As I've been promising, I am laying out what I think are critical issues for the presidency of the US. As this thread gets closer to the actual facts, it gets more serious. None of the issues are as serious as national defense.
On 9/11/2001, the United States was attacked without provocation. There are some politicians who believe we brought this on ourselves. They are wrong and should be immediately discredited, if not charged with treason. Looking back, this should be a "Pearl Harbor event". We were attacked on US soil, but there were several smaller attacks that should have been wake-up calls. This happened before 12/07/41, but then as now, they weren't recognizable for what they were. Now in the light of 911, the events are seen as a prelude.
911 should also be a "Pearl Harbor event" in that it should propel us into the Global War on Terror. That phrase has gone out of style, but that's what it is. There are terrorists everywhere who are attacking us and our way of life. Only by being proactive, can we take the war to them.
My biggest fear is for the next 911. Whether biological, nuclear, or tactical weapons are used, if we do nothing, another attack will be coming. I suspect a series of smaller attacks, hit a shopping mall at Christmas, hit a random school, would get as much attention as the first 911. The next president needs to be ready.
Part of this can be addressed with laws around the Patriot Act. There are also laws regarding FISA - the Foreign Intelligence Surveilance Act. These laws allow the US government to spy on people like you & me when they suspect National Security is at risk. Some of the provisions of these laws are up for renewal. There should be no question about their requirements. Some would argue that they un-necessarily spy on US citizens. I would argue against that. Not a single case has been brought forward that would indicate anyone's rights have been violated.
In addition to the Global War on Terror, the next president needs to address the issues of Iraq and Afghanistan. First to Afghanistan. It's evident to me that the reason the Soviet Union failed in Afg is due to our under-cover support. When that war was over, a vacuum was left in the political makeup of the country. The US failed to step in and fill that vacuum or support any strong government, and the Taliban were allowed to rule. The result was a breeding ground for terrorists.
Now the same thing is ready to happen in Iraq. With Saddam Hussein out of power, we can either rebuild the government or we can let it fall to chaos and another Taliban-type rule. If we abandon either of these countries, we can count on terrorists breeding like mosquitos in a swamp.
The rebuilding of these two countries and the positioning of troops must continue. The troops must not be brought home until the job is complete, which may be several years.
Also in the area of national defense is our response in other areas of the world. However, as already seen in Libya, our response in Iraq and Afg. will have an effect on leaders elsewhere. Our response should be the same, if these countries promote terrorism, we should work to rebuild the country, either politically or militarily.
Part of this applies to one of our allies, Saudi Arabia. The Sauds have long enjoyed our support, yet some of the biggest mosquitos (terrorists) have been bred in their country. The schools teach an anti-American curriculum and the children grow up hating us. With all the money we spend on oil, we should demand a better supplier.
Which brings me to the last subject in the area of national defense, oil. Our nation's economic dependence on oil is a contributing factor to the current dilemma. Only by developing nuclear energy, solar energy and wind energy (I sound like a tree hugger) can we remove this dependence. However, doing so will lessen the economic lifestyle of our middle eastern neighbors and is likely to cause more unrest. We must work with the governments of the affected countries to lessen their dependence on our hard earned cash. Just like an addict on heroin, simply cutting the US cash-addicts off cold turkey will cause withdrawl pains and they may lash out at us, causing increased terrorist activities.
This has been a long post, I appreciate your reading it in entirety. I truly believe that national defense is the single greatest issue facing the next president.
I'm Randy Barnett and I approved this message.
P.S. Why didn't someone correct my previous posts where I said "I endorsed this message"?