Homeland Security Watch

News and analysis of critical issues in homeland security

December 7, 2009

68 Years Ago… A Week Ago…

Filed under: General Homeland Security — by Jessica Herrera-Flanigan on December 7, 2009

7:53AM, the first wave came.  At approximately 8:55am, the second wave appeared. By 9:55am, it was over.

2,400+ dead.
1,282 wounded.
Four U.S. Navy battleships sunk.

188 Aircraft destroyed/damaged, along with several cruisers, destroyers, and a minelayer.

Sixty-eight years ago today, the Empire of Japan unexpectedly and without a formal declaration of war, attacked the U.S. at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.  The attack united America.  The day after the attack, President Franklin D. Roosevelt delivered his “a date which will live in infamy” speech, resulting in Congress passing a formal declaration of war against Japan and solidifying the nation’s commitment to enter  World War II on the side of the Allies.

In the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks eight years ago, a number of commentaries and analysis emerged comparing the 9/11 attacks to Pearl Harbor.   Some noted that the 9/11 attacks were the worst ever on American soil, surpassing Pearl Harbor.  Many noted the shock that accompanied both attacks.  Some analyzed the strategic (Pearl Harbor) vs symbolic (9/11) nature of the attacks. Others just noted that both united our nation.

Perhaps fittingly, President Obama’s speech last week “on the way forward in Afghanistan and Pakistan,” at West Point had tinges of President Roosevelt’s speech from December 8, 1941 throughout it.  The challenge, of course, for President Obama is reuniting the nation in the quiet of the moment – eight years later – rather than in the days after an attack. He seems aware of the challenge, calling in his speech for a united America and making a case for relevancy.  The coming days of Congressional action and public polls will help determine whether he was successful in his attempt.  As for the speeches, here is a line-by-line analysis of President Roosevelt’s speech with some excerpts (in blue) from the much longer Obama speech:

Yesterday, December 7, 1941 – a date which will live in infamy – the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan.

On September 11, 2001, 19 men hijacked four airplanes and used them to murder nearly 3,000 people.  They struck at our military and economic nerve centers.  They took the lives of innocent men, women, and children without regard to their faith or race or station.

The United States was at peace with that nation, and, at the solicitation of Japan, was still in conversation with its government and its Emperor looking toward the maintenance of peace in the Pacific.

We did not ask for this fight.

Indeed, one hour after Japanese air squadrons had commenced bombing in the American island of Oahu, the Japanese ambassador to the United States and his colleague delivered to our Secretary of State a formal reply to a recent American message. While this reply stated that it seemed useless to continue the existing diplomatic negotiations, it contained no threat or hint of war or of armed attack.

Al Qaeda’s base of operations was in Afghanistan, where they were harbored by the Taliban — a ruthless, repressive and radical movement that seized control of that country after it was ravaged by years of Soviet occupation and civil war, and after the attention of America and our friends had turned elsewhere.

It will be recorded that the distance of Hawaii from Japan makes it obvious that the attack was deliberately planned many days or even weeks ago. During the intervening time, the Japanese government has deliberately sought to deceive the United States by false statements and expressions of hope for continued peace.

Under the banner of this domestic unity and international legitimacy — and only after the Taliban refused to turn over Osama bin Laden — we sent our troops into Afghanistan.  Within a matter of months, al Qaeda was scattered and many of its operatives were killed.  The Taliban was driven from power and pushed back on its heels.  A place that had known decades of fear now had reason to hope.

The attack yesterday on the Hawaiian Islands has caused severe damage to American naval and military forces. I regret to tell you that very many American lives have been lost. In addition, American ships have been reported torpedoed on the high seas between San Francisco and Honolulu.

Yet huge challenges remain.  Afghanistan is not lost, but for several years it has moved backwards.  There’s no imminent threat of the government being overthrown, but the Taliban has gained momentum.  Al Qaeda has not reemerged in Afghanistan in the same numbers as before 9/11, but they retain their safe havens along the border.  And our forces lack the full support they need to effectively train and partner with Afghan security forces and better secure the population.

Yesterday, the Japanese government also launched an attack against Malaya.

Last night, Japanese forces attacked Hong Kong.

Last night, Japanese forces attacked Guam.

Last night, Japanese forces attacked the Philippine Islands.

Last night, the Japanese attacked Wake Island.

This morning, the Japanese attacked Midway Island.

