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  • Pop Quiz Mr. President: Why Did You Fail?

    On New Year’s Eve, the White House received the preliminary assessment from federal agencies detailing the shortfalls of a terrorist bomber got on a plane bound for Detroit. The president admitted the government had more than enough information to justify keeping Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab off the aircraft. Obama concluded the system failed.

    Here is what the president did not explain: This is the same system that stopped the London-based terrorist plot in 2006. On that occasion, intelligence connected the dots; counterterrorism agents penetrated the conspiracy; Homeland Security developed countermeasures; and with international partners the U.S. took down the terrorists before any bomber got near a plane.

    Obama had the same system at his disposal as the last president. One built between 2002 and 2008 in the aftermath of the first wave of terrorist attacks– 9/11; the anthrax letters; and Richard Reid, the shoe bomber. A system that President Bush drove day-in and day-out, 24-7-365 to find and stop terrorist threats before they got off the ground. That’s why the 2006 plot and 26 other plots since 9/11 (21 under the Bush presidency) were found out and stopped. What Obama did not explain is how it worked for the last president, but failed for him.

    Systems will never be perfect. The enemy keeps changing its tactics—innovating, improvising, adopting. There will also always be gaps, miscues, and mistakes. That’s the nature of how government works. There is no better antidote for these problems than leadership from the top. A leader that establishes the priority; sets the right tone; demands results; and then follows-up.

    Faulting the administration for a lack of leadership is not meant as a partisan criticism. Scoring political points won’t make us safe. The terrorists don’t care if they kill Republicans or Democrats or the West Wing is held by the left-wing or the right-wing. Nobody wants the White House to fail in this mission. Nor are finger-pointing or snipping and point-scoring much helpful. The President needs to look forward not back. Start over. Make winning the war against terrorism the top priority of his administration and act like a war president day in and day out.

    And, if the president acts like a president; America needs to support him. Politics no longer stop at the water’s edge. They stop at our doorstep. We need the spirit shown on the anniversary of 9/11 in 2008 when two presidential candidates stood side-by-side and put politics aside for the day.

    Posted in Security [slideshow_deploy]

    45 Responses to Pop Quiz Mr. President: Why Did You Fail?

    1. Sandy says:

      As soon as he starts following the Constitution and laws of our land he might actually be a real President.

    2. Joe Lewis, CA says:

      Pop Quiz: Why wasn't this question asked of Mr. Bush when the same thing happened on his holiday vacation? It is quite admitted now, that enough info was known about 9/11 and Mr. Bin Laden (by the way, where is he?). Why did Mr. Bush fail here? Before we question Obama, let's have Mr. Bush answer these questions first.

    3. Bob Baker, Idaho says:

      This article says absolutely nothing. And I'm a conservative.

    4. ash Ga. says:

      This administration seems set on doing the things that the people dont want them to do and not doing the things the people want them to do. Go figure.

    5. Mars the Avenger says:

      As a now retired member of the Intelligence Community, I can safely say that Mr. Carafano has it right on. The structures which detected previous threats are still in place. Now, if PBO has a better idea as to how to improve its effectiveness, let's hear it. Otherwise, quit whining, shut up and use the tools you have, and for the sake of our country, BE A LEADER! And, as Sandy rightly writes, he needs to follow our Constitution.

    6. Si , NV says:

      Obama Failed because he doesn't think there is a problem with muslim terrorists. Obama believes our problems are from within.

      Leave Obama alone while he's on vacation. This is the first good thing he's done for America… He's leaving it alone and doing nothing… And he should be rewarded for doing nothing… Obama's uber-liberal government hurts less when it is not interfering in our lives…

    7. no politician says:

      its just part of the cloward-piven plan. Have you read http://www.cloward-piven.com. If you are a marxist you will love it.

    8. wm w meyer iii says:

      I hope we all,finally, wake up to the very real,close and imminent threat to each of us,our families,friends and fellow citizens around our globe.Effective leadership demands that the "boss" identify the right ball that we need to keep our eye on. Adversity;no matter how uncomfortable,daunting,complicated or unpopular–requires courageous vigilance and action to preserve and protect our liberty.I would hope we will cease to lull in complacency and distraction.Let`s hope we unite as an informed, intelligent,courageous and caring people.Peace.

    9. Pingback: Obama is a near sighted gray haired wrinkled old man? judge for yourself « VotingFemale Speaks!

    10. NTighe, Fernley says:

      In response to Joe Lewis, When 911 happened President Bush was not on holiday he was visiting school children as part of his events in Florida that day. The new set of rules that have been implemented following 911 are to be used to prevent something like this from happening, Prior to 911 no one ever thought it could happen and when they lack of communication between agencies was found to have allowed 911 to happen, the rules were changed about sharing info between agencies. Our government leaders especially our President must stay on top and everyday require a reporting of all suspect activites, not only to him but the other acencies as well. If our current President can't even be bothered to come back to Washington to deal with the attempted attack then how can anyone trust him to make our nations saftey a top priority!

