They are little secrets, but, loose lips sink ships, or, better put, idiot newspapers publishing operational secrets causes real American citizens to be butchered by jihadi barbarians. At first blush, the article, published on the front page of the Sunday edition, seems to be attempting to show that Barack Obama is no cream puff. No. It takes on a typical far left “maybe we should just stop annoying the Islamists” tone. First, though, let’s see what secrets they have exposed
At first, the news from Yemen on May 25 sounded like a modest victory in the campaign against terrorists: an airstrike had hit a group suspected of being operatives for Al Qaeda in the remote desert of Marib Province, birthplace of the legendary queen of Sheba.
But the strike, it turned out, had also killed the province’s deputy governor, a respected local leader who Yemeni officials said had been trying to talk Qaeda members into giving up their fight. Yemen’s president, Ali Abdullah Saleh, accepted responsibility for the death and paid blood money to the offended tribes.
The strike, though, was not the work of Mr. Saleh’s decrepit Soviet-era air force. It was a secret mission by the United States military, according to American officials, at least the fourth such assault on Al Qaeda in the arid mountains and deserts of Yemen since December.
The first three paragraphs were meant simply as a setup to the rest of the article about Obama’s shadow war against Islamic terrorists. Yet, this secret could do irreparable harm to our dealings with Yemen, and put Saleh in deep trouble in a country that is ripe with hard core Islamists. Jane at Armies of Liberation has spent years exposing what goes on with and in Yemen, and paints a very disturbing canvas of the country. The Times exposing secrets like the one above is dangerous. Fortunately, and I will give Obama props for this, Obama has been shown to be extremely unamused by these types of leaks, and goes after them vigorously.
The attack offered a glimpse of the Obama administration’s shadow war against Al Qaeda and its allies. In roughly a dozen countries — from the deserts of North Africa, to the mountains of Pakistan, to former Soviet republics crippled by ethnic and religious strife — the United States has significantly increased military and intelligence operations, pursuing the enemy using robotic drones and commando teams, paying contractors to spy and training local operatives to chase terrorists.
The White House has intensified the Central Intelligence Agency’s drone missile campaign in Pakistan, approved raids against Qaeda operatives in Somalia and launched clandestine operations from Kenya. The administration has worked with European allies to dismantle terrorist groups in North Africa, efforts that include a recent French strike in Algeria. And the Pentagon tapped a network of private contractors to gather intelligence about things like militant hide-outs in Pakistan and the location of an American soldier currently in Taliban hands.
Thus begins the apparent Obama props from the Times. Alas, no. But, hey, thanks for giving the enemy more intel, Fish Wrap! Sure, they might have known some, but, not the extent of the operations which have been mostly kept secret, which also puts the leaders of these countries, who may be cooperating, in danger, especially in Pakistan.
Yet such wars come with many risks: the potential for botched operations that fuel anti-American rage; a blurring of the lines between soldiers and spies that could put troops at risk of being denied Geneva Convention protections; a weakening of the Congressional oversight system put in place to prevent abuses by America’s secret operatives; and a reliance on authoritarian foreign leaders and surrogates with sometimes murky loyalties.
And here is where the Times starts it’s tsk tsk tsk finger shaking at Obama. Their natural tendency to support the “bad American!” syndrome overrides their messianic worship of Obama. Oh, and Fish Wrap? The Islamists have yet to treat those they have captured according to the Geneva Conventions.
“For the first time in our history, an entity has declared a covert war against us,” Adam Smith (D-Wa.) said, referring to Al Qaeda. “And we are using similar elements of American power to respond to that covert war.”
Huh? Covert? 9/11 wasn’t particularly covert. Nor was Bin Laden’s fatwah against the United States. They want everyone to know that they are in a war against not just the USA, but, western civilization.
In pursuing this strategy, the White House is benefiting from a unique political landscape. Republican lawmakers have been unwilling to take Mr. Obama to task for aggressively hunting terrorists, and many Democrats seem eager to embrace any move away from the long, costly wars begun by the Bush administration.
Republicans are not “unwilling”, they are acting as cheerleaders, the same as Conservatives do when it comes to Obama’s increased operations against Islamists. One of the only things we agree with him on.
Then, after a few paragraphs saying how dangerous and bad it can be to work around Congress as well as escalating these types of covert wars, the story moves on into massive details regarding the US strikes against Islamists in Yemen, which includes
The accounts of the American strikes in Yemen, which include many details that have not previously been reported, are based on interviews with American and Yemeni officials who requested anonymity because the military campaign in Yemen is classified, as well as documents from Yemeni investigators.
And now the enemy has more specific knowledge, which can be used to kill Americans. Thanks, Fish Wrap, for once again increasing the danger to real Americans.
The final part, on page 4 of the web article, is the Times’ opinion on the success of the operations, and they are worried about creating more terrorists through these operations, a standard liberal thought. As the saying goes, read the whole traitorous thing.