9-11: George W. Bush and his bullhorn

September 11, 2019

Lots of people have written today about that terrible morning: where they were, what they remember, maybe honoring the victims or the many valiant heroes of the battle and its aftermath. I wondered what I would write. I decided that, rather than focus on the day itself, something others have done much more eloquently than I ever could, I wanted to share video of what has become one of my strongest memories from that time: the moment, when, three days later, George W. Bush stood amidst the smoldering ruins from which the dead were still being recovered and rallied a stunned and bloodied nation:

That was the day a man who won a disputed, contentious election truly became President of the United States of America, and I’ll forever be grateful for him.

Note: This is a reposting of something I try to put up each September 11th. 


Pearl Harbors then and now

December 7, 2018

In the last surprise attack on American soil before 9/11, the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor:

The end of the USS Arizona

(Credit: Aviation History)

My grandfather was a Petty Officer aboard the USS Nevada during the battle. Below are a couple of pictures of his ship under attack, the only battleship to get underway that day:

…and…

Grandpa was having a bad day

(Both photos credit: Naval Historical Center)

As you can see, they had been hit pretty hard. Thankfully, Grandpa survived.

Seventeen years ago, we were hit by another fascist enemy, with casualties 25% higher than Pearl Harbor:

(credit: September 11th News)

…and…

(Credit: Aspersions)

…and…

(Scene at the Pentagon. Credit: US Navy via Wikimedia)

Our grandfathers finished their job. Let’s not do any less, shall we?

RELATED: The story of Lt. John William Finn, who won the Medal of Honor for his actions at Pearl Harbor.
Note: This is a reposting of a post I put up every December 7th, slightly edited to fix dead links.

9-11: George W. Bush and his bullhorn

September 11, 2018

Lots of people have written today about that terrible morning: where they were, what they remember, maybe honoring the victims or the many valiant heroes of the battle and its aftermath. I wondered what I would write. I decided that, rather than focus on the day itself, something others have done much more eloquently than I ever could, I wanted to share video of what has become one of my strongest memories from that time: the moment, when, three days later, George W. Bush stood amidst the smoldering ruins from which the dead were still being recovered and rallied a stunned and bloodied nation:

That was the day a man who won a disputed, contentious election truly became President of the United States of America, and I’ll forever be grateful for him.

Note: This is a reposting of something I try to put up each September 11th. 


Pearl Harbors then and now

December 7, 2017

In the last surprise attack on American soil before 9/11, the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor:

The end of the USS Arizona

(Credit: Aviation History)

My grandfather was a Petty Officer aboard the USS Nevada during the battle. Below are a couple of pictures of his ship under attack, the only battleship to get underway that day:

…and…

Grandpa was having a bad day

(Both photos credit: Naval Historical Center)

As you can see, they had been hit pretty hard. Thankfully, Grandpa survived.

Sixteen years ago, we were hit by another fascist enemy, with casualties 25% higher than Pearl Harbor:

(credit: September 11th News)

…and…

(Credit: Aspersions)

…and…

(Scene at the Pentagon. Credit: US Navy via Wikimedia)

Our grandfathers finished their job. Let’s not do any less, shall we?

RELATED: The story of Lt. John William Finn, the last surviving Medal of Honor winner from Pearl Harbor.

9-11: George W. Bush and his bullhorn

September 11, 2017

Lots of people have written today about that terrible morning: where they were, what they remember, maybe honoring the victims or the many valiant heroes of the battle and its aftermath. I wondered what I would write. I decided that, rather than focus on the day itself, something others have done much more eloquently than I ever could, I wanted to share video of what has become one of my strongest memories from that time: the moment, when, three days later, George W. Bush stood amidst the smoldering ruins from which the dead were still being recovered and rallied a stunned and bloodied nation:

That was the day a man who won a disputed, contentious election truly became President of the United States of America, and I’ll forever be grateful for him.

Note: this is a reposting of something I wrote for the tenth anniversary. My sentiments haven’t changed in the years since.


