The National Journal has a blog on national security affairs that I contribute to and this week’s question had to do with Obama, nuclear proliferation, and how to make America secure therefrom. As discussed here last week, I fear the nuclear problem is out of control and that international agreements to secure WMDs are needed but about 20 years too late. For America, as a result, only effective border control has a chance — if slim one —to stop a nuclear or other WMD attack in the United States.
By the end of 1991 — 19 years ago if you’re counting — the Soviet Union was gone and a new Russian government was in power. At the time there was much heated, anxious discussion over the need for immediate U.S.-Russian cooperation to bring under effective control all of the former USSR’s 22,000-plus nuclear weapons. Then, in the 2004 presidential election campaign, John Kerry and George W. Bush debated whether that arsenal should be brought under full control by 2008 or 2010. On Monday, President Obama will convene in Washington a so-called nuclear summit aimed at stopping nuclear proliferation and preventing al-Qaeda and its allies from acquiring and using a chemical, biological, or nuclear weapon against the United States or one of its allies. And, by the way, when the conference opens none of the attendees will be able to verify that the former-USSR’s WMD arsenal is fully controlled.
Having been at war with Osama bin Laden, al-Qaeda, and their growing number of allies for nearly fourteen years, Americans now find they have elected a president who has a solution for the problem.
One of the signal problems for Americans is to see how so many seemingly disparate events fit into the Islamists’ war against the United States. Last week’s subway bombings in Moscow, for example, seem, at first blush, to be tragic but altogether unrelated to the United States. But are they?
Al-Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden last week issued a short statement saying that his forces would kill captured U.S. personnel if Khalid Shaykh Muhammad and his al-Qaeda colleagues were executed after trial. This threat should be taken to the bank as the correlation between bin Laden’s words and deeds would put any Western leader’s record to shame.
As I am sure all recall, seven CIA officers were killed in a suicide attack near the Afghan town of Khowst in late December 2009. As always when such incidents occur, there are numbers of retired CIA officers who are eager to criticize the Agency and its officers for mistakes the critics claim they surely would not have made had they been in charge. There has been quite a bit of that in the Khowst case, but among the subtle themes in the criticism has been one by “old boy” CIA officers whose basic claim — when you strip away their patronizing and clearly faux grief over the loss of “under-trained female officers” at Khowst — is that there is little place for females in CIA’s Directorate of Operations and no place for them in overseas operations.
There still seem to be Americans who believe that one of the two major parties is dedicated to restoring U.S. sovereignty and independence. I tend to believe that idea is wrong. If America is to be restored and preserved intact for our posterity — shaped and governed as the Founders intended — other political vehicles will have to be devised.
Not since Citizen Genet has a foreigner behaved as atrociously in America as Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu did at this week’s AIPAC conclave of 8,000 cheering U.S. citizens — including 300-plus congressmen and senators — who are more loyal to Israel than the United States. The behavior of both men, I think, reflects the fact that they represent arrogant governments that rule by violence.
As the week ended there seemed to me three things that merited attention, none of which boded well for the United States.
In the past two days, President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton rushed to the media to say U.S.-Israel ties are a “close, unshakable bond” and to pledge their “absolute commitment to Israel’s security.”