Japan has, therefore, undertaken a surprise offensive extending throughout the Pacific area. The facts of yesterday and today speak for themselves. The People of the United States have already formed their opinions and well understand the implications to the very life and safety of our nation.

Over the last several years, the Taliban has maintained common cause with al Qaeda, as they both seek an overthrow of the Afghan government.  Gradually, the Taliban has begun to control additional swaths of territory in Afghanistan, while engaging in increasingly brazen and devastating attacks of terrorism against the Pakistani people.

As Commander-in-Chief of the Army and Navy, I have directed that all measures be taken for our defense.

And as Commander-in-Chief, I have determined that it is in our vital national interest to send an additional 30,000 U.S. troops to Afghanistan.


But always will our whole nation remember the character of the onslaught against us.
Our friends have fought and bled and died alongside us in Afghanistan.  And now, we must come together to end this war successfully.  For what’s at stake is not simply a test of NATO’s credibility — what’s at stake is the security of our allies, and the common security of the world.

No matter how long it may take us to overcome this premeditated invasion, the American people in their righteous might, will win through to absolute victory.

We’re in Afghanistan to prevent a cancer from once again spreading through that country.  But this same cancer has also taken root in the border region of Pakistan.  That’s why we need a strategy that works on both sides of the border.

I believe that I interpret the will of the Congress and of the People when I assert that we will not only defend ourselves to the uttermost, but will make it very certain that this form of treachery shall never again endanger us.

It’s easy to forget that when this war began, we were united — bound together by the fresh memory of a horrific attack, and by the determination to defend our homeland and the values we hold dear.  I refuse to accept the notion that we cannot summon that unity again.I believe with every fiber of my being that we — as Americans — can still come together behind a common purpose.  For our values are not simply words written into parchment — they are a creed that calls us together, and that has carried us through the darkest of storms as one nation, as one people.

I ask that the Congress declare that since the unprovoked and dastardly attack by Japan on Sunday, December 7, 1941 a state of War has existed between the United States and the Japanese empire.

Going forward, I am committed to addressing these costs openly and honestly.  Our new approach in Afghanistan is likely to cost us roughly $30 billion for the military this year, and I’ll work closely with Congress to address these costs as we work to bring down our deficit.

Hostilities exist. There is no blinking at the fact that our people, our territory, and our interests are in grave danger.

I make this decision because I am convinced that our security is at stake in Afghanistan and Pakistan.  This is the epicenter of violent extremism practiced by al Qaeda.  It is from here that we were attacked on 9/11, and it is from here that new attacks are being plotted as I speak.  This is no idle danger; no hypothetical threat.  In the last few months alone, we have apprehended extremists within our borders who were sent here from the border region of Afghanistan and Pakistan to commit new acts of terror. And this danger will only grow if the region slides backwards, and al Qaeda can operate with impunity.  We must keep the pressure on al Qaeda, and to do that, we must increase the stability and capacity of our partners in the region.

With confidence in our armed forces – with the unbounding determination of our People – we will gain the inevitable triumph – so help us God.

America — we are passing through a time of great trial.  And the message that we send in the midst of these storms must be clear:  that our cause is just, our resolve unwavering.  We will go forward with the confidence that right makes might, and with the commitment to forge an America that is safer, a world that is more secure, and a future that represents not the deepest of fears but the highest of hopes.

Thank you.  God bless you.  May God bless the United States of America.   Thank you very much.  Thank you.

However one may come out on the debate on Afghanistan, remember that today’s anniversary is one that honors and remembers the soldiers, both at Pearl Harbor and elsewhere, who protect our nation.  Regardless of one ‘s political views, those individuals deserve thanks and respect for all they do.

December 4, 2009

ISA Issues Report: Incentivize Don’t Regulate

Filed under: Cybersecurity,General Homeland Security — by Jessica Herrera-Flanigan on December 4, 2009

Co-authored by first time contributor Colin Bortner

The Internet Security Alliance released a report, “Implementing the Obama Cyber Security Strategy via the ISA Social Contract Model,” yesterday responding to Obama administration’s Cyber Space Policy Review. The report takes a broad view of cybersecurity and tackles everything from information sharing to securing the IT supply chain, but its most substantive proposal is a public private-model to enhance cybersecurity though market incentives.

The report strives to align the President’s Cyber Space Policy Review, completed in May, with points raised in the the Cyber Security Social Contract: Recommendations for the Obama Administration, published by ISA a year ago.  As noted by ISA then, the social contract:

is essentially a deal between industry and government wherein both entities agree to provide services and receive benefits resulting in a larger social good.

