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Bomb Plot Foiled

The CIA says it’s stopped an al-Qaida plot to blow up a U.S.-bound airliner. We’ll go deep on how they spotted the plot and the bomb threat now.

This undated file photo released by Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Interior on Sunday, Oct. 31, 2010, in a combination of two photos which they say both show bomb maker suspect Ibrahim Hassan al-Asiri. Al-Asiri constructed the first underwear bomb and two others that al-Qaida built into printer cartridges and shipped to the U.S. on cargo planes in 2010. U.S. bomb experts are picking apart a sophisticated new al-Qaida improvised explosive device, a top Obama administration counterterrorism official said Tuesday, to determine if it could have slipped past airport security and taken down a commercial airplane. (AP)

This undated file photo released by Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Interior on Sunday, Oct. 31, 2010, in a combination of two photos which they say both show bomb maker suspect Ibrahim Hassan al-Asiri. Al-Asiri constructed the first underwear bomb and two others that al-Qaida built into printer cartridges and shipped to the U.S. on cargo planes in 2010. U.S. bomb experts are picking apart a sophisticated new al-Qaida improvised explosive device, a top Obama administration counterterrorism official said Tuesday, to determine if it could have slipped past airport security and taken down a commercial airplane. (AP)

The news reports on the double agent in Arabia and the foiled bomb plot aimed at U.S.-bound airliners reads like a script from “Mission Impossible.” 

A super sting.  A double agent inserted into the heart of al-Qaida in Yemen, pretending to be a willing suicide bomber, coming out alive with the latest, fiendish creation of a master bomb maker: a deadly underwear bomb so subtle it might have slipped right through. We’re past panicking every time we hear the name al-Qaida. But this gets our attention. 

This hour, On Point:  al-Qaida, the sting, and the threat now.

-Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Brian Bennett, national security correspondent for the Los Angeles Times

Philip Mudd, senior research fellow, Counterterrorism Strategy Initiative at the New America Foundation. He’s the former deputy director, National Security Branch of the FBI and former deputy director of the CIA’s  Counterterrorism Center.

Bruce Hoffman, Professor and Director, Center for Peace and Security Studies and Security Studies Program at Georgetown University.

From Tom’s Reading List

Daily Beast “The infamous Ibrahim al Asiri is thought to have orchestrated al Qaeda’s latest foiled bomb plot. Bruce Riedel on how an enemy in Yemen and his pupils are determined to blast their way into American history.”

ABC News “In a stunning intelligence coup, a dangerous al Qaeda bomb cell in Yemen was successfully infiltrated by an inside source who secretly worked for the CIA and several other intelligence agencies, authorities revealed to ABC News.”

CBS News ” Inspire, an online magazine associated with an al Qaeda affiliate group called AQAP or al Qaeda of the Arabia Peninsula continues to be published a year after its publisher and editor were killed. This week, the magazine surprised some when it released a double issue. ”

The Washington Post “The CIA and overseas intelligence partners disrupted an al-Qaeda plot to blow up civilian aircraft using an advanced explosive device designed by the terrorist network’s affiliate in Yemen, U.S. officials said Monday.”

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  • Victor Vito

    I’m not overly inclined to believe this story, and I’ll tell you why.  It is impossible for me to believe that we are batting 1.000 when it comes to preventing terrorism.  No serious terrorist successes since 9/11?  They could pull off the 9/11 attacks but could manage NOTHING since?  It doesn’t logically follow for me.  I think it is just as likely that this is a seriously overblown incident or even a partial fabrication to maintain the status quo for the government, the military, suppliers of the military, and our efforts at hegemony. 

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Would you believe the EVIDENCE, that 9/11 was ALLOWED?
          The self-proclaimed ‘decider’ taking over 15 minutes, to ‘decide’, that being read to, was less important than doing his JOB?
          THAT is only one of HUNDREDS, or thousands, of pieces of evidence against the ‘official’ ‘story’?

    • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

      Your skepticism is warranted but mis-aimed. 

      First, this second underwear bomb attempt is a far simpler operation than was 9/11, which took years to plan and set up, has only one operative and a known bomb-maker. The story is completely credible.

      Second, and more to the point, 9/11 was a very sophisticated operation ostensibly carried out by the most inept, clumsy non-jihadis (bars and prostitutes before going to meet their prophet?) several of whom had been tracked by the FBI (until the CIA pulled them off), had affiliations with the CIA (expedited visas) and the US military (training on bases) as well as an ISI paymaster (General Mahmoud Ahmad, the head of Pakistan’s intelligence agency, who was in Washington the week prior to 9/11 meeting with CIA chief George Tenet).

      9/11 happened only because those incompetent fools had  behind them the only power capable of pulling off such an unprecedented attack: US covert operations insiders and the Bush administration (Cheney, at least – Bush may have been out of the loop).

  • Winston Smith

    North Carolina’s overwhelming vote against gay marriage represents another defeat against the tide of moral excrement that is sweeping over our nation.  Perhaps anti-immorality votes such as the North Carolina vote will move God to continue to show undeserved mercy and withholding of His deserved judgment upon our nation and our gross immorality by enabling law enforcement to continue to prevent the kinds of mass killings that terrorist bombers such as the one discussed in today’s program attempt to carry out.

    • Victor Vito

      So your assertion is that because North Carolina voted against “gay marriage”, the Christian God will decide to spare us from terrorist attack?

      Just wanted to make sure your point is perfectly clear.

      • Winston Smith

        There is not necessarily a direct correspondence.  However, our nation has rejected God and His moral code more and more over the past few decades.  Groups such as the NEA, ACLU, Planned Parenthood, and many other radical left wing groups use their influence to push their anti-god agenda.  God will not force Himself on us.  But when we reject Him, we also reject His protection which our founding fathers and many others over the 236 years of our existence have acknowledged.  It is only in the past several decades that we have become so smart, independent, and self -reliant  so that we don’t need Him and longer (even though every breath that we take is a gift from God).  Old Testament Israel rejected Him and His protection and were destroyed as a nation and taken captive.  We are deserving of the same fate by rejecting Him.

        • Hidan

          The like the story of God and the Devil in the Spawn Universe. Twins fighting for the earth

          • Brett

            I like that one, Hidan! …Twins fighting for control of the earth is about right, as interpreted by those who would believe literally in such mythology.

        • Victor Vito

          I don’t think that every American is rejecting him.

        • PRIVATE GENERAL

          wah wahwah…..same old drivel. 

        • Hidan

           “Groups such as the NEA, ACLU, Planned Parenthood, and many other radical
          left wing groups use their influence to push their anti-god agenda.”

          hahahahahahhaha radial left wing, anti-god lol, Didn’t god give men free will? If every breath we take is from him than when a baby,child dies it must mean that??

          Screw his protection I’ll go with science

          “Old Testament Israel rejected Him and His protection and were destroyed as a nation and taken captive.”

          The above is about as true as Batman and Superman,Zeus, Werewolves,

          Maybe it’s about time to get over fairytale?

        • Adks12020

          Oh, come on now…just stop it.

        • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

          “His protection which our founding fathers… have acknowledged.”

          Sorry to let you in on a big (non) secret, but most of the Founders of America were Deists and transcendentalists. If they believed in God at all, it was a creator God who no longer interfered in earthly existence. 

          “Shake off all the fears of servile prejudices, under which weak minds are servilely crouched. Fix reason firmly in her seat, and call on her tribunal for every fact, every opinion. Question with boldness even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason than that of blindfolded fear.” – Thomas Jefferson, September 28, 1820

          And, by the way, God was gay. He got off on ribbing Adam but left it to the snake to temp Eve.

          • Terry Tree Tree

            LOL!  LOL!! LOL!

    • MadMarkTheCodeWarrior

      Which God would that be? The one with infinite love and compassion who has no problem damning his children to an eternity of torture not because they were mass murderers, serial killers, or pedophiles or terrorists, but because they doubt his existence without seeing proof with their own eyes?

      Please live by the teachings you, and many of us evil (and God loving) Democrats try to embrace- “Judge not lest…”

    • jefe68

      Words from the ministry of the Powerhouse Church of the Presumptuous Assumption. 

    • Terry Tree Tree

      So Child-RAPING priests and clergy cannot marry their VICTIMS?
          YOU condone the HOMOSEXUAL, and heterosexual RAPE of Children, by ‘men of God’? 
          If I remember correctly, you have stated membership in that ‘religion’?   If NOT, I apologize for a bad memory.

    • J__o__h__n

      Today’s topic is Islamic extremists not Christian ones. 

      • Terry Tree Tree

        Religious extremists are religious extremists?

    • jimino

       As one pundit joked:  Another popular vote constitutionally  guaranteeing that the only gay person on the altar for a wedding is the priest. 

    • Brett

      Who would Jesus bomb?   

  • Hidan

    Story sounds suspect. According to our NPR own stenographic journalist Dina TR the informant got his/hers hands on this in Yemen and a drone killed the #1 guy that no one has heard about before. But remember Congress just passed a bill that does not require even knowing who the drone is going to kill. Than we have the reasons why the U.S. government would report this now? According to one of the “sic” experts new body scanners are avaiable that could pick up this new Material but need the will of congress to install all over the Airports in the U.S.

  • Gregg

    Kudos to the administration. When do we invade Yemen?

    • Victor Vito

      Humor, sarcasm, irony, satire, serious analysis?  I dunno, you got me with your post.

      • Gregg

        I’m sincere about the kudos. I think this is a reminder that there are still folks plotting relentlessly day in and day out to kill as many of us as they can. President Obama seems to get that to some extent. 

        The war has no boarders, the USS Cole tragedy was in Yemen, wasn’t it? The Ft. Hood terrorist was in contact with a radical imam over there too, I think. I don’t advocate invading Yemen though, I just say let’s keep up the fight. We may sneak across the boarder and assassinate a few. Americans love that. Or maybe a drone or three. But hopefully we won’t invade.

        • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

          Actually, the war has too damn many “boarders” (sic), all getting their daily board (meals) from Haliburton privateers (pirates).

          • Terry Tree Tree

            On U.S. Taxpayers’ tab!

          • Gregg

            Good one! You even worked in the Haliburton. My bad, “borders”.

        • Terry Tree Tree

          We ‘invaded’ Yemen, years, or decades ago!
             How many U.S. Millitary bases, and personnel there?
             No problems?

    • Terry Tree Tree

      MOST of the 9/11 hijackers, were Saudi Arabians!  If we use the ‘logic’ of ‘W’, and his admin.,  we invade Sweden over this?

      • Gregg

        It never has been about something as small and petty as revenge. It’s about changing the face of the entire Middle East.

        • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

          See separate reply.

      • notafeminista

        President Obama won.

        • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

          In terms of undermining the al Qaeda network threat, he’s certainly done a much more focused and effective job than his predecessor.

