Kerry Aid Gives Bush Love

People have their different explanations for the Scott heard round the world. I've assumed that people were mostly tired of the heavy-handedness of the Dems, so discounted the claim that Brown's numbers started rising after the Knickerbomber incident at Christmas. Now I'm not so sure it didn't play a more important role. See for example this essay, written by a member of John Kerry's legal team for the 2004 election. (In other words, a guy committed to challenging Bush's presidency if the vote was close.)
It should be obvious now, even to Obama’s most passionate supporters that shielding the free world requires more than mere words like “hope” and “change.” Bush’s detractors should be embarrassed having arrogantly thought they could do it better, and those Republicans who abandoned Bush when he needed them most should take a moment to reflect on their fortitude or lack thereof.
Americans who chastised President Bush for removing Saddam Hussein from power in Iraq should apologize and show him the same respect they are now showing President Obama as he neutralizes the Taliban in Afghanistan.
George W. Bush seemed to have an almost mystical understanding of what the American people needed when we needed it most. He reminded all of us of why we should be proud to be Americans at a time when there was a whisper that we brought the Sept. 11 attacks upon ourselves for promoting democracy abroad.
President Bush deserves our respect, not our betrayal.
Curtsy: Brutally Honest
It seems the inept handling of the Knickerbomber inspired this re-thinking --ineptness described in disturbing detail by Stephen Hayes. For example, the team created to interrogate the Knickerbombers of this world was not so much as contacted in the recent incident. The guy was just Mirandized on the spot, with no effort to find out about other plots! This was not policy, as our Director of National Intelligence (!) explains:
"I've been a part of the discussions which established this high-value interrogation unit, [HIG] which we started as part of the executive order after the decision to close Guantanamo. That unit was created for exactly this purpose -- to make a decision on whether a certain person who's detained should be treated as a case for federal prosecution or for some of the other means. We did not invoke the HIG in this case," he said. "We should have."

That's quite an admission. Blair wasn't finished (see the 51:00 mark of this video). "Frankly, we were thinking more of overseas people and, duh!, we didn't put it then. That's what we will do now. And so we need to make those decisions more carefully. I was not consulted and the decision was made on the scene. It seemed logical to the people there but it should have been taken using this HIG format at a higher level."

When Blair said "Duh," he literally gave himself a slap on the forehead, as if to say I-cannot-believe-we-were-that-stupid. It was an appropriate gesture.  Blair admitted that Abdulmutallab was not interrogated for intelligence purposes because the Obama administration had not considered using the newly-created elite interrogation unit on terrorist in the United States.
Living in DC, a likely Ground Zero which has already come under attack, it's nice to know when the hijacked plane crashes into us, the DNI will slap his forehead.

It gets worse. Read Hayes' entire piece.

Senator Sessions, who did a great job interrogating our FBI director (video here --get a load of Sen. Leahy's utter cluelessness), sent a strongly worded letter to the President (signed by all the GOP senators) and released a statement:
I am deeply disturbed by the stunning revelations from today's oversight hearings in the Homeland Security and Judiciary Committees. The decision to prosecute Umar Abdulmutallab in civilian court, which required him to be given a Miranda warning and access to a defense lawyer, may have cost us crucial intelligence about current and future plots against our country. Even more alarming, we learned today that these rash decisions were made without consulting key counter-terrorism officials in the administration, including the Director of National Intelligence, Dennis Blair.
In his testimony today, Mr. Blair stated that the administration failed to deploy the High-Value Detainee Interrogation Group that was put in place for this very purpose. We learned that the administration had no policy in place to determine whether Abdulmutallab would be treated as a civilian or as an unprivileged belligerent-that, in effect, these decisions were made "on the fly" without any meaningful consideration of the consequences. And we learned from FBI Director Mueller's questioning that responsibility for the decision to switch gears from intelligence collection to criminal processing lies with an unnamed high-ranking official at the Department of Justice.
Director Mueller stated flatly that intelligence gathering stopped when Abdulmutallab was told he had the right to remain silent and to an attorney. By contrast, captured enemy combatants are not provided with these same privileges. While they do have important rights, they are available for interrogation and can be detained as long as the war continues.Intelligence saves lives-but this administration's wrongheaded quest to grant American criminal trials to foreign terrorists puts valuable intelligence out of reach.

Terrorists are at war with us whether we like it or not. Failing to recognize that reality will not serve us any better now than it did before 9/11. It will only increase the danger.

To quote our DNI: /slaps forehead: "Duh."