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Items are posted in chronological order or order of order of discovery.

Obama's Greatest Attribute -- Arrogance
Obama said the Bush administration’s announcement it was bringing some U.S. troops home fell short, calling it a "modest" step that indicated no real change in policy.

"At this point what it appears is the next president will inherit a status quo that is still unstable, Obama told reporters at a high school outside Dayton.  "And what’s going to be required is a comprehensive strategy, and that’s what I’ve been offering for the last two years...."

Mind you, Commander-in Chief Obama has never even been a boy scout, but now he's second-guessing the combined wisdom of the Department of Defense, the Pentagon, the Joint Chiefs, Central Command, the Presidents National Defense Team and the real Commander-in-Chief.
What More Do You Need To Know?
Abe Greenwald says, "Successful politicians aren’t just good at what they do; they’re lucky."  Obama’s being on a Hawaii vacation when Russia invades Georgia is a stroke of luck for John McCain.  (Calm down, calm down. I’m not saying that Russia invading Georgia is lucky for anyone.  It’s the timing of Obama’s trip that’s fortuitous for the McCain camp.)  For starters, it creates an (undeserved) correlation between global crisis and a lounging Obama. This dovetails exquisitely with McCain’s recent push to discredit Obama as a serious statesman. Also, the timing simply allows McCain to be the the most prepared with a comment, and McCain has capitalized on this opportunity. Here’s a brief statement from the Senator:

"Russia should immediately and unconditionally cease its military operations and withdraw all forces from sovereign Georgian territory.  What is most critical now is to avoid further confrontation between Russian and Georgian military forces.  The consequences of Euro-Atlantic stability and security are grave.  The government of Georgia has called for a cease fire and for a resumption of direct talks on South Ossetia with international mediators.  The U.S. should immediately convene an emergency session of the United Nations Security Council to call on Russia to reverse course.  The U.S. should immediately work with the E.U. and the OSCE to put diplomatic pressure on Russia to reverse this perilous course that it has chosen."

As that concise and specific statement demonstrates, successful politicians aren’t just lucky either.  They’re informed and resolute.  When the world goes kablooey, as it does from time to time, the difference between gibberish about world citizenship and the "consequences of Euro-Atlantic stability and security" comes into sharp focus.  Here is the vague hash Obama has come up with in response to Russian aggression:

"I strongly condemn the outbreak of violence in Georgia, and urge an immediate end to armed conflict.  Now is the time for Georgia and Russia to show restraint, and to avoid an escalation to full-scale war.  Georgia’s territorial integrity must be respected."

Obama called for direct talks among all sides and said the United States, U.N. Security Council and other parties should try to help bring about a peaceful resolution.

Forget all the ads, the videos, the talking points, and the accusations.  Here’s what it comes down to: In a geopolitical crisis, you have one candidate with a handle on the specific players and their intentions, and ideas on specific ways to move forward: then you have another candidate who says parties "should try to help bring about a peaceful resolution."  There’s your choice.
On Friday the Obama campaign issued a pathetic statement "strongly condemn[ing] the outbreak of violence in Georgia."  Strongly!  Obama found no reason to distinguish between Russia and Georgia in strongly condemning the outbreak of violence.  Or perhaps he found it too difficult to do so.

Obama has apparently continued to deliberate on the subject.  Given some more time to think about it, one can infer from this Reuters story, Obama has made a big decision.  Obama has decided that it's better to sound like John McCain.
Barack Obama without a teleprompter is an accident waiting to happen.  Sometimes he reveals his ignorance of history, sometimes he stumbles incoherently, and sometimes he blurts out what he really believes.

That's what happened today when Obama tried to talk about Georgia, a topic that has embarrassed him more than once already, beginning when, in the first hours after the invasion, he parroted the Russian line, by equating Russia's invasion of Georgia with our toppling of Saddam Hussein.

More . . .
No Nukes
Obama told an audience at Purdue University that, his administration would rid the world of nuclear weapons. The problem is, he wants to start in America.

Obama's plan to disarm America  (01:35)

While Obama proceeds with his plan to disarm America and neuter its military, he has a plan to establish his own private, civilian security force.

Master Of The Universe
Kristinn, at FreeRepublic.com, observes that Barack Obama and his team agree: At 46 years old, with no military service or foreign policy experience, having only spent three years as a United States senator, he is master of the universe.

Susan Rice, Obama's senior foreign policy advisor, informed the German news magazine Der Spiegel in an interview published today that her candidate "bows to nobody in understanding this world."