          George W. Bush: “I don’t know where he is… I truly am not that concerned about him.”

        • Terry Tree Tree

          We AGREE!  Thanks!  You’re getting better!

  • Hidan

    We must now invade Yemen to overthrow there….eh…..dictator…oh wait the guy is on our side. We must promote democracy in Yemen to stop the spread of terrorism……wait that would piss off the Saudi’s and our guy in Yemen….ok than, we must send arms to our Despot in Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain to stop the spread of democracy in the name of security…..wait wouldn’t that just increase terrorism? I guess the only logical means is to take away more American civil rights and spy on it’s citizens….wait what?

    Good thing the Saudi’s are helping the U.S. with it’s exported  terrorist, where would the U.S. be without a brutal backwards religious intolerant U.S. supported country that banns protest with the threat of death? 

    • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

      “Basically, Osama said ‘jump’ and Bush and Cheney said ‘how high?’. We did exactly what he wanted us to do by going into Afghanistan.”

      - Michael Scheuer, Chief of CIA bin Laden unit, 1996- 1999

      Usama bin Laden
      Statement to the “Infidel” Nations
      delivered 7 October 2001

      “You American people – can you ask yourselves why [there is] all this hate against America and Israel? The answer is clear and very simple, that America has committed so many crimes against the nations of Muslims.”

      “America is the head of criminals by creating Israel – this continuous crime for 50 years. The government which is besieging the people of Iraq and killing them. Why [is] your government… supporting the rotten governments of our countries? What happened in the United States is a natural reaction to the ignorant policy of the United States. If it continues with this policy, the sons of Islam will not stop their struggle. The American people have to know that what is happening to them now is the result of their support of this policy.”

      “I say by God the great, America will never dream, not those who live in America will never taste security and safety unless we feel security and safety in our lands and in Palestine.”

  • Hidan
  • troll_doll

    bogus story that is too hard to believe.

  • Terry Tree Tree

    Would Bloomer-bombers have any use for the 72 virgins, after blowing the ONLY real evidence of their manhood off?

    • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

       You’re discounting the resurrection of the body?

      • Terry Tree Tree

        COMPLETELY?  Drat!

  • MadMarkTheCodeWarrior

    If you want more scary….

    Read up on a very real domestic threat to our democracy: ALEC (The American Legislative Exchange Council) a Rightwing lobbying organization has exempted itself from lobbying laws by submitting legislation for themselves through their puppets in Republican controlled legislatures in three states.

    http://truth-out.org/news/item/9007-special-rights-for-alec-three-states-exempt-stealth-corporate-lobbying-group-from-lobbying-rules

    This is not the America that I grew up believing in. This is what the founding fathers warned us of: the greatest threat to Democracy is not terrorism but domestic private interests.

    • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

       And none of those politicians could do these things if voters didn’t elect them.  The real danger is an uninformed electorate.

      • JGC

        Sadly, some of this electorate are informed, and still support this type of skulduggery.  The end justifying the means? 

        • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

           I support some of ALEC’s proposals, but I know what I’m talking about.  The point is that no matter what the organization chooses to talk about in secret, the bills have to be voted on in public and the politicians have to be elected in public.

          • MadMarkTheCodeWarrior

            When private interests are exempted from the restrictions applied to regular citizens, then we no longer have a Democracy.

            Time to vote our democracy back into power if we can given the implementation of voting machines, voter suppression acts (ALEC backed) and gerrymandering.

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

            “I know what I’m talking about.”

      • TFRX

        Pfft.

        The electorate is getting informed about ALEC’s “Keep out the vote” effort, for one thing.

        The result? ALEC is getting dropped by corporate sponsors left and right. They are no longer a “safe play” on the K-street of every state capitol.

        It seems the word about them is finally breaking through; not even the Beltway Inbreds can paper over their crap any longer. Not even the Kewl Kids with their obsession to say “both sides do it” and their worship of “savvy” can hide ALEC any longer.

        • Terry Tree Tree

          How many similiar organizations exist?   What will replace ALEC?  How long will their damage be done, before THEY are EXPOSED?

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Paolo-Caruso/1778940602 Paolo Caruso

         The real danger is a rigged political system.

        • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

           What rigging is there, exactly?  Be specific.

          • http://www.facebook.com/people/Paolo-Caruso/1778940602 Paolo Caruso

             Lobbyists, political action committees,  THE MEDIA,  the electoral college, the two party charade……..

          • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

             And what of all that forces you to vote any given way?

          • http://www.facebook.com/people/Paolo-Caruso/1778940602 Paolo Caruso

             Hey Greg, 
            Tell me,  which compromised clown should I vote for ??

          • MadMarkTheCodeWarrior

            … and who are our politicians supposed to represent – ‘The People’ or the multinational corporations who are exporting capital and our jobs, and creating new ones 5 times faster than creating them here….

          • notafeminista

            People in Guatemala and Indonesia need jobs too.

          • Boo!

             they can create their own jobs smart guy!  Self-determination–isn’t that what you parrot at home; are you a  hypocrite or proposing a welfare state?hypocrite–or

          • notafeminista

            And here Robert’s been telling us America isn’t exceptional.  Heh.

          • notafeminista

            …pity I can’t like this comment twice.

          • Boo!

             what’s your point?  That is exactly what they want–people not to vote, or care about voting, or government, or what they are doing or democracy–or to understand it–they just want you to fear…

            vote 3rd party!
            vote green.  Get in the street Organize!  Join Occupy! Their time has come.  The biosphere is the most important issue in the world–10000x over!  anything else is just peanuts.

            nobody can win a debate against a green.  And those that disagree or resist–simply are not educated or aware, and are probably stubbornly ignorant or fascist.

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong
          • Boo!

             Dems and repubs are owned by the same interests, the same corporations.  foreign policy never changes does it?  There is revolving door–corporate ceos.  The media refuses to vover, or give adequate cover to third parites–cuz theri is only one party–the fascist party.  it si designed in 2 ‘rhetorical’ parts in a game of psychological warfare.  Obama is a puppet.  bush was a puppet–same bosses.

            Stalin said–”it doesn’t matter who they vote for–they always vote for us.”

            The population is so dumbed down and apathetic–that absurdity rules the days.  And when you believe absurdities, they commit atrocities!

      • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

        “The abuse of buying and selling votes crept in and money began to play an important part in determining elections. Later on, this process of corruption spread to the law courts.  And then to the army, and finally the Republic was subjected to the rule of emperors.” – Plutarch,  Historian of the Roman Republic

        “It is enough that the people know there was an election. The people who cast the votes decide
        nothing. The people who count the votes decide everything.” – Josef Stalin

        “If pigs could vote, the man with the slop bucket would be elected swineherd every time, no matter how much slaughtering he did on the side.” – Orson Scott Card (1951- ) Novelist

        “Vote: The instrument and symbol of a free man’s power to make a fool of himself and a wreck of his country.” – Ambrose Bierce (1842-1914) The Devil’s Dictionary

        “The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.” – Winston Churchill

        “Democracy substitutes election by the incompetent many for appointment by the corrupt few.”  – George Bernard Shaw, 1905

        “Democracy:  The state of affairs in which you consent to having your pocket picked, and elect the best man to do it.”  – Benjamin Lichtenberg

        “Giving every man a vote has no more made men wise and free than Christianity has made them good.” - H.L. Mencken

        • Terry Tree Tree

          Great Quotes!!

  • X-Ray

    Why do we have to spill the beans on how this was done? Keep the techniques
    secret. Just because the Administration wants to indulge in self-aggrandizement
    doesn’t mean it is the best thing for the country. Revealing the methods aids
    the terrorists.

    • Drew (GA)

      “Why do we have to spill the beans on how this was done?”

      It’s an election year…

      • Terry Tree Tree

        Could just have ‘Orange’, and ‘Red’ ‘Security Alert Status, between now, and Nov 6th, like MOST election cycles, for 7 years?  MORE to your liking?

        • Drew (GA)

          Of course that would not be more to my liking. I was just commenting that ALL Politicians will seize on ANY perceived opportunity they come across during an Election Year. And every other year come to think of it…

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Republicans have been hounding the admin.  about SEVERAL disasters that Republicans CAUSED! 
         You don’t expect Democrats to do anything, but quietly allow themselves to be attacked, by the likes of the deceitful O’Keefe?
         When Republicans own up, as LOUD, about the things they have done wrong, I’ll consider what they have to say?

  • BHA in Vermont

    As interesting as all this is, WHY can’t people keep things to themselves?

    Just because a journalist has some juicy story doesn’t mean they should publish it. All this information just serves to make AQAP more careful. They will get through one day and it will likely be due, in part, to secrets that are no longer secret. The agent could have possibly set up the bomb maker but not now. And the bomb maker is surely digging a deep hole to hide in. 

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Paolo-Caruso/1778940602 Paolo Caruso

       AQAP ????   The new and improved scary boggyman.  

      You probably have more explosions in your own underwear than does these fabricated terrorists.

    • notafeminista

      Great question.  I wonder why Mitt Romney’s dog story made the news.

      • Ray in VT

        Because he had the poor sense to talk about it, like his wife’s Cadillacs or his NASCAR owner friends.  He provides a good deal of ammo for people who want to portray him in a certain light.

        • notafeminista

          And what light would that be?

      • nj_v2

        Right, no information should be published that makes your Republican candidate look like a clown.

        • notafeminista

          Guess it depends on the definition of a juicy story doesn’t it.

    • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

      And your answer is to even further disempower the fourth estate to do the job it’s supposed to do?

      Just because the Washington Post had some juicy story about the Pentagon Papers, why the hell should they put the people’s right to know above national security secrecy? 

      You’ve got to be kidding!

  • John in Danvers

    Gee, guys , isn’t it obvious? The FBI tricks low mental capacity people in the US just this way. Because there aren’t any real attackers here!

    Now the CIA is taking the trick global, followed by drone strike. Maybe there aren’t really any terrorists over there either?

  • Randall

    Tom,

       I have enjoyed your program for the most part, but here you are jumping on the bandwagon. Let these people do their job, and zip your lips.

    Randall Byrd
    Leoma, TN 38468

    • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

      Throttle the free press. Kettle the protesters. Impose draconian security laws on the people. 

      Yup, that’s a good strategy for protecting and preserving freedom and democracy.

      • Boo!

         This is sarcasm for you people (Notafeminista, betterearle, etc..) who don’t understand.

        • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

          If we are “you people” then are you a extraterrestrial? or a bacterium?

  • Boston mom

    What a truly bizarre bunch of comments. Truly. Wow.

    • nj_v2

      The OP comment section is kind of like a daily, holiday meal with the extended, disfunctional family.

      • Boston mom

        Haha! True. Still, I’ve never seen it quite this, um, fragmented. In that the first dozen responses I read were about everything from God to gay rights, and basically everything that had nothing to do with this story. 

