December 27, 2009

OUTCRY: “Napolitano should quit.” “I watched her on three shows and each time she was more annoying, maddening and absurd than the pevious appearance. It is her basic position that the ‘system worked’ because the bureaucrats responded properly after the attack. That the attack was ‘foiled’ by a bad detonator and some civilian passengers is proof, she claims, that her agency is doing everything right. That is just about the dumbest thing she could say, on the merits and politically. I would wager that not one percent of Americans think the system is ‘working’ when terrorists successfully get bombs onto planes (and succeed in activating them).”

UPDATE: More from an Obama voter: “Now, I know they are mopping up after a failure, and there is reason to want to portray the attack as coming out of the blue and unconnected to anything that should have been the subject of close monitoring, but — damn — I hope they are doing a better job than they look like they are doing. And if they don’t look like they’ve been doing a good job, then they aren’t even doing a good job of mopping up after their failure.”

ANOTHER UPDATE: Obama Voter: “Yes, I’m sorry.”

MORE: Andy McCarthy:

The people now in charge of our government believe Clinton-era counterterrorism was a successful model. They start from the premise that terrorism is a crime problem to be managed, not a war to be won. Overdone “war on drugs” rhetoric aside, we don’t try to “win” against (as in “defeat”) law-enforcement challenges. We expect them to happen from time to time and to contain, but never completely prevent, the damage.

Here, no thanks to the government, the plane was not destoyed, and we won’t get to the bottom of the larger conspiracy (enabling the likes of Napolitano to say there’s no indication of a larger plot — much less one launched by an international jihadist enterprise) because the guy got to lawyer up rather than be treated like a combatant and subjected to lengthy interrogation. But the terrorist will be convicted at trial (this “case” tees up like a slam-dunk), so the administration will put it in the books as a success … just like the Clinton folks did after the ’93 WTC bombers and the embassy bombers were convicted. In their minds, litigation success equals national security success.

It is a dangerously absurd viewpoint, but it was clear during the campaign that it was Obama’s viewpoint. The American people — only seven years after 9/11 — elected him anyway. As we learn more painfully everyday, elections matter.

Indeed they do.

Plus, “Janet, you’re doin’ a heck of a job.”

STILL MORE: So what about McCarthy’s other point, about it being wrong to go for a criminal trial? Well, we did that with Richard Reid, and as I recall I thought it was the right thing to do then. Does experience teach us that it was, or that it was a mistake? We’ve had quite a few years to learn more about who we’re fighting. My guess is that the intelligence value of these guys is low — at least, if I were running Al Qaeda, I’d make sure my tools didn’t know anything useful, and maybe even make ’em think they knew a lot of things that were actually disinformation. But I’m a law professor, not an intelligence type. . . .

MORE STILL: Well, he’s still misrepresenting me, but at least he’s linking to my post this time. Sadly, that counts as progress. But “pro-torture” is just a synonym for somebody Andrew doesn’t like now. Come on, Andrew. Raise your game! Heh.

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