Thursday, January 22, 2009

Carter Redux?

Retired Admiral Dennis Blair, Obama’s nominee for Director of National Intelligence, has just announced during his confirmation hearings that the United States should seek ways of working with Islamic leaders and countries such as Iran on issues of mutual interest. Furthermore, he is a proponent of applying standards across the government for humane treatment of terrorism suspects, and for restoring America’s moral standing in the eyes of the world. He also backs the closing of Guantanamo Bay prison because if “has become a damaging symbol to the world.”

Having a director of intelligence who is concerned about the perception of the world is not the most constructive way of fighting terrorism. Let us not forget that September 12, 2001 the whole world looked at us with love and affection. But as soon as we started fighting to prevent such an attack from ever happening again, the “world” became upset with our response. I put the word “world” in quotation marks, because it is such a sweeping generalization that it makes feel like grabbing a red pen and crossing it the way I did when a paper submitted by a student had such sweeping statements. For every demonstration against America there were silent millions around the world who supported what the U.S.did. Of course that for a certain sector of the liberal left having the support of Great Britain, Italy, Australia, Poland, Rumania, and Israel, just to name a few, is not good enough. I guess we need the support of Chavez and Castro to make them happy.

I would have liked to see a senator ask Admiral Blair what did he mean by the statement “discussing issues of mutual interest” with Iran? I’ll bet that his responses would have been similar to the responses of another admiral who contributed significantly to the weakening of the CIA, his name was Stanfield Turner, Carter's nominee. With Blair as Director of Intelligence and Leon Panetta at the helm of the CIA, I hope that we don’t end up with an intelligence service that will make us say “Carter Redux.”

Remember the 444 days when the world supported us? We could live without such support.

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