Lithograph of Great Lakes and Chicago – On Every Measure Democrats Beat Republicans on National Security

Lithograph of Great Lakes and LaSalle Str Chicago, Illinois. Around mid 1800s to 1872.

Buffalo & Chicago steam packet empire state: M. Hazard, Commander. [Currier & Ives between 1835 and 1856]. In the Chicago-Great lakes poster above, about center, is a picture of a “side wheeler”.

Intelligence office says it got Libya attack wrong, not White House

Extremists from groups linked to al Qaida struck the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, in a “deliberate and organized terrorist attack,” the top U.S. intelligence agency said Friday, as it took responsibility for the Obama administration’s initial claims that the deadly assault grew from a spontaneous protest against an anti-Islam video.

The unusual statement from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence appeared to have two goals: updating the public on the latest findings of the investigation into the assault, and shielding the White House from a political backlash over its original accounts.

“In the immediate aftermath (of the assault), there was information that led us to assess that the attack began spontaneously following protests earlier that day at our embassy in Cairo,” spokesman Sean Turner said in the statement. “We provided that initial assessment to executive branch officials and members of Congress, who used that information to discuss the attack publicly.”

[  ]…In his statement, Turner said that U.S. intelligence agencies’ understanding of what happened in Benghazi, Libya’s second largest city, has evolved as they’ve collected and analyzed information on the incident. “As we learned more about the attack, we revised our initial assessment to reflect new information indicating that it was a deliberate and organized terrorist attack carried out by extremists,” he said.

“It remains unclear if any group or person exercised overall command and control of the attack, and if extremist group leaders directed their members to participate,” he said. “However, we do assess that some of those involved were linked to groups affiliated with, or sympathetic to, al Qaida.”

Turner didn’t name a specific group. Other U.S. officials have said that they were focusing on the possible involvement of the North African affiliate of the terrorist network, al Qaida in the Maghreb, known as AQIM, and local Islamic militant groups.

The statement did not quiet the political backlash.

Shortly after it was issued, Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., called for the resignation of Susan Rice, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, who was the first senior official to detail the administration’s initial account that the attack was spontaneous during appearances on Sunday morning television talk shows.

King (R-NY) has a very relativistic moral compass when it comes to terrorism. King supports actual terrorism sometimes. His wishy washy moral bearings are typical of Republicans. If the AQIM attacks has occurred on Bush’s watch he and other conservatives would be claiming that just means they have that terrorists right where they want them, that by criticizing the president in a time of war they are being unpatriotic and undermining the war on terror, the criticism by conservative bloggers and politicians is telling the enemy that the U.S. is weak and will “cut and run”. As events and intelligence gathering evolve about any violent event, the facts frequently change. That conservatives would try to twist and exploit the news facts as they emerge is typical of the fetid morality of the conservative movement. They have never displayed much in the way of genuine concern or appropriate reactions to anything bad that happens within ten feet of a Democrat, one should not expect them to rise above it all and act like patriots intend of fevered nationalists out for blood.

What do the attacks on the Libyan Embassy compound mean. Conservatives are being comically absurd in their quest to shape the meaning. They claim this makes Obama weak on terrorism. This is from the same people who brought us the bloody war on terror. In which the deaths of Americans and innocent men, women and children reached historic heights from 2001 to 2008. Unless you listen to Glenn Greenwald who thinks Obama is  worse than Bush on inflicting civilian causalities (Glenn means well, but that is one of his weakest cases). Terrorist Attacks and Presidents

Terror attacks count by president

Terror fatalities by president

It is pretty clear that if one is willing to put partisan blindness aside – an impossible task for Republicans – Democrats hold a clear advantage on keeping Americans and innocent foreigners safe.

BUSH
(Not including Iraq and Aghanistan attacks, and abortion attacks)
1) September 11 (Domestic Islamic) – 2,992 fatalities
2) Karachi (Overseas Islamic) – 12 fatalities
3) Riyadh (Overseas Islamic) – 34 fatalities
4) Riyadh #2 (Overseas Islamic) – 22 fatalities
5) Riyadh #3 (Overseas Islamic) – 4 fatalities
6) Jeddah (Overseas Islamic) – 4 fatalities
7) Amman (Overseas Islamic) – 57 fatalities
8) Damascus (Overseas Islamic) – No fatalities
9) Athens (Overseas Islamic) – No fatalities
10) Algeria (Overseas Islamic) – 60 fatalities
11) LAX Shooting (Domestic Islamic) – 2 fatalities
12) Beltway Snipers (Domestic Islamic) – 10 fatalities
13) Anthrax (Domestic?) – 5 fatalities
14) Madrid (Overseas Islamic Allies) – 191 fatalities
15) London (Overseas Islamic Allies) – 56 fatalities
16) Chapel Hill SUV attack (Domestic Islamic) – No fatalities
17) Yemen (Overseas Islamic) – 16 fatalities
18) Mumbai, India (Overseas Islamic) – 190 fatalities

Bush did manipulate the country into Iraq, with some help from some Democrats and the media. So Bush and the conservative pundit warriors take take blame for these fatalities as well: 5,921 US military dead. 31,844 wounded in action, of which 13,954 were unable to return to duty within 72 hours. A conservative estimate of civilian Iraqi deaths is between 108,000 and 119,000. And let us remember the that Bush and Cheney were the great masterminds of terrorist fighting even if Bush did say,  “I don’t think you can win [the war on terror].” Mr. weak on terrorism, President Obama, certainly with the help of the Pentagon and CIA did kill Bin Laden, where as Bush Inc. lost Bin laden at Tora Bora. One of the reasons the CIA was able to relentlessly persue every Bin Laden lead during the Obama administration, is that the Obama White House resurrected the CIA’s Bin laden unit that Bush disbanded, July 4, 2006 – C.I.A. Closes Unit Focused on Capture of bin Laden.