        • nj_v2

          It’s even worse on the weekly news round-up (free-for-all Friday).

          People have their pet obsessions delusions issues which they feel compelled to mention at every opportunity, whether they’re relevant or not.

          Our “conservative” friends will bash Obama for everything and anything, every day, all the time, even manufacturing issues to do so.

          The Obamabots will defend him no matter what, and fail to even acknowledge any bit of the prevarication, lies, broken campaign promises, corporate kow-towing, etc.

          One poster is so concerned about the greeeedy rich and pedophile priests that we are reminded daily, and sometimes multiple times per day, about this, no matter the context.

          Supporters of some sort of fantasy “liberty” agenda shill for Ron Paul and insult anyone who doesn’t see their light.

          And on it goes.

          Oops, i’ve wandered even further off topic.

          • Terry Tree Tree

            It IS a Week News Roundup?  
               Part of it IS pertinent to the news of the current week?
               Different, and differing views are presented?
               You come back to it?

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

            What about animal rights? You forgot animal rights!

          • Terry Tree Tree

            And animal LEFTS?  Animal rights would only fall over, without animal lefts?

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

            Two birds tied
            together have four wings but cannot fly.

          • nj_v2

            Dang! I must subconsciously hate animals.

      • JGC

        Excuse me…could somebody please pass the poutine?

  • Adks12020

    I’m glad there are people out there working on these issues but I wish it wouldn’t have come out. Sometimes I wish these things would just stay secret.  It would be better for the mental state of the American public, and maybe limit the fear mongering by politicians, and it would be better for the intelligence agents trying to get these people. Publicity isn’t going to help anyone but the terrorists.

    • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

      “Secrecy is the first essential in affairs of the State.”
      - Duc De Richelieu, chief minister to King Louis XIII in
      1624, he sought to consolidate royal power and crush domestic factions

      “Secrecy is the freedom tyrants dream of.” – Bill Moyers

      “Secrecy, being an instrument of conspiracy, ought never to be the system of a regular government.”
      - Jeremy Bentham, jurist, philosopher, social reformer

      • nj_v2

        You’re expanding my quote file today.

  • Drew (GA)

    You know what would have been even more impressive? If the agent had taken out the whole cell, then we never heard about it. That would have been impressive. I’m glad they “caught” the “terrorist”.

  • nj_v2

    One of the guests is blathering “…drone strikes are reducing al-Quaeda capacity…”

    Something else drone strikes are doing:

    http://www.salon.com/2012/05/08/us_attack_kills_5_afghan_kids/singleton/

    US attack kills 5 Afghan kids
    “The way in which the U.S. media ignores such events speaks volumes about how we perceive them”

    As long as U.S. policy encompasses foreign occupation, remote drone strikes, and other actions of corporate/governmental hegemony, there will be an endless stream of recruits to the cause to strike at the devil of the West. Good job security for those employed in the corporate-governmental-terrorism-industrial complex.

    • BHA in Vermont

       The Taliban kills far more Afghan kids with their suicide bombers than we could ever kill in “collateral damage” during a drone strike against those attacking the Afghan government and people.

      • Terry Tree Tree

        ‘Laser-like-precission’ drone strikes, that kill children, and other innocents, WILL be used against us, by Al-Quieda, and ANY others, as U.S. would against them?

      • Boo!

         so, you compare America to the Taliban?  Exactamundo!  Now you get it.

      • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

        So we should measure ourselves against the morality of the Taliban to determine whether we are marginally better?

      • nj_v2

        Factually incorrect. The number of civilian deaths from Taliban suicide bombers is about the same as from all anti-Taliban forces.

        http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/04/world/asia/afghanistan-civilian-deaths-hit-record-un-says.html?_r=1

        Numbers aside, your rationalization come down to, “We kill fewer innocents than the designated enemy, so no problem.”

        • notafeminista

          Wait a minute.  You grump that the mainstream media is ignoring civilian deaths and then quote two mainstream media sources.

          • nj_v2

            Are you trying to sound foolish, or does it come naturally?

    • notafeminista

      Isn’t salon the US media?

      • Boo!

         i think its Canadian.  But it doesn’t matter–a degree of half-truths, and facts sometimes do age into the papers, as blurbs lost on page 16, mistakes, or to keep us guessing and confused as to make them look like real journalists–confusion is a key tactic in pys-ops, brainwashing, hazing, and torture.

        • JGC

          Not Canadian.  Salon is U.S. based (San Francisco?)  But we’ll take credit for Adbusters.org, proudly exporting the Occupy movement since 2011. 

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

            WHAT! Occupy is a foreign intervention?

            Jeezum, pretty soon we’ll all be eating poutine.

          • JGC

            Mmmmmmm…poutine…

      • nj_v2

        How your trolling going today?

        • notafeminista

          Not nearly as well as yours.

  • Tmomma57

    I am way more afraid of our government than Al-Q.  If we’d get the heck out of the Middle East and worry about our problems right here at home.  Then Al-Q wouldn’t mess with us.  Also, since Al-Q works with us when we need them it(like in North Africa) it seem like more of the same scare tactics to get the American people to give up more freedom.  After watching the original underwear bomber being escorted through security with no visa or passport makes me skeptical of everything the CIA/FBI does. Infowars.com

    • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

      We’d have to “get the heck out of the Middle East”, get Israel to become a secular multi-cultural state, and stop supporting tyrants. Tough row to hoe.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Paolo-Caruso/1778940602 Paolo Caruso

    Sounds like another choreographed event to boost stocks and business for security firms… many of them based in Israel. 

    • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

       Here you go again–the Israelis are responsible for all terrorist plots in the world.  Do you have any evidence, or is it just the little demon on your shoulder who whispers things to you?

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Paolo-Caruso/1778940602 Paolo Caruso

         Are you joking Camp???  The evidence is overwhelming and readily accessible.  All is required is a brain, inquisitiveness, and internet access.

        • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

           No, I’m not joking.  Anyone with a brain can tell that you suspect Jews of causing the world’s problems.  The rest of us know better.

          • Boo!

             That is not waht he is saying!!!!!!!!

            Get a grip.  Nobody said Jews.  Let it go all ready–enough! Irsael is a nation (a false one carved out with western help–displacing others) and as such should act within the law and with respect as all nations are expected to do so.  The information surrounding Israel is mythical, false, outlandish, and absurd–isreal is the biggest terrorist plutocracy on the face of the earth–sister to america, vassal of America–vice-versa.

          • Brettearle

            Boo,

            Israeli Jews ought to be separated–ideologically and otherwise
            –from all Jews, everywhere?

            Is that what you’re saying, Boo?

            Or are you planning to dodge the question?

            And just for the fun of it, Boo, would you like to redraw the map of Human History and state, for the record, that the Jews never lived along the Fertile Crescent, Boo?

            Or is it, Boo, that you are planning to run from that question too, Boo?

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

            There’s considerable scholarly evidence that the map of Jewish history has long been fabricated to justify a cultural myth (the Chosen People) and a political program (Zionism).

            The Thirteenth Tribe
            (1976) by Arthur Koestler, advances the thesis that Ashkenazi Jews are not descended from the historical Israelites, but from Khazars, a Turkic people. It is widely known that the Khazars converted
            to Judaism in the 8th century, and migrated westwards into Eastern Europe in the 12th and 13th centuries. Koestler suggests that 95% of world Jewery and 50% of Israeli Jews are Caucasians, not Semites.

            The Invention of the Jewish People (2008) by Shlomo Sand, Professor of History at Tel Aviv University, similarly argues that most Jews are converts from various Mediterranean lands, and that the current Palestinians are the direct descendants of the ancient Israelites.

          • Boo!

             well said and true

          • Boo!

             what questions have I run from?  Hmm–beatlebee?  why do you keep saying Boo! Are you trying to scare me?

            I never run from questions.  I love questions.  If you would be so kind, to open your mind for a moment and not be so ridiculously angry about nothing you can read my comments above and Riversong’s–the point is made i think.

            Yes, ‘Israeal jews’–should be absolutely seperated from ‘all jews’.  Are all black peole th esame?  Are all americans monolitihic in their thinking?  Read ON point and you might come to a different conclusion.  All americans ar enot white.  Not by far.  All jews do not think th esame.  I do not think the same as my governemtn or my corporate-aristocracy.  Nor should I!

            America is not Americans.  In fact, not all Israeli ‘citizens are Jewish–are they BEatlebee!?

            And not all Israeli citizens think the same or can be confused with their terrorist government.  I do not want to be confused with my government.  Are you a drone?  A Borg?  Are you an institution?  an Idea?

            A.I.–a computer?  I thought i was talking to an individual human being.

          • Boo!

             the Israelite conquered the fertile crescent even way back then in biblical times–the first thing–’Moses’ did was form regiments, the 12 tribes and then went to war–an invasion–battalions. 

            Some people lived there–yes–but you cant just come back 200 year slater and push ou tht epeople who live ther and hav e aclaim to the land.

            I am not a racist like you seem to be–race does not equal nation or community.  The two can be separated.  What is so wrong with America that a jew thinks they need to leave and go to kil people elswehere and carve out a strip of land in someones elses home?  Am I entitled to go to Israel and live ther as a an Israelite?  or do I have to be Jewsih–a nation based on race–therefore needs to vanquish all other languages, skin-colors and ethnicity.  Sounds like Nazism to me.  The victims are said to take on characteristics of their oppressors.

            I think a bad element controls Israel.  i think Israel was a bad idea and unjust.  And we suffer from those imperial racist ideas today.

            but what is done cannot so easily be undone.  what we must do–what israel must do is recognize Palestine as a nation independent and free and live in harmony rather than be so bullying and hateful and evil and murderous.

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

            It is you who is confusing Israel with Jews. I am a Jew, but I am anti-Zionist and opposed to most of the Israeli state’s policies.

            Maybe you can stretch your mind to discern the difference.

          • http://www.facebook.com/people/Paolo-Caruso/1778940602 Paolo Caruso

            thank you for making this point.

        • originalname37

          I’m curious and willing to read. Please point me to the citations you’re talking about.

      • Terry Tree Tree

        Actually, Greg, I think you would find it VERY interesting to check into the ‘Security Firms’, and equipment suppliers, of things that WERE, and CAN be made HERE, and how MUCH of it is from Israel?
            They certainly wouldn’t be the first entity that does things to ‘manufacture need’, for their product?

        • notafeminista

          Versus how much is from China?

          • Terry Tree Tree

            GOOD QUESTION! 

          • Boo!

             How much?  Point?

          • notafeminista

            3T is implying that Israel is manufacturing need for their products.  China actually sells lots and lots and lots of products to the US in signficantly higher quantities on the whole than Israel.  Are they “manufacturing a need” for their products?

