web analytics
July 31, 2015 / 15 Av, 5775
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Osama Bin Laden’

Israel Explodes the ‘Big Lie’ – Gaza Al Dura Boy Wasn’t Killed

Sunday, May 19th, 2013

An official Israeli government report declared Sunday that Mohammed al-Dura, the 12-year-old boy whose picture convinced the entire world that the IDF had killed him, not only did not die but also may never have been shot.

Now, 13 years after the supposed killing that incited the senseless murders of Israelis as well as Jews throughout the world, the Israel government report categorically concluded that the France 2 report was much more of a hoax than thought several years ago.

For a close look at the footage, click here.

“Contrary to the claim that the boy was dead, the committee’s review of the raw footage indicates that at the end of the video – the part that was not broadcast – the boy appears to be alive,” according to the report by the Ministry of International Affairs and Strategy.

“The probe has found that there is no evidence to support the claims that the father, Jamal, or the boy Mohammed, were shot. Furthermore, the video does not show Jamal being seriously wounded. On the other hand, many signs indicate that the two were never hit by the bullets.”

The panel was comprised of officials from the Defense and Foreign ministries, experts from outside the government and the police, and it was headed by Yossi Kuperwasser, former director general of Israel’s Ministry of Strategic Affairs.

The revelation puts another nail in the coffin of the “Al Dura news report” that was challenged by a French Jew, Philippe Karsenty, who charged that France 2 journalist Charles Enderlin created a media lie by broadcasting edited footage that alleged that the IDF killed the boy.

An emotionally wrenching photo that was seen around the world shows Mohammed supposedly crying out as he and his father took cover during a gun battle between the IDF and Palestinian Authority terrorists at the beginning of what has been termed the Second Intifada, also known as the Oslo War, in 2000.

The alleged shooting of Mohammed Al Dura was filmed by Talal Abu Rahma, a Palestinian Authority photographer who free-lanced for France 2. The film lasts for 55 seconds and shows the boy screaming before the sound of gunfire, followed by a scene of the boy apparently dead over his father’s legs.

Enderlin told viewers the boy was killed and had been the “target of fire from the Israeli positions.” The gunfight occurred on the second day of the Oslo War and spread venom throughout the Arab world, inciting terrorist against Israel.

To make matters worse, the IDF apologized within 24 hours even though the military had not verified the alleged shooting.

The timing of Sunday’s government report is astounding because a French court is to rule later this week on a libel suit filed by Enderlin against Karsenty, who previously was backed by a lower French court, which stated that Karsenty presented a “coherent mass of evidence” and that the Palestinian Authority cameraman for France 2 was not “perfectly credible.”

Karsenty’s investigation revealed that France 2 had edited the film and it was not clear whether the boy died from Israeli or Palestinian Authority fire. At the same time, media watchdogs began documenting “Pallywood” productions that the Palestinian Authority staged for journalists, who gobbled up faked scenes of supposedly wounded Arab victims of IDF gunfire who magically were later seen walking around freely after having been shoved into ambulances.

From a further perspective, the Israeli report punctures another Big Lie that has haunted Israel ever since the Six-Day War in 1967 way.

A small sample of other lies includes:

—   Israel  occupied Judea and Samaria, most of which were in fact taken over by Jordan without any international authorization;

—   Children of Arabs who were chased out of Israel or who fled Israel are ”refugees,” a second generation status that the United Nations does not grant to anyone in the world except Arabs who claim Israel as their home;

—  Israel aggressively attacked Lebanese “guerillas” who pulverized northern residents before the “Peace for the Galilee campaign, now known as the First Lebanese War, in which Israel established a security zone in southern Lebanon to defend the north;

—  Israel committee war crimes for years, especially during the Operation Cast Lead counterterrorist campaign in the winter of 2008-2009. The United Nations Goldstone report claimed Israel for dozens of war crimes but the report’s author, Judge Richard Goldstone, later admitted that had he known then what he knows now, he would have reached different conclusions;

–Israel built an “Apartheid’ Wall that creates a separation between Jews and Arabs. In fact, most of the “wall” that runs for more than 200 miles is a fence, which has helped reduce the number of suicide terrorist attacks against to near zero. The fence also does not “keep out” Arabs because Israel operates checkpoints at numerous gates to make sure that Arabs who are not terrorists can travel freely into the rest of Israel; and

—  Israel “degrades” Palestinian Authority Arabs at checkpoints, even though it uses the same search methods that the United States and other Western countries use at airports and borders.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said after the new report was released that the France 2 film in 2000 “was an example of the deceitful delegitimization that we are constantly subject to. There is only one way to battle lies – by telling the truth.”

