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Saturday, December 26, 2009

Not So Scary Terror?

So says Matthew Yglesias, in a post titled Not So Scary “Terror” (emphasis mine):

Obviously, people shouldn’t be lighting anything on fire inside airplanes. That said, all the big Christmas airline incident really shows to me is how little punch our dread terrorist adversaries really pack. Once again, this seems like a pretty unserious plot. And even if you did manage to blow up an airplane in mid-air, that would be both a very serious crime and a great tragedy, but hardly a first-order national security threat....

Ultimately, it does no favors to anyone to blow this sort of thing out of proportion. The United States could not, of course, be “devastated” by anything resembling this scheme. We ought to be clear on that fact. We want to send the message around the world that this sort of vile attempt to slaughter innocent people is not, at the end of the day, anything resembling a serious challenge to American power. It’s attempted murder, it’s wrong, we should try to stop it, but it’s really not much more than that.

This mindset of treating terrorism as a mere criminal act is settling in quickly in the Holder legal administration.

Contrary the criminal justice mindset, any attempt to blow up airplanes is a threat to national security in the same way as the 9/11 attacks. The effect, had this attack been successful, not only would have been a large loss of life, but enormous economic disruption and terror spread throughout the U.S.

It is not hard to imagine an emergency grounding of all air traffic as on 9/11, and days or weeks before travel resumed a normal pattern. The psychological effect, which is the point of terror, would have cast a pall over the country.

Not so scary terror? Only because it didn't work.

Not a serious plot? It turns out that incendiary device was made of the same highly explosive material used by "Shoe Bomber" Richard Reid, there are increasingly clear links to Yemen, and the U.S. was on notice for two years that this specific individual was a risk.

The Think Progress crowd may not like it politically, but we do need to do a better job at connecting the dots, as Congressman Pete Hoekstra has said.

And we can speak this truth even though Obama is in office, much as George W. Bush was criticized for not connecting the dots leading up to 9/11. We must not allow groups like Think Progress, which seeks to protect Obama's image, to deter us from speaking up out of fear of being ridiculed, as is happening to Pete Hoekstra.

Relying on terrorists to misfire is not a national security policy. It didn't work in the 1990s, and it will not work now.

Update: Thanks to Donald Douglas for this screen shot of a tweet by Spencer Ackerman on the same "not so scary" theme:

Here is the thrust of Ackerman's blog post on this subject, complete with a music video titled "Cherry Bomb," making light of the incident:
Abdulmutallab gets an explosive device from al-Qaeda operatives in Yemen; takes a couple of layovers to get on the plane; boards with his device; ignites it; it fizzles; passengers and crew subdue him. And we’re supposed to be scared of this?
Ackerman dismisses the attempt as "a desperate bid for relevance" by an al-Qaeda under pressure. Well, blowing people up is what al-Qaeda does, so by that definition, 9/11 also was "a desperate bid for relevance."

Related Posts:
Terrorist Attacks Plane, Think Progress Attacks Pete Hoekstra
Obama Green Plan: Substitute Dependence On Chinese Metals For Dependence On Saudi Oil
Juan Cole's Christmas Attack On Israel

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  1. Remember this video?


    An AQ recruiter says one terrorist carrying 4 pounds of anthrax willing to spread it in a densely populated area could kill 300,000 people. He talks about how efficient it would be. No need to highjack planes. No need for a conspiracy. One "brave" person could pull it off.

    I guess that, too, would simply be a tragedy.

  2. Yglesias would change his tune pretty damn quick if we were talking about repeated attempts to blow up liberal advocacy organizations.

  3. Matthew Yglesias is not now, and never has been, a serious or even fully coherent thinker. He is, apparently, a world-class self-promoter, though.

  4. Wishfully thinking, I hope that I logically put down that line of thought on yglesias' page. But Steyn put it best. “Most terrorists are jokes until the bomb goes off.”.

    Most Americans can't see past step one. And even if they could they don't want to.

  5. Can we please put these guys into the category of inbred buck-toothed chinless pimple faced smelly racist bastards that still believe blacks should be in servitude? I've had it with our "politeness" and political correctness that refuses to call them what they are: weak minded, sadistic women beaters, child killers, and evil animals that have thrown "in" with one of many men that used religion to gain personal power, wealth, and unlimited sexual partners. The guy they have "thrown in with" just happened to be a pedophile and murdered people by cutting their heads off that believed all infidels should be slaughtered if they refused to be enslaved. What evidence in nature, what example in all of life and how it has evolved and survived could possibly lead a bunch of people to believe that this is even remotely what God wants? Are you kidding me? I can only find one entity, one common denominator, one re-occurring theme in the religions I've studied... Satan, the devil, Lucifer, whatever you want to call him... he's the only figure in most religions that would encourage this type of behavior. So if Satan does exist and has a religion... guess which one he's chosen to hijack and exploit. The one that thinks it's perfectly acceptable to beat and kill the most beautiful creatures on this planet... women. It's the religion that makes fathers kill their babies, forces women to hide the beautiful faces that God blessed them with while they're treated like slaves, makes communities murder their women, makes weak minded cowards kill innocent people, and makes it acceptable to purposely slaughter people that have done nothing to harm them. It's the religion that allows entire countries to keep their own citizens poor and enslaved in lands drenched in untapped resources and riches. It's the only religion that has to indoctrinate instead of teach, so that successive generations can be just as ignorant as they have been when it comes to the true reality of the world and can hate with the same passion as their predecessors and even ignore history and what has actually taken place. It's about time we threw a "life-line" to many people of that religion and stopped pussyfooting around when dealing with those that have hijacked it. They should be ridiculed, not pampered. Their pedophile sadistic slaughtering "prophet" should be exposed for what he was, not diefied and protected. Can you imagine a Christian or Jew killing people that printed a picture of Jesus Christ or Abraham? We WANT the world to know of these men, we're not trying to hide them. But then again they wouldn't be depicted cutting off the heads of those that disagreed with them or giving sermons on how to exterminate entire races of people that didn't share their views.

  6. This post has been linked for the HOT5 Daily 12/27/2009, at The Unreligious Right

  7. Hey, it would only have beeen a big deal if Matt was on that plane.

  8. The father, Alhaji Umaru Mutallab, allegedly told Nigerian newspaper This Day that he had informed both the U.S. Embassy and the Nigerian security services of his son's activities six months ago, the Post reported.

    Six months, not two years that this specific individual was a risk.

  9. Amen Dave B.

    I always ask the lefty politically correct islamist apologist doing their gold-medal routines in mental gymnastics to morally equivocate them...

    Why do you hate women and gays so much?

    Because they are usually the ones with the rainbow and NOW bumper stickers right next to their "COEXIST" one.

  10. Do these assclowns not understand the difference between being afraid and acknowledging a threat?

  11. And 3 days after the thwarted attack, it has come to light that the bomb was more lethal than first thought. I think Al'Queda is not funny if it is a joke.

  12. Haha, the Crotch Bomber.....I take it seriously but find it hilarious as well. The baddies really set them self up for this one.