GWoRIT vs. OCO: Which has made/is making America Safer?
Coming on the heels of Cheney's FOX News Sunday interview, in which the former Vice President leveled criticism toward the current President that he is increasing America's vulnerability to terrorism, is an interview by Jake Tapper with the president’s National Security Adviser, Gen. Jim Jones (Ret.). Jones claims that under the Obama Administration, we have been more successful in putting terrorists out of business and in improving international relations:
"This type of radical fundamentalism or terrorism is a threat not only to the United States but to the global community," Jones said. "The world is coming together on this matter now that President Obama has taken the leadership on it and is approaching it in a slightly different way - actually a radically different way - to discuss things with other rulers to enhance the working relationships with law enforcement agencies - both national and international."
Jones said that "we are seeing results that indicate more captures, more deaths of radical leaders and a kind of a global coming-together by the fact that this is a threat to not only the United States but to the world at-large and the world is moving toward doing something about it."
The former Marine General didn't provide any specific numbers to back up his claim, but he said "there is an increasing trend and I think we seen that in different parts of the world over the last few months for sure." He added that he was not "making a tally sheet saying we are killing more people, capturing more people than they did -- that is not the issue."
But the numbers are going up, he said. “The numbers of high value targets that we are successfully reaching out to or identifying through good intelligence” from both the CIA and intelligence agencies from US allies has made the difference, he said. “We have better human intelligence; we know where the terrorists are moving. Because of the dialogue and the tone of the dialogue between us and our friends and allies...the trend line against terrorism is positive, and that’s what we want. If we have a positive trend line we have a safer country.”
All this was going on under the Bush Administration. The Obama Administration is an inheritor of those successes, including cooperation amongst foreign nations in the GWoRIT.
Many of the tools and policies put in place in waging the Overseas Contingency Operations are Bush era creations, which President Obama has kept in place in his continuation of "Bush's War(s)".
Steve Schippert writes:
Someone is going to point to Pakistan to help him out here, where Taliban leader Baitullah Mehsud was finally introduced to the working end of a Hellfire missile.
That's a load of garbage the instant anyone attempts to take that easy way out. The cooperation within Pakistan has got jack to do with President Obama's suddenly deft foreign policy prowess nor his wild popularity with global media and resulting coverage - which is to be astutely distinguished from wild popularity among world leaders. Pakistan's cooperation was being lined up mostly by the Taliban itself, which made its insurgency against the government of Pakistan so bold that the Pakistanis could push it off no longer. They simply had to deal, and have been for the better part of the year.
Predator drone attacks? Those began under President Bush and continue on under President Obama. Under Musharraf and during the Bush tenure, Pakistani authorities handed over to us, Abu Zubaydah and KSM. How have relations improved under Obama's watch?
The GWoRIT has not been waged ONLY militarily and ONLY in Iraq and Afghanistan. It's been waged globally, with kills and captures of leaders and operatives happening all the time, in 102 different countries, in cooperation with our CIA and FBI and our military. This all happened under President Bush.
Cowboy diplomacy and "go-it-alone" unilateralism? "You're either with us, or with the terrorists"? America's standing harmed; we're hated all over the world....spin and the stuff of talking point mantra myth-perceptions.
"There is no military solution."
So sick of this strawman! When had the Bush Administration ever claimed its solution to fighting terrorism was strictly a military one? When was its approach to Iraq and Afghanistan ever strictly a military solution?!
Reaching out to the Muslim community? Not exclusively unique to President Obama.
Closing Gitmo? Really?!? Please wake me when it actually happens.
The War in Iraq? President Obama rode in on the coattails of the surge success he opposed and is merely surfing the waves of SOFA, signed under President Bush.
The War in Afghanistan? He's acting more like Bush, than not.
NSA warrantless wiretaps much criticized under Bush continue under Obama (partial list of plots averted under Bush)....Rendition programs begun under Clinton, leaked under Bush (which did harm our relations by embarrassing allies implicated in cooperation with the Bush Administration on the GWoRIT- but that's thanks to the NYTimes, USAToday, and WaPo. We just can't be trusted with keeping secrets), continue under Obama....
Cross-posted at Flopping Aces