          • Boo!

             product?  weapons? fear?  Plastic trinkets?  China sells more plastic junk to the US–or China sells more plastic junk to Israel?  off topic?  Or do mean China sells weapons to Israel and the U.S.?

            How is the china trade surplus-deficit relevant to Israel as a war platform for the US? 

            I’m not saying whatever your saying is wrong–i just don’t get your rhetoric or reasoning–the syntax is so poor as to lose meaning…

            clarification is needed.

      • Boo!

         Come on Israel as a nation–is a terrorist-state.  A platform for US oppression terror, and war.  Stop aid to israel and we eliminate half the problem.

        Free Palestine!

        • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

          Actually 69.75% of the problem, roughly speaking.

        • Brettearle

          That’s it, Boo, you just keep thinking in a naively distorted way.

          That may be what you’re good at.

          Normally any conflict, has two sides.

          And, normally, both sides are on the right side and the wrong side of the issues and arguments. 

          [Except of course for the Jews in the Holocaust.  Something tells me there was only one side there, who was on the wrong side.]

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

            “keep thinking in a naively distorted way…Normally any conflict, has two sides.”

            Such as the Spanish conquest of the Americas, and the British colonial near-genocide of Native Americans, and the Zionist occupation and ethnic cleansing of Palestine…

            Naive is the simplistic belief that there are always two equal sides to every conflict.

            When a modern nation invades and occupies a primitive people, the warfare is typically so aysmmetrical as to amount to genocide. And when that modern nation invades and occupies another people’s traditional lands, that’s a war crime of the highest level.

          • Brettearle

            I never said “always” two sides to every conflict.

            I said, “normally”.

            You quoted me yourself.

            There you go again with YOUR OWN LACK OF NUANCE.

            Your arrogance got the best of you.

            Once again, you’ve displayed your knee-jerk reactions.

            All the Best….

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

            Yes you did. And I responded that “normally” – in fact most of the time – that’s simply not the case. 

            Using CAPITALS and ad hominen arguments doesn’t make a wrong argument right.

          • Boo!

             always on the defense you are…relax, we dont want to hurt you.  everything will be ok.  Have some chocolate.

          • Boo!

             Precisely what he said. 

            people are scary.  Americans scare me–frighten me, terrify me.  You can be obtuse and cold-hearted and malicious.

          • Boo!

             that is American people can be obtuse and cruel…

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

            So who is “me”? What nation are you part of? Or are you just nobody making noise?

          • Boo!

             look–i am entitled to my opinions–well-educated opinions, and well read.  There is no need to attack sb because they think more deeply than you or have a different P.O.V.   We all do–we all have unique experiences–really it’s about awareness–what you are aware of and choose to be aware of–if you’re listening and watching and thinking.

            There is no need to attack me.  I am arguing against institutions, a myth–not you–but that angers you for some reason–could it be you are content to slumber and dream the dream?

            I am aware of shades of gray.  But here, the gray is definitely, and definably charcoal–the pendulum swings way to the right. 

            I never attacked ‘Jews’–so why do some people choose to equate a critique of Israel–as a critique of ‘Jews’–hmm.  always this way. 

            I never mentioned in this comment the holocaust–and it has nothing to do ith what i mentioned–so dont bring it up–its a red herring.  Its irrelevent.  Why must some people always resort to the big ‘H’ when talking about the cruel and malicious and racist policies of a State.  Not the same thing.  Why don’t you do your research and find out how exactly Israel came to be–not unlike our American history–genocide–you must eradicate the people all ready living there if you want their land and resources–if you are cruel and malicious. 

            But Good people make friends and negotiate and help each other–and show compassion rather than bombs. 

      • Brettearle

        Greg–

        You can’t reason with political bias–and we both know it.

        We can scream, stomp our feet, and justifiably ridicule the political bigotry.

        But in the final analysis, these men and women are impervious to analysis, a final analysis, and to psychoanalysis.

        Take away the second syllable from the last word, in the previous paragraph, and you might possibly have arrived at an accurate depiction of what types are behind such diseased rhetoric. 

        • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

          “Take away the second syllable from the last word”

          Psyanalysis?

          Is that like Psi phenomena? You know, ESP and psychokinesis and such?

          • Brettearle

            Oops….

            My mistake: 

            I should have said, “Use only the first two syllables, from last word, in the previous paragraph.”

            Thanks for pointing out the confusion. 

          • Brettearle

            “from the last word” not “from last word”.

            Phewwwww

          • Terry Tree Tree

            bigot?

          • aj

            * * * * *

    • notafeminista

      Except we know this administration is lukewarm towards Israel at best.   Might just be a campaign tactic to make the incumbent appear forceful and decisive.

    • jefe68

      What?

  • BHA in Vermont

    There is no question that non US airports don’t have the same security as we do. I went to Athens 2 years ago. I had to take off my shoes to get on the airplane at JFK. In Athens, no such requirement. Standard walk through the scanner security. Seems like we are protecting other countries from potential US based attacks but they aren’t too worried about reciprocating. 

    • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

      Or, more likely, the extreme measures we impose on Americans are simply unnecessary except to maintain fear and control domestically.

      • Zing

         Not to mention safety and security…thank you Bush – Obama

  • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

     Until the TSA gropings stop, I’ll drive myself, thanks.

    • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

      Then you can pick up your own gropers at the rest area bathrooms. Nothing like free choice.

      • Zing

         So, you prefer picking up rest area gropers, then?

        • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

          I hope you’re not more than 12 years old. Otherwise you embarrass the human race.

  • William

    It’s nice to brag about success but it would be better to say the terrorist was caught and lie how he was caught. Why give up what works?

  • Boston mom

    Free society commenter, thank you. Certain security measures, fine, but the naked machine already takes it too far. I’ll skip people checking my underwear when boarding flights. 

    • Brettearle

      When 85 year old women and Nuns (of any age) get throroughly examined, we know that we’ve gone too far…..even though some day, a terrorist may, indeed, arise from one of these two categories. 

      • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

        Terrorist Nuns? Aren’t those the feminists that are undermining the authority of the Church?

        • Brettearle

          Ha. Ha.

          I’ll never tell.

          But in the post-modern matrix of videogames, you just might see a star wars clan of feminista-clergy arise and do battle with chauvinistPriest cults and Satan’s roller-derby daughters. 

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

            Sounds like a case of art imitating reality.

          • Brettearle

            Wrong again, Karnak breath!

             (just kidding)

            Ya got that half right:

            It’s a case of art imitating reality imitating art imitating reality….and so on….. 

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

            I don’t play video games, so I would not understand your non-literary allusion.

          • Brettearle

            You jumped to the wrong conclusion.

            I don’t either.

            I was employing poetic license.

  • HCW

    Cynically speaking I’d say the government likes plots such as this that it can foil and then feed to the press. But I would argue that killing or jailing so called terrorists (or rather those driven by ideologies that differ from and threaten our capitalist based ones will never succeed in eliminating the problem. As someone commented earlier our drones have killed innocent civilians. This sort of “mistake” in an instant reinvigorates the hatred toward our country that keeps Al-Quaeda alive.

    • ana

      I agree with most of your points.  but, how do we deal with terrorists?  There is no option for dialogue.  Should we just stop all offense and take our chances?  I am sure there are threats that we are not privey to such as biological and even nuclear.   The next attack on our soil would surely be met with outrage for not preventing it.I would like never to hear about another drone attack.  But, what then?

      • Boo!

         yes!! finally you get it! yes, we stop all offense.  When we do, they will have no reason to hate us.  Even better, lets aid ‘axis’ countries and start an honest respectful relationship–guess what–you will never see another terrorist–except American chrisitain radicals.

        • ana

          I hope you would be right.   There are natural born killers in the world  who need little to set them off.  
          I would love to see an end to the offense, but am not as sure as you of the outcome.
          Can humans ever be safe  other human predators?    Is turn the other cheek the way to go?

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

            There are no “natural born killers”. Every baby born is just as innocent and deserving of dignity. When we deprive others of dignity, they retaliate.

            “The nations of infidels have all united against Muslims. You American people – can you ask yourselves why [there is] all this hate against America and Israel? The answer is clear and very simple, that America has committed so many crimes against the nations of Muslims.”

            “America is full of fear from its north to its south, from its west to its east. Thank God for that. This is something, very little, of what we have tasted for decades. Since nearly 80 years we have been tasting this humiliation.”

            “They [Americans] support the murder against the victims so God has given back to them what they deserve. Those who live in America will never taste security and safety unless we feel security and safety in our lands and in Palestine.”

            - Osama bin Laden, October 2001

            “If you (Americans) are sincere in your desire for peace and security, we have answered you… it would be useful for you to read the book “Rogue State,” which states in its introduction: “If I were president, I would stop the attacks on the United States: First I would give an apology to all the widows and orphans and those who were tortured. Then I would announce that American interference in the nations of the world has ended once and for all.”

            “As for us we have nothing to loose. He who swims in the ocean does not fear the rain. You have occupied our land, you have attacked our honor and dignity, you have spilled our blood, stolen our wealth, destroyed our homes and you have shattered our security. And we will give you the same treatment.”

            “You have tried to prevent us from living with dignity, but you won’t be able to prevent us from dying with dignity… Do not be deceived with your power and your armaments, it can only make you win some battles but you will loose the war.”

            - Osama bin Laden, January 19, 2006

          • ana

            Psychopathology is a disease.  Most violent killers are predisposed and  their actions require little or no stimulation.
             

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

            We get a psychological disease, and are not born with it.

            Most violence is “hot blooded” (heat of the moment) not cold blooded, except for the organized violence we call war. 

            You are perpetuating ignorance and prejudice, not science or fact.

          • notafeminista

            How do you know people aren’t born with psychological disease?  You’ll need a source for that.

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

            On the contrary. If you believe that it’s a fact, you need to produce the science. 

            Can’t do your own research?

            By definition, however, a “psychological disease” is a dysfunction of the mind (which is a cultural, post-partum phenomenon), as opposed to a genetic or physical disease (which is cellular and trans-partum). Unless, of course, you’re so reductionist as to assume that mind and brain are identical.

          • Boo!

             dum dum dum dum!  These are soldiers committed to an idea–not psychopaths–unless you consider all soldiers psychopaths–including US soldiers–most of them are.  Blackwater truly is. 

          • ana

            Are you suggesting that 9/11 was a self inflicted  “wound” ? .
            Are you suggesting that Al Queda  would meet and hold peace talks?   Or am I missing your point.
            I really think the President would be open to such an opportunity.

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

            There is absolutely no doubt that 9/11 was self-inflicted on many levels.

            Every CIA agent understands the concept of blowback. And bin Laden has always been very clear about the reasons for jihad.

            Noam Chomsky has said the same thing.

            “There are many terrorist states in the world, but the United States is unusual in that it is officially committed to international terrorism.”