9-11: George W. Bush and his bullhorn

September 11, 2016

Lots of people have written today about that terrible morning: where they were, what they remember, maybe honoring the victims or the many valiant heroes of the battle and its aftermath. I wondered what I would write. I decided that, rather than focus on the day itself, something others have done much more eloquently than I ever could, I wanted to share video of what has become one of my strongest memories from that time: the moment, when, three days later, George W. Bush stood amidst the smoldering ruins from which the dead were still being recovered and rallied a stunned and bloodied nation:

That was the day a man who won a disputed, contentious election truly became President of the United States of America, and I’ll forever be grateful for him.

Note: This is a re-posting, slightly updated, of something I wrote for the tenth anniversary; I think it’s a moment that needs recalling.


Pearl Harbors then and now

December 7, 2015

In the last surprise attack on American soil before 9/11, the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor:

The end of the USS Arizona

(Credit: Aviation History)

My grandfather was a Petty Officer aboard the USS Nevada during the battle. Below are a couple of pictures of his ship under attack, the only battleship to get underway that day:

…and…

Grandpa was having a bad day

(Both photos credit: Naval Historical Center)

As you can see, they had been hit pretty hard. Thankfully, Grandpa survived.

Fourteen years ago, we were hit by another fascist enemy, Muslims waging “jihad fi sabil Allah,” with casualties 25% higher than Pearl Harbor:

(credit: September 11th News)

…and…

(Credit: Aspersions)

…and…

(Scene at the Pentagon. Credit: US Navy via Wikimedia)

Our grandfathers finished their job. Let’s not do any less, shall we?

RELATED: The story of Lt. John William Finn, the last surviving Medal of Honor winner from Pearl Harbor.

NOTE: This is a republishing of a post I put up each December 7th.


9-11: George W. Bush and his bullhorn

September 11, 2015

Lots of people have written today about that terrible morning: where they were, what they remember, maybe honoring the victims or the many valiant heroes of the battle and its aftermath. I wondered what I would write. I decided that, rather than focus on the day itself, something others have done much more eloquently than I ever could, I wanted to share video of what has become one of my strongest memories from that time: the moment, when, three days later, George W. Bush stood amidst the smoldering ruins from which the dead were still being recovered and rallied a stunned and bloodied nation:

That was the day a man who won a disputed, contentious election truly became President of the United States of America, and I’ll forever be grateful for him.

Note: This is a re-posting, slightly updated, of something I wrote for the tenth anniversary; I think it’s a moment that needs recalling.


Pearl Harbors then and now

December 7, 2014

In the last surprise attack on American soil before 9/11, the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor:

The end of the USS Arizona

(Credit: Aviation History)

My grandfather was a Petty Officer aboard the USS Nevada during the battle. Below are a couple of pictures of his ship under attack, the only battleship to get underway that day:

…and…

Grandpa was having a bad day

(Both photos credit: Naval Historical Center)

As you can see, they had been hit pretty hard. Thankfully, Grandpa survived.

Thirteen years ago, we were hit by another fascist enemy, Muslims waging “jihad fi sabil Allah,” with casualties 25% higher than Pearl Harbor:

(credit: September 11th News)

…and…

(Credit: Aspersions)

…and…

(Scene at the Pentagon. Credit: US Navy via Wikimedia)

Our grandfathers finished their job. Let’s not do any less, shall we?

RELATED: The story of Lt. John William Finn, the last surviving Medal of Honor winner from Pearl Harbor.

NOTE: This is a republishing of a post I put up each December 7th.


9-11: George W. Bush and his bullhorn

September 11, 2014

Lots of people have written today about that terrible morning: where they were, what they remember, maybe honoring the victims or the many valiant heroes of the battle and its aftermath. I wondered what I would write. I decided that, rather than focus on the day itself, something others have done much more eloquently than I ever could, I wanted to share video of what has become one of my strongest memories from that time: the moment, when, three days later, George W. Bush stood amidst the smoldering ruins from which the dead were still being recovered and rallied a stunned and bloodied nation:

That was the day a man who won a disputed, contentious election truly became President of the United States of America, and I’ll forever be grateful for him.

