Archive for the ‘al-Qaeda’ Category

Muslim Terrorists Offer To Lay Down Their Arms, Renounce Terrorism, To Thank Obama For Closing Gitmo

May 22, 2009

We’ll be waitning to see that headline.  Forever.

Yesterday President Obama said (again):

“Instead of serving as a tool to counter-terrorism, Guantanamo became a symbol that helped al Qaeda recruit terrorists to its cause. Indeed, the existence of Guantanamo likely created more terrorists around the world than it ever detained.”

Former Vice President Cheney said:

“Another term out there that slipped into the discussion is the notion that American interrogation practices were a “recruitment tool” for the enemy. On this theory, by the tough questioning of killers, we have supposedly fallen short of our own values. This recruitment-tool theory has become something of a mantra lately, including from the President himself. And after a familiar fashion, it excuses the violent and blames America for the evil that others do. It’s another version of that same old refrain from the Left, “We brought it on ourselves.”

If terrorists are delighted that Gitmo is closing it will be because they are now going to live on U.S. soil with the hope of meeting even more people they can recruit to their cause, as Michelle Malkin points out….

http://michellemalkin.com/200
9/05/22/the-jihadi-virus-in-our-jails/

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Pelosi Knocked Off Her Game: Tortureous Explanations Punishes the Facts

May 12, 2009

For Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), it’s a new week of old questions: What did she know about harsh Bush administration interrogation techniques, and when did she know it?

Usually a master of message discipline, Pelosi has been thrown off balance by a mounting firestorm over whether she or her staff learned six years ago that intelligence officials were using extreme tactics such as waterboarding.

By Tory Newmyer and Steven T. Dennis
Roll Call Staff

For weeks, the Speaker has insisted she didn’t, though a declassified report last week suggested otherwise.

And Republicans, sensing a rare opportunity, are moving to keep the heat on the discrepancy over competing versions of what precisely was disclosed at the classified briefings in question. The GOP is demanding the CIA release more documents showing exactly what Pelosi was told in 2002, as they continue a wider offensive targeting Democrats on security issues like the planned closure of the Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, detainee prison.

With a series of torture investigations already in the works, Attorney General Eric Holder set to appear Thursday before the House Judiciary Committee and the likelihood of either a series of Congressional hearings or a “truth commission,” the issue simply isn’t going away.

Pelosi’s camp is braced for the buzz saw awaiting the Speaker upon her return today from a surprise trip to Iraq. Their strategy: stick to their script and blast the GOP attacks as a politically motivated attempt to distract from abuses sanctioned by the Bush administration.

For Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), it’s a new week of old questions: What did she know about harsh Bush administration interrogation techniques, and when did she know it?

Usually a master of message discipline, Pelosi has been thrown off balance by a mounting firestorm over whether she or her staff learned six years ago that intelligence officials were using extreme tactics such as waterboarding.

For weeks, the Speaker has insisted she didn’t, though a declassified report last week suggested otherwise.

And Republicans, sensing a rare opportunity, are moving to keep the heat on the discrepancy over competing versions of what precisely was disclosed at the classified briefings in question. The GOP is demanding the CIA release more documents showing exactly what Pelosi was told in 2002, as they continue a wider offensive targeting Democrats on security issues like the planned closure of the Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, detainee prison.

With a series of torture investigations already in the works, Attorney General Eric Holder set to appear Thursday before the House Judiciary Committee and the likelihood of either a series of Congressional hearings or a “truth commission,” the issue simply isn’t going away.

Pelosi’s camp is braced for the buzz saw awaiting the Speaker upon her return today from a surprise trip to Iraq. Their strategy: stick to their script and blast the GOP attacks as a politically motivated attempt to distract from abuses sanctioned by the Bush administration.

Read the rest:
http://www.rollcall.com/issues/54_129
/news/34823-1.html?type=printer_friendly

For Obama, Gitmo Has Become a Tar Baby of His Own Making

May 9, 2009

On Wednesday, April 29, in an East Room news conference, President Barack Obama claimed, “We have rejected the false choice between our security and our ideals by closing the detention center at Guantanamo Bay.” That simply isn’t true. What he did do was issue an executive order directing the facility be closed by January 2010 — more than seven months from now. Unfortunately, Mr. Obama — in his naive exuberance to fulfill a pledge that had earned standing ovations and rave reviews from the mainstream media during the presidential campaign — really didn’t have a plan. That’s coming back to haunt him.