            “Everybody’s worried
            about stopping terrorism. Well, there’s a really easy way: stop participating in it.”– Noam Chomsky

            But, if you “really think the President would be open to such an opportunity”, then you know absolutely nothing about US foreign policy.

          • Terry Tree Tree

            Would it take YOU over 15 minutes, to ‘decide’ you need quit being read to, IF you had been told “the nation is under attack!” ?
               IF your transportation was Marine 1, AND Air Force 1?
               OR, would that be the action of someone waiting for information about the REST of the planes he knew about?

          • aj

            Thank you for your service TTT.

          • notafeminista

            That is precisely what he is suggesting.  The United States brought terrorist attacks on itself.  It’s a little like blaming a rape victim for being scantily dressed.

          • Boo!

             nonsense!  get a grip!

          • Boo!

            yes it was a self-inflicted wound–wo after so long you are getting it. Wonderful.  NO–we dont have peace talks with soldiers–we have peace talks with nations and extend a helping hand like good people do–if you judge somebody by actions–look oat ours–what do you see–evil!

      • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

        “how do we deal with terrorists?  There is no option for dialogue”

        No option for dialogue when you refuse to engage in dialogue.

        guardian.co.uk, Sunday 14 October 2001

        The Taliban would be ready to discuss handing over Osama bin Laden to a neutral country if the US halted the bombing of Afghanistan, a senior Taliban official said today.

        Afghanistan’s deputy prime minister, Haji Abdul Kabir, told reporters that the Taliban would require evidence that Bin Laden was behind the September 11 terrorist attacks in the US.

        “If the Taliban is given evidence that Osama bin Laden is involved” and the bombing campaign stopped, “we would be ready to hand him over to a third country”.
         
        President George Bush rejected as “non-negotiable” an offer by the Taliban to discuss turning over Osama bin Laden if the United States ended the bombing in Afghanistan.

        He added, “There’s no need to discuss innocence or guilt. We know he’s guilty”.

    • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

      All military strategies are a calculus of death and revenge. What matters to the planners is only that “they” hate the “enemy” more than they hate us, and that the payoff is “worth it”.

  • John in Amherst

    It is hard to imagine that we know the whole story. 
    It seems highly likely that there are multiple levels of intrigue and deception, spin, and strategic plays several moves out.  How is it the Saudis are at once our secret service allies AND the source of so much terrorist funding and so many recruits?  How far have we gone in trading our liberties for security?  What level of threat is the US public willing to bravely countenance, and how much insecurity and collateral damage at home and abroad can we accept to remain free?  What is the distinction between a “war on terror” and the “normal” and on-going police and security services’ interception of “lone wolves” and small, radical terror cells?  How does fundamentalist rigidity in the Muslim world mirror fundamentalist Jewish and Christian ideology, and how does the vast majority of the world’s non-radical, non-fundamentalist population counteract fundamentalist threats to freedom world wide?  When do we focus on the forest, and not the trees?     

    • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

      A more pertinent question is “how does the fundamentalism of the Muslim world mirror that of the Neo-con vision?”

      THE POWER OF NIGHTMARES – BBC
      written and produced by Adam Curtis, 2004 

      “In the past our politicians offered us dreams of a better world. Now they promise to protect us from nightmares.

      The most frightening of these is the threat of an international terror network. But just as the dreams were not true, neither are these nightmares.

      The Power of Nightmares explores how the idea that we are threatened by a hidden and organized terrorist network is an illusion.

      It is a myth that has spread unquestioned through politics, the security services and the international media.

      At the heart of the story are two groups: the American neo-conservatives and the radical Islamists.  Both were idealists who were born out of the failure of the liberal dream to build a better world.  These two groups have changed the world but not in the way either intended.

      Together they created today’s nightmare vision of an organized terror network, a fantasy that politicians then found restored their power and authority in a disillusioned age.  Those with the darkest fears became he most powerful.”

      • John in Amherst

        Interesting points, but I disagree that Islamist or for that matter Christian or Jewish fundamentalism is born of the failure of the “liberal dream” (whatever the hell that is).  Fundamentalism – the belief that scripture written down a couple thousand years ago and passed on via “true believers” is an immutable and bonafide connection to the Divine – is the problem.  When coupled with the notions that , to paraphrase Goldwater, “extremism in the defense of the Holy word is no vice”, and a belief that God is a real estate broker, fundamentalism puts humanity on a religious collision course that threatens annihilation of us all.  This, of course, is not threatening to fundamentalists, who are basically all suicide bombers at heart, as death is just the door to a glorious eternity.  These forces need to be marginalized ASAP.
         

        • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

          The current “war on terror” is one between just two fundamentalisms: Islamic jihad and Neo-con jihad.

          From The Power of Nightmares:

          Two relatively unknown individuals each came to believe that liberalism held the seeds of its own demise and led inexorably to nihilism. One was an Egyptian school inspector, Sayyid Qutb, who enrolled in college in Greeley, Colorado, and the other was a political philosopher at the University of Chicago, Leo Strauss.

          Sayyid Qutb experienced the self-centeredness and moral degeneracy of American culture in the late 50′s and, returning to Egypt, joined the Muslim Brotherhood which helped Gamel Nasser overthrow the last of British imperialism.  But Nasser then asserted a secular state and formed alliances with the US, brining in the CIA to train their new security services which viciously tortured members of the Brotherhood.

          Qutb was himself subjected to extreme torture and concluded that the Islamic world was so infected with the disease of the west, which he called jahiliyyah – a state of barbarous ignorance – that it couldn’t even recognize its own state.  A virtuous Islamic vanguard was needed to fight these forces, both within and without the Islamic world, and any means were justified in this fight for survival.  Nassar determined to crush the Brotherhood and, In 1996, Qutb was put on trial for treason and executed. 

          The next day, a young schoolboy, Ayman al-Zawahiri, decided to establish Qutb’s vanguard and later became the mentor to Osama bin Laden.

          In the meantime, the promise of liberalism’s Great Society was being replaced with urban riots and the breakdown of order and America’s cultural institutions. 
           
          But there was a way to stop this, Leo Strauss believed.  It was for politicians to assert powerful and inspiring myths everyone could believe in. They might not be true, but they were necessary illusions. One of these was religion; the other was the myth of the nation – the idea that the country had a unique destiny to battle against the forces of evil throughout the world.

          This myth was epitomized, Strauss told his students, in his favorite television program, Gunsmoke, because it showed the conflict between good and evil in a way that would be immediately intelligible to everyone.

          His other favorite show was Perry Mason; and this, he told his students, epitomized the role that the elite had to play.  In public, they should promote the myths necessary to rescue America from decay, but in private they didn’t need to believe in them.

          In the 1970′s Irving Kristol became the focus of a group of disaffected intellectuals in Washington who found an answer in the ideas of Leo Strauss.  Paul Wolfowitz, who studied with Strauss, Irving’s son William Krystol and others became the neo-conservatives.

          Their aim was to try to stop the social disintegration that they believed liberal ideas had unleashed. They would set out to create the myth of America as a unique nation destined to combat evil in the world.

  • Terry Tree Tree

    ‘W’ promoted the idea that HE should be able to choose how our enemies should attack us?  
        What ASSANINE HUBRIS, to think YOU can dictate the morals and ethics of those that don’t LIKE you?

    • notafeminista

      President Obama won.

      • Terry Tree Tree

        We AGREE!  Thanks!

    • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

      Well, if you’ve got personal and business connections to the bin Laden family…you just might entertain such fantasies.

  • Joani

    Your expert Bruce, with his mispronunciation :”cathartick” adj? and his trying to talk over and dismiss our wars and continued presence in Irak and Afghanistan as well as our insane use of those wonderful drones and our big talk about bombing Iran is more than annoying.
    War drums?
    Bomb creation that we created? I have become cynical and resentful of the ways our democracy has been altered permanently.
    AND PS, main point:
    “Experts” should learn the language before using it foolishly to “explain” Al Queda.

  • Akfaka

    As long as we don’t kill this evil ideology, with the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, we only give the gihadists a reason to hate and kill us the  we will always under attack. 

    • Terry Tree Tree

      The Saudi Arabia connections are always played down, especially by those getting PAID by Saudi interests?
      ‘W’, his father, Colin Powell, and MANY others, (Obama?), through the Carlisle Group, millitary contractors, etc…, get BIG MONEY, from Saudi sources, for dubious ‘services’?
          MANY of the ‘terrorists’, that have done, or attempted GREAT HARM, to U.S. interests, were from Saudi Arabia?
          So we invade Iraq?

      • notafeminista

        President Obama won.

        • Terry Tree Tree

          We AGREE!  Thanks!

        • jimino

           Nobody won.  When our military and diplomatic personnel, along with their spouses and children, can live in the general population of Iraq, like we did in Germany within a couple years after the end of WWII, then we can talk about who won.  Until then, I would be happy if just the Bush’s, Cheneys, Wolfowizc’s, Feiths and other planners of the invasion moved there with their offspring to experience and illustrate how wonderful things turned out.

          • notafeminista

            Fair point.  Right after the Left moves to Vietnam.

  • Terry Tree Tree

    Interesting change, from the published subject of the second-hour show, and the lack of comment board for it?  Alaska?

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

    The News is wrong. A CIA agent infiltrated a terrorist cell in Yemen and he was able to steal a New Bomb Device that will not be detected by x-rays or airport scanners.
     
    He left Yemen and went to Saudi Arabia. There was a never a bomb plot to blow an airplane.

  • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

    re Gregg: “It never has been about something as small and petty as revenge. It’s about changing the face of the entire Middle East.”

    It’s about restoring and expanding American hegemony over the world – always has, always will be.

    By 1975 even Saudi Arabia and Kuwait had nationalized oil. Fear of the Soviet Union and Vietnam syndrome, ruled out direct intervention, necessitating the ‘Nixon doctrine’ which relied on regional powers, Iran and Israel to control challenges to US interests in the region.

    Zbigniew Brzezinski: How Jimmy Carter and I Started the Mujahideen, Jan, 1998

    Brzezinski: Regret what? That secret operation was an excellent idea. It had the effect of drawing the Russians into the Afghan trap and you want me to regret it? The day that the Soviets officially crossed the border, I wrote to President Carter: We now have the opportunity of giving to the USSR its Vietnam war. Indeed, for almost 10 years, Moscow had to carry on a war unsupportable by the government, a conflict that brought about the demoralization and finally the breakup of the Soviet empire.

    Kicking the Vietnam Syndrome
    By Robert Parry, February 28, 2011

    Twenty years ago, with a resounding victory in a 100-hour ground war against Iraqi troops in Kuwait, the first Bush administration completed the restoration of a powerful public consensus, a renewed national commitment that the United States should act as the world’s imperial policeman.