The social contract ISA is proposing is based on the agreement between government and the utilities in the early 20th century which had the goal of providing universal phone, power and light service to Americans. That model worked.

The Contract had two key elements:

“First is the realization that cyber security is not a purely technical problem. Rather, cyber security is an enterprise-wide risk management problem which must be understood as much for its economic perspectives as for its technical issues.”

“The second key element is that, at this point, government’s primary role ought to be to encourage the investment required to implement the standards, practices, and technologies that have already been shown to be effective in improving cyber security.”

The public-private model outlined in the report released yesterday calls for the establishment a family of incentives and a body charged with evaluating and grading security certifications.   The various grades of certification would be mapped to the various incentives so that certification x would yield incentive a, while certification y would yield incentive b.

The incentives that ISA suggests include basic tax incentives, access to Federal grants, participation in Federal procurement, a Cyber Safety Act (modeled after the Safety Act providing limited liability in the case of a cyber incident), and national awards for cybersecurity, among other recomendations.   ISA envisions the certification to be a stamp of compliance with an established open standard, such as those developed and maintained by ISO and NIST, or a proprietary, sector-specific certification, such as PCI-DSS for the payments industry.

The model aims to accommodate an ecosystem of certifications that are both tailored to fit the needs of different industries or organizations and which provide different levels of security at different costs (and rewards).  ISA predicts that this would create a competitive marketplace of Federally-blessed certification organizations that compete to win access to greater incentives for their customers at lower costs.

The ISA Report largely reiterates the views advocated by ISA over the last several years.  As a non-profit collaboration between the Electronic Industries Alliance (EIA), a federation of trade associations, and Carnegie Mellon University’s CyLab, ISA represents corporate interests from the Defense & Aerospace, Banking & Financial, Food Service, Entertainment, Telecommunications and Manufacturing industries.   Focusing on the Internet economy sectors, it makes sense that ISA would promote insurance and incentives over pure regulation.

Unfortunately, without high-level leadership in the White House on cybersecurity, a review of ISA’s and others views and proposals are lagging.  The Department of Homeland Security, led by Rand Beers, Phil Reitinger, and Greg Schaffer in the National Protection and Programs Directorate (NPPD),  is getting its house in order and making headway on DHS’s efforts to better streamline and secure government systems.  Hopefully, with the new Assistant Secretary of Private Sector Douglas Smith, the folks at NPPD can strengthen their public-private sector outreach.  That will only be 1/2 the puzzle, however, if they do not have a strong advocate in the White House for their operational and policy efforts.

December 3, 2009

From the HLSWatch Archives: Homeland Security as the new Maginot Line

Filed under: General Homeland Security — by Christopher Bellavita on December 3, 2009

Occasionally we will look back at some of the previous posts on this blog.

Four years ago, HLSWatch’s Beckner presented what he called a “rather dour opinion piece … on homeland security”  from the Wall Street Journal. The Journal piece is republished below. I have highlighted in the article some of the questions and ideas that continue to have relevance:

  • Are we more secure now than we were before DHS started?  Was massively restructuring government an over-reaction to a threat few people understood? How would we know?
  • When did collective bargaining become a threat to national security?
  • Will Congress ever streamline its oversight of DHS?  Why aren’t the number of committees DHS has to report to a national security threat?
  • Does the FBI have an effective enterprise-wide computer system?
  • Is our adversary “nimble?”  Is our anti-terror strategy more than an expensive Maginot Line? How would we know?
  • Do we have the institutional and organizational arrangements we need to “effectively prevent domestic terrorist” attacks?
  • Is it time to start doubting “the seriousness with which the American people take the terrorist threat?”
  • Why do we still use the metaphor of “a game” when talking about seemingly endless wars that have killed more than 8,000 and injured more that 30,000 Americans?  Let alone the dead and injured in other nations.

————————

The Maginot Department: Homeland security is about more than playing defense.

Saturday, December 31, 2005 12:01 A.M. EST

Wall Street Journal

When the Department of Homeland Security was created in November 2002, largely at the instigation of Congressional Democrats, it was touted as the biggest restructuring of the federal government in more than 50 years. The new department’s “overriding and urgent mission,” said President Bush, was “securing the American homeland and protecting the American people.” Three years later, the bureaucratic deck chairs have been moved. But are we more secure as a result of it?

