Eleven years after Sept. 11, President Obama would have us believe that, at least with respect to our national security, we are better off than we were when he came to office. Specifically, he now claims that al Qaeda — the terrorist organization that killed nearly 3,000 Americans on that terrible day — is “on the path to defeat.”
That contention is, of course, predicated in part on the laudable fact that al Qaeda’s founder, Osama bin Laden, is dead, as are a number of the organization’s other senior leaders. The president deserves credit for achieving such successes.
However, these victories do not mean that the group that perpetrated the Sept. 11 attacks is nearly defeated. In fact, its franchises are growing concerns in places like Libya, Yemen, Syria, Nigeria, Somalia, Mali and Pakistan, to say nothing of the theaters we have abandoned (Iraq), or are in the process of abandoning (Afghanistan).
More importantly, even if it were true that al Qaeda is being defeated, a net assessment would clearly show that on Mr. Obama’s watch, the world has become much more hospitable to its ideology and goals, and much less safe for America and our interests.
That is the case in no small measure because of the help Team Obama has given to the Muslim Brotherhood, a group that fully shares al Qaeda’s ambitions to impose its totalitarian, supremacist Islamic doctrine known as Shariah on the rest of the world under the rule of a caliph. As the Center for Security Policy has documented in a free online video-based curriculum entitled “The Muslim Brotherhood in America: the Enemy Within” (MuslimBrotherhoodinAmerica.com), that help has taken myriad forms, including: recognizing and engaging the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt; helping it come to power there; and providing $1.5 billion in aid after the Muslim Brotherhood’s political party dominated Egyptian parliamentary elections and on the eve of the election of its candidate, Mohamed Morsi, to the presidency.
The Obama administration is preparing to do still more for the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt now that they have effectively established complete control in one of the Middle East’s most strategic nations. It is engineering another $1 billion in debt relief at U.S. taxpayer expense and more than $4 billion in assistance from international financial organizations (a substantial chunk of which will come out of our hides, too).
It is also warning Israel not to object to Egypt’s remilitarization of the Sinai, in blatant violation of the peace treaty between the two nations signed at Camp David in 1979. It is also preparing to roll out the red carpet for Mr. Morsi in New York and the White House later this month.
Are such steps a problem — especially collectively? After all, the Muslim Brothers are, according to Mr. Obama’s administration, the sort of benign Islamists with whom we can safely deal since they have, in the words of the director of national intelligence, James Clapper, “eschewed violence.”
In point of fact, the Muslim Brothers have no more eschewed violence toward infidels and even Muslims who stand in the way of their geopolitical ambitions than they are, in another unforgettable example of Gen. Clapper’s cluelessness, “a largely secular organization.” These rabid and avowed Islamists are perfectly prepared to use violence — think Hamas, the Muslim Brotherhood’s Palestinian franchise — when they believe it serves their goals.
Until that time, Shariah requires its adherents to pursue the same goals through means that are best described as pre-violent, rather than nonviolent. It is the steady progress that the prime practitioners of this approach — which the Muslim Brotherhood calls “civilization jihad” — have made unnoticed, or at least uncountered, by Mr. Obama and his subordinates. They have actually made the world vastly more dangerous than it was when they came to office.
Just how dangerous may be on display when Mr. Obama hosts Mr. Morsi. It will be interesting to see whether he emboldens that Islamist, as he has others, by bowing to him. What will be far more important than such symbolic gestures is which further concessions Mr. Obama will offer, concessions that — according to the doctrine of Shariah — are interpreted as tangible signs of our submission.
One that will be at the top of Mr. Morsi’s agenda is his demand that the United States release one of the world’s most dangerous jihadists, Omar Abdul Rahman. Better known as the Blind Sheikh, this terrorist was convicted of leading, among other conspiracies, the first lethal attack on the World Trade Center in 1993. Presumably, Mr. Obama would not dare pardon or transfer Rahman to Egypt before his “last election,” but he may feel free to do so afterward — when he has, in his words, “more flexibility.”
Either way, the Morsi visit will be a “teachable moment” for every American. All other things being equal, it will demonstrate tangibly that 11 years after Sept. 11 — notwithstanding the tactical successes achieved by our courageous service members, lethal drones and intelligence and homeland security professionals, we are losing, not winning, the war against those who are driven by Shariah to wage jihad, of either the violent or stealthy kind, against us. We better pray the visit will prompt the American people to insist on a fundamental course correction two months from now.
Frank J. Gaffney Jr. is president of the Center for Security Policy (SecureFreedom.org), a columnist for The Washington Times and host of Secure Freedom Radio on WRC 1260 AM.