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Bill Clinton's Legacy: Today's Terror-Filled World
A look at former President Clinton's pathetic attempts (or should we say baseless claims?) at stopping terrorism.
Charles Krauthammer is exceptional man. A psychiatrist by training, he has left his original profession to become a celebrated pundit, applying his unique insights into the world of the demented to the word of the truly demented -- international politics. In a recent syndicated column Bracing for the Apocalypse , Dr. Krauthammer provides us with his chilling diagnosis of humankind's current chances for longevity and pronounces the situation terminal -- unless forceful action is taken immediately. Even more interesting (and just as chilling), he posits a hypothesis regarding the origins of our current terminal condition, tracing the terror and apocalyptic threat to the world today to the irresponsible and self-serving actions of none other than America's most undistinguished presidential procrastinator and First Felon, William Jefferson Clinton.
In other words, with great authority, someone in the mainstream media has finally detailed the real legacy of Bill Clinton, notwithstanding the excuses and rationalizations all of the Great Prevaricator's friends and spin doctors in the hallowed halls of American journalism.
As Charles Krauthammer saliently notes:
You don't get to a place like this overnight. It takes at least, oh, a decade. We are now paying the wages of the 1990s, our holiday from history. During that decade, every major challenge to America was deferred. The chief aim of the Clinton administration was to make sure that nothing terrible happened on its watch. Accordingly, every can was kicked down the road."
And which inconvenient cans is Charles Krauthammer exactly referring to? Well, in his own words, here's how he catalogues them:
--Iraq: Saddam continued defying the world and building his arsenal, even as the United States acquiesced to the progressive weakening of U.N. sanctions and then to the expulsion of all weapons inspectors.
--North Korea: When it threatened to go nuclear in 1993, Clinton managed to put off the reckoning with an agreement to freeze Pyongyang's program. The agreement--surprise!--was a fraud. All the time, the North Koreans were clandestinely enriching uranium. They are now in full nuclear breakout.
--Terrorism: The first World Trade Center attack occurred in 1993, followed by the blowing up of two embassies in Africa and the attack on the USS Cole. Treating terrorism as a problem of law enforcement, Clinton dispatched the FBI--and the odd cruise missile to ostentatiously kick up some desert sand. Osama was offered up by Sudan in 1996. We turned him away for lack of legal justification.
As Charles Krauthammer sardonically notes regarding the preceding negligent or self-deluding actions of the Clinton administration:
That is how one acts on holiday: Mortal enemies are dealt with not as combatants, but as defendants. Clinton flattered himself as looking beyond such mundane problems to a grander transnational vision (global warming, migration and the like), while dispatching American military might to quell 'teacup wars'' in places like Bosnia. On June 19, 2000, the Clinton administration solved the rogue-state problem by abolishing the term and replacing it with 'states of concern.' Unconcerned, the rogues prospered, arming and girding themselves for big wars.
And what do you know? The consequences of all that procrastinating, prattling and putting off the inevitable have arrived. The Clinton administration's delayed detritus has finally hit the fan. As Charles Krauthammer puts it: "On Sept. 11, the cozy illusions and stupid pretensions died. We now recognize the central problem of the 21st century: the conjunction of terrorism, rogue states and weapons of mass destruction."
Of course, according to the fashionable Clintonist spin, everything that could be done to stop terrorist actions was done after the Word Trade Center and 1998 embassy bombings. For example, according to Madeleine Albright, "We consumed all the intelligence we had. It's so easy to finger-point. [But] we tried everything we could."
Yet General Henry Shelton, retired chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, was also quoted as saying after 9/11: "Absolutely nothing prevented us from running the kind of [anti-terrorist] operation we're running now, if there had been a commitment to do that."
In fact, on several occasions, Bill Clinton refused to consider any military action against the al Qaeda terrorist network. Of course, according to the Great Prevaricator, that was because of all the bad advice he got from his national security team, who believed that a few verbal darts from the President would be enough to do the trick.
On the other hand, when the delicate matter of that stained blue dress threatened to get splashed all over the front pages of even the most friendly American newspapers, Mr. Clinton wasn't adverse to lobbing a few missiles at some abandoned tents in the middle of the Afghanistan desert, or bombing Sudan's only pharmaceutical factory (mistakenly identified as a chemical weapons factory by more of those unnamed "others" who have conspired to mislead the Clintons throughout their long history of "unintended" misdeeds).
Finally, as the piece de resistance of our little trip down Clinton memory lane, it's necessary to again bring up that pivotal time in 1996, as originally reported in the Los Angeles Times, when Sudan offered to extradite Osama Bin Laden to the United States and the Clinton administration politely declined the offer. Oops! On whom do we blame this mammoth miscue, Bill?
Well, as it happens we are told, once again the all-knowing William Jefferson Clinton was tripped up by the advice of yet another bumbling lackey, this time National Security Advisor Sandy Berger who evidently felt that the United States did not have enough evidence to convict Mr. Bin Laden in a U.S. court of law. Many thanks, Sandy, for your legal acumen, from all the occupants of the World Trade Centre on September 11th.
Of course, Bill Clinton did not have to take that advice. But based on the record of America's most self-involved president, it seems most likely that President William Jefferson "High IQ" Clinton willingly chose that path, and all the wrong policy paths cited by Charles Krauthammer (with their many disastrous consequences), because they appeared to be in Bill Clinton's self interest: they were ways of ensuring more soaring poll numbers and digging his way out of what were, in his mind, the real national crises -- Whitewater, Travelgate, Bimbogate, The Starr Report and impeachment.
Aren't you glad George W. Bush is the president today? Despite all the carping by the New York Times and the "useful idiots" fifth column of Noam, Peter, Dan, Babs, Susan and company, the moral clarity and resolute determination of Dubyah may be the one last hope for America and Western civilization. Apocalypse Not, we still hope, thanks to George W. Bush and his courageous administration.