J. V ? But what about Benghazi ????
Video: Al-Qaeda a “jayvee” team?
POSTED AT 5:21 PM ON JANUARY 21, 2014 BY ED MORRISSEY
“If a jayvee team puts on Lakers uniforms, that doesn’t make them Kobe Bryant,” Barack Obama told the New Yorker when asked whether al-Qaeda still represents a threat to the US. While Obama’s remarks on marijuana and his own falling poll numbers in this interview have commanded most of the attention from the media, Wolf Blitzer argues that this should get much more scrutiny than it has received. He asks former House Intelligence member Jane Harman whether Obama is too glib about the threat al-Qaeda poses. Harman clearly thinks so, although she tries to let him off the hook with a distinction between “core” AQ and the “horizontally-affiliated” networks:
New Yorker reporter David Remick considered this “an uncharacteristically flip analogy,” which is a bit of an understatement. Here’s the entire quote:
“I think there is a distinction between the capacity and reach of a bin Laden and a network that is actively planning major terrorist plots against the homeland versus jihadists who are engaged in various local power struggles and disputes, often sectarian.“Let’s just keep in mind, Falluja is a profoundly conservative Sunni city in a country that, independent of anything we do, is deeply divided along sectarian lines. And how we think about terrorism has to be defined and specific enough that it doesn’t lead us to think that any horrible actions that take place around the world that are motivated in part by an extremist Islamic ideology are a direct threat to us or something that we have to wade into.”
The problem with this construct is that it offers false distinctions. Even so-called core AQ engaged in “various local power struggles.” They did so in Afghanistan, and they certainly sponsored and helped recruit for the Iraqi insurgency — many of those recruits coming from eastern Libya, where they also conducted “local power struggles.” In Yemen, where AQ had its beginnings in the Yemeni-Saudi conflict, AQ has tried for years to overthrow the government. And so on. The distinction for Yemen becomes even more false when one remembers that we are conducting drone attacks there, as part of the original 2001 AUMF against al-Qaeda, a drone campaign that Obama clearly endorses as part of that effort.
The point about eastern Libya should also remind us that we allowed AQ and its affiliates to metastasize there. Obama led a NATO effort to decapitate Moammar Qaddafi’s regime, even though it put a lot of pressure on AQ in the region, keeping it from spreading across North Africa. After that NATO disaster, AQ and its affiliates and allies nearly sacked Mali, and has expanded widely. It was that power vacuum — and the attitude that AQ was nothing more than a “jayvee” team — that allowed al-Qaeda and its allies the opportunity to drive the West out of Benghazi, culminating in the destruction of our consulate and the loss of four Americans on the anniversary of 9/11.
By the way, how many of this “jayvee” responsible for Benghazi have been caught by the Obama administration varsity? Sixteen months later, the answer is still zero.
Maybe this administration needs to take the threat a lot more seriously than Obama does at present. Harman and Blitzer can hardly believe Obama’s words, but that’s been the message from this administration all along, and Benghazi is the result.
**Written by Doug Powers
In an interview with The New Yorker, President Obama made a curious comparison in an attempt to dismiss the influence of Al Qaeda:
Even if that were the case, they’d still be people trying to kill Americans while wearing Lakers uniforms!
As evidenced by the below dueling CNN headline from a couple of weeks ago, the junior varsity squad seems to be holding their own:
Last summer, Obama said “Al Qaeda has been decimated”, and the previous year he said “Al Qaeda is on the run.”
That according to the captain of the administration’s varsity team:
It’s been a busy month for Obama sports metaphors. In the same interview, the president also said that he would not allow the son that he doesn’t have to play in the NFL.
Obama wouldn’t let his hypothetical son play on the JV team either because that would be even more dangerous (see above).
White House Advisors refute Obama on pot.....
ISTOOK: The blunt truth — White house drug czar contradicts Obama on marijuana
White House docs say pot causes brain damage and lower IQ in teens, alcohol does not
President Obama’s latest claims about marijuana are contradicted by research and official positions of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, which is part of the White House. And Mr. Obama’s words have anti-drug leaders worried about negative repercussions among youth.
Mr. Obama claimed to The New Yorker magazine that marijuana is no worse than cigarettes or alcohol and he promoted state efforts by Colorado and Washington to legalize marijuana, which remains illegal under federal law.
The National Drug Control Policy’s official stance, posted on the whitehouse.gov website, says the opposite of Mr. Obama on all counts.
For example, as documented in agency reports, marijuana smoke has significantly more carcinogens than tobacco smoke.
And as reported by the government’s National Institute on Drug Abuse, adolescent use of marijuana does something that alcohol does not; it causes permanent brain damage, including lowering of I.Q.
Taxpayers have spent billions of dollars warning about drugs, often about marijuana, but these efforts were dramatically undercut by the president’s comments.
Mr. Obama might as well have rolled that money into a joint and smoked it on national television.
He told the interviewer, David Remnick, that his earlier years of prodigious puffery were “a bad habit and a vice.” Yet he doesn’t warn others not to follow in his footsteps.