Rice prefaced this conceit by relating his world travels: "Senator Obama has travelled to Europe, Africa, the Middle East and South Asia many times before. He lived in Asia."

This evening ABC News Nightline will broadcast an interview with Obama conducted after he met with Iraqi Prime Minister Maliki and Gen. Petraeus today in Iraq.

Obama's arrogance shone through as he dismissed Petraeus' concerns about Obama's plans for Iraq:

"My job is to think about the national security interests as a whole and to weigh and balance risks in Afghanistan and Iraq.  Their job is just to get the job done here, and I completely understand that."

Obama, in his arrogance, failed to recognize that Petraeus, having recently been promoted to head up Centcom, which oversees both Iraq and Afghanistan, would also be looking at Iraq from the same perspective.

Obama also made clear he worked to undermine President Bush's negotiations with the Maliki government on the new status of forces agreement:

"I made very clear to him that we have one president at a time.  And it is the job of the Bush administration to work with [the] Iraqi government.  I am a United States senator, I can present my views as a candidate and I can present my views as a senator who believes that we can't bind the next president to an agreement that involves us committing troops or budget."

While Obama has not been elected yet, he and his team are acting like it is all over but the swearing in ceremony.

His presidential-style rally being held in Berlin later this week is one more example of the self-crowning of Obama.

Many an arrogant man who "bowed to nobody in their understanding of this world" have found themselves to be proven disastrously wrong.  Unfortunately the world usually pays a horrendous price for their arrogance.

Berlin is a good city for Obama to learn a valuable lesson or two.  However, the lessons of Berlin will likely be lost on him.

In the Der Speigel interview, Rice said of Obama: "He sees the world as more complex than simply good versus evil."

For more than half a century, Berlin was the front line in the battle between good and evil in the world -- from the rise and fall of Adolph Hitler through the rise and fall of the Berlin wall.

However, a man who has foretold his own coming ("we are the ones we have been waiting for") may be too far gone already.


At a morning background briefing, reporters parried with senior advisers on the characterization of Obama’s speech Thursday in Berlin as a campaign rally.  The outdoor speech at the Victory Column could draw thousands of people, similar to the size of Obama events in the United States.

"It is not going to be a political speech," said a senior foreign policy adviser, who spoke to reporters on background.  "When the president of the United States goes and gives a speech, it is not a political speech or a political rally.

"But he is not president of the United States," a reporter reminded the adviser.
Weakness Or Wisdom
Scott at PowerLine blog noted that Senator Obama's victory speech last night turned impressively to the general election campaign.  He all but clinched the Democratic nomination last night.  His speech sounded very much like a nomination acceptance speech.  I expect that the themes he sounded in his speech last night will reappear in his speech this summer in Denver.

Tom Maguire caught this passage:

I trust the American people to understand that it is not weakness, but wisdom to talk not just to our friends, but to our enemies, like Roosevelt did, and Kennedy did, and Truman did.
Maguire comments:
Obama's supporters are too young to know any of this, but Roosevelt led the United States in the war against Hitler; the Allied policy was unconditional surrender, so there was very little for Roosevelt and Hitler to discuss, and in fact, the two did not meet at all (but they did exchange correspondence before the war).

So my guess is that Obama is thinking of the Yalta Conference with Churchill and Stalin as talking to "our enemies," although of course we were still allied with the Soviet Union against Germany and Japan at that point.  Beyond that, is the Yalta Conference something Obama and his advisers view as a success worthy of emulation?  Puzzling.

And the United States has been talking with Iran right along in any event.  It's not for lack of communication that Iran has been conducting its war on the United States.

When Obama invoked past Democratic presidents in his speech last night, he started with Roosevelt but omitted Johnson, Carter, and Clinton.  Moving on from the Clinton era is part of the thesis of Obama's candidacy, so the omission is understandable.  Of past Democratic presidents, none has set a better example of the pitfalls of "talking to our enemies" than Jimmy Carter, both in his presidency and his travels since (though Carter probably would not acknowledge that his interlocutors are our enemies).

Obama may not be knowledgeable enough to know he doesn't want to emulate Roosevelt at Yalta.  Perhaps he believes that Roosevelt's name sanctions whatever action he can attach to it.  But Obama is smart enough to know that he doesn't want to profess a desire to emulate Jimmy Carter, if only on political grounds.  In substance, however, it seems to me that the president Obama most closely resembles on this point is Carter.
Frank Gaffney says Obama is working against our friends and for our foes.  He undermines our allies.  Emboldens our enemies.  Diminishes our country.  If anyone doubts these words summed up the Obama Doctrine, look at what Obama's team perpetrated last week in Honduras.

