Breaking News

Monday, March 2, 2015 - 9:31pm

New terror stance worries Republicans

New terror stance worries Republicans
Mgn Online

POSTED: Sunday, May 26, 2013 - 10:39am

UPDATED: Monday, May 27, 2013 - 12:11pm

The new era in America's war on terror -- described by President Barack Obama in a major address Thursday -- worries some Republicans, who say the phase-down could leave the country vulnerable to still-persistent threats from abroad.

In his remarks, Obama insisted the fight against terrorists must shift to reflect current threat levels, which he described as having evolved since the attacks of September 11, 2001. The global "war on terror," launched in the aftermath of those attacks, must end, "like all wars," the president maintained.

"I think this is the most significant foreign policy address ever given by this president," said Rep. Michael McCaul, the Republican chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee. "At the same time I found many parts to it disturbing for many reasons."

Chief among his concerns was Obama's call for a return to what McCaul described as a "pre-9/11 mentality," a mindset the Republican argued could lead to a dangerous level of unpreparedness as threats emerge from sources other than al Qaeda.

"I couldn't disagree with him more on that," McCaul said Sunday on CNN's "State of the Union."

In his remarks Thursday, Obama described al Qaeda as "on the path to defeat" in its longstanding bases of Afghanistan and Pakistan, but warned the terror group's affiliates in other countries still posed lethal threats to Americans.

But those groups, Obama said, are "less capable" than the larger al Qaeda, and are focused more on operating in the countries where they're based, rather than planning an attack on the American homeland.

Attacks on America are still being planned, the president warned, and "our nation is still threatened by terrorists." Yet the current threat has vastly changed in the decade-plus since the war on terror began, he said.

"We have to recognize that the scale of this threat closely resembles the types of attacks we faced before 9/11," the president said.

McCaul said Sunday the intelligence he's seen as chairman of the homeland security panel suggests a more serious danger than Obama described.

"I think the rhetoric sort of defies the reality in terms of the threat level that we've all been briefed on," he said. "I mean, the narrative is sort of that, you know, al Qaeda is on the run, they're defeated, let's claim victory, war's over. And then let's go back to a pre-9/11 mentality."

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-South Carolina, argued a scaled-down war footing could send the wrong message to potential enemies.

"What do you think the Iranians are thinking? At the end of the day, this is the most tone-deaf president I ever could imagine, making such a speech at a time when our homeland is trying to be attacked literally every day," Graham said on "Fox News Sunday."

"I've never been more worried about our national security as I am right now. This speech did not help."

In his address Thursday, Obama noted the difficulty in balancing Americans' freedoms during wartime, a task Sen. Dick Durbin argued Sunday would be made easier as the country's terror stance shifts.

"You find in a warlike atmosphere that you end up compromising some basic values and basic freedoms and liberties," Durbin, D-Illinois, said on "Fox News Sunday" in his defense of Obama's speech. "That's what the president reminded us. I'm not going to take lightly the terrorism threat against the United States. But if we're constantly thinking of this in the context of war, we stand a very real risk of doing things which compromise our values and freedoms."

Comments News Comments

There are those in our government who would have us all be like them. Thankfully the world has had enough of these cultural Marxist whocall themselves liberal.

So Obama says there is no real terror anymore! Yea we had THREE terrorist attacks in the U.S. since 'O' became president. Bush had ZERO after 9/11.

Why? These drone murders that Obama does fail to keep them from recruiting new members, fails to keep them from attacking other countries, fails to stop them from adding more hiding places.

In short, Obama fails and calls it a success. About the only thing he does is spy on citizens and rigs votes.

Smith - I thought you had some level of intelligence until I saw your latest comment. Here are the casualties attributable to the cowardly and incompetent George Bush Jr.. In the 2 wars wars he initiated: 8,119 US and allied troops killed, 600,000 US military claims for disability due to amputations and the like, c134,000 civilians killed in those lands.
The price of freedom is not free. Neither is the election of an imbecile in the presidency. Terrorists loved having infidels to kill at home.

There may be a draw-down of troops on the ground (saving many the trauma of combat situations, fewer deaths, disabilities, PTSD), but with modern technology and un-manned capabilities, a more sophisticated military presence will be deployed around the world in times of conflict...this nation will not be seen as weakening, but will be perceived as being on the cutting edge of participation in keeping rogue nations/radicals from pursuing an agenda that would compromise world stability.

Post new Comment