The supposed killing of the boy has been cited as the catalyst for the grizzly and barbaric lynching IDF reservists the following month in Ramallah, where they had arrived by mistake. The “Al Dura incident” also was said to have incited the murder of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl as well as Osama bin Laden.

The question remains whether Mohammed al Dura was ever wounded, or if he even was a real person.

There is a less of a question concerning the credibility of international coverage of Israel.

Day by day, reports covering the “peace process” and the “Palestinian struggle” show fatigue in continuing to report Arab claims that have become so ludicrous that they simply are ignored.

Without media support, and without media incitement, the Palestinian Authority is increasingly being left with an audience of one hand clapping.

One other question arises: Can France 2 can be accused of inciting war crimes against Israel?

Restoring the Image of George W. Bush

Sunday, April 28th, 2013

The American people honored the formal opening of the George W. Bush Presidential Center on the campus of Southern Methodist University in Dallas last Thursday. It will house a library which will serve as the government repository for the historical documents of the Bush presidency combined with an institute dedicated to promoting the vision and values of President Bush and the first lady Laura Bush..

This historic moment is an important transition to a possibility continually suggested throughout the two presidential terms of George W. Bush: that history would validate and look positively on his global and national service.  This analysis examines some important positive corrections to the memory and future understanding of President Bush.

Correction #1:   President Bush was an impressive presidential leader who returned civility for incivility

President Bush endured a now four decade long tradition of demonizing Republican presidents since Richard Nixon.  The overriding bias of academics, journalists and Hollywood producers consistently suggests to the general public that these public servants from this political party are unusually unethical, deceptive, ignorant, and harmful to the nation.  President Bush endured a high watermark of our intellectual communities’ tradition of demonizing a president.  President Bush remains one of the most unpopular political figures of modern times.

Despite this long tradition, the president continually displays a positive attitude toward the nation, his critics and even the current president who replaced him.  President Bush does not participate in the partisan attacks that dominant the current American civic practice.  His restraint and civility remain a model for good leadership and a path back to a better form of politics.

Correction #2:  President Bush was a great military leader who defeated Osama Bin Laden’s rival vision of America the “paper tiger”

Without question, the events of September 11, 2001 set the rhetorical frame from which one begins to understand the Bush presidency.  Envisioned by terror mastermind Osama Bin Laden, the grand attack on U.S. soil was the culmination of a growing program of terror.  Designed to demonstrate to the world Bin Laden’s view that the United States was a paper tiger — as demonstrated on the streets of Mogadishu and the nation’s general reticence for war – 9/11 was a capstone symbolic humiliation of the United States. Bin Laden believed that all people would follow his model of the “strong horse.”  Bin Laden’s increasingly brazen attacks were designed to attract admirers and future participants in his holy war.

President Bush set aside promises to not engage in “nation building,” issued in the presidential debates of 2000, to strategically restore America’s image as an active military power.  Combat operations around the world but principally expressed in Afghanistan and Iraq, brought to a decisive end the cowering legacy of Vietnam.  America was willing to deploy hundreds of thousands of its precious men and women to fight on the ground with the barbaric cruelty of Islamic supremacists bent on terrifying the world into submissive silence.  A predictable pattern of limited American casualties forming the understood calculation for expelling American military force was brought to an end as thousands of our soldiers died in foreign lands.

Instead of withdrawing in shame from Iraq in 2007, President Bush surged and restored order to the country in direct defiance to an anti-American war movement that had historically dictated U.S. military deployment to the satisfaction of dictators abroad. In 2013, the risk of U.S. military intervention remains more robust than anytime since Vietnam and America appears as the global “strong horse.”  In his two terms, there were no major terror attacks on the United States.