    That consensus, which took shape after World War II, had been shattered by the Vietnam War and rebuilding it had become a key (though secret) goal of the Persian Gulf ground war, which President George H.W. Bush ordered on Feb. 23, 1991, and called off on Feb. 28.
     
    Bush knew that the extra killing of Iraqi and American troops wasn’t needed to achieve the military objective of getting Iraqi forces out of Kuwait, because Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein had long signaled his readiness to withdraw.

    But Bush and his top political advisers, including Defense Secretary Dick Cheney, insisted on the ground war as a dramatic climax to a story line designed to thrill the American people – and get them to embrace warfare again as an exciting part of the national character.

    On Feb. 28, 1991, just hours after the fighting stopped, Bush gave the public a fleeting glimpse of his secret agenda when he celebrated the ground war victory by blurting out the seemingly incongruous declaration, “By God, we’ve kicked the Vietnam Syndrome once and for all.”

    REBUILDING AMERICA’S DEFENSES
    Strategy, Forces and Resources For a New Century

    A Report of The Project for the New American Century, September 2000

    “As the 20th century draws to a close, the United States stands as the world’s most preeminent power. Having led the West to victory in the Cold War, America faces an opportunity and a challenge: Does the United States have the vision to build upon the achievement of past decades? Does the United States have the resolve to shape a new century favorable to American principles and interests? “[What we require is] a military that is strong and ready to meet both present and future challenges; a foreign policy that boldly and purposefully promotes American principles abroad; and national leadership that accepts the United States’ global responsibilities.”

    “The history of the 20th century should have taught us that it is important to shape circumstances before crises emerge, and to meet threats before they become dire [i.e. pre-emptive war doctrine].”

    “Further, the process of transformation, even if it brings revolutionary change, is likely to be a long one, absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event – like a new Pearl Harbor [i.e. a major terrorist attack on US soil, even if orchestrated or facilitated by covert elements in the US government].”

    • Zing

       If you’re so smart, why aren’t you rich?

      • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

        Do you really think that if you repeat an inanity, it somehow makes it less stupid?

        • nj_v2

          Zing’s handle is pure irony.

    • Gregg

      Dad gum! That was like a homework assignment. I’m exhausted. That’s a lot of history but I get your point. Looking back is helpful at times if there is something to be learned but it’s awful hard to compare political football with radical Islam. There is a ton of stuff to talk about in your little collection. I’ll try to bite my tongue and focus.

      I wrote: “”It never has been about something as small and petty as revenge. It’s about changing the face of the entire Middle East.”

      You wrote: “It’s about restoring and expanding American hegemony over the world – always has, always will be.”

      Aren’t we saying the same thing when it all shakes out? I think I agree with you on this one. Possibly we disagree as to whether American hegemony is good or bad. I think it’s good but that gets ahead of the debate IMO. Is it necessary? Scratch that question… still too far in front… Doesn’t someone have to be the big enchilada and if not America, who?

      Okay, that’s two questions. In my opinion, they have to be debated honestly and answered (in that order) or we’re all just dreaming about “butterflies and zebras and moonbeams and fairy tales”.

      • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

        “Doesn’t someone have to be the big enchilada and if not America, who?”

        American exceptionalism is just egotism on the national scale – just as problematic, just as self-destructive, just as destructive of the welfare of all.

        Read Why America Failed: The Roots of Imperial Decline by Morris Berman (2012), which shows how, from its birth as a nation of “hustlers” to its collapse as an empire, the tools of the country’s expansion proved to be the instruments of its demise.

        • notafeminista

          “American exceptionalism is just egotism on the national scale…”  tell that to the people complaining about American jobs being outsourced. (“Save our jobs” — Please.  As if somehow Americans have more right to that job than anyone else does.)
          ..tell it to the immigrants who come in here droves hoping for a better life than the wretched existence they leave behind.

          It ain’t just ego.  Something good is going on here.  Even now, much to your chagrin.

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

            “..tell it to the immigrants who come in here droves hoping for a better life than the wretched existence they leave behind…Something good is going on here.”

            The largest wave of immigration in history from a single country to the United States has come to a standstill. After four decades that brought 12 million current immigrants – more than half of whom came illegally – the net migration flow from Mexico to the United States has stopped – and may have reversed, according to a new analysis by the Pew Hispanic Center of multiple government data sets from both countries.

            You betcha. Something so darn good that even poor, desperate Mexican braceros aren’t interested anymore in what we have to offer.

          • notafeminista

            Want to put a date and a cite on your source? 

             Not even the Mexicans.  Want to talk about Cubans, Koreans, Ethiopians (who, according to a story right here on NPR a few years ago) have immigrated to the US in such numbers to constitute “Little Ethiopia” in Washington DC.  U Street neighborhood as I recall.

            Try again.

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

            It’s been all over the news. Don’t read?

            http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/for-first-time-since-depression-more-mexicans-leave-us-than-enter/2012/04/23/gIQApyiDdT_story.html 

            Original source: http://pewresearch.org/pubs/2250/mexican-immigration-immigrants-illegal-border-enforcement-deportations-migration-flows

            In fact, it’s been so widely discussed that there’s even a Wikipedia page on it; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reverse_immigration_in_the_United_States

          • Boo!

             we do have more rights to these jobs!!–they are made by American companies made wealthy by American workers, built on American soil, with American water and American earth and American blood and sweat and tears–and labor movements and civil rights–these are American companies born in American communities made successful by American generations–these are OUR JOBS!!!!!!!!!!

  • Boo!

    i’m highly skeptical.  Most of the time the FBI and CIA finance and instigate such acts.  Big oil and MIC benefit from the illusion of a war on terror  I suspect “Alqueda” is the CIA with joint training exercises with Blackwater.   At terrorist training passing in review–Cheney appears to make a speech and congratulate them.

    if we are afraid we will support continuous war and the war machine.

    i don’t not doubt for a minute that Hitler was installed by international fascists–corporations and the 1%.

    • Terry Tree Tree

      Interesting analysis and conclusions! 
         I suspect you will be TOO BUSY, for quite some time, to comment again, having tweaked the noses of so many with POWER!

      • Boo!

         huh?

    • ana

      You have to be kidding.

    • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

      You might try some occasional doubt. It’s nutritious and refreshing – and tends to clear the head of paranoid delusions.

      • Zing

         Yeah…you should..in yourself

        • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

          Try trolling after some fish. You might find it more satisfying.

      • Boo!

         I am not paranoid–i dont even care aout your war on terror–i just add 2+2.

        I could say you are in denial.  The 1% has no incentive to protect you–like your daddy–but they do lust for power and wealth and control–fact!

        Look at the facts–democracy in shambles–a fraud–the constitution dead–killed by fascists in power on both sides of the aisle.  Continuous wars–coverups, no transparency–a hideous in human police state incarcerating millions–the new jim crow–now with the permission to assassinate American citizens without trial–including peace activists.  these are facts.  Facts.  facts.  Wake up–this is not paranoia–this critical thinking that i was armed with in higher education.  Your country, your flag is not heroic or good or benign or serving you–it is not not not! and never has–look at American history–look at it–look at it again!  you are in denial.  Civil rights and equality in this country have always been fought tooth and nail  and sonic weapons by the corporate elite–the fascists that have always controlled America.  And when we get civil rights the fascist tactics and rhetoric evolves and they find new rhetoric and clever ways to re-institute the same same same evils.

        • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

          “i just add 2+2″

          And that’s the problem. The world is not binary, or simple, or black and white.

          There is no unalloyed evil and uncompromised good. Everyone has a soul and a shadow – all 100% of us. 

          There is no sharp line between the alleged 1% and the rest, though it makes a convenient slogan.

          There are no “facts” – there are only experiences and interpretations. Each of us sees through a glass darkly. 

          I deny nothing. I embrace everything. And then I come to my own conclusions. I read history, I’ve taught history (using Zinn’s book), and I interpret history through the lens of 60 years on the planet and 43 years of opposing and exposing “the system”.

          Nothing is as simple as most would like to believe. Everything is nuanced, everything shades of gray. 

          The only thing that’s certain is the the current order is collapsing and there is an opportunity, however tenuous, to build another world from the detritus of the old one.

  • Brettearle

    It seems to me that the essential obligation of safeguarding the West, and western allies, from terrorism will always compromise our liberty, for security, and will put great, sustained strain on our financial resources.

    When will there be a point of diminishing returns?

    Will there ever be a point, where there is CONSIDERED to be a point of diminishing returns, even though we might have already passed it now, or will in the future.

    How much protection is too much?  Perhaps too much is not enough.

    But if we say it’s never enough–it might, ironically mean our own DOOM, eventually, as a country.

    On the other hand, we, as a country do not have the historical spectre of being “war-torn”–such as in Europe.

    To us, another terrorist attack, on our soil, would be like a whole country, in Europe, being torn asunder.

    Sure, you will say a “dirty bomb” will kill 50,ooo in a city.

    And that, tragically, would be true.

    But WILL we be destroyed spiritually and economically, in the meantime?  

    Damned if we do.  Damned if we don’t.

    • Brett

      I like your use of the term “diminishing returns” applied regarding our policies on terrorism. The phrase comes from economics, but it can be applied more generally in many other concepts/situations.

      In grappling with attempting to reconcile both sides of the coin, so to speak, where do we strike the balance or draw the demarcation lines? Unfortunately, we seem to only fully understand the ramifications of our policies after a certain line has been crossed that directly affects people. Even when that line is crossed, ostensibly, there is not consensus about whether it was crossed. 

      There is the ongoing debate among the masses, as it were. To reframe something you said, some people in the general public think too much protection is not enough, others think even a little is too much. Our intelligence sources/agencies, as well as our legislators, are made up of humans with all manner of fallible qualities who also grapple with the ongoing debate. In conjunction with things like incompetence and out and out human error, there’s corruption/ulterior motives, and so on, making the task of applying the right amount of protection even more difficult. 

      • Brettearle

        Brett,

        Please check my responses to you on Friday, with regard to OWS and VietNam.  You will see a method for you to get in touch with me, away from this web site–without compromising our identities and electronic addresses, whatsoever.  I have more to say about VietNam and OWS.  Thanks for your comments on May 4th.

        What you wrote above is well said and well considered.

        My response is the following–and some, here, will not like it:

        When Bin Laden said, “America is vulnerable.”

        I don’t think he was referring to the borders along southern Arizona.

        • Brettearle

          Oh, yeah…..

          Lose the name

    • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

      Or just damned if we do, if the whole “terrorist” threat has been largely invented or created in order to rationalize the continued expansion of the US military-industrial complex and America’s missionary complex.

      See the 2004 BBC documentary The Power of Nightmares.

      • Brettearle

        Robert,

        Please define Missionary Complex (you mean as in spread the Pax American word, like Jesuits do, for Christianity?):

        Regarding, the US M-I Complex:

        I have always felt that those who, faithfully, believed in that idea were imputing too much significance to it.