On Wednesday, while Mr. Obama was holding a photo op at the White House with Afghan President Hamid Karzai and Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari, Rep. David Obey, D-Wis., chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, quietly deleted funds for closing Gitmo from the fiscal year 2009 supplemental spending bill. The O-Team had requested $80 million for this fiscal year and an equal amount for next year to cover the expense of shuttering the detention facility and relocating the terrorists housed there. Obey, one of the most powerful Democrats on Capitol Hill, justified eliminating the FY ’09 funds by noting, “I personally favor what the administration is talking about doing, but so far as we can tell, there is yet no concrete program for that.” Just in case the nice folks at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. didn’t get the message, Obey added, “While I don’t mind defending a concrete program, I’m not much interested in wasting my energy defending a theoretical program.”

On Wednesday, April 29, in an East Room news conference, President Barack Obama claimed, “We have rejected the false choice between our security and our ideals by closing the detention center at Guantanamo Bay.” That simply isn’t true. What he did do was issue an executive order directing the facility be closed by January 2010 — more than seven months from now. Unfortunately, Mr. Obama — in his naive exuberance to fulfill a pledge that had earned standing ovations and rave reviews from the mainstream media during the presidential campaign — really didn’t have a plan. That’s coming back to haunt him.

On Wednesday, while Mr. Obama was holding a photo op at the White House with Afghan President Hamid Karzai and Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari, Rep. David Obey, D-Wis., chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, quietly deleted funds for closing Gitmo from the fiscal year 2009 supplemental spending bill. The O-Team had requested $80 million for this fiscal year and an equal amount for next year to cover the expense of shuttering the detention facility and relocating the terrorists housed there. Obey, one of the most powerful Democrats on Capitol Hill, justified eliminating the FY ’09 funds by noting, “I personally favor what the administration is talking about doing, but so far as we can tell, there is yet no concrete program for that.” Just in case the nice folks at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. didn’t get the message, Obey added, “While I don’t mind defending a concrete program, I’m not much interested in wasting my energy defending a theoretical program.”

Read the rest from Oliver North:
http://www.realclearpolitics.com/
articles/2009/05/09/gitmo_quag
mire_96416.html

US almost doubles military aid to Pakistan

May 8, 2009

The United States has earmarked $700 million in its budget for the next fiscal year for training and equipment to improve Pakistan’s counterinsurgency capability.

By Anwar Iqbal
Dawn Newspaper, Pakistan

This is a major increase from the $400 million set aside for this purpose in the current fiscal year which expires on Sept. 30.

This marks the first time since 2003 that the Afghan war funding surpassed the outlay for Iraq. The Pentagon is seeking $130 billion in war funds for 2010, including $65 billion for Afghanistan and $61 billion for Iraq. For 2009, the Pentagon had request $87 billion for Iraq and $47 billion for Afghanistan.

The move demonstrates a shift in US priorities as the Obama administration increases its focus on fighting the militants it holds responsible for planning and executing the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.

The proposed fund for Afghanistan covers the deployment of 21,000 additional US troops this year, raising the total to 68,000. More funds would be required if President Obama decides to meet the request of US commanders for 10,000 more troops next year.

The Pentagon’s $534 billion base budget is $21 billion, or four per cent, larger than last year’s. It includes key initiatives to reshape the US military to fight insurgencies across the world.

Major spending increases include $2 billion on intelligence and reconnaissance, $500 million to field and maintain helicopters, and funds to add 2,400 personnel to Special Operations Forces in 2010 as well as aircraft to support them. More will be spent on some modern weapons systems, with an increase in the purchase of littoral combat ships and the ‘fifth generation’ F-35 fighter jets.

The 2010 Pentagon eliminates $8.8 billion in weapons programmes that were in the 2009 budget. It would halt the programme for the F-22 fighter jet after 187 are manufactured.