Note: This is a re-posting, slightly updated, of something I wrote for the tenth anniversary; I think it’s a moment that needs recalling.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Missing Libyan jets: don’t panic

September 4, 2014
Pentagon, 9/11/2001

Pentagon, 9/11/2001

You’ll recall those missing 11 Libyan airliners I wrote about the other day; a post in The Aviationist, quoting an executive familiar with airline operations**, agrees it’s something to be concerned about, but we shouldn’t underestimate the difficulty of launching another 9/11-style attack:

“I agree the risks [of a missing plane] are there but I would be cautious in several regards: aircraft condition, availability of actual pilots and airfield conditions, etc,” says Tom Meyer, who’s worked for over a decade in all areas of the airline’s operations with Top US Air Carrier.

In fact, the missing airliner must be hidden somewhere (an kept away from the indiscreet eyes of satellites and U.S. drones snooping on terrorist bases in the desert) but a difficult-to-find airport is quite unlikely an airport capable to serve an airliner.

“Airline Ground Operations will need to include: Ground Power or APU [Auxiliary Power Unit) Availability, Fueling, Weight & Balance, FOD Free Ramp, Clear Taxiways and Runways…If any of the items is missing or done incorrectly, the whole scenario unravels. Sorry, Airline operations are complex,” Meyer explains.

It should be kept in mind that the 9-11 hijackers were exactly that: terrorists who seized control of the planes after they were already in the air. They just needed enough training to be able to pilot them to their targets. As Meyer mentions, the logistical needs of maintaining the planes and the facilities they need to take off are not inconsiderable, nor easily concealed.

There’s more, including mention of the difficulty of getting past air defenses, at least in Europe, in post-9/11 age.

Still, no one imagined guys armed with box cutters could carry out the biggest terrorist attack in history, either. Panic may not be warranted, but prudent concern and a strong effort to find those planes is.

**(He’s credited as working with “Top US Air Carrier.” I wonder if that’s a placeholder that got left behind.)

via Blogs of War


Oh, yay! Eleven Libyan airliners are missing!

September 3, 2014
"x11?"

“Times 11?”

Obama’s Libya war — it’s the gift that keeps on giving. Or maybe it’s Pandora’s box:

Islamist militias in Libya took control of nearly a dozen commercial jetliners last month, and western intelligence agencies recently issued a warning that the jets could be used in terrorist attacks across North Africa.

Intelligence reports of the stolen jetliners were distributed within the U.S. government over the past two weeks and included a warning that one or more of the aircraft could be used in an attack later this month on the date marking the anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks against New York and Washington, said U.S. officials familiar with the reports.

“There are a number of commercial airliners in Libya that are missing,” said one official. “We found out on September 11 what can happen with hijacked planes.”

The author, Bill Gertz, cites experts who describe a range of frightening possibilities, from these jet liners being used themselves as guided missiles, as they were on 9/11/01, to being disguised as normal civilian flights, but carrying armed assault teams of terrorists who could then wreak mayhem. That these aren’t likely to be used against the US homeland is hardly any comfort: much of North Africa, the Middle East, and Mediterranean Europe would be in range. Imagine a multi-target strike a la September 11th (the anniversary of which is fast approaching!) that simultaneously aims at a giant Saudi oil refinery, a soccer stadium in Marseilles, and The Vatican.

And, thanks to a miserably conceived, off-the-cuff war launched by Barack Obama that served no US interest whatsoever, but did manage to overthrow a dictator whom we had tamed and who was keeping his country quiet, we may well have helped armed a future Mohammad Atta.

I’m sure our allies in the region are ever-so-grateful.

UPDATE: Snopes gives this a “probably false” rating, but Gertz is a pretty solid national-security reporter, so I’m not ready to write off his work on the say-so of a fact check site, even one with the pedigree of Snopes. Still I’m including it here for completeness’ sake. (h/t MissFuzzball)


Al Qaeda debuts new currency

March 2, 2014

If the president needs a target for his drone list, I’d suggest finding out where these are printed and then expressing our displeasure with a Hellfire or three.

Money Jihad

Osama Bin Laden bill

Reportedly, Al Qaeda in Iraq (ISIL) is circulating its own one hundred “Islamic” pound note in western Iraq with a picture of the Twin Towers burning on 9/11 and a portrait of Osama bin Laden.

