The Morning Joe Rebuttal for January 4th, 2010
1) One of everyone’s favorite catch phrases as they try to tame over-reaction to terrorist activity is “we always seem to equip ourselves for the last event”. Everyone, myself included, has pressed that full body scans would’ve prevented the Detroit attack, as would some common sense and if the NCTC had done their job. But this prescription to put full body scanners everywhere now is not what my take was last week, and falls into that paradigm Katrina vanden Heuvel talked about today: it’s a mistake if it costs us any vigilance elsewhere or ceases any part of our critical thinking on the matter.
Al-Qaeda and whomever takes their place when we obliterate them over time, are nothing if not amorphous. In fact, Al-Qaeda is this year’s model of the Viet Cong. The absolute definition of this kind of adversary is test, probe, attack, scatter, repeat. We have no chance of creating a safety net that is impervious over time to this. Al-Qaeda listened with great interest today to the cast as they described full body scan as a potent solution to today’s airport security problem, tantamount to an end-all.
No, it was an end-next if it had been employed in 2003 instead of all of the silly pork barrel projects handed out in all 50 states under the banner of homeland security.
Now, Al-Qaeda would like for you to review the movie “Maria, Full Of Grace” as to what to expect from them should you lack vigilance in the coming decade. A full body scanner would not have picked that scenario up, but the common sense part, and the NCTC doing its fundamental duty, both, would represent opportunities still available.
2) The war in Afghanistan is taking a big hit as the world finally catches up with Barack Obama. I think it was on his radar that his enemies have moved on and that he is on a 100,000 troop cleanup mission to undo a terrible failure of the last administration. If he had advertised that the war wasn’t winnable at the announcement of his strategy, the reactionary forces in America would’ve skewered him and asked “then why invest any more blood or money at all”. This does not reconcile with President Obama’s mission to reform the reputation of the United States abroad. We have not only sacrificed our soldiers and a mountain of treasure, we have asked 60 other countries to do the same. If we pull a Baltimore Colts and leave in the dead of night on this fruitless mission, we will sacrifice our ability to build a coalition for the next and coming crisis, when it’s clear we will need it to be coalition based more than ever before.
By winding down and methodically doing all we can to pack out what we packed in with dignity and respect to the country we invaded, we will accomplish one thing, if not the main thing. The main thing got by us at Tora Bora, and it will not come back. The entrenched enemy is impenetrable for their invisibility and causing our vital opposing apparatus catastrophic setback, as defined by the massacre of an elite collection of CIA experts in Khost last month.
And now we know we need these people and can’t afford to lose any more of them before we refine our deployment to reflect an enemy that has metastasized into Yemen, Somalia, Sudan, Europe, Malaysia and Detroit.
3) I was very amused by the right defining it’s 2010 national platform as including it’s long held claim of national security as their exclusive provincial anchor. To my eyes this is done while having a record of dismantling that same security to the extent we find ourselves today. That Dick Cheney talks of the war which he has led us into a loss on as a “love it or leave it” mantra is so useful for it catalogs his myopia as itemized selling points:
Fight them there so we don’t have to fight them here?
We are at war, but wait, we invaded both spots?
We will hunt the people down who did this to us? Who is hunting who?
Obama is making America less safe, well you’re correct there because he has to mop up the abhorrent mess you left, leaving us vulnerable until a majority of the world doesn’t hold us in a forked tongue regard.
Yea, good luck politicizing security as one of your key national issues guiding Republican candidates in 2010. I would like to hear more.
4) I can already hear the Joe Scarborough response asking for accountability and reversal of the use of American courts for foreign terrorists, the use of American prisons for foreign terrorists, the closing of Guantanamo in the wake of new fronts in the terror war developing. ‘And wasn’t that short sighted of the Democrats?’ I can hear him say it.
Maybe, but if we paint the best possible picture on our actions, do we leave ourselves more or less options than the famous Cheney line that you quoted today “we will have to do more hard work in the shadows with unsavory people”. Justice out in the open as a carrot and the shadows as a stick, or the hopelessness of the shadows only as a motivating force for Al-Qaeda’s next recruiting poster?
I await your decision.
5) My apologies for using a double entendre involving Mika for a title that might have led to the reader thinking I was going to do a book review or talk about their interview with her about the “All Thing At Once” release. Good luck with that.
That’s all for today, see you tomorrow.