Just over a week ago, Senator Diane Feinstein and Representative Mike Rogers, chairs of the Senate and House Intelligence committees respectively, warned America that we are not safer today from the threat of Jihadist terrorism than we were several years ago. We told you about their discussion on this matter on CNN’s Sunday morning news show, State of the Union, in an email bulletin last week, but it is worth reviewing their appearance again.
It turns out that Feinstein and Rogers aren’t the only Democrat and Republican who agree that the threat from Jihadist terrorism is worse today than it was years ago—and that the threat is actually getting worse.
On Sunday, The Washington Times reported that members from both sides of the aisle are skeptical of the Obama administration’s portrayal of President Obama as a great “terrorist fighter.”
Some members of Congress are resentful of the administration promoting what they see as a “false narrative” of Obama as the hero that killed Osama Bin Laden, while Al Qaeda grows and spreads. Other members of Congress are concerned that Al Qaeda and other Jihadist terror groups are active in more safe havens today than ever before with more Jihadi warriors fighting in more places than ever before.
Given that Al Qaeda was able to launch the September 11th, 2001, terrorist attacks from a single safe haven in Afghanistan, the proliferation of Jihadist terrorism in more places than ever is rightly seen as a threat to US national security.
For instance, Rep. Michael T. McCaul of Texas, who chairs the House Homeland Security Committee, told CNN on Sunday that Al Qaeda and Jihadist ideology was “spreading like a spider web, like a wildfire through Northern Africa and the Middle East.” He also reported that the threat to America has become greater in recent years, despite assurances from President Obama, particularly during politically-tainted presidential campaign speeches.
We cannot emphasize enough how dangerous it is for the President of the United States to be spreading a false narrative about the status of our enemies in the war on terrorism.
First, by claiming repeatedly that Al Qaeda is “on the path to defeat” and “on the run,” when the available evidence suggests that Al Qaeda is growing stronger, Obama is encouraging Americans to let down their guard. Not just ordinary American citizens, but our first responders as well. Leadership is more important to a war effort than any other form of endeavor and our nation’s leaders’ words matter.
We aren’t talking about a few isolated incidents of exaggerations or misstatements either. As CNSNews reported in November of 2012, just two months after the terrorist attack in Bengahzi, Libya, which resulted in the deaths of 4 Americans, Obama was almost constantly stating that Al Qaeda was being “decimated”.
This brings us to the second negative impact of the Obama administration’s false narrative. By repeatedly claiming that Al Qaeda is defeated, the president is almost daring the Jihadists to prove him wrong. Early on in Operation Iraqi Freedom, President Bush was criticized for uttering the words “bring it on,” when asked about the Jihadist insurgents in Iraq. But that quip was nothing compared to Obama’s repeated claims that Al Qaeda is through. It has rightly been compared to “spiking the football,” and is no doubt viewed as a taunt by Al Qaeda.
By saying that Al Qaeda is on the path to defeat when they are clearly growing stronger in more safe havens than ever before, Obama is waving a red cape in front of a bull. It might be okay if Al Qaeda was in fact close to defeat, but taunting a strong Al Qaeda could result in Americans paying the ultimate price for Obama’s boasts.
At ACT! For America, our role as the largest, fastest growing grassroots national security organization is to ensure that our leaders act and speak responsibly and that our fellow citizens are educated about the threats that America faces. All of us need to make certain that our elected officials know that we will not tolerate cavalier, irresponsible rhetoric when it comes to the war effort. We must thank our fighting men and women for the victories that they fight for, but we must never let down our guard for the sake of political expediency.