Correction #3:  President Bush was a prudent and effective leader in fiscal and economic policy

The rapid decline and collapse of the American economy in the latter half of 2008 has perpetuated a notion that President Bush can and should be blamed for all economic ills.  Taking note of where the nation left the fiscal and economic tracks is easy to do.  In January of 2007, the nation strongly ushered the Democratic Party into congressional dominance.  Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid took emphatic control of American fiscal policy and leaders like Barney Frank took the reins of congressional oversight for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac– the nation’s largest holder of mortgages.  In 2007, the unemployment rate was 4.7 percent.  The annual deficit had fallen from a high of half a trillion dollars in 2005 to less than 170 billion dollars.  The declining deficit was a function of growing revenues and a growing economy.  2007 stands as the final year of unblemished American prosperity, the clear departure point where American fiscal and economic policy left the tracks.

CIA Captures Al Qaeda Terrorist Who Helped Plot 9/11

Thursday, March 7th, 2013

CIA agents have captured Bin Laden’s son-in-law and former spokesman who helped plot the 9/11 terrorist attacks, and he is to face charges of terror in a New York court on Friday, according to official sources who remained anonymous.

Senior Al Qaeda terrorist Sulaiman Abu Ghaith could have been facing indictments a month ago when Turkish authorities, acting on a CIA tip, took him into custody at a luxury hotel in Ankara. He had arrived in Turkey from Iran.

Instead of honoring an American request to extradite him, Turkey deported Abu Ghaith to Jordan on March 1 with the intention of sending him back to Kuwait, where he has been stripped of nationality. However, CIA agents caught up with him in Jordan, according to the Turkish newspaper Hurriyet.

Turkish media claimed that he was not extradited because he did commit a crime on Turkish soil and that Al Qaeda may target Turkey if he were to be sent to the United States.

Turkish  media claimed Abu Ghaith was freed by an Ankara court because he did not commit any crime on Turkish soil and that Turkey had hesitated to extradite him to the United States because it feared it could become a target of Al-Qaeda.

New York Republican Congressman Peter King, former chairman of House Homeland Security Committee, confirmed to the Associated Press Thursday that Abu Ghaith was arrested a second time, this time by the CIA, and taken to the United States.

Calling the arrest it a “very significant victory” in the war on terror, King added, “Definitely, one by one, we are getting the top echelons of Al Qaeda. I give the (Obama) administration credit for this: it’s steady and it’s unrelenting and it’s very successful.”

After the 9/11 attacks, Abu Ghaith appeared alongside Bin Laden in a propaganda video and warned of more deadly attacks.

In a remarkable understatement, King was quoted by Fox News as saying, “The propaganda statements in which Abu Ghaith and his late father-in-law, Osama bin Laden, praised the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 are alone enough to merit the most serious punishment.”

Tom Lynch, a research fellow at the National Defense University in Washington, told Politico that Abu Ghaith was one of a small handful of senior al-Qaida leaders “capable of getting the old band back together and postured for a round of real serious international terror.”

“His capture and extradition not only allows the U.S. to hold — and perhaps try — a reputed Al Qaeda core survivor, further tarnishing the AQ core brand, but it also points to the dangers for those few remaining Al Qaeda core refugees,” he added.

Turkey’s refusal to extradite him raises serious questions about relations with Ankara, which the past three years has turned about-face on its once-friendly relationship with the West and Israel.

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan ran into the arms of Syrian President Bashar Assad Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad until he realized he chose the wrong allies.

However, his hatred of Israel and Jews has not diminished, and only last week, at a UN forum, he compared Zionism with racism.

Why the CIA Director is Wrong: Islamism Scarier than Al Qaeda

Monday, March 4th, 2013

Originally published at Rubin Reports.

It’s time, a dozen years after September 11 and following Islamist coups in the Gaza Strip; Islamist electoral revolutions in Egypt, Tunisia, Lebanon, and Turkey; and a probable Islamist victory during the next year in Syria–to rethink completely our view of Al Qaeda.

First, Al Qaeda wasn’t involved in any of these events or in several more big developments we could list. Second, Al Qaeda hasn’t disappeared, contrary to the Obama Administration’s claims. And third, the American homeland is now demonstrably well-protected from terrorist attacks so consequently while success on this front remains important it need not be the top U.S. strategic priority.