The new bills are quite a curious development considering that Islamists normally regard paper currencies as unclean “infidel” currencies invented by non-Muslim imperialists.  Islamists prefer gold dinars and silver dirhams such as those used by Muhammad according to traditional Islamic texts.

ISIL may have chosen a denomination of 100 because of the popularity of U.S. $100 bills in Iraq, where they are nicknamed “ghosts” because of Iraqi perceptions of Benjamin Franklin’s sprectral appearance.

Presumably, the new currency is more of a publicity stunt than an actual, working currency that could be used to pay the wages of their fighters.  The money would seem to have limited usefulness to ISIL’s men and their families, because…

View original post 13 more words


#Benghazi: One year later, and they don’t give a damn

September 12, 2013
"Forget honor. What about justice?"

“US consulate, Benghazi. Remember?”

Yesterday was not only the anniversary of the September 11th, 2001, attacks on the United States, but it was also the first anniversary of the massacre in Benghazi, where our ambassador and three other Americans were slaughtered by al Qaeda-aligned Muslims waging jihad.

At NRO’s Campaign Spot, Jim Geraghty notes that the crowd that once shouted “Bush lied, people died!” doesn’t seem to care all that much about blatant, obvious lies coming from the Obama administration:

Don’t they care that our ambassador and his team were sent to a facility with ludicrously insufficient security?

Don’t they care to know whether something could have been done that night to save those men, and if so, why a rescue mission wasn’t launched? Look at a map. This is a Libyan city on a coast, facing the Mediterranean, south of Europe and all of our NATO allies. Less than a year earlier, we had been running a major multinational combat operation right there…

Don’t they care that the explanation offered by our government was false? These folks who screamed “Bush Lied, People Died” from 2003 to 2008 now shrug about lies about how and why Americans were killed.

Don’t they care that despite Obama’s pledge that “justice will be done,” no one has been caught, jailed, or executed for their role in the attack?

No, actually, they don’t. That’s because most of the Left (with a few exceptions) didn’t really care about war in Afghanistan and Iraq; what mattered then was the party of the president and the majority in Congress. What mattered was power at any cost, putting the parochial political interests of the Democratic Party ahead of the nation (1) and, yes, truth itself.

Now that there’s a (D) after the president’s name, well… that’s different! Libya? Four dead Americans? Jaw-dropping incompetence? People died, Obama lied? (2)

Meh.

Footnotes:
(1) I will never, ever forgive that wretch Harry Reid (D-NV) for undercutting troops in the field by claiming “The war is lost” just as the Surge operation was about to begin in Iraq.
(2) Not only Obama, but Hillary Clinton, Jay Carney, Susan Rice, and so many more….

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


9-11: George W. Bush and his bullhorn

September 11, 2013

Lots of people have written today about that terrible morning: where they were, what they remember, maybe honoring the victims or the many valiant heroes of the battle and its aftermath. I wondered what I would write. I decided that, rather than focus on the day itself, something others have done much more eloquently than I ever could, I wanted to share video of what has become one of my strongest memories from that time: the moment, when, three days later, George W. Bush stood amidst the smoldering ruins from which the dead were still being recovered and rallied a stunned and bloodied nation:

That was the day a man who won a disputed, contentious election truly became President of the United States of America, and I’ll forever be grateful for him.

Note: This is a re-posting, slightly updated, of something I wrote for the tenth anniversary; I think it’s a moment that needs recalling.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Iconic firefighter photo almost excluded from 9/11 memorial exhibit

July 28, 2013
"Patriotism. How gauche."

“Patriotism. How gauche.”

Because, you see, it’s too “rah-rah American”:

According to Elizabeth Greenspan, author of the up coming book Battle for Ground Zero (St. Martin’s Press), Michael Shulan, creative director of the 9/11 Memorial Museum, thought about cutting the famed photo from Ground Zero of three firefighters raising the American flag amidst the rubble of the World Trade Center…because he thought it was too “rah-rah America.” Shulan said, “I really believe that the way America will look best, the way we can really do best, is to not be Americans so vigilantly and so vehemently.”

