Having just watched the miniseries “The Looming Tower,” which depicted the run-up to the 9/11 attacks, I was reminded that as Shakespeare said, “The past is a foreign country.”
The series made much of the “Wall” that existed in those Clintonian times to prevent CIA and FBI from cooperating. While that Wall has been taken down, I cannot say the same for the much more massive wall that has been built afterwards — the Wall of False Perception that has been built that cordons off reality about the threat of Islamic extremism.
While the average person in the U.S. and Europe has a nagging sense of unease about personal security and terrorism, the forces of Political Correctness and liberal progressivism, the same people that believe in no borders — not to mention the mainstream media — blast out a narrative of “All is well, nothing to see here!"
As I thought about “The Looming Tower,” I wondered how I would explain the present willfully blind media perception of Islamic extremism to anyone in 2001 without them thinking that the world had gone mad in the intervening generation. Could we in 2018 really be so contemptuous of the truth, so unwilling to admit the problems that beset us? Indeed we can!
Could I explain to the 2001 emissary that here, in the U.S., not only had officials located a squalid terrorist training camp in New Mexico (complete with the body of a young child), but that most of the 5 defendants had been released on a mere $20,000 bond? The presiding judge said there was no “threat to the community”! Never mind that the main defendant is Siraj Wahhaj, the son of a well-known imam who was an unindicted co-conspirator in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing.
How would I discuss the ongoing Huddersfield UK Sex Inquiry, featuring “Grooming Gangs” that the British press is loath to describe as a nationwide problem?
Looking back over only the past few days, I would mention to my 2001 counterpart the “military like” operation that saw dozens of cars torched throughout Sweden 3 days ago.
And the fact that video of these riots in Sweden are banned on Facebook (after I explained what Facebook was!).
Lest we forget, the world also saw terrorist attacks in both Toronto and London in the past two weeks. Although the British seem to reluctantly admit that the latest (thankfully abortive) London attack was terrorism, Canada steadfastly denies the obvious — despite the death of two precious children.
I think at this point Mr./Mrs. 2001 would have left my presence in disgust!
What do all these attacks have in common, in addition to their obvious ties to Islamic extremism?
That is, “Seeing What One Wants to See.” This tragic human flaw is something I have been attuned to throughout my career in intelligence — because on this all of us have seen examples of such blindness amongst our friends and family, and I have often written on the subject.
Intelligence Services have long been concerned with this quirk, given their duty to keep nations safe from threats. Clinging to false narratives can have adverse results.
Our present problem with willful blindness, however, is far more serious than just a challenge for our intelligence and law enforcement agencies.
In the present day, we are now looking at whole societies afflicted with the “disease” of willful blindness, the deliberate ignoring of facts on the ground. While we see this in other aspects of our lives as well (Trump Derangement Syndrome) — it’s in the area of national security — particularly Islamic extremism, where the rubber really meets the road.
We all know that the first rule in getting out of a hole is "stop digging," but this is lost on European “leadership” who are more concerned with censoring anti-Islamic internet forums than properly screening a million Middle Eastern refugees (and counting). Merkel, May, and Trudeau bury their heads in the sand while crime and lawlessness subsume populations unable to defend themselves (no Second Amendment there, you know!) What to do if you are a Swede caught in the midst of a grenade attack between rival North African Street gangs — when you know the police will not be there to help you? Start packing, I guess.
This is exactly what Dr. Sebastian Gorka means when he says that, “Political Correctness Kills…”
Western Europe, long involved in a crisis of self-loathing, is much further along the Road to Cultural Suicide than we are, with not only a culture but national leaderships stewing in political correctness and false narrative, unable to admit that the wholesale influx of refugees has resulted in an explosion of crime Continent-wide.
Eastern Europe, for millennia the frontline defenders of Christianity against the spread of Islam, and cynical of central leadership due to its Warsaw Pact past, tells the Westerners to pound sand, thank God, when told to admit more refugees — and for its trouble is sanctioned by the EU and accused of racism… or something.
The United States remains a battleground between the forces of realism (Conservatism) and willful blindness (Liberal Progressives), with victories on each side. The clear lurch of the Democratic Party toward the extreme Left (Abolish ICE, Antifa, etc.) is both a threat to our collective security and an opportunity. The latter because the leftist lurch has awakened many Americans to the true agenda of what is now an anti-American, socialist party with no agenda and no ideas, except Trump bashing and institution toppling, and no desire to protect Americans.
This week the news from New Mexico was not good, but the outrage over such homegrown terror seems to be increasing, as more Americans realize that Liberal Progressives with their false narratives and disregard for the facts on the ground are putting American lives in danger. Reality, you see, is not the strong suit of liberals — and Americans are pragmatic with most still having the ability of Critical Thinking — something our academia, never fear, is working on!
The immediate fear post-9/11 was that the tragedy would unleash copycat terrorists who would assault everything from the Mall of America to Disneyland; Americans braced themselves for a new Age of Terror. Thank God, this prophecy never truly came to pass. What we have seen, however, beginning in around 2013 and continuing to the present, is much more “lower-order” terrorism than previously.
Another key difference now is that we have a mainstream media committing journalistic malpractice and unwilling to identify this threat or sometimes even report on it.
Let’s hope that the same rejection of the False Narrative that propelled President Trump into office will hasten the death of a mainstream media that has mutated into a propaganda arm that this old Russian Hand believes the Soviet Union would have been proud of!
Scott Uehlinger is a retired CIA Station Chief and Naval Officer. A Russian speaker, he spent 12 years of his career abroad in the former Soviet Union. In addition to teaching at NYU, he is a frequent Newsmax TV and Fox Business TV commentator, and has a weekly podcast, "the Station Chief," that can be found on iTunes or at www.thestationchief.com. To read more of his reports — Click Here Now.
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