Other major cuts include ending the $13 billion presidential helicopter programme, which has more than doubled in cost; the $19 billion transformational satellite programme; and the Air Force combat search-and-rescue helicopter programme, as well as cutting $1.2 billion from missile defence.

http://hotair.com/archives/20
09/05/08/pakistan-goes-to-war/

In Pakistan: Some Hope; But Much To Doubt

Self Defeating U.S. War Strategy

May 8, 2009

THE most effective weapon terrorists have found to wield against us isn’t the headline-grabbing suicide bomber or even the deadly roadside bomb, the IED.

Such weapons can harm us, but they can’t stop us. Terror’s super-weapon is the lie.

Lying about civilian casualties is the one sure way to impede or even halt US (or Israeli) operations, to force such tight restrictions on our troops that they can’t win.

The casualty con’s so effective as both propaganda and tactic that terrorists everywhere have adopted the technique. It’s been so successful that our enemies long ago transitioned to the next phase: creating civilian casualties and blaming us.

It works. The media love the charge. Our troops and pilots are always guilty — even if proven innocent. Because so many on the left want us to be guilty.

Few journalists bother to investigate. If the Taliban, al Qaeda, Hezbollah or Hamas says it, it must be so. In Media Wonderland, terrorists never lie. Now every successful strike on a Taliban target generates the instant claim that the dead were all civilians.

And it isn’t just the media who back the Taliban. The Obama administration — a case study in instant foreign-policy ineptitude — signs up, too.

This week, Taliban terrorists publicly beheaded three civilians in Afghanistan’s Farah province, then herded women and children into compounds from which they fought government forces and US advisers.

With a vicious ground battle under way, the Talibs knew attack aircraft would appear. According to military sources, they set up the target. And, just in case, they slaughtered those women and children with grenades before any aircraft appeared. The entire massacre was a planned media event.

By Ralph Peters
The New York Post

Read the rest:
http://www.nypost.com/seven/05082009/
postopinion/opedcolumnists/the_casu
alty_con_168138.htm

Obama scrambles against militant threat in Afghanistan, Pakistan

May 6, 2009

The fuse that could ignite an explosion of Islamic militancy in Afghanistan and Pakistan is burning so fast that the Obama administration is scrambling to keep pace.

As Pakistan’s army finally opened a belated offensive against the advance of extremist Taliban fighters, Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari and his key security ministers huddled Wednesday with their Afghan and U.S. counterparts in all-day meetings in Washington.

By Steven R. Hurst
Associated Press

Afghan President Hamid Karzai started the day on a solemn note, acknowledging Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton‘s expressions of regret for the deaths of dozens of Afghan civilians killed during Monday’s battle between U.S. forces and the Taliban.

President Barack Obama demanded the meetings as part of his complex, costly and far-reaching strategy for Afghanistan that now links success there with stability in neighboring Pakistan.

It’s a huge undertaking in distant lands where fiercely independent people have a long history of outlasting foreign militaries and refusing to change their ways. The Washington sessions represent an early test of whether a U.S. president at the start of the 21st century has sufficient leverage and power to succeed where great empires have failed.

The fuse that could ignite an explosion of Islamic militancy in Afghanistan and Pakistan is burning so fast that the Obama administration is scrambling to keep pace.

As Pakistan’s army finally opened a belated offensive against the advance of extremist Taliban fighters, Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari and his key security ministers huddled Wednesday with their Afghan and U.S. counterparts in all-day meetings in Washington.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai started the day on a solemn note, acknowledging Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton‘s expressions of regret for the deaths of dozens of Afghan civilians killed during Monday’s battle between U.S. forces and the Taliban.

President Barack Obama demanded the meetings as part of his complex, costly and far-reaching strategy for Afghanistan that now links success there with stability in neighboring Pakistan.

It’s a huge undertaking in distant lands where fiercely independent people have a long history of outlasting foreign militaries and refusing to change their ways. The Washington sessions represent an early test of whether a U.S. president at the start of the 21st century has sufficient leverage and power to succeed where great empires have failed.

Read the rest:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090506/ap_on_go_
pr_wh/us_us_afghanistan_pakistan_analysis;_ylt=A
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A2L3VzX3VzX2FmZ2hhbmlzdGFuX3Bha2lzd
GFuX2FuYWx5c2lzBGNwb3MDMgRwb3MD
NgRzZWMDeW5fdG9wX3N0b3J5BHNsawN
hbmFseXNpc29iYW0

The Truth Is: Team Obama and The National Media Have To Grow Up Fast

May 6, 2009

O.K. we’ve enjoyed the love fest and the photo ops of the “First 100 Days;” which is about as meaningful as “Cinco de Cuatro” or any Hallmark Moment.

