Eight long years ago, then President George Bush and the dynamic duo of Dick Cheney and Don Rumsfeld promised the American people they would capture Osama bin Laden, “Dead or Alive.” Of course, within a few weeks after making the bold claim, they abandoned the search for the elusive Osama and turned their attention to Iraq in order to search for non-existent WMD. Fast forward to December, 2009 and President Barack Obama is promising to capture anyone connected with the failed attempt to blow up an airline in Detroit. He promised “to dismantle and defeat the violent extremists who threaten us, whether they are from Afghanistan or Pakistan, Yemen or Somalia.”
Yes, we want to capture or kill terrorists, particularly those who take explosives on a plane. Of course, the question raised by Homeland Security chief Janet Napolitano is somewhat awkard, “how did he get an explosive substance on to the plane?” Reality is one focuses on small details rather than focusing on general speeches that sound tough, but can never be accomplished. There will always be sick terrorists and some will escape because, such is life. Deal with the immediate by developing an effective process of searching people boarding a plane. Enough with the threats.