So let me propose a new way of looking at things:

Aside from being a problem of counter-terrorism—that is, of law enforcement—Al Qaeda is no longer important. It certainly isn’t strategically important nor is it important for the biggest and most essential U.S. national interests. That doesn’t mean Al Qaeda should be ignored. Yet combating it is relatively manageable.

This alternative view is especially significant at a moment when the new CIA director is the father—and the president, secretary of state, and secretary of defense the avid fans—of a theory that places Al Qaeda at the center of the world stage. Basically their theory goes like this:

Al Qaeda is terribly evil and a threat to America. It must be fought. But all Islamism—except for Al Qaeda—can be moderated and won over by a sympathetic U.S. policy. The Islamists are the best people to handle and defeat Al Qaeda and by giving the people what they want–Islam running the society–their desire to commit terrorism or attack America will subside. After all, if the United States shows itself to be Islamism’s best friend, why should Islamists be angry at it? This strategy began with Obama’s Cairo speech which was a profoundly pro-Islamist statement, and that’s why he invited Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood leaders to sit in the front row.

In other words, put your enemies in power and they are no longer your enemies. Moreover, once Islamists get into power they will get entangled in party politics, paving roads, running schools, and doing all the other things that governments do. They will lose their radicalism and certainly stop using violence.

Now there’s a lot to say against this theory. It either hasn’t worked historically on other radical ideologies—Nazism, fascism, Communism—or at least only after a very long time in power (including millions of victims) often mixed in with military debacles. It can be said to have worked with radical Arab nationalism but only after 50 years and multiple military defeats. This was also the precise theory that underpinned the 1990s’ Oslo peace process and assumptions about Yasir Arafat settling down to become a great and practical statesman. And that didn’t work either.

Moreover, it ignores the fundamental extremism, anti-Americanism, antisemitism, anti-Christian, and anti-women tenets of Islamist philosophy, which are rooted in reasonable (but not the only possible) interpretations of Islam. And it also leaves out the power gained once radicals take over institutions. Sure they’ll be running the schools but that doesn’t mean they will become entangled in planning curricula so much as to persuade people they should grow up to be radical Islamists and jihad warriors.

Finally, all Islamists want Islamist rule and the application of Sharia as the law. Some will talk and do nothing; others will talk and organize; others will use violence, and among those who organize there are those who can seize state power—in Muslim majority countries—and those that will fail. The Muslim Brotherhood is brilliant tactically; Al Qaeda has only one note in its orchestra, endless struggle and terrorism rather than political maneuvering and building a mass base.

Usually, as you can see, when I talk about this issue I stress the non-Al Qaeda side of the equation. But it’s time to reanalyze Al Qaeda also.

The importance of Al Qaeda in the history of Islamism is actually more marginal than it might seem from the massive study and headlines it generated. Al Qaeda had three innovations of importance:

First, that the movement be international, fighting simultaneously on all fronts. While the Muslim Brotherhood had been an international group it had a limited number of branches, only four of real significance. However, this only succeeded because Al Qaeda’s organization—especially after the U.S. destruction of the center in Afghanistan and long before Osama bin Ladin’s assassination—was so loose. Basically, local groups could simply affiliate with Al Qaeda without being its actual creation. Being active everywhere and not concentrating one’s forces is a formula for survival but also a recipe for ultimate defeat.

Al Qaeda Puts Bounty on Jewish US Envoy’s Head (Video)

Thursday, January 3rd, 2013

Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) is offering gold worth more than $100,000 to anyone who will kill the Jewish U.S. Ambassador to Yemen, Gerald M. Feierstein, as well as more than $20,000 for anyone who kills a U.S. serviceman in Yemen.

According to the AP, the Yemeni-based AQAP has a media arm, the al-Malahem Foundation, which made the offers in an audiotape posted on its websites this past weekend. The offer is open for six months.

Al-Malahem Foundation also distributes the notorious  English-language Jihadist magazine Inspire.  That magazine was largely written by the Jihadi terrorists Anwar al-Awkaki and Samir Khan, both of whom were killed by the U.S. in the September, 2011 drone attacks.

