Person of the Day
SEPTEMBER 11, 2007
Scheuer former CIA bin Laden expert, back when nobody cared. Today, they still don’t care enough to wake up and understand the enemy. In Sunday’s NY Daily News he gave this bracing assessment. What follows is the piece in its entirety.
CIA agent says we're letting Bin Laden win
BY MICHAEL SCHEUER
Sunday, September 9th 2007, 4:00 AM
On the sixth 9/11 anniversary, Americans can see that Osama Bin Laden has taught them a valuable lesson about the moral and intellectual bankruptcy of the U.S.bipartisan governing elite. In 1989, Bin Laden famously told the mujahedeen that beating the U.S. would be easier than defeating the U.S.S.R. in Afghanistan because Americans are soft, impatient, risk averse and afraid to offend their effete European role models by fully using U.S. military power.
Osama was wrong about our military's courage — it is fighting superbly against long odds — but dead right regarding our elected and high-ranking appointed officials, Republicans and Democrats alike.
The moral cowards governing us today have handed Afghanistan to Bin Laden. Instead of sending a half-million troops to that country, sealing its border with Pakistan, annihilating anyone who fought us, and then coming home, President Bush listened to then-CIA director George Tenet's promise that bribery and a few CIA and U.S.Special Forces officers would win the war. Tenet's recipe let about 60,000 Taliban and Al Qaeda fighters go home with their guns and missed Bin Laden at Tora Bora.
And as for those now aspiring to the presidency, I don't hear a single voice — Democrat or Republican — claiming we should have wielded far more force there.
As a result of this cowardice, today we are fighting a more numerous and better trained and armed foe. Meanwhile, Bin Laden and his boys sit unmolested on the Pakistan-Afghanistan border, planning more attacks in America because our bipartisan elite long ago delegated America's protection to a beleaguered Third World dictator.
On balance, Bin Laden and Al Qaeda are more threatening today than on 9/11. As the July National Intelligence Estimate reported, the core of Al Qaeda is rebuilt, aiding Iraqi and Afghan insurgents, and preparing attacks in the United States. Worse, the proliferation of Al Qaeda-inspired, homegrown groups in the West is accelerating, as we saw last week in Germany and Denmark.
Bin Laden is doing well militarily: He commands a potent organization, and is instigating a new worldwide threat that is nearly impossible to detect, let alone preempt. The lies of U.S. political leaders do not help us face down our foe. They say Bin Laden, et. al are primarily motivated by their hatred of America's freedoms. Not so. The impact of our policy is the Islamists' core motivation and a glue of unity for that ethnically and linguistically diverse crowd.
The second oft-heard lie is that America is safer than on 9/11. But our governing elite has knowingly failed to accomplish its two most vital post-9/11 tasks: controlling U.S. borders and fully securing the former Soviet Union's nuclear weapons.
Because of this criminal neglect, no level of American law enforcement has a fighting chance to stop the next attack, unless an obviously deranged guy, wearing a Bin Laden T-shirt and carrying a clearly labeled Soviet nuke, comes through an official entry point.
So on this 9/11, we must accept this sad and infuriating reality: Bin Laden is winning. He has defied us, attacked us, eluded us and inspired new threats we cannot begin to enumerate.
To be victorious in this long war, we must get smarter and more ruthless. That means reducing U.S. intervention in the Muslim world, keeping policies essential to U.S. security and unloading those that undermine it — like energy dependence on the Saudi and other Gulf regimes. This will start to deflect Islamist and Muslim ire onto their main enemy, the Arab world's Islamofascist rulers.
Second, we must ignore international opinion and apply overwhelming military force on Islamists and their abettors whenever necessary to defend America. This will cost Bin Laden much of the popular support generated by some current U.S. policies.
As this support erodes, the Islamists can be destroyed by men and women descended from those who delivered catastrophe to America's German and Japanese enemies.