It’s a wretched yet predictable ritual after each new terrorist attack: Certain politicians and government officials waste no time exploiting the tragedy for their own ends. The remarks on Monday by John Brennan, the director of the Central Intelligence Agency, took that to a new and disgraceful low.
Read more here.
Let me add one or two thoughts to this most excellent editorial from the New York Times.
People like Brennan want to have their cake and eat it too. On the one hand, they tell us again and again how they’ve disrupted numerous terrorist attacks on America through the illegal and unconstitutional activities they engage in daily. Usually they don’t provide very much detail to back up their claims, counting on us to take their word for it.
But then, when it becomes obvious the emperior has no clothes and a plane is blown out of the sky over the Sinai or people are killed in Paris or watching the Boston Marathon, they like nothing more than to wring their hands and blame their failings on the restraints they operate under.
It’s not their fault. It’s never their fault even though we lavish tens of billions of dollars on them every year. It’s our fault for making life difficult for them by asking them to honor our Constitution, not twist it into whatever is convenient for them.
Their contempt for the very things that have made America great is hard to swallow.
Harder to swallow still are people like Senator Marco Rubio, a Republican running for President who has called the conflict with ISIS a “clash of civilizations” and proclaimed that “either they win or we win.”
These days politicians like to pander rather than tell the truth. The truth is “we cannot eradicate terrorism any more than we can eradicate armed robbery,” as Andrew Bacevich has put it.
That’s not a comforting truth nor an excuse for inaction. But like the war on drugs or the war on poverty or any of the other wars America’s so-called leaders like to proclaim, the war on terrorism is an on-going war that will never be won.
If we allow ourselves to abandon our principles as a nation in a false quest to win a war that cannot be won, it is the terrorists who will win; an inconvenient truth to be sure, but the truth nonetheless.