Assistant Secretary of State Thomas A. Shannon and the National Security Council's Senior Director for Western Hemisphere Affairs Dan Restrepo visited the Honduran capital, Tegucigalpa, on Wednesday to compel the country's recalcitrant democrats to make a deal with the man the latter had lawfully removed from the presidency on June 28.

It remains to be seen whether, pursuant to this deal, former President Manuel Zelaya will now be -- as he claims -- restored to power.  What is already unmistakable, though, is that it is better to be a foe of America than its friend.

The Obama administration has been on the wrong side in this affair from the moment the Honduran supreme court and congress acted as required by their nation's constitution in the face of Mr. Zelaya's effort to engineer an illegal second term.

Instead of standing with those who lawfully protected democracy, Obama and his minions immediately joined the region's authoritarians -- including notably Venezuela's Hugo Chavez and Cuba's Castro brothers -- in declaring Mr. Zelaya a victim of a "coup."

When the interim Honduran president, Roberto Micheletti, a member of Mr. Zelaya's own party, and his countrymen refused to reinstall the latter, Team Obama unleashed their full "soft power" arsenal upon America's impoverished ally.

Drawing upon an opinion authored by notorious transnationalist Harold Koh, the State Department's legal adviser, who found that the Hondurans' action was indeed a "coup" and must be reversed, the U.S. administration and/or its allies on Capitol Hill cut off most aid to Honduras; issued travel warnings to discourage tourism; blocked visas for officials of the interim government; tried to preclude fact-finding missions to Tegucigalpa by Republican legislators; and promoted the heavy-handed, pro-Zelaya "diplomacy" of the Organization of American States' leftist Chilean secretary general, Jose Miguel Insulza.

As the Honduran democrats refused to bend to such coercion, Mr. Obama's team dropped the big one: The United States would join the hemisphere's large and growing block of authoritarian nations in refusing to recognize the legitimacy of the election scheduled for the end of this month.

The effect of this power play would be to deny the people of Honduras the one peaceful means they would have to end the nightmare Mr. Zelaya unleashed.

Continue reading here . . .
Paul Mirengoff says the author, Scott Wilson, is pretty clear that Obama's approach to dealing with our allies and our adversaries has come up empty so far, whether in enlisting allies to help us in Afghanistan, persuading them to stimulate their economies, or causing Iran to change its behavior.  How to explain Obama's embrace of an approach that seems so ineffectual?

Wilson does so by claiming that Obama's approach to dealing with nations is an outgrowth of his days as a "community organizer."  He argues that Obama sees foreign countries, including our adversaries, as part of a community to be organized.  Wilson writes:

President Obama is applying the same tools to international diplomacy that he once used as a community organizer on Chicago's South Side, constructing appeals to shared interests and attempting to bring the government's conduct in line with its ideals. . . .

As a community organizer, Obama worked to identify the common interests of neighborhoods suffering through the economic aftermath of plant closings and of the politicians elected to represent them.  The role requires patience -- a word used consistently by his advisers in regard to reviving Middle East peace talks or reaching out to Iran -- and cultivating a lower profile than the other parties involved.

Whether Obama is actually cultivating a lower profile than the other parties involved in his foreign dealings -- and, indeed, whether he did so during his ascension through Chicago politics -- is open to question.  But let's put that issue to one side.  Does Obama really believe that the relationship between the U.S. and its allies to the likes of China, Russia, and Iran is comparable to the relationship between aggrieved constituents and their elected representatives?  If so, then he certainly is a fool.

But the evidence is that Obama believes no such thing.  Obama has not treated Israel and Honduras with the same "patience" he has treated our adversaries.  They have not been the beneficiaries of his "I come here to listen, not to lecture" approach to activism.

Thus, Obama's selective use of what Wilson calls a "cool, interests-based" approach to foreign policy should be viewed as a matter of ideology, not one of style.  After all, Jimmy Carter was never a community organizer; yet his approach to the world was an awful lot like Obama's.