        I do think it’s an influence–but there are others as well.

        I don’t believe that the US does not do everything for a nationalistic-aggressive-empire building-profiteering

        • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

          If I had any idea what you were trying to say, I could attempt an answer.

          But the American “missionary complex” is a lot like the missionary position. Get on top and f*ck the one we’ve got pinned to the mat – and repeat with as many partners as possible.

          • Brettearle

            I’m writing too fast.

            I do not believe that the US does everything for the sake of profit or to promote its idea of hegemony.

            It is not as dark as you are trying to protray it, I think.

            But that doesn’t mean that I believe the US is nothing but egalitarian.

            Of course, it isn’t.

            But to believe in a dark principle that the US is an Evil Empire is to ascribe traits and characteristics to it that are too all-or-nothing, without nuances.

            The USAID is not into promting its own version of Despotism, for example.  

          • Brettearle

            “promoting its own version”

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

            You’re also leaping to conclusions too quickly.

            Nothing I’ve posted would suggest a simplistic “evil empire” analysis, and I’m constantly criticizing the myriad ideologues on this forum who fall victim to such un-nuanced interpretations.

            But you’re wrong about USAID. I lived with a 17-year veteran of that “humanitarian” agency, who gave up his career when it became too painfully obvious that everything he had been doing was in support of imperialism and neo-colonialism, enriching and empowering the elites while impoverishing and enslaving the peasants.

            When he quit, he joined the Catholic Worker movement, which was authentically serving the dispossessed and striving for a better world.

          • aj

            USAID flooded Egypt with cheap ‘subsidized’ American wheat, putting poor Egyptian wheat farmers out of buisness forcing them into the city and to lose their farm.

            Because part of that USAID deal was that Mubarak would take away peasant water rights away and use it for his cronies to grow cash crops (vegetables,fruits) for export to europe, and these profits would be used to pay interest and principle on debt payments to the U.S.

            Instead of simple and humane debt forgiveness, they destroyed the ability of Egyptians to grow enough wheat to feed themselves. Something Egyptian farmers have been doing for about 7,500 years. USAID changed that in the eighties.

            Also, Haiti’s agriculture was decimated by subsidized American rice exports. I could go on. USAID is the devil to the third world. So is the World Bank, though they claim to be reforming themselves.

            I recommend two books by Ha-Joon Chang for further reading. He is a superb economic analyst.
            http://www.amazon.com/Ha-Joon-Chang/e/B001HOFPKS/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1

          • Hidan

             Haiti was a cash cow to many NGO. I know a guy that was pissed he couldn’t get in on it.

            Even wyclef got in on taking advantage of those people

          • Brettearle

            You assume that all great powers are Evil.

            Where is YOUR nuance?

            I don’t see it…..

            You claim otherwise–and yet you actually run toward the extreme.

            I suspect that you despise being pigeonholed.

            I also suspect that you telegraph your political punches all the time.

            THE USAID may have a great deal to answer for, but it’s a mixture.

            They’ve also accomplished a great deal. 

            Yes, it’s a mixture–but you can’t see it, because you may be a Chomsky-ite.

            Thinkers like you obfuscate by sounding forthright–but in the end are biased ideologues.

            Case in point:

            Both Israel and the American Indians have historical claims to their land. 

            You can’t have it both ways.

            [doesn't mean the Palestinians don't have similar claims.

            They do.]

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

            “You assume…I suspect that you…I also suspect that you…you may be a Chomsky-ite…Thinkers like you…
            biased ideologues…”

            You make a lot of assumptions and sling a lot of innuendos, but you’re only going to fall on your face since you don’t have a leg to stand on. Try sticking to the substance of the arguments, if it’s not too much trouble.   

            “Case in point: Both Israel and the American Indians have historical claims to their land.”

            American Indians are without any doubt, the first settlers of the land we invaders brutally stole from them. But there is much scholarly doubt about whether the those who currently  identify as Jews have any history in Palestine.

            The Thirteenth Tribe (1976) by Arthur Koestler, advances the thesis that Ashkenazi Jews are not descended from the historical Israelites, but from Khazars, a Turkic people. It is widely known that the Khazars converted to Judaism in the 8th century, and migrated westwards into Eastern Europe in the 12th and 13th centuries. Koestler suggests that 95% of world Jewery and 50% of Israeli Jews are Caucasians, not Semites.

            The Invention of the Jewish People (2008) by Shlomo Sand, Professor of History at Tel Aviv University, similarly argues that most Jews are converts from various Mediterranean lands, and that the current Palestinians are the direct descendants of the ancient Israelites.

          • aj

            1 state solution. Any thing less would be uncivilized.

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

            Anything else would be unjust and unsustainable. 

            I tend to avoid using the word “civilized” as a synonym for anything good, since it is civilization which has destroyed the planet’s life-support systems, while “primitive” peoples left little footprint.

          • Boo!

             yes it is

          • Zing

             If you’re so smart, why aren’t you rich?

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

            Because you can’t eat money.

          • Boo!

             its past your bedtime.  How does wealth = intelligence.  Its usually brains= poverty.  Deceit and cruelty, and lack of empathy=wealth in so many cases, most cases.

            before you go to bed make sure you leave the door open a crack little baby, so the dark doesn’t scare you–also, the light will dispell the boogey man in the closet–the one with the beard and turban and the one with chocolate skin–demons and trolls, oh my!

            One day you will grow up and realize it all fairy tales and they cant hurt you.  One day maybe you will be a man–or a woman.  meanwhile, let the grown-ups make decisions and keep you safe.  Republicans and red states–children, progressives in the blue states–adults. 

      • Zing

         And all this time I thought it was the missionary position causing all the angst…

        • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

          It is…for the one on the bottom.

    • Zing

       You’re a nuancer and a ditherer…just what the enemy wants…glad Obama doesn’t hear you….

      • Brettearle

        You see things in all-or-nothing terms.

        If one does that, one is more likely to make the wrong decision, at least 50% of the time.

        You sound like a carte blanche war-monger, who believes in Bush II’s slogan, “You’re either with us or against us”–despite the fact that you could even be a Democrat.

        Doesn’t matter though, it’s clear that’s how you basically views things.

        And you likely don’t have the guts to admit it, here.

        Glad Obama won’t ever take seriously comments of yours.   

  • U.S. Vet.

    It turns out the ‘Al-qaeda’ terrorist was actually a C.I.A. agent
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/cia-unraveled-bomb-plot-from-within/2012/05/08/gIQA5tKOBU_print.html

    And that’s out of the left-wing, pro-Obama, Washington Post.

    But that isn’t going to stop Obama from pumping his fists in the air claiming that he’s tough on terrorism.

    All the while the Obama economy is sinking deeper and deeper
    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/adding-insult-injury-goldman-cuts-us-q1-gdp-19

    Can you say diversionary tactic?

    • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

      How do you confuse “working on behalf of the CIA and its counterparts in Saudi Arabia and Yemen” with “actually a C.I.A. agent”?

      And how do you confuse the worst economic collapse in 80 years, initiated by the Reagan revolution, made possible by Clinton’s elimination of Glass-Steagall, pushed into overdrive by Bush’s war- and tax cut-driven deficits and his laissez faire deregulation of the financial industry – with the one that Obama inherited and has begun to improve by any economic measure?

      • Brett

        Him? He’s just a troll with penchant for ideological gobbledegook.  

        • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

          Some days I feel like one too.

        • U.S. Vet.

          You tell ‘em Bert!

  • Brett

    I only heard snippets of the story while on my way to the hardware store to buy materials for a trellis. The double agent’s moves being exposed perhaps sends the wrong message to terrorists, at least possibly the ones who use underwear bombs. We may have just inadvertently helped them solve a major problem in their approach: briefs, not boxers! Then, there’s the whole combo (brief-boxer) thing…

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_C2STBLZJK4VKQBV27DVQX3I6CU FAX68

    iOnePoint:

    The 1951 Mutual Defense Treaty between the Philippines and United States America can assure both nations to help each other during a war.

  • Tired of sitting and waiting

    When will the US stop playing defense with one hand tied behind our back.  We try to stop terrorists at their own game.  We play by our rules, they play by their rules.  Perhaps we turn the tables on them and start playing by their rules.  If they want to attach civilians, then we can attack civilians.  We can match them bomb for bomb, attack for attack. 

    As Israel has shown, playing nice does not work against terrorists.  For ever strike against us we strike them back 10, no 100 times harder. 

    This may seem extreme, but unless we act with strength, there is nothing we can do to stop the terrorists.

    • nj_v2

      Yeah, you’re right, let’s drop the big one…

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PGO42gvCSPI

    • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

      You’re confusing strength of muscle with strength of character. But perhaps you would have us “destroy our nation in order to save it”.

    • Zing

       Been saying that all along brother…put the fear of the Great Satan in them despite weenies like riversong..whatever that is….

      • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

        It’s so easy to be an asshole when you’re anonymous.

        • Boo!

           its easy to be an asshole when one uses his name.  what difference does it make–discuss, on point google, facbook, the cia–thy know who we are–and watch closely, filing, filing, hatching plots in there schemey little brains.

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

            When one uses one’s name, one stands by one’s words. 

          • Boo!

             i am with you on most things–but this i am not.  I stand on my word no matter what–the name is for fun, the name is meaningless–even your own–its arbitrary–they have m y email, they know who i am.  Even if i gave you my name–it doesn’t mean you know who i am in a sea of people who might share that name.  Will you know where I am.  Would you want to?  I can give you my name but you still wont know who the hell i am.  It doesn’t matter.  The content of my words is all that matters–if people insult others online for no apparent reason–as war-mongers tend to do–republicans–it shows who they are and we need not listen.  but if my words are on point, or worth considering. please do…my name remains irrelevant.

          • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

            Not irrelevant at all. 

            On every one of the discussion forums I’ve been part of, anonymity contributes to “online disinhibition”, trolling, abuse and infantile idiocy.

            Not that those behaviors aren’t all-too-common in every social interaction, but anonymity always makes it worse.

            I don’t believe that the Black Bloc practice of wearing masks during demonstrations adds to the quality of the action.

            I don’t believe that secretive conspiracies make the world a better place.

            And I don’t believe that using fake names has a salutary effect on on-line conversations.

            I not only use my real name, but post my real face. I stand by my words. Very few do these days – here or anywhere.

            I’ve been arguing for years that there is no such thing as “virtual community”, but real names and real faces at least gives me a sense of who I’m conversing with. 

            Otherwise, it’s just bits, bytes and pixels.

      • jimino

         Maybe you  guys could volunteer for a  Slim-Pickens like role and ride your suggested bombs to their final destination.  You’d be famous instead of an anonymous pipsqueak posting on sites like this.  Or who else do you suggest do your dirty work?

