According to Brian Ross at ABC News in a report filed yesterday, the unsuccessful terrorist attack designed to bring down a Northwest Airlines Airbus 330 over Detroit, Michigan was planned and launched by Al Qaeda leaders in Yemen. Five days before the plan failed on Christmas Morning, Barack Obama’s Justice Department approved the transfer and actually transferred a dozen terrorist detainees from the U.S. detainee facility at Guantanamo Bay — according to a December 20 Bloomberg report, half of the 12 transferred terrorists went to Afghanistan and Somaliland, while the other half . . . you guessed it . . . went home to Yemen.
Even better, according to Politico, the administration was hoping to send 80 more Yemeni terrorist detainees back home to Yemen from Guantanamo Bay, the secure facility specifically designed to house such creatures. This, of course, will complicate things to say the least. From the Politico piece:
Since Yemenis represent almost half of the roughly 200 remaining prisoners at Gitmo, new hurdles to their resettlement could spell more trouble for President Barack Obama’s plan to close the island prison while transferring a limited number of detainees to a prison in the U.S. Six Yemeni nationals were returned home earlier this month, and officials hoped more transfers would follow.
The relatively weak central government has been working, with U.S. military and diplomatic support, to counter two separate insurgencies, and the nation, Osama Bin Laden’s ancestral home, has become a haven for some members of Al Qaeda. That instability has contributed to concerns within the Obama administration and from its domestic critics about returning prisoners there for repatriation.
The Nigerian man charged with the Christmas Day bombing attempt aboard Northwest Flight 253, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, reportedly spent time in Yemen after graduating from a London university in 2008. According to ABC News, Abdulmutallab has told authorities that, while in Yemen, Al Qaeda operatives crafted the explosive device which was sewn into Abdulmutallab’s underwear.
We know the recidivism rate among former inmates at Gitmo. We know that approximately one in every seven detainees released return to the battlefield to fight, hurt and kill Americans. We know this, and yet this administration still plans to carry out civilian show trials for 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and five others in Lower Manhattan, and still aims to shutter the detainee facility at Guantanamo Bay in favor of a retrofitted federal prison in Illinois.
Why? My God, why?
How many American soldiers, sons and daughters and brothers and sisters and mothers and fathers to so many here at home, were killed in action at the hands of someone who should have been behind bars save for needless leniency and the lure of political correctness? How many more Americans, innocent ones here at home, must die because this administration decided that the outward perception of the United States of America among nations and heads-of-state who detest our freedom and prosperity anyway was somehow more important than the safety and security of American lives?
And, gosh, even more specifically — could the timing be any worse? It only shows the fundamental disdain this administration has toward America and the American military that it would toss around the idea of investigating and prosecuting our own intelligence officials while at the same time secure the transfer and eventual release of foreign terrorists captured on the battlefield in foreign lands in the process of attempting to kill, or actually killing, Americans. And now, in the wake of a narrowly averted terrorist attack planned and launched by radical Yemeni Muslim jihadists, we’re sending Yemeni terrorists back to Yemen? It makes no sense whatsoever.
On top of it as always were Congressmen Pete Hoekstra of Michigan and Peter King of New York. Hoekstra and King, two of my personal favorites, couldn’t have said it better. From the Politico piece:
“Yesterday just highlights the fact that sending this many people back—or any people back—to Yemen right now is a really bad idea,” said Rep. Pete Hoekstra (R-Mich.), the ranking Republican on the House Intelligence Committee. “It’s just dumb….If you made a list of what the three dumbest countries would be to send people back to, Yemen would be on all the lists.”
“I think it’s a major mistake,” Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) said about prisoner releases to Yemen. “I don’t think Guantanamo should be closed, but if we’re going to close it I don’t believe we should be sending people to Yemen where prisoners have managed to escape in the past….Obviously, if [Abdulmutallab] did get training and direction from Yemen, it just adds to what is already a dangerous situation.”
I understand the draw of showing the rest of the world that we’re not going to intentionally trample on the natural rights of an innocent man. I understand that. However, we must err on the side of safety and security for innocent American men, women and children every single step of the way. If it means incarcerating a terrorist who planned on blowing himself up for Allah anyway, so be it. If it means waterboarding, go for it. If it means a bullet to the head, even better.
We cannot fight a war with both hands tied behind our back. We cannot kill those who wish to kill us with rules of engagement that work against the entire reason for maintaining a military. Similarly, we cannot protect anyone from those who wish to kill us with tenets of political correctness which require that silver-haired, walker-bound septuagenarians receive a cavity search while Umar Farouk Abdul Mutallab skates on by the security checkpoint with high explosives in his undershorts.
Sooner or later, we’re going to lose. After intelligence officials facilitated the prevention of an attack on international flights by using liquid-based explosives, the government instituted regulations which provided a boon to the Travel-Size Toiletries industry whily only keeping people safe from explosive liquid-yielding terrorists. After alert passengers subdued Richard Reid after the radical Muslim tried to light his explosive-filled shoes on fire, the government instituted regulations which required that airline passengers remove shoes and swap foot fungus at security checkpoints. And now, after this Mutallab fellow retrieved bomb making materials from a carry-on bag and from his own underbritches, mixed the materials in a lavatory and tried to ignite the bomb underneath a blanket on his lap, the government is once again stepping in and requiring that airlines refuse to allow passengers to stand up at all or use the restroom during the final hour of every flight, no longer permit anything to be kept on passengers’ laps, and look into a moratorium on all carry-on luggage.
Sooner or later, we are going to lose. A group of men might have pulled this attack off, for example. Or, if the Yemeni terrorists decide that bringing down another airliner might be too difficult, perhaps that loss will come following an attack on a shopping mall or elementary school.
Sooner or later, that one-step-behind will turn into two steps, and we will lose. And, while the fight against radical Islam may even on a good day appear insurmountable, a good step would be to stop releasing people who will stop at nothing to murder innocent Americans.