In sum, the only relationship between Obama's diplomacy and his community activism is the left-wing ideology behind both.
Obama In Happy Fairyland
Mark Steyn says that in years to come -- assuming, for the purposes of argument, there are any years to come -- scholars will look back at Obama's Nuclear Security Summit and marvel.  For once, the cheap comparisons with 1930s appeasement barely suffice: To be sure, in 1933, the great powers were meeting in Geneva and holding utopian arms control talks even as Hitler was taking office in Berlin.  But it's difficult to imagine Neville Chamberlain in 1938 hosting a conference on the dangers of rearmament, and inviting America, France, Brazil, Liberia and Thailand, but not even mentioning Germany.

Yet that's what Obama just did: he held a nuclear gabfest in 2010, the biggest meeting of world leaders on American soil since the founding of the United Nations 65 years ago -- and Iran wasn't on the agenda.

Granted that almost all of Obama's exciting, innovative "change we can believe in" turns out to have been exhumed direct from the sclerotic '70s to stagger around like a rotting zombie in polyester bell-bottoms from some straight-to-video sequel, there's still something almost touchingly quaint in the notion of an international summit on nuclear "nonproliferation" in the 21st century.  Five years ago, when there was still a chance the world might prevent a nuclear Iran rather than pretending to "contain" it, I remember the bewildered look from a "nonproliferation expert" on a panel I was on after I suggested nonproliferation was a laughably obsolescent frame for this discussion.  You could just about enforce nonproliferation back in the Cold War, when the only official nuclear powers were the Big Five at the U.N. Security Council and the entry level for the nuclear club was extremely expensive and technologically sophisticated.  Now it's not.  If Pakistan and North Korea can be nuclear powers, who can't?  North Korea's population is starving.  Its gross domestic product (GDP) per capita is lower than Ghana's, lower than Zimbabwe's, lower than Mongolia's.  Which is to say its GDP is all but undetectable.

Yet it's a nuclear power.

Continue reading here . . .
Obama’s Wasteful Spending Trumps National Security
George Landrith says the Obama Administration has already slashed missile defense in Eastern Europe that would neutralize Iran's growing missile threat.  The Obama Administration has already slashed the Airborne Laser, which is a powerful defensive tool against potential hot spots like Iran and North Korea.

The Obama Administration's has killed a "next generation" bomber, the Air Force's F-22, is on the verge of ending the Marine Corps Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle, and appears ready to prematurely end production of the most advanced carrier-based fighter in the world, the Navy's F-18.

Meanwhile, these Obama "budget cutters" are intent on running record-setting trillion-dollar annual deficits for the next ten years, with no limits on government growth whatsoever -- except on our national defense.  Does this make sense to you?

The failure to continue production of the F-18 could result in a shortage of almost 200 F-18 Super Hornet fighter jets for our premier power projection platform -- the aircraft carrier.  Since the strike-fighter complement aboard an aircraft carrier is roughly 50 aircraft, those cuts could shut down four of our ten aircraft-carrier battle groups.

I've always been a budget hawk.  That has meant wanting the federal government to spend dramatically less.  And the Defense budget needs to be reviewed every year, just like everything else.

But spending cuts have to be smart.  Despite the obvious need to cut federal spending, we will spend hundreds of billions of dollars on so-called "stimulus" while slashing tens of billions on vital national security programs.  Why, precisely, does everything except defense spending count as "stimulus" with the Obama people?

Continue reading here . . .
Obama's National Security Strategy
Byron York says Obama's national security strategy is to be based on education, clean energy, and rights for terrorists.

Obama’s speech at West Point Saturday is the most sweeping statement yet of his plan to create a national security policy emphasizing education, clean energy, green jobs, anti-climate change measures, the granting of full American constitutional rights to accused terrorists, and "engagement" with America’s enemies.

Obama is set to release his first formal full-scale national security strategy in the coming week.  At West Point, he told the Class of 2010 that the United States must "see the horizon" beyond the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.  To reach that horizon, he explained, "we must pursue a strategy of national renewal and global leadership" and "build the sources of America’s strength and influence."

In Obama administration parlance, phrases like "national renewal" often mean far-reaching domestic programs, and at West Point Obama linked three domestic goals to national security.  First, there is education, so American children can "compete in an age where knowledge is capital, and the marketplace is global."  Second, there is clean energy, to "power new industry and unbound us from foreign oil and preserve our planet."  Third, there is scientific innovation that "unlocks wonders as unforeseen to us today as the microchip and the surface of the moon were a century ago."

