America is stronger today, but now weakening....
Stronger Today. Be thankful that:
(1) Since the day Islamist terrorists murdered nearly 3,000 people on American soil, there has not been a successful major terror attack launched against the American homeland.
(2) Al-Qaeda's original organization has been decimated, and Osama bin Laden is dead.
(3) While there have been a few domestic Islamist attacks--most notably the Fort Hood massacre--mounted by radicalized Muslims, these have been few and far between. America's homeland defenses are vastly stronger, with NYPD the best counter-terror police force on the planet, having stopped 14 attack attempts since 9/11/01.
(4) America's two major foreign wars, Afghanistan & Iraq, are winding down and our soldiers coming home to their families. Our military has been simply spectacular, its men & women writing a stirring chapter in the annals of American history, of courage & devotion for the ages. Our magnificent military is, rightly, the most admired institution in America.
(5) Most of the successful policies instituted by George W. Bush--drone attacks, internment of detainees at Guantanamo, building of terror databases to track militants--remain in place under President Obama.
But Weakening. Yet we have reason to fear, too:
(1) Militant Islam's holy wars against America continue, with no end in sight. The homeland remains in mortal danger. Airport "security theater" treats children & the elderly as threats, with TSA personnel looking for bad things instead of looking for bad people through modern screening & interrogation techniques, as is done in Israel. While no planes have dropped from the sky, neither have they done so in other countries whose security surveillance is less harassing and intrusive. Obama has eviscerated our interrogation methods that worked remarkably well despite an orchestrated international campaign to discredit them and demonize the US. Matters were made worse by a Supreme Court and myriad subordinate federal judges who infringed to an unprecedented degree upon national security during wartime.
(2) As al-Qaeda fragments and new franchise successors organize, other terror groups, Hezbollah, Hamas, the Salfists & the Muslim Brotherhood remain lethal threats.
(3) What looked one year ago like a Iraq war that, though too costly in blood & treasure, was coming to a tolerable outcome--not quite victory but not defeat either--now appears to be unravelling. American troops precipitously pulled out by President Obama no longer mediate internecine conflict there, and Iraq's government tilts closer towards Iran.
(4) The Afghan war unravels as well, Obama having pulled American forces out during the middle of the fighting season (the start of the fall campaign season). The thug leader the US installed, Hamid Karzai, is double-crossing us, and the resurgent Taliban are poised to take over upon our 2014 departure.
(5) The killing of bin Laden in a locale ten minutes from Pakistan's top military academy, not far from the capital city, revealed Pakistani duplicity. Pakistan is a rogue state whose populace seethes with hatred of the US, whose leaders deeply mistrust us and routinely lie to us, armed with a nuclear arsenal of some 100 weapons, which Pakistan aims to double in short order.
(6) The Arab Spring of 2011 has become the Arab winter of 2012. Egypt, a staunch US ally through 2012, is now governed by the Muslim brotherhood, its prospects for democracy uncertain after Islamists hijacked the "Facebook Revolution"; peace with Israel is in severe jeopardy. Chaos reigns in Libya, Yemen & other sadly benighted places.
(7) A stupefyingly heroic popular uprising in Syria, against the secular tyrant who is Iran's top Mideast client and co-guarantor of Hezbollah's grip on southern Lebanon, descends towards open civil war. The US stands by, save for minimal intelligence & diplomatic effort. The fall of Syria would be Iran's worst strategic setback in a generation, effectively ending Russia's Mideast sway. Yet Obama declines to meaningfully aid the rebels and channel America's influence towards non-Islamist rebel groups.
(8) Iran marches steadily towards nuclear-weapon status. The president shamefully stood by in June 2009 when the Green Movement's uprising after a patently fraudulent election had thrown Iran's Islamist government off balance. Saying little, doing nothing, clinging to chimerical hopes of talking Iran's mullahcracy out of going nuclear, Obama watched as the Green Revolution was crushed. An opportunity of the kind that comes along once in a generation was foolishly squandered.
(9) Seeing that Iran's march towards nuclear weapons continues as Swiss-cheese sanctions are oft evaded, told bluntly by the US that no action to destroy Iran's nuclear facilities will be supported by the US for the indefinite future, Israel readies its own forces. It faces a possible three-front war--perhaps four fronts--if it strikes. The prospect that Iran will assemble & use a nuclear weapon against Israel or America is growing. A nuclear Iran would trigger a Mideast arms race, with several Gulf states instantly offering Pakistan petrodollars for atomic bombs. The global nuclear proliferation regime would collapse of its own serial failures. President Obama is mesmerized by fantasies of achieving nuclear zero in his second term, a quest that will only encourage the world's most dangerous nuclear actors to clandestinely augment their own arsenals.
(10) America alliance structure is fraying badly. Obama's misbegotten Russian "reset" gave Russia a nuclear arms treaty that shrinks our forces while allowing theirs to expand, and allows Moscow to determine what limited missile defense deployment in Eastern Europe is acceptable. Poland & the Czech Republic saw their security negotiated behind their diplomatic backs and sprung upon them at the eleventh hour, irreparably harming a once rock-solid alliance. NATO is militarily spent. Our Asian allies now face a nuclear-armed North Korea and a China clearly aiming to push America out of the western Pacific.
(11) Our Gulf state allies in the Mideast, fearing a nuclear Iran most of all, look to Israel for salvation. And Team Obama remains fixated on the utterly marginal Israeli-Palestinian conflict, which it clearly wants settled on terms largely determined by the Palestinians. American-Israeli relations are at their nadir.
(12) America has added $10 trillion to our national debt ($4 trillion under G. W. Bush, $6 trillion under Obama). If not reversed within the next presidential term, runaway federal spending will bankrupt the country, and relegate America to second-rate status for the foreseeable future.
Bottom Line. The November 6 election offers voters an opportunity to continue the course set by President Obama, which will lead to a diminished role for America in the world, and no superpower to step in and check rising global disorder. Or voters may choose Mitt Romney, who may, or may not, be able to rise to the occasion and set America on a path towards restoration of its domestic and foreign position.
Put simply, our troubles a far from being over, and may yet grow by orders of magnitude.
Letter from the Capitol, LFTC, Homeland Security, Terrorism, National Security, WMD, Nuclear Proliferation, Foreign Policy, Conservative Politics