I hope everyone had a Happy Hanukkah, Merry Christmas, or Winter Solstice (whichever greeting fits your fancy). My Christmas was wonderful…I got to see family I hadn’t seen in a very, very long time and have the opportunity to rebuild relationships that, a couple of years ago, I thought were gone forever.
On Christmas Day, however–December 25–we escaped tragedy by the skin of our teeth. 23-year-old Nigerian Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab boarded Northwest Flight 253 in Amsterdam with 80 grams of a high-grade explosive called PETN (Pentaerythritol Tetranitrate, which is also the main ingredient in Semtex) sewn into the crotch of his jockey shorts. When the plane entered the sky over Middlesex County (Ontario), Abdulmutallab used pillows and a blanket to conceal what he was doing: injecting a liquid acid into the packet of PETN in his underwear in an attempt to blow up the plane.
Thankfully, the good Lord had other plans, and they did not include allowing that passenger jet to be blown out of the sky. The Mixture didn’t react properly and instead of exploding, it merely set the would-be terrorist on fire. A Dutch passenger tackled him and dragged him to the front of the plane. All of the witnesses said that Abdulmutallab wore a completely blank, expressionless face, even though he had third-degree burns on his legs. He later crowed to investigators that he had attempted the attack at the behest of his Al Qaeda handlers in Yemen.
It has since come out that we knew who he was; his own father, Alhaji Umaru Mutallab–former chairman of First Bank PLC and a prominent member of Nigeria’s high class–had gone to the American embassy in Lagos and shared his concerns that his son had become radicalized in Islam and might be working with Al Qaeda. British MI5 had a dossier on him because of his extremist activities while studying in London. He wasn’t a lone nut, nor was he poor; his last known address was a three-million-pound loft in the UK.
Not only did we know who he was, how he got on the plane should have raised every red flag known to the transportation industry. He had no luggage and was escorted by a “well-dressed man”. He had no passport. Nobody thought to question why he would be getting on this flight to the US. Not since Richard Reid has a Muslim terrorist been so brazen in any attempt to commit terrorist acts on American soil.
Al Qaeda claimed the plot. Then they promised that they had hundreds waiting to commit similar atrocities.
Richard Reid hatched his boneheaded idea just a few months after 9/11. At the time, we were still cleaning up and trying to figure out exactly what to do to keep ourselves safe from this sort of thing. Today it’s been a full eight years since the face of our world changed, and while Bush had already done all he could do by the time Reid was stopped, Obama has done nothing but tear down our defenses–and when his administration’s stupidity was revealed by this latest attempt, he stayed in Hawai’i. Vacation was more important. Seeing Avatar is, too, I guess, because that was on the agenda for today.
I’m not nearly as angry with Obama for staying in Hawai’i as I am angry that something so horrid nearly succeeded because Obama doesn’t want to “rush” any decisions. We can’t racially profile. We have to be careful about offending Muslims by targeting them for searches at airports. We can’t rush to judgement on this the way we are on healthcare and climate change. God forbid we stop the killers; it’s far more important to keep shoveling money into that bottomless pit labeled “hysteria.”
As I sit here at my dad’s place, listening to good music and celebrating the start of a new year, I wonder where we’re going. Did we learn anything from 9/11? Did we learn from the London and Madrid bombings? Did we learn from Richard Reid? Or will the next Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab succeed in killing hundreds of innocent Americans before we wake up? Worse, will the next four or five succeed?
I wonder what kind of world my niece is growing up in. What will we tell her and my soon-to-be nephew when they come of age and ask us about this decade? Will we tell them that the Hollywood elite led us around on a short leash? Or will we be able to tell them with pride that we fought our hardest and won?
Personally, I’d prefer the latter. Israel makes no bones about the fact that they openly profile Muslims in their airports. I think maybe they’re on to something. Who else is trying to blow us all to kingdom come? I hate to tell you this, but white supremacists (while menacing) are not the biggest threat. If we really want to stop the next 9/11 from ever happening, we’re going to have to swallow our pride and start doing things that aren’t politically correct. We can start by knocking off the whining about immigration reform, kicking out the offenders, and not allowing those on extremist watch lists to EVER set foot on American soil.
Thomas Jefferson understood what needed to be done with the Muslim raiders in his day. He read the Qur’an and used their own beliefs against them. To this day, the copy he owned sits under glass in the Library of Congress.
We here at gayconservative.org hope you all have a very happy and safe new year. I pray that our eyes will open this year before any more have to die. God’s grace, love and peace to you all.