As for granting full U.S. constitutional rights to accused terrorists, Obama said a "fundamental part" of American national security strategy will be the support of "universal rights" abroad, which begins with a scrupulous adherence to them at home.  "We will promote these values above all by living them," Obama said, "through our fidelity to the rule of law and our Constitution, even when it’s hard; even when we’re being attacked; even when we’re in the midst of war."

"We will commit ourselves," Obama told the West Point graduates, "to forever pursuing a more perfect union."  When Obama talks about "pursuing a more perfect union," it’s a good bet he is referring to big domestic programs.

Finally, there is diplomatic engagement, which Obama has stressed since the 2008 campaign.  The new engagement, perhaps best symbolized by the administration’s sputtering efforts to influence Iran’s nuclear intentions, will help the U.S. "shape an international order that can meet the challenges of our generation," Obama said. Strengthening old alliances and building "new partnerships" will help the U.S. create "stronger international standards and institutions."

There is some debate about how much of a change Obama’s speech, and the national security strategy it previews, represents.  The New York Times saw it as a major break with the policies of George W. Bush.  John Hinderaker of PowerLine read it as an indication of continuity with the recent past.  But there seems little doubt that it represents a significant change in emphasis from the Bush administration and one that sends a message to the world that Obama is dedicated to domestic concerns and the projection of soft power abroad.  Will our adversaries see that as a statement of strength?

The usurper, who refuses to enforce the immigration laws of the United States, has ther gall to say, "through our fidelity to the rule of law and our Constitution..." -- what a joke!
Obama's National Security Advisor Called A Disaster By Gates
Rick Moran says that with the departure of General Jones from the White House, America is losing a fine public servant and excellent military man.  One of the few in Washington who eschewed the limelight, Jones did his job fairly competently and with a minimum of self promotion.  Will we get that lucky with his replacement?

The man picked to be Obama's next national security advisor was sharply criticized by top officials in the administration, with the Secretary of Defense Gates saying he would be a "disaster" in the job.
According to the new book about the Obama administration's handling of Iraq and Afghanistan by Bob Woodward, Pentagon chief Robert Gates expressed deep reservations about Deputy National Security Advisor Tom Donilon, who has been tapped to be the successor to Gen. James Jones.

In the book "Obama's Wars," Woodward writes that, "Gates felt that Donilon did not understand the military or treat its senior leadership with sufficient respect."

"The secretary later told Jones that Donilon would be a ‘disaster' as Obama's national security adviser," Woodward wrote.

Jones -- a former Marine Corps Commandant who served as Obama's national security advisor since the first days of the administration -- also warned Woodward about Donilon's shortcomings, saying though he had "organizational skills," his deputy didn't know enough about the subjects on which he was advising Obama.

Donilon has never bothered to go to Iraq or Afghanistan, nor is he known for his breadth of knowledge with regard to other foreign policy issues.

Ed Lasky adds:

Hey it might have been worse -- the deputy NSC adviser, Ben Rhodes, was a frustrated fiction writer who morphed into the Foreign Policy speechwriter for the Obama campaign and then was promoted to be the deputy NSC adviser-with no, zero, military ,intelligence or diplomatic experience.  He also was involved in writing the Cairo speech.

Maybe we should count our blessings....

Thomas Lifson adds: Donilon was a lobbyist for Fannie Mae, and fought off regulatory reforms.  If he does for national security what he accomplished for the economy, we are doomed.

Related:  New Obama security adviser clashed with military
Obama Needs To Wake Up And Smell the Gunpowder
Ted Galen Carpenter says that while the Obama administration worries about security issues half way around the world in such places as Afghanistan, Iran, and North Korea, a serious problem is brewing right on our southern border.  Drug-related violence in Mexico has claimed some 29,000 lives since President Felipe Calderon declared war on the cartels four years ago.  The situation is now so bad that some analysts worry that Mexico could become a "failed state."

That outcome is a relatively unlikely, worst-case scenario, but the violence is already bad enough that it warrants far more attention from America’s leaders than it is receiving.  Yet when Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told the Council on Foreign Relations that Mexico’s violence was reaching the point of becoming an insurgency, Obama promptly disavowed her analysis.

But developments just in 2010 confirm that Clinton’s concerns are not exaggerated.  This year has marked the first appearance of car bombings in the conflict between Mexico’s security forces and the drug cartels.  Such an escalation suggests that the cartels may be moving beyond just trying to control the profitable trafficking routes into the United States and are now embarking on a terrorist campaign.  Other incidents reinforce that fear.  Previously, most victims in the drug violence were traffickers killed by rivals or security personnel who ran afoul of the cartels.  But over the past year there have been several attacks on birthday parties and other gatherings in which the dead appeared to be civilians who had no apparent connection to the drug trade.
In addition, the turmoil is spreading far beyond the usual danger zones in border cities such as Ciudad Juarez, Tijuana, and Nuevo Laredo.  Shootouts have occurred in Acapulco, Cancun, Cuernavaca and other prominent tourist destinations . Monterrey, which one business association in 2005 termed the most peaceful major city in all of Latin America, has been convulsed by turf fights between rival cartels.  The security environment in Monterrey has become so bad that the U.S. State Department instructed its diplomatic personnel in the consulate there to send their dependents out of the area.  American -- and even some Mexican -- business executives are doing the same with their families.

The overall pace and severity of the carnage is increasing as well. 2010 promises to set a new record for deaths -- breaking the record set just last year.  There have been several high-profile assassinations, including a dozen mayors and the leading candidate for governor in a northern Mexican state.

Continue reading here . . .
Call Him Irresponsible
Hot Air Pundit contends that this remark by Obama is one of the most irresponsible remarks ever heard from a president.

"It's not sufficient for the United States, or France or other members of the nuclear club simply to say all of you have to stop but we're not gonna do anything to change ourselves"

So we really can't tell Iran that they can't have Nuclear weapons if we're not gonna change ourselves?  This coming from a sitting president?  In Obama's mind our possession of nuclear weapons is no different that a rogue regime having them.  He sees America as some imperial power that has to be cut down to size to match every other country.

I am unaware of the United States saying it will wipe another nation off the map like Iran has with Israel.  And just exactly how do you make nuclear weapons obsolete?  Will North Korea suddenly give up their nukes in response to another meaningless U.N. resolution?  Did resolutions work against Saddam Hussein?  This is what happens you elect a naive, inexperienced community organizer to the nations highest office.

One thing is absolutely sure about this guy, there's not a single solitary part of Barack Obama that sees America as a shining city on a hill.
Obama Traded Away Missile Shield For Russian Support On Iran
Poland's The News is reporting that Obama cancelled anti-missile shield plans in Poland and the Czech Republic to get Russia support for UN sanctions against Iran, documents made public by Wikileaks reveal.

The released documents also show that out of the 251,287 cables planned for release by Wikileaks, 972 come from US embassies in Warsaw (970) and Krakow (2).  The most recent cables from Poland are dated February 2010 though their contents have not yet been revealed.

One of the cables from Poland is labelled "top secret," 30 "secret," nine "confidential," 556 "sensitive," 204 "for official use only" and 170 "not classified as confidential."

Earlier, US diplomats had informed Poland’s Foreign Ministry that documents were to be released by Wikileaks which could potentially compromise confidentiality between the two sides.

The whistle blowing web site, publishing diplomatic cables and other documents via The New York Times, the Guardian (UK) and other media outlets, show that George Bush’s anti-missile shield plan to station 10 interceptor rockets in Poland not far from the Kaliningrad (Russia) border and a radar system in the Czech Republic was seen as an obstacle by Obama in getting tougher sanctions against Iran’s nuclear ambitions.

The diplomatic cables show that the US believes that Iran has already received missiles from North Korea which could threaten western Europe.

The released documents show that Russia had intensified its campaign against the anti-missile shield in 2009, with Moscow believing the system would be directed at Poland's immediate east and not Iran.

Obama cancelled the anti-missile system in September.
Three Blind Mice
Now doesn't this make you feel safe and secure?

US Director of National Intelligence James Clapper was asked about the recent London terror arrests by ABC News interviewer Diane Sawyer:

"First of all, London. How serious is it? Any implication that it was coming here?"

After a long pause, Clapper replied:


The U. S. Director of National Intelligence, , whose office has claimed his "knowledge of the threat streams in Europe is profound and multi-dimensional," was completely unaware that British police have arrested 12 men, aged 17-28, from London, Cardiff, and Stoke-on-Trent, said to be involved in a plot to bomb "unspecified targets" in the U.K., "inspired by Al Qaeda."  This appears the largest arrest for terrorism in Britain since April 2009.

Sawyer brought up Clapper's apparent ignorance of the developments later in the interview, saying, "I was a little surprised you didn't know about London," she said.

"Oh, I'm sorry, I didn't," Clapper replied.

You'll notice how John Brennan, he of passport scrubbing fame, tries to cover for the clueless Clapper.

Yesterday, we heard from Janet Napolitano, who said, in the same interview, "What I say to the American people is that… thousands of people are working 24/7, 364 days a year to keep the American people safe."

364 days a year?  Let's hope al-Qaeda doesn't know which day Homeland Security is closed.
Stupidity, Intelligence, and Egypt
Jed Babbin says if you want to understand why our power to influence world events is a shambles, you need only to listen to what came out of the White House, the CIA and the Director of National Intelligence last week in response to the crisis in Egypt.

Start with a point so basic that even liberals should agree with it: if you lack timely, accurate and expertly-analyzed intelligence on other peoples and nations, the making of foreign policy is reduced to mere guesswork.  American policymakers have -- roughly since Jimmy Carter and his CIA director, Stansfield Turner, decided that we really don't need spies -- been reduced to guessing what the world is doing.

With Obama in charge of the guesswork, American policy is apparently being made in disregard of what little intelligence there is.  As I wrote on Egypt last week, Obama sided with the protesters, then with Mubarak and then again with the protesters who he assumed were aiming to establish a democratic government.

Throughout the crisis, Obama was content to dramatize his pretentiousness, doing his best to imply broadly that we had an influence on the outcome which we clearly do not.  He assumed, without evidence, that the protesters uniformly demanded democracy and that if Mubarak fell, democracy would result.  In his statement last Friday, Obama was taking credit for Mubarak's fall and urging the Egyptian military to accomplish a quick transition to democracy.

In response, the Egyptian junta suspended the nation's constitution and dissolved its parliament.  It is now reportedly forcing protesters to leave Cairo's Tahrir Square.

Too much has been made of CIA Director Leon Panetta's prediction to a congressional committee that Mubarak would be out of office on Thursday night.  In the open hearing, Panetta was repeating what he'd observed on television.  If he had classified intelligence that indicated Mubarak's imminent departure, he couldn't have told the committee while the television cameras focused on him.

Panetta -- a partisan Democrat with no intelligence experience -- came into the CIA job at a time when the intelligence agency was under assault by the congressional Democrats who had followed Nancy Pelosi off the cliff in condemning CIA interrogations of terrorist prisoners.  To his credit, Panetta defended the spy agency as best he could.  His August 2009 op-ed in the Washington Post was unprecedented.  In it he condemned the "…climate of suspicion and partisanship on Capitol Hill that our intelligence officers -- and our country -- would be better off without."

Panetta and Obama -- and Bush before them -- did nothing to reform our intelligence apparatus to produce better results.  That is one unspoken problem.  Another is the politicization of our intelligence agencies, especially the CIA.

Richard Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld were wrongfully accused of trying to politicize intelligence to justify the Iraq war.  In fact, they were trying to push CIA analysts to justify their conclusions.  What they got, instead, was George Tenet's statement that the case on Iraqi weapons of mass destruction was a "slam dunk."

And throughout the Bush era, the CIA was engaged in politically motivated leaks.  Remember Joe Wilson's trip to Niger?  As I wrote here in November 2005, Wilson's mission was a CIA setup to disprove President Bush's justification for the Iraq war.  And it was only the most publicized CIA attempt to discredit Bush, along with the long series of leaks.

Last week, Obama's Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper's statement:

"The term Muslim Brotherhood is an umbrella term for a variety of movements.  In the case of Egypt, a very heterogeneous group, largely secular, which has eschewed violence and has decried al-Qaeda as a perversion of Islam."

...substantially worsened the politicization of our intelligence community.

Continue reading here . . .
FBI:  100 Percent Chance Of WMD Attack
Yesterday, we leaned that weapons of "mass effect" have been found in an American port.  Today, Dr. Vahid Majidi, the FBI’s assistant director in charge of the FBI’s Weapons of Mass Destruction Directorate says the probability that the U.S. will be hit with a weapons of mass destruction attack at some point is 100 percent,

Such an attack could be launched by foreign terrorists, lone wolves who are terrorists, or even by criminal elements, Majidi says.  It would most likely employ chemical, biological, or radiological weapons rather than a nuclear device.

As it is, Majidi says, American intelligence picks up hundreds of reports each year of foreign terrorists obtaining WMD.  When American forces invaded Afghanistan, they found that al-Qaida was working on what Majidi calls a "nascent" weapons of mass destruction effort involving chemical and biological weapons.

In every other case so far, the reports of foreign terrorists obtaining WMD have turned out to be unfounded (what about the one at the link?).  However, Majidi’s directorate within the FBI investigates more than a dozen cases in the U.S. each year where there was intent to use WMD.

For example, in 2008, the FBI arrested Roger Bergendorff, who was found to have ricin and anarchist literature.  Ricin kills cells by inhibiting protein synthesis.  Within several days, the liver, spleen, and kidneys of a person who inhales or ingests ricin stop working, resulting in death.

"The notion of probability of a WMD attack being low or high is a moot point because we know the probability is 100 percent," Majidi says.  "We’ve seen this in the past, and we will see it in the future.  There is going to be an attack using chemical, biological or radiological material."

Ronald Kessler says even a WMD attack that does not kill a great number of people would have a crushing psychological impact.

"A singular lone wolf individual can do things in the dark of the night with access to a laboratory with low quantities of material and could hurt a few people but create a devastating effect on the American psyche," Majidi says.

Continue reading here . . .
Obama Making America Less Safe
Barack Obama's ignorance of America and its role in the world is making the United States less safe and that should bar him from a second term in office, former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum tells Newsmax.TV.

In an interview at the NRA’s 140th Annual Meeting in Pittsburgh, Santorum gave a laundry list of ills Obama’s policies have inflicted on the country including higher rates of inflation, rising gas prices and an energy policy that "says let's focus on windmills not drilling for oil and gas."

"We have a president who has created a vacuum, (who) suggests that we have to lead from behind -- that's the most recent word out of the White House.  What superpower leads from behind?  I mean if it’s worth leading you get out in front and you show people it’s worth leading and making sacrifices for."

"This president doesn’t understand …what makes this country great, doesn’t understand our role in the world and it is making America less safe, making our economy unstable and putting our fiscal condition in obviously in a very precarious position."


On what is to likely to be a major campaign issue, Santorum said he believes "we need to raise the debt ceiling, but we need to do some things to show that this is not going to be an ever-worsening problem."  He said he has been in too many negotiations that end with promises of future cuts.

"No more of those games," he said.  "The game has to be now.  We are going to cut now, we are going to change things now, we are going to put things in place to bend that cost curve of the federal government to restrain its encroachment on people’s lives.  And if we don’t do that I would not vote for a debt ceiling increase."
Obama's Missile Secrets Betrayal
Jack Rudd says that in the first article below, former CIA Director James Woolsey alerts us to a major betrayal by the Obama administration regarding missile defense.  Sarah Palin comments in the second.

You ask why?  Well, she has a history of involvement in national security issues and she has long advocated a strong missile defense.  The National Guard troops who operate our Ground-Based Midcourse Defense (GMD) missile defense ground station and interceptors in Alaska reported to her when she was governor. 

This could well be a legitimate impeachable offense.

Giving Away The Farm

By R. James Woolsey and Rebeccah Heinrichs, June 7, 2011

"... Congress discovered that the administration has been working on a missile defense agreement with the Russians and that Moscow had requested that the United States share with it loads of sensitive U.S. missile defense technology and operational authority as part of that deal.  In the administration's eagerness to please the Kremlin, it may just oblige.

"The House of Representatives has given a firm 'no' to that prospect through its decision to ignore Obama's veto threat and approve the defense appropriations bill by a veto-proof vote of 322 to 96.  The Senate may act similarly.  On April 14, 39 Republican senators sent a letter to the president expressing their concern over the administration's consideration of granting to the Russians sensitive U.S. technology and 'red button' authority to prevent the interception of incoming missiles headed for U.S. troops or allies.  This would allow Russia to deny the United States the ability to intercept a missile Washington had determined to be a threat."

In this article Sarah Palin reacts with astonishment.

Another "WTF" Obama Foreign Policy Moment*

by Sarah Palin, June 9, 2011 at 4:16am

*As many readers have pointed out "WTF" is for "Winning The Future," Obama's re-election campaign slogan

Obama wants to give Russia our missile defense secrets because he believes that we can buy their friendship and cooperation with this taxpayer-funded gift.  But giving military secrets and technologies to a rival or competitor like Russia is just plain dumb.  You can't buy off Russia.  And giving them advanced military technology will not create stability.  What happens if Russia gives this technology (or sells it!) to other countries like Iran or China?  After all, as Woolsey points out, Russia helped Iran with its missile and nuclear programs.  Or what happens if an even more hardline leader comes to power in the Kremlin?

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