NATIONAL SECURITY ISSUES
(House of Representatives - February 06, 2013)

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[Pages H400-H406]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




                        NATIONAL SECURITY ISSUES

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Under the Speaker's announced policy of 
January 3, 2013, the gentleman from Texas (Mr. Gohmert) is recognized 
for 54 minutes as the designee of the majority leader.
  Mr. GOHMERT. Mr. Speaker, at this time, the first thing I would like 
to do is yield to the gentleman from Illinois (Mr. Danny K. Davis).


      Paying Tribute to Cardiss Collins, Former Member of Congress

  Mr. DANNY K. DAVIS of Illinois. I want to thank the gentleman from 
Texas for yielding to me.
  I rise to pay tribute to the predecessor of my office, who served for 
23 years as a Member of the House, the Honorable Cardiss Collins, who 
passed away on Saturday evening here in the District area.
  I followed Ms. Collins into Congress when she retired. She followed 
her husband, who was killed in an airplane accident. The amazing thing 
about her was that she basically had no political involvement and 
experience from that vantage point. She was an accountant, who also was 
a housewife and involved a bit in local politics. But she got involved 
and was a quick study, immediately grasped what takes place here, 
ultimately became chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus, became 
chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, had an 
outstanding career, and I simply wanted to acknowledge her work.
  People of her community will remember the legacy that she created as 
a fighter for women's rights, as a defender of children's rights, and a 
real defender of health care.
  Again, I thank the gentleman from Texas.
  Mr. GOHMERT. Thank you, Mr. Davis. It's my pleasure to have had the 
opportunity to yield to you. It's one of the things that's good if we 
do more of, and that is recognizing people for their great 
contributions to this country.
  At this time, I want to pick up where my friend, Mr. Franks, left off 
and follow up on the issue of who will be the next CIA Director. This 
is an important matter.
  Some think, well, what difference does the past make? Today is a new 
day. Every day is a new day. But those of us who majored in history, 
studied history, know that our history is the best indication of future 
performance.
  So with regard to Mr. Brennan, I think it's worth noting that 
Secretary of State--former Secretary of State now--Hillary Clinton 
warned on her way out as Secretary of State of the danger of what she 
called the ``global jihadist threat.'' I am greatly appreciative to 
Secretary Clinton for calling this administration's attention to that, 
as well as the American public. Secretary Clinton should know. We had 
at least four Americans killed at Benghazi during her watch as 
Secretary of State.
  The question might be: Where is John Brennan today on this central 
challenge of our time for Western civilization? And by ``Western 
civilization,'' I mean the idea that the Founders of this Nation had, 
many of them depicted in the great mural just outside this floor, 56 
signers of the Declaration in the mural that John Trumble did down in 
the Rotunda. Their idea, when you read their writings, was of a people 
who would have the chance to govern themselves.
  They all knew that prayer was important. That's why as Ben Franklin 
said during the Constitutional Convention--his own handwriting, he 
wrote out his speech, but he mentioned that during the revolution, in 
his words:

       We had daily prayer in this room. Our prayers, sir, were 
     heard and they were graciously answered.

  They understood that. They prayed for wisdom. They prayed for 
guidance. They prayed for help in setting up this experiment in 
democracy. Yes, Rome had had a Senate. Yes, Greece had had a Senate; 
England had had a Parliament. But they had rulers who could just 
disband, kill, dismiss. This was going to be different. This was going 
to be a people who would have the chance to actually govern themselves, 
a revolutionary idea.
  There was still such a class system in so many areas of the world in 
the 1700s that so many considered that people who were not of the upper 
crust would not have the ability to govern themselves. That's not what 
the Founders believed after they prayed each day during the revolution, 
after they prayed and struggled and argued over the way forward to 
reaching that goal.
  But there is a threat, as Secretary Clinton said, the global jihadist 
threat, of people who think that the Founders' dream is totally 
inappropriate, that it leads to degradation; it leads to moral 
depravity, in their minds.

                              {time}  1300

  The Founders knew that was a possibility, but it was worth the risk 
to give people the freedom of choice as they believed their creator had 
given all of us, to make decisions for good or bad, and normally to 
have to live with the consequences of those decisions.

[[Page H401]]

