Amazing, isn't it?

Discussion in 'Middle East - General' started by JIHADTHIS, May 26, 2004.

  1. JIHADTHIS
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    JIHADTHIS Active Member

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    Damned if they do, damned if they don't

    Analysts Say U.S. Threat Warning Is Back-Covering

    1 hour, 6 minutes ago Add Politics to My Yahoo!


    By Caroline Drees, Security Correspondent

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A vague new U.S. warning that al Qaeda may be planning a massive attack smacks of political back-covering and campaigning, not just a call for heightened vigilance, analysts and former government officials say.



    Stung by accusations that the Bush administration ignored key intelligence in the run-up to the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, officials may now be issuing warnings to prove to Americans they are on the ball this time, say terrorism analysts on both sides of the political fence.


    "Apparently there were warnings over 9/11 and nothing came out to the public before that, and they've paid a dear price for that," said Jonathan Schanzer, a terrorism analyst at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.


    "They need to alert the public that there could be something coming down the pike, in which case, don't say we didn't tell you," he said.


    One former national security official in the Bush administration told Reuters: "This is more butt-covering than anything else."


    Critics say the new threat warnings may also just be a ploy to shore up the president's job approval ratings or divert attention from the increasingly unpopular Iraq (news - web sites) campaign.


    But some analysts say the announcement on Wednesday that the United States had credible but unspecified information on possible terror attacks in the next few months would lead to tighter security and could act as a deterrent to militants.


    U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft (news - web sites) said several upcoming events -- which include two major American holidays, a Group of Eight summit, political party conventions, and U.S. elections in November -- could be attractive targets for al Qaeda.


    "It is certainly an appropriate cry for all of us to remain vigilant," said Bruce Hoffman, a terrorism analyst at the RAND think tank.


    Asked whether he worried about skeptics who say "you're just protecting your behind," Ashcroft told a news conference: "I just don't think my job is to worry about what skeptics say. My job is to do everything I can to protect the American people and to help the American people protect themselves."


    SEEKING MORE GUIDANCE


    But beyond urging citizens to be on their guard, officials failed to suggest what Americans should do to help mitigate the threat. They said the government had no plans to raise the terror threat level or announce new precautions, and gave no details on when, where or how it might occur.


    New York and Los Angeles, two of the biggest U.S. cities, said they had not been briefed on any new threats.


    "Most people feel that just a generalized 'be concerned about things' is not that useful," said Randall Yim, head of the homeland security division at the government's General Accounting Office (news - web sites), the investigative arm of Congress.


    "It's like the old Wendy's (fast food) commercial: 'Where's the beef?"' the former Bush administration official said.


    Some critical voices say the government may also be hoping the warnings could score political points on national security that could boost President Bush (news - web sites)'s flagging popularity ahead of the November elections.


    Schanzer said the administration was probably aware that the threat warning could help lift ratings, but said "they are not exploiting this in a way they probably could."





    Still, "there's no doubt that increased activity on this front, leading up to the election, could strengthen the president's position," he said.

    One prominent terrorism expert, who would only speak on condition of anonymity, said Bush may also be trying to staunch increasing criticism of the Iraq campaign by underlining the link in the public's mind between Iraq and security at home.

    "The president is running as a war president, so the timing is interesting," he said, pointing to a speech by Bush on Monday that made frequent references to terrorist threats.

    "I wonder if there's not a connection to the president's speech when he mentioned terrorism 18 times in the context of Iraq. Isn't this a very convenient way of linking back to the United States that Iraq is part of the broader war on terrorism?" he said.
     
  2. freeandfun1
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    freeandfun1 VIP Member

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    Typical.....

    If the admin said nothing and something happens, then they would claim that the silence was politically motivated.

    I am sick of these hacks!
     
  3. NewGuy
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    You have to admit the timing is suspicious.

    I have been saying for months now that Bush will landslide if another attack happens.

    The reason?

    He will rally America again.

    Lest anyone get on me for being against Bush and like RWA, try to claim me a "liberal", I am a Constitutionalist and I do not believe in voting for the better of two evils.

    They are BOTH evil.
     
  4. freeandfun1
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    freeandfun1 VIP Member

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    Why does it create suspicions? They attacked Spain before an election, why not here?

    As for Bush.... I am not sure he is evil but then again, how can I know that he is not? I try to look for the good in all until they show me they are not. I know your beef with him is the Patriot Act, but what else could he do? Is that your only beef with him?
     
  5. NewGuy
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    True. -But I was talking about it before the Spain thing.

    I guess since Spain occurred it makes the outcome a little more probable.

    I guess I should clarify- "politically" they (Democratic and Republican party politicians) are evil.

    I would never accept an unconstitutional document an example of a viable solution. Being a national hazard by going against the Constitution and suspending rights both are grounds for impeachment and, in my opinion, treason.

    Note that MANY people fit this across party lines and I view them equally.

    If he wanted to do something, as I said before, he would have demanded impeachment of each and every government employee in violation of the Constitution, erase all unConstitutional amendments and laws by invalidation, and allow all citizens to arm themselves unrestricted.

    That is the first step.

    Nope.

    When the guy leading our nation in a worldwide war against terrorism claims the driving religion behined them is a base of worshiping the same god Christians do, I REALLY have a problem with him. -ESPECIALLY when you throw in the Patriot act.
     
  6. freeandfun1
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    freeandfun1 VIP Member

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    Okay, I can accept that answer (those answers). With emphasis on the last one.....
     
  7. dilloduck
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    dilloduck Diamond Member

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    Does the Bible say that political parties are "evil" or is that you talking?

    Suspicious timing? You have listened to Moore to much.

    I think America rallied itself. Any President would have been a focal point.
     
  8. nycflasher
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    nycflasher Active Member

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    I think that you assume ALOT in making that statement.
    If there is another large-scale attack on the US mainland, all bets are off...
     
  9. NewGuy
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    All I assume is that the attacks on American soil are ALLOWED.

    I didn't say planned, or orchestrated.

    There are MANY real reasons to assume this, but like you say: it IS an assumption.

    We will see how it plays out.
     
  10. dilloduck
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    dilloduck Diamond Member

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    And who is allowing these attacks?
     

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