    11. Pingback: Must Know Headlines 1.2.2010 — ExposeTheMedia.com

    12. Bob Z., WA says:

      I love Joe Lewis from CA questions! Why look at the failings of today (where we live and breath) when we can blame Bush for Clinton's failures regarding national security. Get over it Joe, grow up and face the music. YOUR guy is running things now, he "owns" it all! All the tactics, all the strategy, all the glory or the blame which ever is pertinent. Will people like you ever be interested in anything other than blaming someone who's no longer in charge? When you blame others for your mistakes two major things happen, you give up all power to correct or fix the situation and you finally become a complete failure. Those terrorists are coming after YOU and YOUR FAMILY too!

    13. Pingback: "Man-Caused Disaster" - Page 3

    14. Pingback: Al Qaeda tampon bombs and sanitary napkin bombs and Obama’s PC costs in American Lives « VotingFemale Speaks!

    15. Jim Arlington, Oh says:

      President George W. Bush declared war on terrorism and sent troops into Afghanistan and Iraq. We're still fighting because he had compassion on the non-combatants of those countries, thereby limiting his military options.

      Having compassion for others is admirable, and the world would be better if more people were compassionate; but compassion has no part in winning a war. Compassion follows the enemy's unconditional surrendor.

    16. jr., Michigan says:

      obama failed the moment he took office…..

    17. rssg says:

      This is what happens when we have a president who goes out of his way to talk and behave in a weak and meek manner.

      But beyond the Prophet Obama, our country has become weak, through long term "mismanagement" in Wash DC. We have power-drunk life-long, "professional" politicians whose every solution to every problem is to create a huge, top-down, centrally planned federal bueracracy.

      Government needs to scale back considerably….or Americans will lose their individual liberty and our nation will not be able to compete economically with the rest of the world.

    18. JEFF, Indian Trail N says:

      When they ID the real enemy and stop calling American vets " the real threat to America" maybe then they can fire Janet Incompatono.

    19. Bobbie Wright - AL says:

      The structures may still be in place, but the leaders of the structures have changed. This, in itself could change the whole system. Attitudes are very important. And the attitudes have changed. There outwardly appears to be a "downplay" regarding terrorist attacks in this administration. From everything I have heard from this administration, the hate for Bush is very deep-seated which is absolutely shameful. No one fares well carrying that much hate in their hearts for anyone. I have still not seen Obama take responsibility for one action he has taken. All he is able to do is blame Bush for what he says he is "having" to do. And, that's complete hogwash! I am really tired of hearing it. Obama "owns" everything that's been done since January 20, 2009. He clearly does NOT know what to do! And, he is trying to destroy the Constitution. If our Founding Fathers had wanted the Constitution to say, "On BEHALF of the People", they surely would have put it there. So that dog don't hunt either! Obama does not have a clue about being a President. "Looking presidential" just doesn't cut it anymore.

    20. Alan, Michigan says:

      But see he always acts like he is not part of it all, always above the fray. It is amazing to me nothing sticks to this guy and the Lame Stream never looks into it.

    21. Bill S, Philadelphia says:

      You mentioned Richard Reid, the "shoe-bomber". What's the difference between Reid and Abdulmutallab? Nothing. Both made it onto the plane and both failed at their attempt, no thanks to Bush, Obama, or the "system"–"A system that President Bush drove day-in and day-out, 24-7-365 to find and stop terrorist threats before they got off the ground." Well, guess what? Reid got off the ground. I want to believe in and respect this blog. Please have greater integrity in your position than this shoddy, one-sided argument.

    22. Pingback: Where Does The Buck Stop In The Knickerbomber Intelligence Failure? « Nice Deb

    23. Mansfield Bob says:

      When the intellectually vapid liberal has no defense of his position or his president, he falls back on "What about Bush?" Then he falls back on the Michael Moore revision of historical facts to blame Bush for 9/11. This approach to our national security issues is deceptive, whiny and dated, but sadly unsurprising.

    24. Trisha says:

      This is difficult for this administration? When someone's dad tells the authorities that their son is involved with Islamic extremists, you put his name on a watch list and a no-fly list. Then you compare that list to visas that have been issued- and alert all international air carriers to be on the look-out for this guy. And- why isn't Homeland Security (God help us) handling the issuance of visas? Why are we issuing visas to guys with as many red flags as this guy had?

    25. Bobbie Jay says:

      Mr, Lewis, I appreciate your passion, but please sir, much has been learned from the past, much should have been followed through in the present and what is happening in our present is means to our end.

