Thursday, September 11, 2014

9/11: Looking Back; Looking Ahead

9/11: Looking Back; Looking Ahead
Commentary by Sanford D. Horn
September 11, 2014

On the anniversary of 9-11 we the American people find ourselves in a more precarious state than at any time since Barack Obama took office in 2009. Six years into his administration, there are more threats against American citizens and America as a whole from an increasing number of terrorist groups, more conflagrations around the globe; yet fewer solutions, and less demonstrable strength putting Americans and America in harm’s way.

There is a sad irony that Obama, after months, even more than a year, of dithering, hand wringing, and feigning concern seems to be heading back to Iraq after spending the entire 2012 campaign bragging to anyone who would listen that he ended the war in Iraq.

The irony is that his predecessor in the White House, George W. Bush was prophetic with his words on July 12, 2007. Bush said that leaving Iraq at that juncture would lead to losing Iraq to al-Qaeda and eventually they would confront an enemy more dangerous – enter ISIS/ISIL. (See “This is War, Mr. Obama”)

Bush led by actually leading, springing into action from day one while the horrific events of September 11, 2001 unfolded as 2,983 innocent people were murdered. Airplanes, hijacked by Muslim terrorists, were flown into the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York City, the Pentagon in Arlington, VA, and a field in Shanksville, PA presumably headed for either the White House or the Capitol Building.

Yet, the fecklessness by which Obama operates has created an environment of many Americans – 45 percent – feeling less safe than before September 11, 2001. Coupled with an approval rating hovering around 30 percent, 60 percent of Americans support military action – air strikes at the very least – against ISIS as a matter of national security. Only 13 percent oppose any military action. Presumably they are spending more time at marijuana dispensaries in Colorado than anywhere else as destroying and eliminating ISIS/ISIL is a no-brainer after the beheadings of two American journalists, as well as the slaughter of countless Christians, children, and even Muslims.

While Americans and the United States as a whole rose like a phoenix under Bush, life under Obama has been a series of mixed messages, vainglorious behavior, and empty rhetoric. Such words were spoken on September 10, as Obama said “If you threaten America you will find no safe haven.” This from the same man who a week prior had no strategy for eviscerating ISIS/ISIL, saying they needed to be degraded and destroyed in one sentence, then said they needed to become a “manageable problem,” mere sentences later in the same speech. ISIS/ISIL is a terror network growing due to their ability to control and sell oil, bringing in millions of dollars. They are a cancer needing to be eradicated, not simply managed like unruly children in a classroom.

Obama appears more concerned about the Iraq-Syria border than the United States-Mexico border. Yet it his laissez-faire, open borders attitude making the latter more porous and of immediate issue to the American people – a people for whom Obama seems to have little regard as the floodgates remain open to any and all who are able to enter – including terrorists of the ISIS/ISIL, al-Qaeda, Hamas, Muslim Brotherhood variety. The borders should have been shut down like a maximum security prison, but both Bush and Obama failed miserably on that count for various reasons. (See “What Southern Border?”)

Regardless, Obama seems hell-bent on defending Islam, as if the lessons of September 11 were not vivid enough to remain indelibly fixed into his memory. ISIS/ISIL is not Islamic, said Obama, adding that “no religion condones the killing of innocents; ISIL is not a state.” However, it is ISIL itself that takes pride in claiming it is Islamic and on a mission to create a worldwide caliphate. Obama still refuses to call the ongoing strife a war, as if not acknowledging it will somehow make it all go away. The only way for it to disappear is to destroy it wherever it exists – town by town, city by city, and nation by nation.

“Radical Islam is the enemy,” said Lt. Col. Oliver North.

So too is the political correctness that goes out of its way to not profile when profiling is one of the answers needed to limit the odds of the next 9-11. The enemy need only be accurate once, while the powers that be in the United States must be right 100 percent of the time. See also the failures involved in the catastrophe in Benghazi on this the second anniversary of the murder of Ambassador Christopher Stevens, Air Force veteran Sean Smith and former Navy SEALs Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods. (See “Obama Finally Calls Terror Attacks Terror”)

Looking ahead, Obama insists there will be a large coalition of nations to fight ISIS/ISIL, yet to date there are nine countries willing to join the United States. Compare to the 37 nations during the Bush administration aligned to fight the ongoing war on terror. Bush did not mince words and our allies knew where they stood – with the United States because Bush regarded them appropriately. Obama, conversely, has treated allies with disdain and open hostility while literally bowing to our enemies, thus proving he cannot be counted upon during this or a future crisis.

Never forget the real lessons of September 11, 2001. Remain ever vigilant. Teach the children the truth.

Sanford D. Horn is a writer and educator living in Westfield, IN.

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