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Peter Bergen: Who's a 'Terrorism Expert'?

Why then did Bergen have so little impulse control? Well, he was on CNN, but I think it’s more than that. Bergen is the man who -- shortly after the death of Osama bin Laden -- stated that “Killing bin Laden is end of the War on Terror. We can just sort of announce that right now.”

Whoa. No wonder he favors domestic terrorism. How inconvenient it would be for him if it turned out some Wahhabis were still running around Boston blowing people up.

That might even hurt his career as a “terrorism expert.”

But his bin Laden statement is, of course, far worse than that. It’s absurd on the face of it.

First of all, what in the Sam Hill is a “War on Terror”? As many have said before me, terror is a strategy, not a person, place, creed, country, or any other thing you could conceivably have a war on. The War on Terror is one of the more transparent euphemisms of our time.

But even if there were a War on Terror (or more properly a War on Jihadism or something like that … I'm not about to get into the weeds on this one), Bergen’s assertion that it was over with the killing of bin Laden is nothing short of imbecilic. What did he think those demonstrators meant when they chanted, “Obama, Obama, we are all Osama!”? What exactly did he think happened in Benghazi? (Speaking of which, isn’t it interesting that Obama promised the exact same thing after Boston that he did after Benghazi -- to bring the perpetrators to justice. How’s that working out?)

Now I know you think my conclusion is to say that Bergen is NOT a “terrorism expert.” It’s not. He IS a “terrorism expert.”  But the point, these days, is that we ALL are. We have been forced to become one.

But the wise ones know this: Being an expert is foolish. No one knows anything. Wait for the facts.