        • aj

          It seems like he had someone like Gengis Khan in mind, along with a few dozen tactical nukes…certainly not himself. I’m pretty sure he’s the type that sits down to pee…not that there’s anything wrong with that.

    • Boo!

       an ancient and retarded tactic–that has got us nowhere–violence escalated with more violence begets greater violence and the vicious cycle never ends–do read history–do you pay attention to current history?

      If you mblow my house up–i will blow u up–and your family will come to blow my family–and on and on and on…  eye for an eye, tooth for a tooth, leavs evryone blind–and is so ancient it is savage and barbaric, as are the people who support it–better off dead, so we can get on with life

      how is cruelty, mass murder and violence a good thing?  Is it American?

      The solution is to make amends.  these are not bad people–they are angry people sick of being murdered by Americans.  The middle east is not America’s and they don’t want us there! 

      People like you are destroying the world–you are responsible for 911!

  • Still Here

    Wow, interesting timing.  Isn’t there a vote coming up on extraordinary security measures?

  • Hidan

    Bruce Hoffman when referring to the U.S. support for Despots (especially the one that was suppressing it’s democracy in Yemen) as  “Local Leaders” . One must notice how these people minimized Saudi influences on these terrorist or the influence of U.S. supported Despots.

  • Hidan

    Mr Hoffman reminds me of  Jack Burkman on Inside Iraq

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=biCVYsJzjuc

    Worth a watch.

  • Biff

    A sad day for the lingerie industry.

  • Biff

    This incident should have remained secret. The world’s terrorists  have, with the aid of the media, redefined the notion of a “pantywaist”. Our very language has been turned upside down by a perversion of underpants.

  • Zing

    After the USS Cole there shouldn’t  even be a Yemen OR a Sudan…I’m pleased that Obama has embraced the Bush doctrine and is creating havoc in both places.

  • Loren

    After “passing” a full body scan and a subsequent pat-down last week, I arrived at my flight’s gate with a lighter still in my pocket (I had forgotten it was there.)  The security agent, after the lighter had set off the body scan alarm and she had patted me down, merely commented on my “cute haircut” (I’m a white female European). It seems all you need to blow up a plane is to not fit the stereotypical profile of a terrorist.

    • Boo!

       wow, really–what the point of the scanner and pat downs if they couldn’t find a lighter?  Does the scanner do anything at all–or is just a prop?

  • Hidan

    Mudd seem to be the somewhat level headed guest on the show. 

  • Joan

    Once again, our air waves are assaulted by the fear mongering and self promotion of the CIA and the TSA on how their officials 
    disrupted an al-Qaeda plot out ofYemen to blow up an American passenger plane….

    If this doesn’t sound like more propaganda to further legitimize 
    the US phony war on terror and American aggression overseas and assault on Americans civil liberties at home–I don’t know 
    what does.  

    I am just sorry to hear this propaganda being aired on our 
    National public radio airwaves and given a whole segment 
    slot of time on… On Point. 

    Especially, in light of the fact 40% percent of the American population didn’t believe the 9/11 narrative in 2001 which 
    claimed Arab extremists were responsible for the attacks 
    and later the falsehood about Iraq’s WMD & ties to al-Qaeda. 

    I believe that percentage was in the 80% percentile world 
    wide when the US attacked Iraq in 2003.  I imagine that 
    figure has grown exponentially in the US and around the 
    world since.  

    So, when are people going to stand up to the falsehoods 
    being perpetrated on them by the US Security establish-
    ment and the Industrial Industrial Complex? 

    P.S. They say it was such a system of abuse & corruption 
    that brought the Egyptians into the streets to reject what 
    their government represented. i imagine Americans are 
    next….

    • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

      “40% percent of the American population didn’t believe the 9/11 narrative in 2001 which claimed Arab extremists were responsible for the attacks” 

      Don’t confuse a general distrust of the official narrative, with a conclusion that all parts of the narrative were fabricated.

      Just as there are undoubtedly parts of this underpants story that are true, the underlying 9/11 story has a foundation of truth. Throwing it all out is just as irresponsible as accepting it as given. The hard part is separating the wheat from the chaff.

      That “the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor” is true. But it’s also true that Roosevelt and the Joint Chiefs provoked it, knew it was coming, allowed it to happen, blamed others for the catastrophe, used it as the excuse to enter a war, and then covered up the full story.

      Similarly, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed (probably with the nod from bin Laden) planned and initiated the 9/11 attacks. But the CIA and the Bush/Cheney administration (possibly with Bush the lesser out of the loop) knew it was coming, allowed and facilitated it and made sure it would succeed, used it as the excuse for endless wars, and staged a grand coverup.

      What makes these conspiracies so confounding is that they are a mixture of truth and embellishment.

      • Terry Tree Tree

        Bush the lesser out of the loop?
           ‘W’ was ALWAYS ‘out of the loop, in SO MANY Ways!  Especially for doing what was right for the U.S.!

      • Joan

        Re General Distrust Of the official 9/11 Narrative 

        Governments have historically placing the blame on others for conflicts they have escalated and for the targeting others ethnic groups as “the enemy”

        The late Howard Zinn (historian ) talks about this 
        in his column, America’s Blinders . See the URL
        http://www.commondreams.org/views06/0321-20.htm

        Thus I don’t feel I have come to the “wrong con-
        clusion” about the truth of 9/11 many others have questioned–including the group 9/11 truth.org

        Listen to the eye witness testimony by NTC fire-men and a group of architects who claim the de-
        struction ofthe towers were controlled demolitions

        Joan 

        http://dprogram.net/2011/01/13/collected-911-firefighter-witness-testimonies-presented-by-david-r-griffin-and-kevin-ryan/ 

        http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-8182697765360042032
         
         

        • http://riversong.wordpress.com/ Robert Riversong

          Joan,

          Few Americans have done as much research into 9/11 as I have, and I’ve been leading public film/discussion events on it for eight years. I’ve read most of the books and published literature and have 18 documentaries on the subject. I am a member of AE9/11Truth.

          But too many want a simplistic answer to what happened on that day. If you believe that al Qaeda wasn’t involved, then you are mistaken. But they were allowed to stage an attack which others made sure would succeed with the help of nanothermite and a well orchestrated coverup.

          Just because our government never tells the truth, doesn’t mean that everything it says is false. That’s how you create an effective cover story – a mix of truth and confusion.

  • Zammer

    Tom’s guest made a comment “Airlines had to ratchet
    up the security”… Of course, what he meant is, airlines had to ratchet
    up the perception of security to get people back on airplanes. In fact, we’re
    not much safer. Little has been done to address the freight risk and Bush’s
    federalized employees are either power-hungry profilers that embarrass us or they’re
    happily collecting pay and benefits while they sleep on the job… neither of
    these stereotypes can be fired because they are federal employees.

    I’m exaggerating, but I’ve witnessed both extremes in
    many cases during the past 10 years.
    Not safer. Better security perceived. Privacy and freedom vastly erroded. Huge security risk remains.

    • Gregg

      Profiling must be part of the equation.

      • Boo!

         Yeah your’re right–just screen white people.  They commit more terror–’legally’ than anyone in the world.

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  • Boo!

    I do not mind taking my shoes off–that seems reasonable enough and not a big deal.  The fear of the TSA was instigated by the neo-con corporate-right becaus the TSA wanted to unionize–something they deserve and are owed.  I thank the TSA for their diligence and their shitty work.

    I am a radical in some people’s eyes but I can recognize common sense when i see it and necessity. 

    last time I went through security form overseas, naturally, I was anxious as most people are–i didn’t want to be strip-searched or go through the Orwellian x-ray scanner–that cannot be good for the health–but i was pleasantly surprised.  Usually TSA is very rude and belligerent–at least flying through Miami and Atlanta–but in New Jersey I was greeted with efficiency and a smile and the scanner was over in a second and i felt fine–i feel more radiation sickness when i get my chest x-rayed for medicals–i can literally feel the radiation in the room of an x-ray scanner–but i felt nothing in customs. 

    If you fly everyday it might be a problem–for these people it might be necessary to expedite them in some other way–with pre-screening–or periodical screening, but still take the shoes off and metal detectors and pat downs.

    In china-they do these shoes and the metal detector and the pat down but they dont touch my junk.  However, these planes are flying into America–so perhaps the orwellian scanner should be in International Chinese airports.

    And the US corporate government should stop creating terrorism to begin with.

    • Boo!

      They took a pic of my eye too–i didn’t like that–very Orwellian. 

  • Joan

    Addendum 

    The CIA & TSA’s assault on the media and the US and other states civil liberties…… 

    Although I am outraged once again by the CIA and the TSA for spinning a so called leak and “foil bomb attack”on a American airline—one can begin to see how each foil plot became a pow-
    er grab for the CIA and TSA and another assault and infringe-
    ments on US Civil Liberties…And of course, the expansion of the phony war on terror at home and abroad.  

    Especially into countries like Afghanistan, Pakistan ,Libbya
    and now drone attacks into Yemen and US special forces in-
    to Sudan and the Horn of Africa.

    It seems to me every national resistant group has connections to al-Qaeda and are out to get Americans. And it amazes me how such groups can be used as turncoats depending on their hawks need in Washington. 

    For example Libya’s “extremists” became Libya “freedom fighters” to help overthrow Muammar Gaddafi just as Syria’s extremists are being armed and called “The Syrian Free 
    Army” to overthrow the Assad Regime in a counter insurgency .  This is an old trick by the imperial occupiers pitting groups and tribes against one another…..  
    http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=29234

    Hence it follows–each CIA’s assault on those states natural resources have nothing to do with “nation building” or “dem-ocracy” as Paul Collier notes in his 2010 NYT Op-ed …….
    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/20/opinion/20collier.html  

    Lastly, I wish to thank Tom Ashbrook for pointing out how US
    policies are making things more dangerous and stressful for troops serving abroad, plus taking away needed tax revenue 
    from America’s cities and towns and making homeland security more unreasonable and outrageous daily. ( This is the bottom line and why such policies abroad and at home must end.) 

    Joan 

  • http://mathema-tricks.blogspot.com/ Mental Math

    Plot foiled or plot arranged!

  • Romney Bin Bush

    Covert agents… infiltration… such romantic nonsense. To win the war on terror and protect the homeland, we need to instead to invade some unrelated country with lots of oil (that we don’t already control). Say… Venezuela. Ok, there are no Muslims there, but most Americans don’t know that. We can get Pox News to misspel it, like Venes-el-allah… that should be enough of a reason to go in and spend few trillion on private contractors…

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Attorney General Eric Holder talks with Capt. Ron Johnson of the Missouri State Highway Patrol at Drake's Place Restaurant, Wednesday, Aug. 20, 2014, in Florrissant, Mo. (AP)

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