One way to answer the question is to think about “homeland security” as something more than a government agency. Creating the 184,000-man, $40 billion DHS was supposed to be a way of integrating 22 semi-autonomous agencies, dealing with everything from border security to emergency management, into a single unit in which redundancies would be eliminated, gaps filled and synergies achieved. But DHS was also intended to serve as an emblem of American resolve; to demonstrate, both to our enemies and ourselves, that we are serious about defending ourselves. Here, then, is some evidence of our collective seriousness.

• In August, federal Judge Rosemary Collyer blocked an Administration effort to create more flexible pay and personnel rules for DHS, on ground that it violated the collective-bargaining rights of government employees. So much for synergies.

DHS remains subject to the oversight of too many Congressional committees, despite some recent consolidation. The Coast Guard, for example, which operates under the DHS umbrella, remains subject to the House and Senate Transportation committees, while the Transportation Security Administration, which comes under the Homeland Security Committee in the House, is overseen by the Transportation Committee in the Senate.

• The FBI (which is a part of the Justice Department) remains unable to upgrade its computer systems after having burned through four chief information officers and $170 million in four years. As a result, the agency continues to rely on legacy computer systems and hundreds of different kinds of paper forms. The Bureau is now at work on another system, which may or may not be ready by 2009.

Instead, what we have is a kind of antiterror version of France’s pre-World War II Maginot Line; an expensive, highly visible static defense against a nimble adversary. Congress loves it because it offers the chance to throw money at domestic constituencies, and liberals love it because it allows them to sound hawkish on terror without having to fire a shot. The rest of us, however, need to be realistic about its abilities.

Such examples, of course, are merely anecdotal, and it would be unfair to tar the work of the DHS or FBI based on these shortcomings. Nor is it right to suggest that things aren’t capable of improvement; DHS Secretary Michael Chertoff may well prove the man for the job. But the points aptly illustrate the underlying problem with our collective homeland security apparatus, which is that no government bureaucracy is ever going to be the kind of well-oiled machine that can reliably and effectively prevent domestic terrorist threats. And this is to say nothing of natural disasters. This is especially the case as Congress becomes increasingly unserious about the domestic threat. It says something about the current state of play that Mr. Bush must now profess gratitude to Congress for graciously agreeing to a one-month extension of the USA Patriot Act, which in 2001 passed the Senate 98-1. Even more unserious has been the political posturing and mock horror that followed this month’s revelations of the National Security Agency’s warrantless phone intercepts. It’s refreshing to know that 64% of Americans, according to a recent Rasmussen poll, approve of the eavesdropping, not that we ever had doubts about the seriousness with which the American people take the terrorist threat. It’s the seriousness of American elites that concerns us.

Not the least of the ironies in the current debate on homeland security is that many of the same people who oppose the war in Iraq also oppose renewal of the Patriot Act and other domestic counterterrorist tools. That is, they are as opposed to going on offense in the war on terror as they are against playing defense. But the war on terror is not a game the U.S. can opt out of. There is a great deal that can be done to improve homeland security–and to improve the department that bears that name. But it won’t count for much if we aren’t clear about the choices we face.

