve a goal we all share: preventing Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.”

Former UN Ambassador John Bolton characterized that deal as “abject surrender.”

Iranian foreign minister Mohammed Javad Zarif seems to agree: “None of the enrichment centers will be closed and Fordow and Natanz will continue their work and the Arak heavy water program will continue in its present form and no material (enriched uranium stockpiles) will be taken out of the country and all the enriched materials will remain inside the country. The current sanctions will move towards decrease, no sanctions will be imposed and Iran’s financial resources will return.”

In other words, Iran will a year from now have enough enriched uranium to provide cores for more than a few nuclear weapons. And if just one of those weapons finds its way into the hands of jihadi surrogates and is then detonated in an East Coast urban center, the horrific “American Hiroshima” vision of Osama bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahiri will have become reality. 
Some analysts argue that jihadis will not attack CONUS again because they would rather seed Islamist strongholds inside the U.S. Indeed, “Islamic Centers” are spouting like weeds across our nation, as they have across Europe – mostly in urban centers where Muslim outreach to Obama’s “disenfranchised” is progressing well.

But there is a substantial ideological divide between most of the Muslim natives and converts in the U.S., and Islamofascist jihadis. The latter understand that to bring down the infidels, they can hit infrastructure such as power grids with conventional means, or land a devastating blow as they did on 9/11.

For his part, John Kerry laments, “I am perplexed by claims … that somehow America is disengaging from the world – this myth that we are pulling back or giving up or standing down.”

Of course, that’s exactly what Obama and the rest of his “Flat Earth Society” administrators have done for the last five years. Of their relentless and delusional pursuit of a “universal peace,” James Madison noted at the dawn of our nation’s Founding that it “will never exist but in the imaginations of visionary philosophers, or in the breasts of benevolent enthusiasts.”

In his naïve quest for an unattainable peace, Obama has greatly emboldened jihadi terrorists.

As a consequence of Obama’s foreign policy folly, our next president will have a lot of cleaning up to do. Those “cleanups” will come at the high price of more blood and treasure.

**For the record, all Islamist terror attacks in the West have been perpetrated by a global network of Islamofascist groups and individuals under the banner, “Allahu Akbar.” These include the al-Qa'ida network (the perpetrators of the 9/11 attack), and their contemporary manifestations, ISIL and the Islamic State. Point of clarification: “Allahu Akbar” translates “Allah is the Greatest.” The Demo/MSM propaganda machine often reports the translation as something quiet different: “god is great.” As properly translated, Allahu Akbar claims only the god of Islam is great, and has been the violent warring cry of jihadi terrorists for generations, in their centuries-long effort to conquer infidels and establish a worldwide caliphate. Under those words, countless victims of Islamic supremacists – men, women and children – have been slaughtered. As such, it perilously dangerous to erroneously refer to contemporary Islamic terrorists in the West as “lone wolves,” because they are connected to worldwide jihad by way of the Qur'an, the foundational fabric linking all Islamist violence.

(Resource: Link to The Patriot Post’s emergency preparedness page.)

(Additional Essays on the Resurgence of Jihad Terrorism: “Iran, Iraq and Syria: Jihad Part 2 Coming to a Theater Near You,” “The Obama Model of Foreign Policy Malfeasance,” “The Middle East Meltdown,” “Iraq: Blood and Treasure for What?,” and “Obama’s Middle East Makeover”)

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