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Friday, February 12, 2010

Is the sole purpose of antiterrorism activities to foster fear in the American population?
Posted by Jill | 5:24 AM
It certainly looks that way.

The Republicans like to grandstand about the threat that trying terrorists in civilian U.S. courts poses to this country, but I have to wonder if the mission of our intelligence agencies isn't to apprehend terrorists, but instead to just get information that can then be passed on to the media, which in turn can report breathlessly about "chatter" and "potential for an attack". I wonder if their real mission is to keep Americans, especially those in states that have about as much chance of being attacked as I have of waking up tomorrow as a tall, slim blonde, terrified and longing for a police state of tough rhetoric to reassure them.

It seems that the reason Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab's visa wasn't revoked, or so they tell us, is because intelligence authorities feared it would get in the way of "a larger investigation":
Patrick F. Kennedy, an undersecretary for management at the State Department, said Abdulmutallab's visa wasn't taken away because intelligence officials asked his agency not to deny a visa to the suspected terrorist over concerns that a denial would've foiled a larger investigation into al-Qaida threats against the United States.

"Revocation action would've disclosed what they were doing," Kennedy said in testimony before the House Committee on Homeland Security. Allowing Adbulmutallab to keep the visa increased chances federal investigators would be able to get closer to apprehending the terror network he is accused of working with, "rather than simply knocking out one solider in that effort."

So....they're willing to risk one attack because the guy they're looking at MIGHT provide useful information about another? That's sounding an awful lot like LIHOP to me. Is that what they did with Osama bin Laden? Is that why bin Laden was never captured?

In a similar vein, a former Bush speechwriter complains that the Obama Administration is killing too many terrorists (via).

All of this leads me to believe that the REAL purpose of the so-called War on Terror is not to actually do anything about terrorism, but rather, to provide job security for the intelligence community and political fodder for Republicans who long for the good old days of 2001-2005, when Americans were paralyzed with fear and would have put up with just about anything just to be able to sleep at night.

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