Whither Obama's terror 'war?'

Rick Moran
The entrance of Chechen Muslim terrorists into the consciousness of Americans represents a new wrinkle in the war-that-really-isn't-a-war-cause-barry-says-so. It also points up the failure of Obama's policies in combatting terrorist threats.

A legitimate question can be raised: Was there too much emphasis about going after al-Qaeda and its offshoots in the Middle East?

Peter Foster, US editor for the Telegraph:

In his State of the Union address to the American people earlier this year, Barack Obama declared that he was "confident" of achieving "our objective of defeating the core of al-Qaeda".

But as many counter-terrorism experts have been saying - their voices often drowned out or ignored in favour of the pleasing simplicity of the Obama administration's narrative - the threat from al-Qaeda is too amorphous and shifting to ever have been discounted.

Although he acknowledged the need to pursue the "remnants" of the terrorist group and its affiliates, the overall message was clear - al-Qaeda was badly degraded, the tides of war were receding and the US was winning this fight that was no longer even officially a war.

The Boston bombings would appear to present a fundamental challenge to that assessment and once again bring the nagging uncertainty of terrorism back on to the American main street.

[...]

They bring home the complexity of the global Islamist threat and the fact that it cannot be confined to wars in distant lands, or fought at arm's length using drones, as the Obama administration has quietly yet insistently led America to believe.

Mr Obama and his intelligence community know the threat from al-Qaeda affiliates, but have chosen to downplay it to the US public.

Even when that fight does directly touch on American lives, as it did last September when the US ambassador to Libya was murdered in Benghazi by an al-Qaeda linked group, the administration appears at pains to deny the connection.

Indeed, next week, America's transportation authority is to relax rules on carrying knives on planes for the first time since the September 11 attacks.

Just recently, American officials have acknowledged new threats from al-Qaeda in east Africa, as well as building threats in Somalia and Yemen. Two extremists groups in Syria have just merged to fight President Assad. And amidst the increased threat, the president insists he is doing enough by ordering drone strikes that appear to kill more civilians than terrorists.

The president does not wish to refer to a "war on terror." Does it really matter? We're at war whether the president wants to acknowledge it or not. The people who attack us believe 100% that they are at war.

In the face of failure, will Obama alter his policies? The nation deserves an answer, but don't hold your breath waiting for it.


The entrance of Chechen Muslim terrorists into the consciousness of Americans represents a new wrinkle in the war-that-really-isn't-a-war-cause-barry-says-so. It also points up the failure of Obama's policies in combatting terrorist threats.

A legitimate question can be raised: Was there too much emphasis about going after al-Qaeda and its offshoots in the Middle East?

Peter Foster, US editor for the Telegraph:

In his State of the Union address to the American people earlier this year, Barack Obama declared that he was "confident" of achieving "our objective of defeating the core of al-Qaeda".

But as many counter-terrorism experts have been saying - their voices often drowned out or ignored in favour of the pleasing simplicity of the Obama administration's narrative - the threat from al-Qaeda is too amorphous and shifting to ever have been discounted.

Although he acknowledged the need to pursue the "remnants" of the terrorist group and its affiliates, the overall message was clear - al-Qaeda was badly degraded, the tides of war were receding and the US was winning this fight that was no longer even officially a war.

The Boston bombings would appear to present a fundamental challenge to that assessment and once again bring the nagging uncertainty of terrorism back on to the American main street.

[...]

They bring home the complexity of the global Islamist threat and the fact that it cannot be confined to wars in distant lands, or fought at arm's length using drones, as the Obama administration has quietly yet insistently led America to believe.

Mr Obama and his intelligence community know the threat from al-Qaeda affiliates, but have chosen to downplay it to the US public.

Even when that fight does directly touch on American lives, as it did last September when the US ambassador to Libya was murdered in Benghazi by an al-Qaeda linked group, the administration appears at pains to deny the connection.

Indeed, next week, America's transportation authority is to relax rules on carrying knives on planes for the first time since the September 11 attacks.

Just recently, American officials have acknowledged new threats from al-Qaeda in east Africa, as well as building threats in Somalia and Yemen. Two extremists groups in Syria have just merged to fight President Assad. And amidst the increased threat, the president insists he is doing enough by ordering drone strikes that appear to kill more civilians than terrorists.

The president does not wish to refer to a "war on terror." Does it really matter? We're at war whether the president wants to acknowledge it or not. The people who attack us believe 100% that they are at war.

In the face of failure, will Obama alter his policies? The nation deserves an answer, but don't hold your breath waiting for it.