Republicans Are To Blame For Terrorism

On Christmas day the passengers of a plane bound for Detroit narrowly missed a catastrophe. At this time there is still much that is unknown about the attempted act of terrorism, the culprit, or his affiliations. But one thing is clear: It is all the Republican’s fault.

Republicans Screw AmericaIs that too hyperbolic an assertion so soon after the incident occurred? Of course it is. But that hasn’t stopped Republicans from asserting that very same claim against Democrats with all seriousness. In a cynical and self-serving search for blame, it only took a few hours for Republicans to start throwing charges at President Obama.

Rep. Pete Hoekstra (R-MI) was asked Sunday if it was fair to blame Obama. Without hesitation he answered, “Yeah, I think it really is.” Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) fingered the unionization of airport security workers and the closing of Gitmo, along with the standard allusion to appeasement. And scads of right-wing bloggers piled on the Transportation Security Administration and Homeland Security Secretary, Janet Napolitano.

A closer look at the circumstances preceding the attempted attack paint an entirely different picture. For instance it is DeMint who has been personally blocking the President’s TSA chief appointment for months. House Republicans, including most of their leadership, just voted against funding for explosives detection systems and other aviation security measures. And the House recently passed a Republican-authored bill to ban the use of the full-body scanners that many are claiming could have prevented this incident.

The most damning evidence of the Republicans guilt is seen in the rhetoric they’ve employed for many months that casts Obama as weak and our nation as more vulnerable than ever. They seem to be signaling to Al Qaeda that now is the time to strike. Take note of what Dick Cheney said about this five years ago:

“Terrorist attacks are not caused by the use of strength; they are invited by the perception of weakness.”

And ever since Obama took office Cheney and other Republican officeholders and pundits have been striving to manufacture such a perception. Some examples:

Cheney: It is recklessness cloaked in righteousness and would make the American people less safe.

Mitt Romney: It’s the very kind of thinking that left America vulnerable to the attacks of Sept. 11th.

Joe Scarborough (MSNBC): I knew by the second day that America was less safe.

Laura Ingraham (Fox News): I think you can make a pretty compelling case that we’re less safe today.

John Boehner: I think this is a pre-9/11 mentality, and I think it’ll make our nation less safe.

Karl Rove: They’re doing the wrong thing for our country, they’re doing the wrong thing for our men and women in uniform, and they’re making us less safe.

David Gregory (Meet the Press): But do you agree with the vice president when he says that the country is less safe under President Obama?
Newt Gingrich: Absolutely.

In other words, “Come on down, Al Qaeda. The door’s wide open and we’re sitting here playing tiddlywinks.” I first asked this question last May:

“How does announcing to the terrorists that they believe our nation is becoming weaker make us safer? Do they even care? Are they just pasting a big bulls eye on America and hoping for an ‘I told you so’ moment?”

It appears from the Republican’s response to this latest incident of terrorism that my speculation was sadly on target. It appears that the only things the right are interested in are bashing Democrats, announcing alleged security flaws, and gloating when the unthinkable (almost) happens. That is not a recipe for national security. And if they don’t cut it out, they are going to regret the consequences which will be tragic and entirely their fault.


8 thoughts on “Republicans Are To Blame For Terrorism

  1. Great stuff. I’d like to see this list on Maddow tomorrow night.

    • Richard’s post made me LOL. I was thinking the exact same thing – especially after having just watched Maddow’s show tonight. You get the sense that Republicans are rooting for another terrorist attack just so they can say, “We told you so – vote for us!” That may be too glib, but not too far from the truth.

      You wonder how people like DeMint and Hoekstra have the nerve to say the things they say given their willingness to risk our nation’s security to score political points (DeMint holding up the TSA nomination and Hoekstra leaking classified national security info).

      Makes my tummy hurt…

      • If they aren’t rooting for an attack, they are at least taking partisan advantage when one occurs – as they did with this one and Ft. Hood.

  2. I pointed Mark’s post to some friends and they pointed out that Mark may be missing a GOP point: While the GOPers are pointing out Obama’s alleged weaknesses to Al Qaeda, they are simultaneously inviting domestic terrorists to do their dirty work as well.

    So Mar, if you’re listening, you might want to take note of what appears to me to be a valid observation.

    Over at, Nate Silver is point out some statistical probabilities. One probability that we need to be aware of is that a domestic terrorist is much more likely to do serious damage than the foreign ones — though both are extremely dangerous. So I think my point is that airline steps do nothing to deal with the McVeighs roaming out there. And the GOPers are encouraging people like him without any thought of the harm they are doing.

    • That’s a good point. My observations were specifically addressing how Al Qaeda might view Republican’s advertising America’s alleged weakness as an invitation to attack. But the same is certainly true for domestic terrorists. In fact, anyone who for any reason wants to engage in some act of mass violence can only be encouraged when the targets of those acts are portraying themselves as defenseless and vulnerable.

      It’s just plain stupid. It’s like standing on your doorstep and shouting to all within earshot that your front door is unlocked, your life savings are inside, and you’re leaving town for a week. Now I’m not a security expert, but I think that might encourage any burglars who happen to be nearby.

      If there are gaps in our defenses (and what system is perfect?), a better course of action might be to privately alert those responsible for security so that the gaps can be plugged before the bad guys find out and exploit them. But Republicans seem bent on persuading the bad guys to act now.

  3. Considering you understand this concept (probably not until now), why didn’t Obama? Obviously he didn’t, because of his failure to stop this attack by taking greater security measures…

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