According to Foreign Policy, the spring, 2012 issue of Inspire included a posthumously published article by Awlaki.  In that article Awlaki explained why it is permissible to kill any and all kinds of civilians in jihadist attacks, so long as the jihadi intent is pure:

If combatants and non-combatants are mixed together and integrated, it is allowed for the Muslims to attack them even if women, children, the elderly, farmers, merchants and slaves get killed but this should only be done with the intention of fighting the combatants.

Gerald M. Feierstein was sworn in as the U.S. Ambassador to Yemen on September 17, 2010.  Prior to his posting in Yemen, Feierstein served as Deputy Chief of Mission in Islamabad, Pakistan.

Feierstein has spent all of his foreign service abroad in the Middle East or Southeast Asia.  Between 2006 and 2008, Feierstein served in various positions in Washington, D.C. in the Bureau of Counterterrorism.  Since joining the Foreign Service in 1975, Feierstein has served in Pakistan, Tunisia, Saudi Arabia, Israel, Lebanon and Oman.

According to the U.S.-based SITE Intelligence Group, the audio explained that the bounties were offered by Al Qaeda in the Arab Peninsula (AQAP) “to encourage our Muslim Ummah (nation), and to expand the circle of the jihad (holy war) by the masses.”

AQAP is regarded as the most dangerous branch of Osama bin Laden’s terrorist group.  In September, AQAP called for increased violence and protests directed at U.S. diplomats worldwide.  The terrorist attack on the U.S. diplomatic outpost in Benghazi Libya, which led to the death of U.S. Amb. Christopher Stevens and three other Americans, is believed to have been carried out by AQAP.

On the day after the attack on the American compound in Benghazi, Mary Feierstein received a phone call from her diplomat husband, to assure her that he was fine.  Mrs. Feierstein told a Philadelphia-area newspaper on September 13, that her husband was not worried about his safety.

But that was before Ambassador Feierstein was specifically targeted by AQAP.

Feierstein’s religion is of particular concern. On numerous websites, much is made of Feierstein’s Jewishness, with the usual claims of Zionist control of foreign countries and connections to the Mossad.

For those who believe that the West has largely – and perhaps fatally – failed to understand the fundamental difference in ideology between Islam and that of the West, Ambassador Feierstein’s words in an August interview with the Arabic daily Asharq Al-Awsat provide little comfort.

When the interviewer asked Ambassador Feierstein about terroristic threats made by the Huthists, a fundamentalist rebel faction supported by Iran and al Qaeda that dominates the Northern region of Yemen, Feierstein laughed it off as if the Huthists are nothing more than bloviating school yard bullies.  In fact, the Huthists are religious fanatics who seek domination.

[Asharq Al-Awsat] In the north, the Huthists are raising the slogan of “Death to America, Death to Israel”. Do you think they are serious about this?

[Feierstein] (Laughing) Are they serious in wanting to kill us? I do not think so.

[Asharq Al-Awsat] You do not think so?

[Feierstein] No, I do not think so.

[Asharq Al-Awsat] Do you consider the Huthists your enemies because they say that you are their enemies?

[Feierstein] No, and we say that for reasons of their own, the Huthists want to appear as or want to take the position of being hostile to the United States. We were never against the Huthists; we never agreed that they support terrorism. We did not participate in any military actions against them in the past few years. Our opinion is that the solution of this problem lies in national dialogue, negotiations, and reconciliation. In this practical way, the Huthists can come to the table, put forward their vision, and reach a solution. Thus, the United States was never against the Huthists and they know very well the reason why they are conducting this campaign against the United States. Nevertheless, we are worried about the growing cooperation between the Huthists and the Iranian government. If this continues, the Huthists would become Iranian agents in Yemen.

