With the final presidential debate just hours away, Barack Obama's re-election narrative of "a wonderful world" is increasingly more difficult to defend. On the Jon Stewart Show recently, the President again tried to minimize the threat of radical Islam claiming that just a few "remnants" of al-Qaeda remain. But, the evidence continues to mount that despite the death of Osama bin Laden, Barack Obama's "lead-from-behind" foreign policy has resulted in a more aggressive, expanded, and emboldened al-Qaeda network.
The Washington Post reports today that Jordanian officials foiled a "major plot by al-Qaeda-linked operatives to launch near-simultaneous attacks on multiple civilian and government targets, reportedly including the U.S. Embassy in the capital, Amman." The report says 11 people have been arrested with connections to the radical Islamist group known as al-Qaeda in Iraq.
Additionally, as Reuters reported last week, "Al Qaeda-linked Islamists in Mali threatened on Saturday to 'open the doors of hell' for French citizens if France kept pushing for armed intervention to retake" the northern regions of Mali controlled by AQIM extremists since last March.
According to the UK-Telegraph, war seems eminent as French officials have just announced a commitment to provide military support for "the needs of the Malian army in terms of what is necessary" to retake the northern regions of the former French colony of 16 million people in Western Africa.
Six weeks after the assassination of Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans, the Obama administration continues to evolve the explanations of what exactly happened in Benghazi, Libya. President Obama, Vice-President Biden, and Secretary of State Clinton have all vowed "to bring whoever did this to us to justice." But, one of the principal suspects in the attack that resulted in the murders of Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans isn't exactly quaking in fear of the President's threat.
Ahmed Abu Khattala has personally been fingered for his role in the assassinations. He is believed to be a principle in Ansar al-Sharia, the al-Qaeda linked group officials believe is behind the Benghazi terrorist attack. According to the New York Times, "witnesses have said they saw him directing other fighters that night. Libyan officials have singled him out, and officials in Washington say they are examining his role."
But, if he's one of the most wanted men in the world right now, Abu Khattala doesn't seem all that concerned. He sat down with the New York Times and "spent two leisurely hours on Thursday evening at a crowded luxury hotel, sipping a strawberry frappe on a patio and scoffing at the threats coming from the American and Libyan governments."
Abu Khattala told the NYT that, "no authority has even questioned him about the attack…and he has no plans to go into hiding."
In the hours immediately following the murder of Ambassador Stevens, U.S. intelligence intercepted communications from members of Ansar al-Sharia (AAS), Abu Khattala's organization, and members of al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), the group's North African affiliate. In the communications, AAS "bragged about their successful attack against the American consulate and the U.S. ambassador, according to three U.S. intelligence officials who spoke to The Daily Beast anonymously because they were not authorized to talk to the press."
On September 12, the morning after Ambassador Stevens' murder, in a recorded interview for 60 Minutes, the President referred to attacks like what happened in Benghazi as "bumps in the road." Recently, Obama and Biden have tossed the intelligence agencies, the State Department, and even Hillary Clinton herself under the bus trying to avoid responsibility for Benghazi.
Perhaps after another definitive debate victory tonight by Mitt Romney, the next "bump in the road" will be in two weeks when voters toss Barack Obama under his own bus of blame and reject him and his failed leadership.