If You're Feeling Complacent

Betsy Newmark suggests perusing this list of foiled terror plots against Americans since 9/11:

Some I’d heard of, but there are quite a few that I was unaware of. And these are just the ones where there was an arrest. We have no idea of how many were foiled without an arrest and a public announcement.

I believe that many Americans have grown to discount the whole idea that there are people out there who want to kill Americans, preferably here in the United States, and would like to orchestrate as massive a killing as possible. We have grown complacent in the seven years since 9/11 and now take the lack of attack as the norm.

While some of these plots might seem like a bunch of losers cooking up some crackpot idea that never would have been successful, remember that, if the 9/11 plotters had been arrested before they took over those airplanes, their plot would have seemed like just some bizarre idea that a bunch of incompetent kooks was dreaming up. Foiled plots might not seem that scary when they’re exposed, but just imagine how those plots would have seemed totally different if they hadn’t been foiled.

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As successful as President Bush’s administration has been at foiling terrorist plots, I think part of the complacency amongst Americans can be blamed on a relatively poor White House communications effort. Other than the periods when Ari Fleischer and the late Tony Snow were press secretaries, the White House has been surprisingly mediocre at PR and controlling an overwhelming hostile legacy media, which barring another successful terrorist attack between now and January, may in retrospect be seen as its greatest failing.

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