Parshat Vayeishev

Thursday, December 6th, 2012

Most people remember where they were when they heard the news that Osama Bin Laden had been killed and justice delivered. Many books have already been written about the ten-year search for him, the decision to launch the mission and the actual attack on his compound in Abbottabad. While every aspect of this story is fascinating, I would like to focus on one specific area: Why were the Navy SEALs chosen to execute the mission? When the mission was being planned it was hardly a done deal that the SEALs would be selected as opposed to the CIA’s own paramilitary unit.[1]

At a meeting at the CIA in early 2011 Admiral William McRaven, the commander of JSOC (Joint Special Operations Command), suggested that one of the military’s special operations forces be used. His suggestion was SEAL Team Six[2], based on their availability. His reasoning for using one of his teams as opposed to a CIA team was as follows: The compound was located 150 miles inside Pakistan. The least of the problems would be the actual storming of the compound. The key challenge was that the attacking force would have to fulfill its mission and extract itself without starting a shooting war with the Pakistani army. This made the mission overly complex and, the more complex a mission, the more things there are that could go wrong. The SEALs, McRaven argued, had perfected these tactics through trial and error, and at the cost of many lives. They knew what they were doing. They had the experience.

McRaven told CIA officials that history has taught that on missions like this, something always goes wrong – no matter how much planning there is. What they needed were men who could think under pressure and adapt to whatever situation materialized. McRaven was persuasive and SEAL team Six got the job.

The commander handpicked the SEALs who would go on the mission. “It was a Dream Team: men who, in the thousands of raids he had overseen, had shown they did not rattle, had shown they could handle themselves coolly and intelligently not just when things went according to plan, but when things went wrong. Those situations required quickly assessing the significance of the error or malfunction or whatever unexpected event had occurred, and then making the necessary adjustments to complete the mission. The core talent required was the ability to adapt, to think for yourself and make smart decisions” (The Finish: The Killing of Osama Bin Laden by Mark Bowden, 2012, p. 192-93).

The ability to adapt is necessary for all successful leaders. Either things don’t go as planned or unexpected opportunities present themselves. While the leader’s vision and overall goal should remain constant, his plans and tactics must be flexible. This requires conditioning and preparation. In this week’s parsha we meet the ultimate adaptable leader—Yosef. Every step of Yosef’s kidnapping and sale to the Midyanim and then to the Yishmaelim was guided by Hashem, and inspired Yosef to adapt in every situation in a manner that would place him on the trajectory to become viceroy in Egypt. The Ketav Sofer points out that Yosef, despite being a charismatic and success-generating individual, managed to act plain and unassuming while in the company of the Yishmaelim. Had he been his normal self, they never would have sold him in Egypt; they would have opted to keep him for themselves. Had that happened Yosef would have remained a permanent prisoner of a nomadic tribe with no hope of becoming a player in world affairs. Yosef thus adapted to the situation by subduing his natural personality.

Upon being sold to Potifar the Kli Yakar (39:3,5) explains that Yosef demonstrated his organizational and managerial skills and earned three promotions within the household operation. Seeing his success Potifar assigned Yosef to his personal staff with the independence necessary to do his job. He then placed him in charge of the entire household staff. Finally, he appointed him as manager of all his operations, including all of his outside concerns.

After Yosef was falsely accused of misconduct, he was sentenced to the royal prison. Yet even there, amid the terrible conditions of a prison, Yosef adapted and managed to impress his superiors, inspire confidence and attain the position of prison manager. The Or Chaim Hakadosh (39:22) suggests, based on the wording of the pasuk, that Yosef, despite being the senior prisoner, did not take advantage of his position and co-opt for himself special privileges. Instead, he worked with the other prisoners sharing in their discomfort. By setting such a high personal example Yosef endeared himself in the eyes of all others.

Rubin Reports: Is Obama Strong on National Security? Of Course Not.

Tuesday, June 12th, 2012

http://rubinreports.blogspot.co.il/2012/06/is-obama-strong-on-national-security-of.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed:+Rubinreports+(RubinReports)&utm_content=Yahoo!+Mail

Let me explain to you why the Obama Administration’s propaganda leak effort to prove that the president is tough on national security is nonsense. Almost every example with two exceptions—a computer virus against Iran and regime change in Libya–revolves around the willingness to combat or kill al-Qaida leaders, including Osama bin Laden.

There has never been any question but that the Obama Administration views al-Qaida as an enemy and a danger that should be wiped out. That isn’t the problem. The problem is that this is the only entity in the world that this administration sees as a national security threat, since al-Qaida is eager to launch direct attacks against targets on American soil.