The Drug-Free America Foundation responded on its blog: “His laissez-faire attitude about legalization has drug policy and prevention experts scratching their heads in confusion as to why the president will not give clear guidance…either he is seriously ill-informed about the issue or is completely ignoring warnings from his highly-esteemed advisors.”
The foundation called it an “irresponsible move for such a person in the most highly-regarded position in this country.”
The official National Drug Control Strategy from drug czar R. Gil Kerlikowske lists marijuana as one of the “four major drugs (cocaine, heroin, marijuana, and methamphetamine).”
Don’t expect him to resign in anger about how Obama is undercutting his work, however. He’s a short-timer because Mr. Obama nominated him last fall to become the new Commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
So for now, perhaps until Kerlikowske is at his new job, anti-marijuana messages remain on the White House Website. As one page describes things, “confusing messages being presented by popular culture, media, proponents of ‘medical’ marijuana, and political campaigns to legalize all marijuana perpetuate the false notion that marijuana is harmless.”
They should add Mr. Obama’s name to the list of confusing messengers who perpetuate false notions. Except confusing messenger is too polite a term. Outright hypocrite fits better.
Be on the lookout for the White House to remove warnings of marijuana use from its Website, such as this gem: “The Administration steadfastly opposes legalization of marijuana and other drugs because legalization would increase the availability and use of illicit drugs, and pose significant health and safety risks to all Americans, particularly young people.”
It is impossible to reconcile that post with Mr. Obama’s failure to enforce federal drug laws against marijuana, and with his statement to The New Yorker about Colorado’s and Washington’s open violation of those laws, namely, “it’s important for it to go forward.”
Why go forward? The president’s explanation is indeed a head-scratcher: “Because it’s important for society not to have a situation in which a large portion of people have at one time or another broken the law and only a select few get punished.”
Everyone in Colorado and Washington who puffs up is breaking the law — federal law. And no law has a perfect rate of arrest and prosecution.
Mr. Obama, however, tried to attribute it to class warfare and racial bias — and in so doing voiced a myth that his own anti-drug people are shooting down.
As Mr. Obama stated: “Middle-class kids don’t get locked up for smoking pot and poor kids do. And African-American kids and Latino kids are more likely to be poor and less likely to have the resources and the support to avoid unduly harsh penalties. We should not be locking up kids or individual users for long stretches of jail time when some of the folks who are writing those laws have probably done the same thing.”
But Mr. Obama’s claim was shot down by an earlier federal publication, “Marijuana Myths & Facts: The Truth Behind 10 Popular Misconceptions”.
Myth #10 is “The government sends otherwise innocent people to prison for casual marijuana use.”
In fact, less than 1% of all drug incarcerations are for simple possession or use of marijuana. And those few tend to be plea-bargains for people who actually were dealers.
Mr. Obama’s own White House website contradicts his light-hearted claims about marijuana in other ways as well. Multiple pages are devoted to describing clear dangers of marijuana, including these excerpts:
- Marijuana use is associated with dependence, respiratory and mental illness, poor motor performance, and impaired cognitive and immune system functioning, among other negative effects.
- Marijuana intoxication can cause distorted perceptions, difficulty in thinking and problem solving, and problems with learning and memory.
- Studies have shown an association between chronic marijuana use and increased rates of anxiety, depression, suicidal thoughts, and schizophrenia.
- Other research has shown marijuana smoke to contain carcinogens and to be an irritant to the lungs. Marijuana smoke, in fact, contains 50‐70 percent more carcinogenic hydrocarbons than does tobacco smoke.
But what about alcohol? Mr. Obama stated he doesn’t think marijuana is more dangerous that alcohol.
One trick used by pro-pot proponents seems to have worked with Obama. They adopt an extremely-narrow definition of marijuana’s dangers by discussing solely on whether it is “toxic,” meaning that high dosages become poisonous.
They choose that measure because alcohol poisoning causes tens of thousands of deaths each year but marijuana is not poisonous even in large doses.
Toxicity, however, has never been the sole measure of whether a substance is dangerous. Things need not be fatal to be harmful. Plus, things that are intoxicating and hallucinogenic can lead to fatal behavior without being poisonous.
Furthermore, the studies cited by the National Institute for Drug Abuse, regarding brain damage among regular adolescent pot smokers, has no parallel from alcohol. And making one dangerous drug legal is, of course, never a good reason to add another, or a third, or more.
Mr. Obama’s ramblings in The New Yorker show an effort to project an intellectual approach to the marijuana issue when in fact his was pseudo-intellectualism.
He offers up loose arguments, even discredited arguments, because he doesn’t expect serious follow-up from the media. Even if he gets it, Mr. Obama simply talks in circles, ends the questioning, and shuts that reporter out in the future.
Anyone who believes otherwise must be smoking something.
Ernest Istook is a former Republican member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Oklahoma.
After Defending Pot, Obama has to Pardon Medical Marijuana Growers He Jailedhttp://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-01-20/obama-says-race-may-blunt-poll-standing-in-interview.html