9/11/13 – Are We Better Prepared and Safer than 12 Years Ago?

by Jerry Gordon (September 2013)

Debra Burlingame, a co-founder of Keep America Safe, whose brother Charles “Chic ‘Burlingame, III was a Captain on  hi-jacked Flight 77 that crashed into the Pentagon, and David Beamer, the father of Todd Beamer on board Flight 93, earnestly believe that the valiant crews and passengers engaged in the first American counter attack against AQ Islamic terrorists. America, the West and the world were unprepared, although many warnings had been given.

U.S. State Department and by the House of Representatives committees on Armed Services, Foreign Affairs, Intelligence, the Judiciary, and Oversight and Government Reform that it was revealed that the Benghazi 9/11/12 attack was premeditated and executed by a group of more than 150 to 250 well armed and trained perpetrators. The Benghazi hearings raised question about what our government was doing at the CIA annex.  Rep. Frank Wolf (R-VA) has raised the matter of whether the CIA annex was engaged in filtering arms to the Syrian rebel opposition. There is the taint that a cover up of what actually occurred at Benghazi was contrived to ensure the re-election of President Obama to a second four year term in November 2012. One of his campaign slogans was “Osama Bin Laden is dead and Al Qaeda on the run.”

What is the nature of the AQ Threat to the US Homeland post-9/11?

Former 9/11 Commissioner Lee Hamilton had this observation about the process for implementing the PBC recommendations:

It has been twelve years since the attacks on 9/11. Political leaders from both parties should renew their focus on counterterrorism strategies to ensure that our current approach matches the threats of today. Congress should hold a series of public hearings to discuss where the U.S. stands in its counterterrorism strategy. Those hearings would be an opportunity to evaluate if our nation is absorbing the institutional lessons learned over the past decade, to analyze if the government is allocating resources to the right places, and most importantly, to determine what is missing from our strategy.

The BPC recommendations to Congress were:

Bergen suggested that AQ core had been obliterated and been transformed when he commented:

Thus, the BPC report appears to follow the meme of the Obama West Wing that AQ had been decimated following the assassination of Usama bin Laden in a Navy Seal attack at his Abbatobid, Pakistan bastion on May 2, 2011.

Countering jihadi recruitment and propaganda is the main focus of our report. The report studies countries where governments have launched programs to counter extremist rhetoric and indoctrination, and it found the U.S. trails many such countries in instituting such programs.

The BPC and Soufon reports miss the clear demonstration of the resilience and high tech grasp of AQ core and its affiliates. An encrypted conference call between AQ Core and affiliates in the Middle East and Africa forced the temporary closure of more than 23 US Embassies and legations across the Muslim Ummah from the Atlantic Coast through the Arab Muslim heartland to South Asia and the Indonesian archipelago. That AQ conference call raised red flags about whether the chatter pre-figured a possible attack perhaps against US assets in the Ummah and possibly here in the US.

That was the subject of a Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD) panel discussion on August 22, 2013 in Washington, DC with Senior Fellow Tom Jocelyn, Editor of The Long War Journal, Eli Lake counterterrorism journalist at The Daily Beast and moderator FDD President, Cliff May.

reports indicate over 100 of the 603 Guantanamo detainees who have been released returned to Jihadist activities. AQ appears to be alive and flourishing. Moreover, AQ’s genetic ideological source, the Muslim Brotherhood, has been metastasizing from the Arab Spring genesis of early 2011 attempting to assume political power in Egypt, Libya and Tunisia.

Lake said he remained hopeful that peaceful Muslims like the protesters in Egypt would reject the Islamist ideology, pointing to the necessity for groups such as AQAP to employ violent thugs to enforce Sharia law.

Joscelyn countered that al Qaeda continues to achieve victories despite the rejection of jihad by younger generations of Muslims.

Our government has increased our vulnerability to Jihadi attacks

Muslim Brotherhood Triumphant in the Middle East and Washington (July 2012) and the Boston Marathon Bombings perpetrated by the Tsarneav Brothers in Refugee Jihad Terror in Boston (May 2013).

Are we better prepared and safer than we were on 9/11 12 years ago?

Rabbi Jonathan Hausman in Massachusetts:

Carole Rubin in Connecticut:

Bruce Tefft, Counter Terrorism expert:

I think we are convinced by the government and media that we are safer and better prepared. However, a simple search of our military readiness numbers, our border security and the fact that we still do not have a comprehensive method of following those who enter our country through visas and overstay, will let us know we are no better than before. Now we not only are not prepared but we are convinced we are.

Rabbi Eric Tokajer in Florida:

Nidra Poller American Ex-pat writer, Paris France:

It would be unfair to say we are not, in some ways, safer today than on 9/10 2001 and it would be untrue to say that the danger is not constantly increasing. The jihad forces that attacked the United States on 9/11 hoped to extend and widen the path of destruction until Washington, New York and other great cities looked like a bombed out neighborhood of Libya or Syria. Over the past 12 years countless plots have been foiled and jihadis arrested before they could commit mass murder. A few succeeded but never again on the 9/11 scale. Despite relentless efforts to hide the truth, the public is starting to learn about the nature of the threat.

The West Speaks.


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