The “problem” was eventually solved by adding other pictures, “to undercut the myth of ‘one iconic moment…'”, according to the museum’s curator. See, the lone image was just too simplistic, hiding the complexities and meaning of what happened that day.

Just what part of nearly 3,000 Americans being massacred by Muslims waging  jihad is too simple for you, Mikey? What complexity, what nuance, what other perspective is lacking? The jihadists’? Point-of-view shots from the cockpits as the planes were about to slam into the towers? Should you have included a plaque of the text of Bin Laden’s 1996 fatwa declaring war on us? That would introduce some of your beloved meaning, letting the al Qaeda leader explain in his own words why 9/11 was only justice for our crimes, how we’re as much to blame by making them hate us. And who is to judge who is right? Complexity! Perspective! Meaning!

I hope you’ll forgive this simple American for being too “rah-rah,” Michael, but that single image carries more layers of meaning than I suspect you, trapped in a decadent, nihilist multiculturalism, could ever understand.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Lawrence O’Donnell: How many firefighters were killed on 9/11 by Rudy Giuliani?

June 7, 2013

I’m convinced this guy must be some sort of a sociopath. No one with any human empathy could say this kind of crap.


Pearl Harbors then and now

December 7, 2012

In the last surprise attack on American soil before 9/11, the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor:

The end of the USS Arizona

(Credit: Aviation History)

My grandfather was a Petty Officer aboard the USS Nevada during the battle. Below are a couple of pictures of his ship under attack, the only battleship to get underway that day:

…and…

Grandpa was having a bad day

(Both photos credit: Naval Historical Center)

As you can see, they had been hit pretty hard. Thankfully, Grandpa survived.

Eleven years ago, we were hit by another fascist enemy, Muslims waging “jihad fi sabil Allah,” with casualties 25% higher than Pearl Harbor:

(credit: September 11th News)

…and…

(Credit: Aspersions)

…and…

(Scene at the Pentagon. Credit: US Navy via Wikimedia)

Our grandfathers finished their job. Let’s not do any less, shall we?

RELATED: The story of Lt. John William Finn, the last surviving Medal of Honor winner from Pearl Harbor.

NOTE: This is a republishing of a post I put up each December 7th.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Arab Spring: US ambassador murdered in Libya, US embassy in Egypt besieged

September 12, 2012

Hurt feelings.

The Islamic World sent its regards on the anniversary of September 11th:

Looks like President Obama’s much-touted Arab Spring has become the Arab Autumn.

Tuesday Muslim militants stormed the American Embassy in Cairo, tore down the U.S. flag and raised their own banner. In Libya, militants stormed an American consulate, set it on fire and killed four people, including the U.S. ambassador to Libya.

The alleged reason: Someone made a video that insulted Allah. So, naturally that’s the United States’ fault. Never mind the $9 million a day U.S. bombing of Libya to rid those folks of Col. Qadhafi and his amazing hat collection. Never mind the $1 billion in annual aid to Egypt and not-so gentle nudging out of democracy-challenged President Mubarak last year.

Apparently the ever-so-sensitive Muslim feelings were hurt by a short, badly made video criticizing Muhammad. The video had been available since at least July (h/t Howie), but it took until, oddly enough, until September 11th for the mobs to become enraged enough to actually do something, much like the murderous riots over the Muhammad cartoons several years ago.

If the words “coordinated” and “pre-planned” come to mind, you’re not alone.

Libya is, of course, by far the worst of the situation so far: at least three, perhaps four Americans are dead, including Ambassador Christopher Stevens, who was visiting the Benghazi consulate at the time. I don’t know if the consulate had any Marine guards, but there’s a disturbing report that the Libyans hired to protect the consulate first whisked to ambassador to a “safer” location, then told the mob where he was:

Wanis al-Sharef, a Libyan Interior Ministry official in Benghazi, said the four Americans were killed when the angry mob, which gathered to protest a U.S.-made film that ridicules Islam’s Prophet Muhammad, fired guns and burned down the U.S. consulate in Benghazi.

