by Dave Rogers
Leading the evening news as I write this is the story of a video fictionally portraying a suicide bombing of Times Square that was broadcast by ISIS today.
This among many other potential threats obviously has our national security apparatus attention today, with the news media and by extension the general pubic not very far behind. The story about this video is remarkable to me in a few ways. It is being interpreted alternatively as a how-to harbinger of things come here in the US or an empty threat designed to inspire fear. However I found it also interesting in that it was the first story to take precedence in the news cycle over the debate over whether 10,000 Syrian refugees should be allowed to immigrate to our country and how they might be properly vetted.
In the midst of all this I caught a clip of MSNBC’s Chris Hayes interview with Caroline Fourest, a former writer for the now infamous French satire magazine Charlie Hebdo. The interview would have had to originally taken place before the story of the Times Square video broke, but certainly in the midst of the coverage of the refugee debate here in the U.S. She couldn’t have known about the former, and I sincerely doubt she cares very much about the latter. She spoke to Hayes about what she did care about:
“We need to do something. We cannot… cannot just say ‘it;’s ok, don’t fear, it will go away’. No it won’t go away. We know that we have probably ten years of attacks in front of us if we don’t do something about ISIS in Syria. But more than that, it’s not just a war. It would be too simple if it was just a war. It’s even more than a war actually. It’s a fight against a totalitarian movement with recruiting among us.”
The French are in this thing. Deep. And I believe that because of that inevitably we will be as well. We will be deeply involved in sustained combat operations against ISIS regardless of whether the Times Square video is a real threat. We will be in this if the president (and about half of you) is correct that there are no secret terrorist sleeper cells within the 10,000 Syrian ‘widows and orphans’ in temporary news cycle limbo before their immigration process begins. (They will be allowed in. It’s the Presidents call and he ain’t backing down).
No we will be in this because as horribly objectionable as it is for me to write, France is going to be hit again. Germany as well. England is a particularly tough potential target but ask any Englishman what ‘7/7’ means to them and even they will admit that they certainly not invulnerable.
Our debate du jour is whether or not a group of refugees who under the best of circumstances have the wrong point of origin and a tragically coincidental arrival date in the US should be allowed to stay here. Ask yourself this question: Do you think anyone living in France right now cares a scintilla about our little immigration issue? They have some issues of their own.
Listen to Ms. Fourest (above), or President Hollande, or use your eyes and common sense. One of our closest allies just went to war and they damn well know it. Their enemy is already there. They just took a bloody hit last Friday and fully expect more. Germany had a scare yesterday with an (as yet unconfirmed) truck bomb. And if you don’t believe that past performance is a guarantee of future results just ask ISIS. They have said they are coming to the rest of Europe (and here by the way) and as brutally evil and primitively mis-guided they are, they tend to back up their boasts.
What does our world look like when our European cousins are rebounding from not just one brazen and brutal terrorist event but several. What happens to their respective economies, and by extension the global economy, when France and our other NATO-member European allies, our closest economic trading partners, are either mourning one tragedy or preparing for the next?
We are debating (today) whether or not to let some people in our country who may or may not include some bad guys. Their enemy is across town, in their neighborhoods and if the most brutal and well financed terror group in modern times are to be believed, Friday was just the beginning.
We are in this thing. It’s just not leading the news cycle here. Yet
About the author: Dave Rogers is a combat decorated former U.S. Navy SEAL and a two time candidate for United States Congress in 2002 and 2004. Dave now hosts the Open Forum on 1540 WADK and works as a consultant to the defense industry.