Obama Gets Tougher Over Terrorism


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Sixteen months after taking office and inheriting the Bush administration’s war on terror, Barack Obama may be turning out just as tough as his predecessor.

He’s pulled back from his pledge to close Guantanamo Bay prison in Cuba, maintained Bush war policy in Iraq, escalated the effort in Afghanistan and authorized ongoing drone attacks in Pakistan as well.

Even so, some Republicans deride the Obama administration as weak on national defense and say its treatment of terrorism suspects is proof. Under Obama, suspects arrested in the U.S. have been reminded of their rights.

But then a Pakistani-American immigrant was arrested last week in connection with a failed plot to bomb New York’s Times Square.

Police immediately questioned Faisal Shahzad about whether there was any other pressing threat to public safety. Satisfied that the danger was past, they then read him his rights and reminded him he could remain silent.

Some legal experts say that the initial questioning may have violated Shahzad’s constitutional rights and threatened the government’s ability to convict him in court.

The incident apparently impressed the administration. Obama’s aides announced he would be working on potential changes to the long-standing policy.

“We have to think about perhaps modifying the rules that interrogators have,” said Attorney-General Eric Holder, “coming up with something that is flexible and is more consistent with the threat that we now face.”

In George Bush’s home state of Texas, one sarcastic newspaper headline announced that “Holder Discovers Terrorism.”

But reaction elsewhere has been muted. Civil libertarians oppose any effort to diminish the rights of criminal suspects but may be waiting to see what Obama actually proposes.

(Source: CNN)


  1. Obama has maintained Bush’s policy in Iraq?
    You mean he is not going to pull out before the job is done?

    Not even if it means, staying longer then any previouysly announced pull out, dates?

    What about in Afghanistan?

    Also part of Bush’s policy against terrorism was to support Israel, which Obama does not want to do.

    And saying look how tough Obama is, because of the arrest of the car bomber in New York is to imply, that theoretically, we could have had a president under whom, the New York police would not have done their jobs.

    This claim supposedly on behalf of Obamas’ “tough stance” on terrorism is just a throwaway, propaganda statement, nothing more.

  2. hereorthere, the article is saying that obama is tough only because he said he might change some rules. That would be a good thing. Party people, who’s only real agenda is to bash the other side, are being sarcastic. The appropriate reaction would be to say, yes that’s a great idea. If only praise would be heard when it is deserved, would be taken more seriously.

  3. This is from CNN – the media has realized that Obama, and with him the extreme liberal agenda, is in trouble, and are thus trying to save him.