Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, Barack Obama. American presidents come and go yet the terrorists of al-Qaeda continue their deadly work. Since 1998 and the attacks against U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in which 224 were killed - none of them has managed to counter the "war against the infidels" launched by Osama bin Laden.
Clinton wanted to stop public enemy No. 1 before the end of his second term. Bush spent his entire eight-year presidency hunting him, promising a reward of $50 million. Installed at the White House last year, Barack Obama, since the frustrated attempt to down a flight from Amsterdam to Detroit, has toughened his language, saying he wants to, "destroy and defeat extremists."
Three presidents, three temperaments, but a still-elusive goal. In light of the alarming threat of "Jihadism, three admissions impose themselves.
First, humility prohibits untimely and definitive comments on al-Qaeda, that army of criminals that is regularly described as being held at bay. Does it function under a centralized command or is it "franchised" among Allah's damned, as some claim? Undoubtedly a little of both. Only one thing is certain: authentic messages from bin Laden or his lieutenants are invariably followed by dark initiatives.
Secondly, in many nations, this organization benefits from weakness to permanently install itself: In Somalia and the uncontrollable Horn of Africa; In Yemen, where it trained and gave orders to the young Nigerian on a flight to Detroit. This is to say that Americans and their allies cannot confine their efforts to Afghanistan and Pakistan, al-Qaeda's original bases.
Finally, determined to embody "anti-Bushism," Barack Obama must reckon with reality - as do his more ardent admirers. His soothing words on Islam from Cairo had no chance of being heard by the terrorists. Let's see if his change of strategy in Afghanistan, which was begun by his predecessor, bears fruit. At the same time, he has promised that security in the United States will be strengthened, whatever the fiercest defenders of civil liberties have to say. In brief, between Bush and Obama, when it comes to the Islamist threat, the differences may quickly begin to blur.
Source: World Meets