He said Stevens, 52, and other officials were moved to a second building – deemed safer – after the initial wave of protests at the consulate compound. According to al-Sharef, members of the Libyan security team seem to have indicated to the protesters the building to which the American officials had been relocated, and that building then came under attack.

For what it’s worth (and it isn’t much) the Libyan president (more like the “Mayor of Tripoli”) has issued an abject apology:

Libya’s interim president has apologized to the United States for the attack on the U.S. consulate in the eastern city of Benghazi that killed the American ambassador and three of his staff.

Mohammed el-Megarif described the attack as “cowardly” and offered his condolences on the death of Ambassador Chris Stevens and the three other Americans. Speaking to reporters, he vowed to bring the culprits to justice and maintain his country’s close relations with the United States. He said the three Americans were security guards.

While I don’t hold the Libyan government at fault in this –they’re just too weak– this atrocity cannot go unpunished. Though we often criticize (and sometimes rightly so) our diplomats for being too accommodating, Foreign Service Officers are accredited representatives of the United States, often spending years away from home working in very dangerous places to further American interests. They are entitled to absolute protection by the host country under centuries-old international law and, when that protection is denied or fails, it is the duty of the United States to retaliate for any outrage. Our diplomats, volunteers all, deserve no less.

President Obama must do more than issue a condemnation or fire a perfunctory volley of missiles at some tents. If the Libyan government cannot bring these barbarians to justice, Obama must order the intelligence and military services to hunt these people down and kill them. If an organization was behind it, he must order their destruction. Whether it’s accomplished tomorrow or years from now, the enemies of the United States must know they will pay a fatal price for killing our people.

Anything less will be interpreted by the jihadists as weakness and only invite more atrocities.

RELATED: In a new low for US public diplomacy, while trying to fend off the mob in Cairo, the US Embassy there issued a groveling apology for Americans exercising their natural right of free speech. On September 11th. What a surprise, it didn’t work. (And if you want a legitimate reason to criticize our diplomats, here ya go.) Questions: The Embassy in Egypt is sovereign American soil. It is entitled to protection from the host country. Where the Hell was the Egyptian Army during all this? Did Muslim Brotherhood member President Morsi approve of his Salafist allies’ actions? Does he understand the words “act of war?” And about our Smart Power leadership: When it became clear the embassy was not getting the protection it needed (or any at all), why wasn’t the Egyptian ambassador hauled into the State Department and read the Riot Act? It was 3AM. Why wasn’t Obama on the phone with Morsi demanding he clear the streets? We give them a billion dollars a year in aid Cairo desperately needs, and I say that gives us a damn lot of leverage. As in “if those streets aren’t cleared in two hours, or if any American or native embassy employee is hurt, kiss off every last cent.”

RELATED II: It’s been noted in several places that the peaceful and tolerant Muslims barbarian mob in Cairo raised the al Qaeda banner. It’s a little more nuanced than that, as Raymond Ibrahim explains:

Some clarifications for context: Islam’s black flag with the shehada and sword inscription is not an al-Qaeda banner but rather Islam’s most ancient banner, popularized by the Abbasid caliphs in the 800s. In other words, these protesters were not imitating al-Qaeda; rather they—and al-Qaeda—are imitating Islam’s heritage, replete with jihad against the infidel. Same with the phrase “worshippers of the cross”—Islam’s ancient appellation for the hated Christians.

Read the whole thing. As Ibrahim explains, Muslim outrage over their hurt feelings is especially hypocritical, given the wretched and often murderous discrimination against Copts in Egypt.

RELATED III: Governor Romney and President Obama both held press availabilities on the North African crisis. For what it’s worth, I think Romney said the right things and acted like a president should act. He also wouldn’t let the press get away with trying to cover for Obama by presenting Romney’s criticisms as the problem, not the events in Egypt and Libya. President Obama, on the other hand, took no questions and voted “present.” Again. For those who criticize Romney and say “politics should stop at the water’s edge,” I reply “forget it.” The Democrats haven’t played by those rules in years, and we shouldn’t unilaterally disarm.

