Homeland Security Watch

News and analysis of critical issues in homeland security

July 31, 2013

Throwing a little cold water on the Al Qaeda Threat?

Filed under: General Homeland Security — by Arnold Bogis on July 31, 2013

These are confusing…difficult…let’s just say unsettled times in the counter-terrorism field.

On one hand, the mainstream message seems to be that an extensive global drone strike campaign, combined with a vastly expanded intelligence and special forces capability, has disrupted not only Al Qaeda’s plots but the operations of it’s “central” organization and has kept the American homeland safe.

On the other, “Al Qaeda” is spreading among the chaos of the Arab Spring in the Middle East and North Africa.  While not the centralized, directed threat of the late 1990’s and early 2000’s, it is often posited as nonetheless a worrisome national security risk.

I’m not taking a side in this argument…at this point anyway.  However, I do think that Harvard Professor Steve Walt’s analysis (keep in mind he comes from the realist school of international relations)” is worth considering:

What is needed is a much more fundamental rethinking of the entire anti-terrorism campaign. As I suggested last week, part of that rethink means asking whether the United States needs to do a lot more to discredit jihadi narratives, instead of persisting with policies that make the extremists’ charges sound plausible to their audiences. A second part is to keep the jihadi threat in better perspective: They are a challenge, but not a mortal threat to Americans’ way of life unless the country reacts to them in ways that cause more damage to its well-being and its values than they do. Sadly, a rational ranking of costs, benefits, and threats seems to be something that the U.S. foreign-policy establishment is largely incapable of these days.

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Comment by Christopher Tingus

July 31, 2013 @ 6:50 am

First, what shall we do about the following which portrays the lack of work ethics and our inability to understand why the inherent national pride which has been so decimated by an administration so hell bent on civil rights issues and divisiveness and its Muslim fundamentalist leanings given its own narrow minded perspectives that despite the billions spent in the Homeland Security effort, from top to bottom, so many failures…

Second, the Professor is correct and his point quite valid, more efforts to discredit the jihadi narratives, however the Al Qaeda threat and this fundamentalist threat by those seeking to do whatever is necessary to our demise is real and as a nation we must not believe that Al Qaeda and those related to the overall aim to weaken us in every way, to see us spend billions where we would not have spent otherwise…any way they can attack us, let’s not discredit the worthiness of opponent though from my perspective, it is not the disoriented USA led by a weakened White House which cannot even keep its doors open to our kids who deserve better and while 911 strategy was to pierce our beloved Republic’s heart, the White House and their plan failed over the Pennsylvania hills by brave Patriots who said, “Let’s rock ‘n roll” – the White House doors remain closed so while Germany will deal its hand and the fundamentalists have failed to see Germany build and begin to deploy its fast deployment Army and send new shiny naval vessels off of Tehran and Al Qaeda will receive a direct blows and many from the Germans who have no intentions to leave Afghanistan for instance waving good bye and good riddance to us so they can continue to carry out their Middle East strategy and will do so, it is this White House, the AG, Hillary Clinton and so on, those who have weakened us and not enforced our laws and who have no idea of international policy making whatsoever and this disregard for Constitution and our American values where this White House has taken this country back some 100 years and has hoodwinked so many playing this race card and reminiscent of Barry Obama’s Chicago days and his continued degradation of America and so perverse in his perspective and self-serving to the extent that again, in breach of faith, Barry Obama and Ms. Hillary should be held by House arrest for their phony mannerisms…the willingness and knowing decisions to leave our Patriots behind at the “Benghazi Massacre” – I shout arrest them both for suspicion in breach of faith, treason!

The poor performance of TSA agents and so on and so forth, the continued high unemployment and the staggering deficit, now $6.1 trillion more than in ’08 and the immorality we see in late term abortions and 72% pregnancy rates in parts of the Black communities where leadership has no solutions and only empty rhetoric, shame on you!

In the words of James Madison (1785): If tyranny and oppression come to this land, it will be under the guise of fighting a foreign enemy. But, in reality it will be an Enemy from within” –

God Bless us all!

Great post….let’s begin as Americans to take our country back from those we have “entrusted” by precious vote to serve us the People, yet see their self-agenda as their priority….As far as a strong arsenal, you bet for our Democracy will not survive unless we have an arsenal to stand strong against those many who despise our freedom and which has now been compromised by the same type of misrepresentation which caused our forefathers to flee King George and excessive taxes and an ever burdensome government enslaving so many….

Let’s begin to truly address these partisan and self-serving agenda by lusting for power!

God Bless this beloved Republic and our Constitution and hold all accountable for the failed promises to bring transparency to government….it is time for the Black community to address its problems and to look within and to God in prayer rather than to place a band aid and further enslavement by a government seeking to intervene in every way…

Christopher Tingus
“Main Street USA”
Cape Cod, MA 02645 USA

Comment by William R. Cumming

July 31, 2013 @ 11:55 am

YUP AQ has not been defeated and what’s more many educated in USA and speak and read English.

My proposal in late 2001 that 50K be immediately selected and trained in Arabic, Farsi, Court Persian, Urdu, and other MENA languages went no where. Now the deaf [no languages] dumb [no languages] and blind [ignorant and filled with ego and hubris lead the charge of the Very Light Brigade!

Comment by Donald Quixote

August 2, 2013 @ 9:05 am

Interesting questions. I often wonder what the term Al Qaeda (AQ) really means today. It is a term used to group together various known and unknown factions, which may or may not be a threat to the United States, because the narratives and dynamics are too broad and diverse for many to fully understand. Do we define the movement and associations or do they? Do they really see themselves as AQ affiliates or just adopt it after we label them for support and street cred? Is it that AQ remains the primary threat until another more imminent one arises, such as a nation state? The news stories this morning continue the narrative.

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