Now there is real work to do and issues to face and some of us have serious doubt that the Obama Administration and the free press are up to the task.

Consider these few challenges on the president’s plate:

Today Barack Obama will meet with the presidents of Afghanistan and Pakistan to convince both that he needs them to play a greater role in fighting off al-Qaeda, the Taliban and other terrorists: even though the word “terrorist” is practically banned inside the Obama government.  Reuters reporter David Alexander wrote that “Obama will warn that al Qaeda and its Talibanallies pose an existential threat and press Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari and Afghan President Hamid Karzai to toughen their response.”

If the threat is existential, no warning from an outsider is required, right?  And if a threat is existential, the leaders of Pakistan and Afghanistan could better articulate how they planned to save their own skins without so many billions of U.S. dollars from us — not to mention the sweat and blood of our troops.

In the Middle East, the President is pressing Israel to accept a “two-state  solution” with the Palestinians, as a precondition for Washington’s continued dialogue with Iran about its nuclear program.  But Israel has stated clearly that Iran poses an existential threat and it has a plan to deal with that threat.  Israel needs no encouragement on its existential threat from Obama: Obama has to hold them back.

Too many dichotomies.

On taxes and spending, Obama has said we need to spend more and the future will take care of itself.  On one day he is for big business but on most days he is not.  He gave Chrysler to the auto unions and an Italian carmaker of dubious future growth and hatched a plan Monday to raise taxes on American companies widely engaged in the global economic system.

What happened to jobs and growth?

Fortunately even the Democratic Congress is showing signs of waking up.  The “no plan for Gitmo prisoners” request for $600 million plus was rejected by the House Appropriations Committee because there is no plan: just a request for money.

When the President of the United States says “cinco de cuatro” and the Vice President urges people not to travel while flu is in the air, in direct contradiction of the president’s policy, this indicates a certain lack of professionalism and thought at the top of the U.S. government.  These are not small warning signs: they are alarm bells.

When the CDC tells schools to close for two weeks at the first sign a flu and then reverses itself before the two weeks are up: one should wonder what the hell is going on?

And if allies have to be persuaded to save their own nations maybe we shouldn’t spend more or send more troops.

And why is all this going on?  Because the American media is in love with Obama.  Until that love story plays out we’ll continue to travel an uneven and nonsensical path…. Without the needed professionalism and thought.  And without reporters skilled at making reality of the promises: starting with the promise of transparency, professionalism and thought.

http://michellemalkin.com/2009/05/
06/obamas-transparency-policy-do
nt-let-the-sunshine-in/

http://hotair.com/archives/2009/0
5/06/obama-to-force-israel-to-give-up-nukes/

Corruption In Obama Government Plus Loving Media is Taking us Where?

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Obama Is Causing Economic Recovery Delay: And Reshaping the Future Economy Forever?  For Worse?

From Peter Ferrara
The American Spectator

Even though American companies suffer the huge international competitive disadvantage of the second highest corporate tax rates in the industrialized world, Obama continues to scorn doing anything about this as taking us “back to the failed ideas of the past.” On Monday, Obama was out promoting still more tax increases on corporate America. He foolishly thinks that imposing taxes on the overseas investments of American companies will force investment back to the USA. But this is just one more whupping stick in Obama’s arsenal that is going to create full scale capital flight from the U.S. before his term is over. Watch as alert, independent thinking executives start to transform American companies with investments overseas into foreign companies with tentative investments in America at least for now.

Read it all:
http://spectator.org/archives/200
9/05/06/is-obama-delaying-economic-rec

Obama Asking Afghanistan, Pakistan to “Buy Into” Existential Threat With American Money

May 6, 2009

U.S. President Barack Obama will urge the leaders of Pakistan and Afghanistan to put aside a history of mistrust and join Washington in an alliance against Islamic extremists at a White House meeting on Wednesday, senior administration officials said.