December 2, 2009

A New Way Forward: Right Makes Might

Filed under: General Homeland Security — by Mark Chubb on December 2, 2009

Last night President Obama outlined his administration’s strategy and plans for a troop build-up and eventual draw down of forces in Afghanistan during a 35-minute nationally-televised speech from the United States Military Academy at West Point. Two points stood out for me: One from the speech itself and one from the context.\n\nAt several points during the second half of the speech, the president reiterated his view that our national security and our homeland security are deeply intertwined. In particular, he emphasized connections between the cost of the war and the parlous state of our economy.\n\nThe president made a point of identifying how important it is for the American people to support the peoples of Afghanistan and Pakistan. In doing so he drew a connection between our efforts there and efforts over the past 60 years starting in Europe to build a wide range of international institutions that have enabled security and prosperity not only for the United States but for other nations as well.\n\nIn making this connection, the president explicitly directed our attention away from analogies with Vietnam and subtly encouraged us to consider our efforts in central Asia an extension of the policies that successfully ended the Cold War and led to the spread of liberal democracy across much of Eastern Europe. By connecting his agenda in the region with his nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament agenda as well, he made it clear that the connection is literal as well as rhetorical.\n\nHe mentioned the United Nations, the NATO alliance, and the World Bank as evidence of our success promoting economic as well as political liberalization without resorting to force or occupation. In doing so, however, he overlooked the menacing presence these institutions represent to some of our allies as well as a few of our own countrymen, some of whom fear globalization almost as much as than they fear Muslim extremists.\n\nRecognizing that security in Afghanistan depends on development there and in neighboring Pakistan, the President committed the United States to a military engagement with a limited time horizon. At the same time, he clearly committed us to a more open-ended engagement to develop civil and economic institutions there conditioned only on accountability and continued cooperation.\n\nThe President acknowledged in his remarks that United States policy with respect to Pakistan, in particular, has interpreted cooperation and United States’ interests too narrowly. How he intends to broaden this perspective there while remaining true to his goal of disarmament remains unclear.\n\nWhat is clear and was openly acknowledged by the President during the first half of his remarks is that the troop build-up will place a heavy burden on the nation’s already stretched armed forces and the young men and women who serve. Acknowledging this reality, the President spoke directly to the cadets seated before him: “As your commander in chief, I owe you a mission that is clearly defined and worthy of your service.”\n\nAccording to the President, the nation’s interest and goals in Afghanistan and the region remain unchanged from the start of our intervention:\n

\n

Our overarching goal remains the same: to disrupt, dismantle, and defeat al Qaeda in Afghanistan and Pakistan, and to prevent its capacity to threaten America and our allies in the future.

\n\nTo meet that goal, we will pursue the following objectives within Afghanistan. We must deny al Qaeda a safe haven. We must reverse the Taliban’s momentum and deny it the ability to overthrow the government. And we must strengthen the capacity of Afghanistan’s security forces and government so that they can take lead responsibility for Afghanistan’s future.

\nThe commitment of forces represents only one part of the President’s three-pronged strategy for achieving these objectives. Breaking the back of al Qaeda, the President insisted, depends upon reversing the momentum of the resurgent Taliban and creating a stable environment for Afghans who want to govern themselves peacefully to do so. This proscribed role for United States military forces may be achievable, but only with great difficulty and more bloodshed on both sides.\n\nThe President’s proposal recognizes that building civil capacity in Afghanistan and forging a durable partnership with Pakistan cannot be accomplished through the use of sticks. But it remains to be seen how effective the President’s carrots will be in a region where democracy is viewed not so much as a robust ideal as a fragile idea that requires constant care and attention so it can adapt to the harsh climate and conditions present there.\n\nAs the President addressed the sacrifices that lie ahead, the television cameras panned the room. As they did, I was struck by the fresh faces of some of America’s best and brightest seated before him in the auditorium and on display before the entire nation. Besides their obvious youth, something else was evident in their faces. Our armed forces and those we select and train to lead our all-volunteer force represent both America’s diversity and its promise. The ideal of democracy was reflected in their eyes.\n\nIf we succeed in Afghanistan, it will be because, as the President himself suggested, “right makes might” not the other way around. The young men and women of our armed forces are not just the right people to lead in the use of force against our enemies, they are a brilliant example of what our country can still do better than anyone else: Encourage service by promoting success in proportion to one’s commitment to cooperation and self-sacrifice.

December 1, 2009

Turkey Leftovers

Filed under: International HLS — by Christopher Bellavita on December 1, 2009

From conference notes I took in Ankara several days ago, participant quotes about Islam, Al Qaeda, radicalization, homeland security, and perceptions of U.S. foreign policy.  This post closes with a reminder from 1848.

Al Qaeda

  • “Al Qaeda is present in anywhere from 60 to 90 different countries.”
  • “It used to be said that Al Qaeda wanted a few people killed, but a lot of people watching.  Now, Al Qaeda wants a lot of people dead and a lot of people watching.”
  • “Al Qaeda’s biggest victory was getting ‘Islam’ and ‘terrorism’ used in the same sentence.”

Islam

  • “There is no religion untainted by terrorism.”
  • “There is no one version of Islam, no one Islamic culture.  So how can there be a class of cultures?”
  • “There is nothing wrong with Islam.  But there are some things wrong with some Muslims.
  • “The Qur’an, like any holy book, you open it and read it.  But it also reads you.”
  • “There is an Islam of Identity and an Islam of Truth.  Two competing identities will fight each other.  Two truths will cooperate.”
  • (An annoyed university professor after another speaker’s presentation about Islam and homegrown terrorism) “I know we are in a seminar setting where there is free and open discussion.  And that is good. But it is important to remember that Islam and jihad are two sacred words to Muslims. And one should be careful using those words in conjunction with terrorism.”
  • “The primary responsibility for combating extremist ideology should fall on the shoulders of the Muslim community.”
  • (Islamic scholar citing  a quote from Muhammad) “You will kill each other over interpretations of the text.”