President Obama and the team of intelligence experts he has put in place have done a remarkable job of tracking down and killing terrorists. The Terrorist Notches on Obama’s Belt

Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) leader Anwar al-Awlaki as of today.

Earlier this month officials confirmed that al Qaeda’s chief of Pakistan operations, Abu Hafs al-Shahri, was killed in Waziristan, Pakistan.

In August, ‘Atiyah ‘Abd al-Rahman,  the deputy leader of al Qaeda was killed.

In June, one of the group’s most dangerous commanders, Ilyas Kashmiri,  was killed in Pakistan. In Yemen that same month, AQAP senior operatives Ammar al-Wa’ili, Abu Ali al-Harithi, and Ali Saleh Farhan were killed. In Somalia, Al-Qa’ida in East Africa (AQEA) senior leader Harun Fazul was killed.

Administration officials also herald the recent U.S./Pakistani joint arrest of Younis al-Mauritani  in Quetta.

Going back to August 2009, Tehrik e-Taliban Pakistan leader Baitullah Mahsud was killed in Pakistan.

In September of that month, Jemayah Islamiya operational planner Noordin Muhammad Top was killed in Indonesia, and AQEA planner Saleh Ali Saleh Nabhan was killed in Somalia.

Then in December 2009 in Pakistan, al Qaeda operational commanders Saleh al-Somali and ‘Abdallah Sa’id were killed.

In February 2010, in Pakistan,  Taliban deputy and military commander Abdul Ghani Beradar was captured; Haqqani network commander Muhammad Haqqani was killed; and Lashkar-e Jhangvi leader Qari Zafar was killed.

In March 2010, al Qaeda operative Hussein al-Yemeni was killed in Pakistan, while senior Jemayah Islamiya operative Dulmatin  – accused of being the mastermind behind the 2002 Bali bombings – was killed during a raid in Indonesia.

There is more at the link. It does not include bringing down Moammar Gaddafi. This is the same Moammar Gaddafi that Bush reached a diplomatic deal with. Actually Bush claimed credit for negotiations about WMD that had started during the Clinton administration. Republicans talk about national security the way teen punks talk about being tough in really bad 1950s teen exploitation movies. Look behind the curtain and they shouldn’t brag as much as they do, they just do not have the facts, the real outcomes to back them up. And just a reminder that Republican Robert Gates was SecDef until 2011. A name that conservatives in 2007 tossed around as a potential presidential candidate. If conservatives want to make the case that President Obama has done a terrible job, they also simultaneously make the case that one of their own is incompetent terrorist appeaser.

To casual observers it may seem like conservatives are maintaining a constant level of shrill paranoia, false and sleazy accusations and generally immoral behavior. It is not a scientific measurement, but comparing what I read at conservative blogs, conservative newspaper columns and listen to from conservative media, the spin on Benghazi, Libya is especially shrill,  as is the following story because they sense they are not going to have a huge win this election cycle. Nothing whines as loud as a conservative scorned at the ballot box. They think, within the nice safe bubble of the Republican echo chambers that all the trends, the “facts” are on their side and are panicked to find out that sane America disagrees. With ‘Dreams From My Real Father,’ Have Obama Haters Hit Rock Bottom?

After four years of invective, four years during which the right has called President Obama a traitor, a communist, a fraud, an affirmative-action case, a terrorist-sympathizer, and a tyrant, its shrillest voices have been reduced to the most primal insult of all. They are calling Obama’s mother a whore.

For a while now, pictures purporting to show Obama’s mother, Stanley Ann Dunham, modeling in 1950s bondage and fetish porn have been floating around the darker corners of the Internet. Now, though, they’ve made their way into a pseudo-documentary, Joel Gilbert’s Dreams From My Real Father, which is being mailed to voters in swing states, promoted by several Tea Party groups and by at least one high-level Republican. At the same time, Dinesh D’Souza’s latest book, Obama’s America—the first of all his works to hit the top spot on The New York Times bestseller list—has a chapter essentially calling Dunham a fat slut. If Obama is reelected, it’s hard to imagine where the right goes from here.

It’s tempting to ignore Dreams From My Real Father because it’s so preposterous. The movie claims that Obama’s actual father was the poet and left-wing activist Frank Marshall Davis, who Dunham met through her father, who was a CIA agent merely posing as a furniture salesman.

That stench in the air is desperation mixed with the moral decay that is the conservative movement. CNN Lets Dinesh D’Souza Peddle Conspiracy Theory That Obama Is “Anti-American”

Conservative pundit Dinesh D’Souza appeared on CNN this morning to reinforce the message of his error-laden and factually inaccurate movie, 2016: Obama’s America, attacking President Obama as “anti-American” and claiming he has “embraced a Third World ideology.”

While CNN host Zoraida Sambolin pressed D’Souza to explain his accusations, she offered no pushback to D’Souza’s outlandish claims about Obama’s character nor did she point out the discredited claims contained in his movie.

If I had the time and artistic talent I’d draw a political cartoon of elected Democrats and candidates in this election cycle standing with their arms folded, looking forward, with frenzied Republicans throwing the kitchen sink, dirty socks and anything that can grab to throw at them.

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