By David Alexander
Reuters

Offering billions of dollars in U.S. military and civilian aid, Obama will warn that al Qaeda and its Taliban allies pose an existential threat and press Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari and Afghan President Hamid Karzai to toughen their response, the officials said.

“He’s going to make the obvious general points that have to be said and carry such enormous weight when they are said by the president of the United States — that these two countries have to work together for their mutual benefit, despite their history, despite the suspicions,” said one official.

The White House gathering, part of Obama’s new strategy for the U.S. war against al Qaeda, could produce specific agreements for cooperation on policing and border issues, the officials said.

Read the rest:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20090506
/pl_nm/us_afghanistan_pakistan_usa_8

Obama’s Cinco de Mayo is No Joke: Meltdown in Pakistan, Israel Feels Abused, China Harasses U.S. Ship

May 5, 2009

Oh by the way: with all the news of the economy and President Obama’s mantra of education, environment and health care; there is still a lot for the president to do in the arena of foreign affairs.

Today Pakistan said it expected half a million refugees from the Swat Valley where the Taliban has been operating with nearly a free rein.  The Taliban got to within 60 miles of Islamabad, the Pakistan capital, before the Army stepped in.  Now the question is, Can Pakistan’s Army defeat the Taliban and protect the nation’s nuclear weapons?

Meanwhile, diplomats from Israel are blistering at signals from the Obama Administration.

Yesterday, White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel said thwarting Iran’s nuclear program is conditional on progress in peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.

Today, Vice President Joe Biden challenged Israel to back a two-state peace agreement with the Palestinians.

“That is not negotiable, that is not a matter of change,” he said, adding that the Obama administration’s desire to engage with Iran would not compromise Israel’s security.

Finally, the Associated Press is reporting that China has apparently harassed another U.S. ship in international waters….

Related:
http://hotair.com/archives/2009/
05/05/pakistan-melting-down-in-swat/

Biden: Israel Has No Choice, Must Back a Two-State Peace Agreement with the Palestinians

Leaders of Pakistan, Afghanistan, Israel Seek Obama’s Help

China Again Tests U.S., Obama At Sea

The Associated Press on Pakistan:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090505/ap_on_re_as
/as_pakistan;_ylt=AlwJvDtIlZM4yhJ_KdDA7BGs0NUE
;_ylu=X3oDMTJjMW1idWlzBGFzc2V0A2FwLzIwMD
kwNTA1L2FzX3Bha2lzdGFuBGNwb3MDMgRwb3M
DNgRzZWMDeW5fdG9wX3N0b3J5BHNsawNwY
Wtpc3RhbmV4cGU

House Democrats Unveil $94.2 Billion Wartime Spending Bill — Omit Gitmo Prisoner Relocation; Worry Obama’s Long-Range Military Plan

May 4, 2009

House Democrats unveiled a $94.2 billion wartime spending bill Monday which adds $9.3 billion to White House requests but also reflects serious doubts about the long-term viability of President Barack Obama’s military commitments to Afghanistan and its neighbor Pakistan. 

“It gives the president one year to demonstrate what he can do. It gives him ample resources,” said House Appropriations Committee Chairman David Obey. But the Wisconsin Democrat said he was “very dubious” about the chances of success and wants a “fish or cut bait” assessment in a year’s time that will determine how long the United States continues on this path. 

“The president feels obligated to give it a shot, and we’ll help him give it a shot for a year,” Obey said. “At the end of the year I want to have a hard-nosed realistic evaluation based on the performance standards we’re talking about.” 

The full House Appropriations Committee is slated to meet Thursday on the proposed bill, and the administration has been anxious to complete initial floor debate in both chambers of Congress before the Memorial Day recess. 

To speed the process—and avoid what could be an awkward political debate — Obey appears to have dropped all money and language related to the relocation of prisoners now held at Guantanamo. The chairman said he supports the president’s decision to close the controversial detention center, but thus far, the administration has not come up with a “concrete program” for what to do about the estimated 50 to 100 detainees who can’t be released but also can’t be effectively tried by the military. 

Obama had requested $50 million for the Pentagon and $30 million for the Justice Department to begin this process, but none of these funds are now in the bill. 

“So far as we can tell, there is no concrete program,” Obey said. “I’m not much interested in wasting my time defending a theoretical program.”

From Politico