According to the heads of Congress’ intelligence committees, America is more vulnerable to terrorism than ever. Even more so, than just before 9/11/2001. Although Feinstein is undoubtedly a Socialist and Rogers is a Progressive on the right, they are correct in pointing out that our intelligence services are not the bad guys. The Jihadists and those that support them are. The likes of Edward Snowden, Glenn Greenwald and Julian Assange have damaged the reputation of our intelligence agencies and that was by design.
From the New York Post:
WASHINGTON – The heads of Congress’ intelligence committees warned Sunday that America is less safe from terrorism today than it has been in recent years.
The dire warning came from both sides of the aisle, with Senate Intelligence Committee Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers (R-Mich.) agreeing that the threat is worse.
“Terror is up worldwide. The statistics indicate that,” Feinstein declared on CNN’s “State of the Union.”
“The fatalities are way up. … There are new bombs, very big bombs — trucks being reinforced for those bombs,” she said. “There are bombs that go through magnetometers. The bomb maker is still alive. There are more groups than ever. And there is huge malevolence out there.”
She said the threat to the US has grown with the rise of “more groups, more fundamentalist, more jihadist, more determined to kill to get to where they want to get.”…
Terrorists Gain Ground
Even if our agencies were strong and had not been purged, gutted and manipulated by the Obama Administration, sooner or later a terrorist attack will succeed. They cannot stop every one of them. There are just too many being planned and are waiting to be carried out. Americans may feel a false sense of security now that Osama bin Laden is dead and a number of top al Qaeda leaders have been taken out, but there are an endless parade of others waiting to take their place and garner glory in the afterlife for themselves and their families.
In point of fact, we have not made advances since 9-11. We have if anything, become even more susceptible to terror attacks. We have encouraged the importation of radical extremists who are now positioned not only in the White House and our intelligence communities, but throughout American institutions, including our schools. While the overreach of intelligence agencies is a concern for Constitutional rights, it must not overshadow the fact that these people are our front line at home to protect us from Islamic terrorists. They are not the enemy – the Jihadists, the Russian intelligence services, the Chinese intelligence services and the Iranians are the enemy that we must fight.
The leaders of the House and Senate Intelligence committees said Sunday that terrorists have gained ground in the past two years and that the United States is not any safer than it was at the outset of 2011.
Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-California, and Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Michigan, agreed that despite the death of Osama bin Laden and drone strikes aimed at decimating al Qaeda’s leadership, President Barack Obama’s administration has lost ground in the ongoing battle with global terrorism.
“Are we safer now than we were a year ago, two years ago?” host Candy Crowley asked Feinstein on CNN’s “State of the Union.”
“I don’t think so,” the Senate Intelligence Committee chairwoman replied.
“I absolutely agree that we’re not safer today,” Rogers added.
Rogers warned that the Obama administration’s successes against high-value targets have fostered a false sense of security.
“People think that, well, we’ve got this thing beat,” Rogers said. “And that’s just not the case.”
In the wide-ranging joint interview with Crowley, Feinstein and Rogers detailed an international climate growing more hostile toward the United States.
Feinstein said increasingly fundamentalist Islamist groups are gaining power and winning the minds of the disenfranchised in the Middle East and Near Asia.
“I see more groups; more fundamentalist, more jihadist, more determined to kill to get to where they want to get,” Feinstein said.
As evidence the U.S. is in greater danger, the California lawmaker cited a rise in fatalities from terrorist-related activities and increasingly specialized and dangerous technology available to terrorists. Feinstein specifically highlighted bombs as a growing threat to American security – and not the kind of improvised devices that plagued U.S. armed forces in Iraq and Afghanistan, or rudimentary explosives like the pressure-cooker bomb used by the Boston marathon bombers. She said terror groups had already tried, on four separate occasions, to send these newer, more deadly explosives into the United States.
“There are new bombs, very big bombs, trucks being reinforced for those bombs,” Feinstein said. “There are bombs that go through (metal-detecting) magnetometers.”
Rogers said the evolving nature of the terror threat – both an increase in the number of al Qaeda affiliates globally and the group’s shifting strategy – has produced an enemy that, even if it’s not outright winning, has disproven Obama’s claim the group is “decimated.”
“Al Qaeda as we knew it before is metastasizing to something different,” Rogers said.
Rogers said the terrorist network has changed its modus operandi. Rather than placing a premium on sophisticated, simultaneous large-scale terror attacks – like those of September 11, 2001, and embassy bombings throughout the 1990s – the new breed of al Qaeda is more decentralized, he said, something that will make it “exponentially” harder to stop the next attack from happening.
“They’ve now switched to this notion that smaller events are OK, so if you have more smaller events than bigger events, they think that might still lead to their objectives and their goals,” Rogers said.
Rogers said the potency of the al Qaeda threat comes at a time of heightened scrutiny of the American intelligence apparatus working to root out the next terror events.
“The pressure on our intelligence services to get it right, to prevent an attack, are enormous,” Rogers said.
Rogers said a wave of disclosures about U.S. intelligence collection – revelations prompted by leaks from former NSA contractor Edward Snowden – has turned public opinion against agencies that are working to defend the United States.
“Our intelligence services are not the bad guys,” Rogers said.
America is at Greater Risk
The leaks from Edward Snowden have emboldened al Qaeda. He has magnified and created new risks to national security. Snowden’s leaks and exposure of agency methodology and their methods of surveillance has already caused three of al Qaeda’s affiliates to change their means of communication and their warfare strategies. Snowden still has much more that he will release and each time he leaks this information, the chances of an attack on American soil become more likely. Wounded and exposed, the intelligence agencies are now lame ducks that cannot adequately do their job of protecting America and that can be laid squarely at Snowden’s feet and those that are behind him.
Americans need to realize that all countries have intelligence agencies – they are necessary in a world filled with those that wish to rule by any means necessary and who don’t care about the body count. Whether the impetus is militaristic, theological or just plain evil; these radicals are penetrating our intelligence web at an alarming rate and the terrorist clock is ticking. The danger is becoming so great that it is now a truly non-partisan issue – everyone agrees that a terrorist attack is coming and people will die. At the top of the threat index are the Islamic Jihadists who are patient and deadly.
While America is increasingly more at risk from Jihadist terrorism, there are those such as Snowden, Greenwald and Assange who seek to destroy America’s faith and confidence in those that stand between all of us and the terrorists – our intelligence services.
Editor/Author Terresa Monroe-Hamilton is a Libertarian and she writes at NoisyRoom.net. NoisyRoom is a Conservative blog that focuses on political and national issues of interest to the American public. The web site is frequently featured by other leading sites and the media. Her writing and blogging are based primarily on Conservative issues and her research focuses on exposing those who would subvert the Constitution and the intentions of the founding fathers. Driven by a need to uncover the truth and the connections between those that would forever change the American way of life and the Constitutional principles that America was founded upon, Terresa is dedicated to exposing Progressives wherever they may hide.
Terresa specializes in research and editing. Her background is in accounting, management information systems and Constitutional law. She is an author and has written many conservative columns. She has also worked with numerous political organizations and candidates during her career as well as CPA firms, law firms and upper-tier executives. She is also the CEO and owner of Monroe Virtual Services (tmonroe.com), an executive virtual assistant firm. She also does research for KeyWiki.org and is an Editor at Trevor Loudon’s New Zeal site. You can find NoisyRoom.net on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/terresamonroe and on Twitter at https://twitter.com/terresamonroe.