Well, the Obama administration has spoken, and, usual, we are left with more questions than answers.
That might be because the Obama administration has contradicted itself, once again, much as is the habit of its leader.
“The war on terror is over,” the ubiquitous unidentified Obama administration spokesman recently informed us, strangely not from the Palace of Versailles or the deck of the U.S.S. Missouri.
“Now that we have killed most of al Qaida,” a senior administration official recently informed us, “now that people have come to see legitimate means of expression, people who once might have gone into al Qaida see an opportunity for a legitimate Islamism.”
Nice to hear that al Qaida has been pretty much reduced to the status of, say, a rogue band of desperate Bedouins threatening the local camel and mule population with a fate worse than death.
If that’s the case, though, why are we being urged to beware the anniversary this week of Osama bin Laden’s assumption of ambient conditions courtesy of U.S. Navy Seals.
Which is it? If al Qaida is dead, how does it pose an extraordinary threat to the United States?
It’s certain that news of the end of the War on Terror will come as a surprise to the likes of Ayman al-Zawahiri, Osama’s one-time No. 2, who has yet to be killed or captured.
If the war is over, then we have to ask of our fearless leader, “Dude, where’s my peace dividend?”
If the war is over, why are 7-year-olds and 70-year-olds still getting groped in airports by uniformed TSA agents?
If the war is over, someone ought to tell Iraqis who still get blown up by suicide bombers with harrowing regularity.
If the war is over, someone should inform the Army, which would be terrifically pleased to hear it.
The fact is that we know the war isn’t over, and is perhaps far from over.
“Legitimate Islamism” makes as much sense when used by the Obama administration today as “peace in our time” when used by Neville Chamberlain in 1938.
Chamberlain came to regret his confidence in deals with Hitler after the deaths of hundreds of thousands. We have yet to learn the wages of confidence in “legitimate Islamism.” Playing word games about the deadly serious bloodthirst of “Islamism,” though, won’t cut any losses.