In contrast, though, the administration does not act against any other possible national security threat be it Cuba, Bolivia, Venezuela, North Korea, China, Russia, Pakistan, Syria, Hizballah, Hamas, the Turkish Islamist regime, the Muslim Brotherhood, or anything else you can think of.

The administration obviously has shown its belief that engagement, flattery, refusal to help their intended victims, and concessions can win over these enemies. It has even tried to redefine the Taliban as a group that can be conciliated and given a share in a new Afghan government, despite its involvement in September 11!

The only partial exception to that list is Iran. Yet even there the Obama Administration tried to avoid doing anything for almost three years. Even now the government has been desperate to make a deal with Tehran and it is only Iran’s intransigence—and preference for stalling—that have prevented some bargain. Even on the Iran issue the administration did less than Congress wanted and virtually exempted China, Russia, and Turkey from having to observe the sanctions.

Thus, the one other case of administration “toughness” has been support for Israel’s strategy of using such delaying tactics as computer viruses. Of course, the administration is happy at low-cost, no-risk ideas to postpone its having to deal with Iran having nuclear weapons.

During its term, the administration has not been tough in terms of helping allies all over the world. A few dozen governments have been very disappointed by U.S. policy.

In Iraq and Afghanistan, the administration has pursued withdrawal strategies initiated by its predecessor. This choice seems wise, but it should be noted that the Obama administration has been completely ineffective in Iraq, where the political system is in serious trouble. With no U.S. effort to resolve the conflict in sight, the Shia prime minister has put out an arrest warrant for the Sunni vice president on a charge of terrorism, and the Kurdish president is helping him hide out.

As for Afghanistan, the possibility of a regime collapse and a Taliban takeover is a very real danger that the administration has not been able to counter. The administration favors a “moderate” Taliban participation in government, and has found no way, despite billions of dollars of U.S. aid, to get Pakistan to stop backing the Taliban.

That leaves Libya. This intervention was done because the Arab League, the UN, and the European Union all concurred, and the Gaddafi regime was an easy target. It is not yet clear whether this operation will leave Libya worse off and will jeopardize U.S. interests. Note that the Libyan transitional government is stalling on elections, apparently because these might result in a radical, anti-American Islamist regime or a regional conflict that would produce a new civil war. At any rate, it was less a bold action than a mere going along with the crowd, and whether the operation was of any benefit to U.S. interests is still to be seen.

Finally, there is the jewel in the crown: the assassination of Osama bin Laden. The administration’s portrayal of this as some courageous decision shows more than anything how weak he is. A normal U.S. government would have taken this choice for granted, and not felt the need to stress the president’s alleged machismo. (Even Jimmy Carter didn’t posture over the comparatively brave decision to launch an armed rescue mission of the U.S. hostages held in Iran.) Actually, given Obama’s worldview — don’t make the Muslims mad, fear looking like a bully, be ambiguous about the use of force, panic lest failure have a political cost — it was indeed a hard decision. But that supposed difficult pondering, by the White House’s own admission, precisely makes the point about this administration’s weakness.

Generally, the case of Obama being tough is sold by journalists by leaving out all of the points listed above. Indeed, they are often very vague about specifics in making the case for a heroic Obama. In normal times, with a media that made some serious effort at balance, they would be laughed off the stage.

As for the allegedly mysterious source of the leaks, this is a joke. Anyone who knows how these things work would have no doubt after reading the relevant articles, especially in the New York Times. All of those interviewed were former or current Obama appointees eager to make him look good. These are the people who told the press about national security secrets that relatively few people knew, especially in some detail.

Do these leaks endanger American soldiers and intelligence sources? Ask those at the Pentagon who are outspokenly bitter about self-serving Obama administration leaks, the British services whose penetration of al-Qaeda was irresponsibly revealed, and the Pakistani doctor sentenced to 33 years in prison for helping to get Osama without a huge U.S. effort to get him released.

Finally, here is Jackson Diehl of the Washington Post on what Obama is doing wrong; Ambassador John Bolton on what Obama should be doing; and most surprisingly of all, the usually in-the-tank-for-Obama Nicholas Kristof writing in the New York Times of his disgust at the president’s policy on Syria and Sudan.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/analysis/rubin-reports/rubin-reports-is-obama-strong-on-national-security-of-course-not/2012/06/12/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: