From the moment Umar Farouk Abdul Mutallab’s pantsload of PETN failed to detonate properly — which may mean the young Nigerian will have to sing soprano when he finally joins the heavenly choir — government officials and the media were united in their insistence that Mr. Mutallab’s attempt to bring down Flight 253 on Christmas Day was an “isolated incident”.
It was hard do deny that this was a terrorist attack — even we, the great unwashed out here in Bubbaland, would have seen through that dodge — but every talking head on TV avoided using the “I”-word. Despite the avowed connection to Al Qaeda and Anwar al-Awlaki, the young man was diagnosed as “isolated”, and may in fact have been a mental case who needed to be in an isolation ward.
That’s our story, and we’re sticking to it. Especially our Messiah-in-Chief, who stayed in the surf ’n’ sun in Hawaii during the whole crisis and let his minions handle such ephemeral trivia as terrorist attacks on airliners.
Until today, that is. Suddenly Barack Hussain Obama refers to the “plotters” — plural! — who tried to blow up the Northwest Airlines plane on Christmas. Is this an acknowledgement that there was another suspect arrested at the airport after landing? Or that a nattily-dressed accomplice was observed at Schiphol? Or that another passenger is alleged to have videotaped the entire incident on the plane?
According to CNN:
Obama promises justice for Christmas terror plotters
(CNN) — President Obama pledged Saturday that the United States will hold accountable all of the individuals involved in the failed Christmas Day terrorist attack aboard a U.S.-bound jetliner.
He also highlighted his administration’s attempts to crack down on extremist enclaves in Yemen and reiterated his longstanding promise to “disrupt, dismantle and defeat” al Qaeda.
“All those involved in the attempted act of terrorism on Christmas must know you, too, will be held to account,” Obama said in his weekly address.
So terrorism — not “human-engendered misfortunes”, or whatever the currently preferred circumlocution is — has appeared in the president’s talking points. Notice, however, that Mr. Obama manages to avoid mentioning Islam or jihad or anything else that might explain what causes such unfortunate man-made incidents.
There are “extremists”, and they are “violent”, and full of “hatred”. But why? Well, because… Just because! Stop asking so many tomfool questions and get back to your daily bowl of Hope and Change!
Sometimes there aren’t any explanations for the bad things that happen to good people. They’re like tornados or meteor strikes — they just happen:
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“Our nation is at war against a far-reaching network of violence and hatred, and … we will do whatever it takes to defeat them and defend our country.”
Some Republicans have criticized Obama for not responding more aggressively to a botched December 25 attempt to blow up a Northwest Airlines passenger jet en route from Amsterdam, Netherlands, to Detroit, Michigan.
Umar Farouk AbdulMutallab, a Nigerian national, is accused of trying to ignite explosives smuggled aboard the plane in his underwear. Obama confirmed Saturday that AbdulMutallab, 23, recently traveled to Yemen and “it appears that he joined an affiliate of al Qaeda.”
The group “al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula” apparently trained AbdulMutallab, “equipped him with … explosives and directed him to attack that plane headed for America,” Obama said.
“This is not the first time this group has targeted us,” Obama said. “They have bombed Yemeni government facilities and Western hotels, restaurants and embassies — including our embassy in 2008.
Here’s my favorite part: we’re going to dump more boatloads of cash onto the Yemeni government to help it fight “terrorism”. This is the same government that has been so feckless and corrupt and terror-enabling since long before the Cole bombing, and that shows no signs of changing. But now Yemen is going to get its own little stimulus package, courtesy of the United States taxpayer:
“I’ve made it a priority to strengthen our partnership with the Yemeni government — training and equipping their security forces, sharing intelligence and working with them to strike al Qaeda terrorists,” he said.
You can see why Obama has emerged from his customary fog of denial and indifference about our national security — it’s become obvious that this particular incident has the potential to do actual serious damage to the political prospects of the Democrats:
Obama spoke with Homeland Security Assistant John Brennan on Thursday to review preliminary assessments of the federal government’s inability to prevent the Christmas Day attack.
AbdulMutallab had a valid, two-year, multiple-entry visa into the United States, despite the fact that his father had twice spoken to at least one representative of the CIA at the U.S. Embassy in Nigeria about his son’s increasingly extremist views.
A report detailing that information was prepared but not circulated outside the agency, a reliable source told CNN. Had that information been shared, AbdulMutallab might have been denied access to the flight, the source said.
The State Department announced Thursday it was directing American embassies around the world to include information on whether a person has a U.S. visa when they send special cables to Washington containing information on potentially suspicious individuals.
President Obama is taking great pains to emphasize that his administration is now, forcefully and with great determination, shutting the barn door.
Next step: the formation of a new bipartisan federal body, The Commission to Investigate the Causes of Equine Larceny.
Within a year or eighteen months the commission will announce its findings, but I’m willing to go out on a limb right now and make a prediction: The absence of the horse will be the fault of George W. Bush.