Radicalization

  • H.R. 1955 (cited by an Eastern European university professor) –  “The term ‘homegrown terrorism’ means the use, planned use, or threatened use, of force or violence by a group or individual born, raised, or based and operating primarily within the United States or any possession of the United States to intimidate or coerce the United States government, the civilian population of the United States, or any segment thereof, in furtherance of political or social objectives.”
  • “In the 1960s, left wing terrorists [in Europe] were motivated by communism.  We did not call them ‘homegrown terrorists.’ But that’s what they were.  Why do we use that term now?  Is it a coded way to say ‘Islamic terrorism?’ “
  • “There is very little evidence to support the claim that the internet is an effective channel for radicalization.”
  • “There are more than 5,000 radicalization websites; there are fewer than 100 counter radicalization websites.”
  • “Most of the online Al Qaeda stuff is dense and boring.  Very few people will plow through that [on line] material.”
  • Singapore has a strategy (described here) to rehabilitate those who have been radicalized.  It is based in part on the idea that those who have been radicalized “… are the faithful, but they have gone the wrong way.  They need to be taught the correct way.”

Homeland Security

  • “In some places in America, ‘community policing’ is evolving into ‘homeland security policing.’”
  • “Does the proliferation of and language about homeland security contribute to the production of terrorism?”
  • “While there may be no universally accepted definition of terrorism, we can more easily agree on definitions of terrorist acts.”
  • “I am an advocate of homeland security.  My critics call me an ‘agent of a repressive state.’ I wear the label proudly.”
  • “What comes after ‘homeland security?’  How about ‘human security.‘”

US Foreign Policy

  • A Pakistani officer’s suggestion for U.S. policy makers: “Take your soldiers out of Afghanistan.  Allow us to deal with the problem.” [For another perspective, see Jessica's "Afghan Policy - Making A Presidency" immediately below this post.]
  • A senior Pakistani army officer just back from the battlefield talking about not knowing who they are fighting. “It’s not Al Qaeda or Taliban. We go into a village.  Everyone is friendly to us.  We leave and they start shooting….” Who is the enemy? “Someone is providing the enemy with massive quantities of powerful weapons,” he said. He suspects “U.S. interests” – whatever that means. He said the US is making more enemies in Pakistan than friends. “Every death affects 10 people.  It’s your soldiers dying. But it’s our people and our children who continue to suffer. We are not like you where everyone can earn a living.  For us, one person earns a living for 10 people.” He gives us 2 years to find a way out or “It will be worse for you than Vietnam.” The man seemed a little sad, a bit desperate, a lot resigned. As if he were under a sentence of death.
  • We were reminded that “The U.S. allowed Iran “to purchase a small [nuclear] … research reactor for Tehran University. In 1967, Tehran’s research reactor was fueled with highly enriched uranium provided by the United States.”
  • Eastern European army officer: “I am worried that [the U.S.] will go to war against Iran.  Then what will happen?  Israel will get involved.  Then the Arab world.  Then it will be 1914 Sarajevo all over again.  But this time with nuclear weapons.”
  • “If a nation bombs, say, one of your power stations, you will respond with full force.  But what is the proper response if someone uses a cyber attack to shut down your power station?”
  • “Six failures in the War in terrorism: 1) Failure to capture Bin Laden and Zawahiri; 2) Afghanistan — allowing Al Qaeda and the Taliban to re-infiltrate the country; 3) the strategic blunder that is the War in Iraq, with its 3 trillion dollars in costs to the U.S.; 4) the failure to prevent Al Qaeda from using organized crime to move money across international borders; 5) the failure to win hearts and minds of the Muslim world and its diaspora; 6) failure to maintain solidarity and optimize cooperation within the Coalition Against Terrorism.”
  • “Improved cooperation among nations and agencies — even if not perfect — is better than no cooperation.”

Last Word

“We have no eternal allies and we have no perpetual enemies.  Our interests are perpetual and eternal, and those interests it is our duty to follow.”  Lord Palmerston, British Foreign Secretary (1848)

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