RELATED IV: Sarah Palin unleashes her night stick on Obama. Boom! You don’t want to miss it.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


9/11: George W. Bush, Barack Obama, and the duties of a president

September 11, 2012

Today is the eleventh anniversary of al Qaeda’s attacks on New York City, Washington, D.C., and Pennsylvania, in which Muslims waging jihad fi sabil Allah –war for the sake of Allah– killed nearly 3,000 Americans and foreign guests.

On that day, the federal government failed in its primary duty: protecting the United States and her people.

Since then, one would like to believe the men in the Oval Office have taken that duty, assigned to them by the Constitution as Commander in Chief, damned seriously; that they would bend every effort to making sure it never happened again.

We know that was true of George W. Bush. He not only ordered the invasion of Afghanistan to destroy the regime that sheltered al Qaeda, but he received bipartisan congressional approval for the liberation of Iraq (rightly perceiving Saddam’s monstrous regime as a strategic threat that couldn’t be allowed to continue) and he set in motion the intelligence operations that eventually lead to Osama bin Laden’s death under Barack Obama.

Agree or disagree with what he did, there’s no doubt George W. Bush took to heart the national security of the United States.

But, after reading Marc Thiessen’s column in the Washington Post, can we same thing about Barack Obama when he skips out on half of his national security briefings?

President Obama is touting his foreign policy experience on the campaign trail, but startling new statistics suggest that national security has not necessarily been the personal priority the president makes it out to be. It turns out that more than half the time, the commander in chief does not attend his daily intelligence meeting.

The Government Accountability Institute, a new conservative investigative research organization, examined President Obama’s schedule from the day he took office until mid-June 2012, to see how often he attended his Presidential Daily Brief (PDB) — the meeting at which he is briefed on the most critical intelligence threats to the country. During his first 1,225 days in office, Obama attended his PDB just 536 times — or 43.8 percent of the time. During 2011 and the first half of 2012, his attendance became even less frequent — falling to just over 38 percent. By contrast, Obama’s predecessor, George W. Bush almost never missed his daily intelligence meeting.

Thiessen questioned a NSC official, who argued that attending the meetings isn’t important and that Obama learns what he needs to know from reading the daily briefings, which he receives wherever he is.  Other “former officials” (Bush administration?) disagreed, saying it’s very important for the president to attend these briefings, so that he can clarify his own understanding, question assumptions, and let his advisers know what he thinks is important. The interchange is a vital part of the process leading to national security decisions.

And before anyone can say “Well, he’s got a lot on his plate,” Thiessen relates how Obama’s predecessor handled his briefings:

While the Bush records are not yet available electronically for analysis, officials tell me the former president held his intelligence meeting six days a week, no exceptions — usually with the vice president, the White House chief of staff, the national security adviser, the director of National Intelligence, or their deputies, and CIA briefers in attendance. Once a week, he held an expanded Homeland Security briefing that included the Homeland Security adviser, the FBI director and other homeland security officials. Bush also did more than 100 hour-long “deep dives” in which he invited intelligence analysts into the Oval Office to get their unvarnished and sometimes differing views. Such meetings deepened the president’s understanding of the issues and helped analysts better understand the problems with which he was wrestling.

(Emphases added)

That schedule included President Bush’s 2004 reelection campaign. When he was on the campaign trail, they were probably held by secure conference call. He always made time, always put his duty ahead of his campaign.

In 2012, we’re still at war. The jihad didn’t end when SEAL Team 6 put a couple of bullets into Osama. While al Qaeda has seemingly been savaged to the point that they cannot launch catastrophic attacks against us (we hope), they and other jihad groups haven’t given up trying.

They’re still trying to kill us.

And yet President Obama thinks it’s sufficient to read the morning memo and get on to other things.  Not only does he pass on face to face briefings, but his Defense Secretary all but admitted that the President himself (1) authorized the recent national security leaks. There’s only one real conclusion to take from this:

The current President of the United States does not have as his first priority the security of the United States.

Remember that when you vote on November 6th.

via Bryan Preston and NRO

PS: Romney-Ryan 2012, because I want a Commander in Chief, not a campaigner in chief.

Footnote:
1) As he is allowed to do under law, so there’s no criminal violation. Because it’s legal doesn’t make it right, smart, or ethical, though.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)