      I don't recall Mr. Bush ever holding off for three days before acknowledging pertinent information to the public? pretty funny

      Mistakes of the past, shouldn't exist today and a man of dignity, wouldn't point fingers.

    26. Bernice L McClure De says:

      Joe Lewis You may want to fact check your statement. Unless you were inside the CIA at a time prior to 9/11 it would be hard

      to prove your stretch of non facts. We need home land security

      not, a committee to study the problem. The problem is Terrorism and it's here.

      The present administration is failing on every front—this president has work to do on the home front—how embarrassing that he stayed in Hawaii—-after the terrorist bomber in Detroit was captured—not to mention that it took the president 3 days to make a statement. That we know Mr. Lewis it has been fact checked.

    27. ThereButForFortune, says:

      Obama reacted more quickly to his friend's son's bobo than he did to the panty bomber.

    28. ThereButForFortune, says:

      Bill S, Philadelphia wrote: "Well, guess what? Reid got off the ground."

      There wasn't the plethora of warning signs about Reid. Don't raise that straw man here.

    29. Pat says:

      Actually, if this president spent more time doing those things in the constitution which the federal government is reponsible for and less time trying to bankrupt the country and overthrow our form of government by violating our constitution, so he can turn himself into a self styled dictator, he probably would have had the time to be on top of this. National security, jobs and the economy are not his priorities sadly.

    30. Juan Dominguez, Melb says:

      To the naysayers, leave BHO alone. He is the best president the US has ever had, or at least a B+ (humble as he is). He's won a Nobel Peace Prize to prove it! What more does anyone want??? Respect for the Constitution, for America's accomplishments, for our our brave servicemen and women??? Keep dreaming.

    31. Claire Solt, PhD says:

      Subordinates will do their best to give leaders what they want.

      Ask Colleen Ryan, the FBI agent who wanted to se Moussavi's computer what's wrong. I am sure she will tell you that Clinton and Obama don't want to know about terrorism, so agencies comply and info gets kept down instead of rising to actionable levels. A few swift kicks at the CIA hasn't helped, either.

    32. RkyMtnPatriot says:

      How convenient – you lump Richard "Shoe Bomber" Reid in with 9/11, to avoid the obvious: the air safety system failed under Bush, too. Not to mention, Bush failed the test of 9/11, resulting in the biggest terror attack in U.S. history. Spin this anyway you want, but Obama is not the fault here. Like so many things, the flawed TSA system was handed to him from the previous administration.

      Truth is, conservatives now seem to expect a "nanny state" in which each and every lunatic the world over is controlled and every American is safe. It's impossible, and blaming the president every time some determined lunatic thwarts the system is ridiculous.

      My dad used to say, "when the doctor slapped you on the ass, nobody promised you a safe world."

    33. Pingback: Al Qaeda spooks Obama into closing Yemen Embassy; the System Working, right Janet? « VotingFemale Speaks!

    34. win, illinois says:

      answers to Joe Lewis, CA, who is more concerned about the past then fixing todays problems …

      "Pop Quiz: Why wasn’t this question asked of Mr. Bush when the same thing happened on his holiday vacation?"

      The procedures were not put into place until after the "shoe bomber", it was implemented in 2005 as if I remember correctly.

      "It is quite admitted now, that enough info was known about 9/11 and Mr. Bin Laden (by the way, where is he?) "

      Clinton executive order had targeted bin Laden but he had not been caught prior to 911, nor were Bush, or now Obama able to catch him.

    35. Pingback: What’s the Frequency Joe?

    36. Stirling, Huntingdon says:

      When your more "concerned" about passing (well ramroding is more appropriate) healthcare then National Security (keeping the country safe) this is what the end result becomes. This president ran on being a complete opposite of Bush during the election, and acutally followed thru on that promise. At least Bush you knew that National Security was Job #1.

    37. Pingback: Strip Searching is Offensive to Muslim Suicide Bombers Boarding Airplanes « VotingFemale Speaks!

    38. Alan, Michigan says:

      Dear Mr Joe Lewis in Cali I find it humorous when Obama supporters compare him to Bush, because isn't the whole reason Obama was elected was he was supposed to be different not follow suit with Bush ie make the same mistakes…Bush is gone you should find somebody new to blame.

    39. D.S.M., California says:

      I don't know why the people are complaining about Obama's actions now. He is doing what he said he was going to do before he was elected. He has not changed, everyone that voted for this turkey got what what they ask for!

    40. teresa says:

      Got what you voted for.

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    45. Australia immigration have a short while ago revised there skilled jobs list, does anybody understand or know if this is likely to impact worker holiday visa, what are the promises to change this sort of Australian permit?

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