  The global jihadist threat that Secretary Clinton pointed out does 
not have the belief that a democracy is a good idea, that a people 
electing representatives in a republican form of government is a good 
idea. They believe that we need some religious leader, like the 
Ayatollah Khomeini, or now Khamenei in Iran, we need a religious leader 
like that, that tells us what we can do, that makes all his decisions 
under shari'a law.
  Now, all of those who met during the revolution, they believed in the 
power of prayer to God, and that's why they prayed during that time. 
But they wanted everyone to have the chance to worship as they chose, 
be they Muslim, Hindu, but especially Judeo-Christian beliefs where 
Jews and Christians had traditionally suffered persecution. They wanted 
the chance for people to worship as they please, or not worship. But 
they knew to make that possible they had to pray to God.
  And that's why we are observing, once again, tomorrow the National 
Prayer Breakfast where our President will speak, where we will have a 
fantastic testimony from one of the great leaders in our country, who 
earlier in his life, when his life was going astray, dropped to his 
knees and prayed for help and got it. We will hear about that tomorrow.
  But if we don't know the history of this country, if we don't know 
the dream of the Founders, if we don't understand the Constitution, 
then we lose it. And people need to understand when there is a global 
jihadist threat, not of moderate Muslims, like our friends, the 
Northern Alliance, who fought and defeated the Taliban on our behalf, 
not the enemy of our enemies, but these are radical Islamic jihadists 
who want a caliphate in which the United States is subjugated to a 
religious ruler.
  And they're willing to use violence, if necessary. Although the 
Muslim Brotherhood now seems to indicate that here in America they've 
made so much progress in infiltrating and getting positions of power in 
our government, in our State Department, in our Homeland Security 
Department, in our Justice Department, at the White House directly, 
direct lines to the President, they have made so much progress in 
moving toward that goal of a caliphate here in the United States, under 
shari'a law, not under the Constitution, that they're thinking maybe 
violence is not the way forward in America to achieve their goal of 
making this a shari'a compliant caliphate.
  But the Muslim Brotherhood around the world believes in many places 
violence is the way forward in those areas. But we've got to understand 
who we are facing and what they want to do. And Secretary Clinton, 
unfortunately it is on her way out that she notes this, instead of 
being able to spend the last four years with the clarity she had when 
she said that we face this danger of a global jihadist threat. It is a 
threat. She now acknowledges it on her way out.
  And the question now is, since Secretary of State Kerry will now be 
carrying that mantle, for heaven's sake we have got to have somebody in 
intelligence directing intelligence who understands the threat against 
us and will ensure that we are protected and understands the global 
jihadist threat.
  The Obama administration has focused almost entirely on al Qaeda, 
believing people when they came in and said, ``Look, the only people 
who can actually give you advice on dealing with these radical folks 
are Islamic believers, so you must get advice from us, form 
partnerships with us, let us give you advice, let us tell you how to 
deal with this threat.'' And they made great inroads in this 
administration in that approach.
  But the blindness of the larger jihadist threat, the enterprise that 
is being pursued by the Muslim Brotherhood abroad, has resulted in the 
practice of drone-delivered assassinations of al Qaeda figures, with 
what many are questioning or arguing is due process without that, and 
this administration's repeated declaration that al Qaeda is being 
defeated. They know not of what they speak.
  The idea that al Qaeda is being defeated is helping recruit others 
who are radical jihadists, because they're able to point to a United 
States administration that is so blind and so uninformed of what really 
is going on, that they think al Qaeda is on the decline when radical 
jihad is on its way up.
  The drone technique of killing American citizens and killing radical 
jihadists is apparently thought by this administration to be a very 
advanced and practical approach. Well, it does avoid putting Americans 
at risk right now. But those same people in this administration that 
talked about the danger of waterboarding because, yes, some acknowledge 
we got very critical information by using that, even though there was 
no threat to their health, you had doctors there, there was no 
intention to do any harm. The intent was to perform a procedure that 
did not harm but would gather information.
  Well, this administration ran against John McCain, and even though 
John McCain agreed, yeah, we don't want to waterboard, we don't want to 
do anything that somebody might someday call torture, they complained, 
gee, this is allowing radicals to be recruited against the United 
States because of the unjust nature of doing a procedure that is not 
harmful to someone's health to gather information to save American 
lives, which it did.
  So here we are now with this administration that thought 
waterboarding helped jihadists recruit more radicals, using a process 
of having a high administration official think to himself or herself, 
``I don't think this may be enough, yeah, blow them up,'' without 
giving adequate consideration to civilians who will be killed, to 
family members who will be upset, to the ability of our enemies to use 
that to recruit other radicals many times over to replace those that 
have been killed with a drone strike.
  This administration's systemic failure to understand what the Muslim 
Brotherhood calls ``civilization jihad'' is putting this country in 
severe jeopardy. That's why I appreciate Secretary Clinton, on her way 
out, unfortunately, pointing back to the danger of this global jihadist 
threat.
  According to the--and this is the name of the document--``Explanatory 
Memorandum on the General Strategic Goal for the Brotherhood in North 
America,'' the mission of the Muslim Brotherhood is this:
  ``A civilization-jihadist process--a kind of grand jihad in 
eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and 
sabotaging its miserable house by their,'' i.e. Americans', ``hands and 
the hands of the believers so that it is eliminated and Allah's 
religion is made victorious over all other religions.''

                              {time}  1310

  The mission statement I've just quoted translates into a 
comprehensive effort to penetrate, to influence, and otherwise subvert 
our American civil society, our form of government, our governing 
institutions. And that explanatory memorandum that I just quoted from 
was written on May 19, 1991 by a top Muslim Brotherhood operative, 
Mohamed Akram.
  Though the Justice Department established in Federal court during the 
Holy Land Foundation trials in Dallas, Texas, that the groups 
identified by the Muslim Brotherhood in their memo are ``their 
organizations,'' a number of them and their successors have been 
treated by the Obama administration as key interlocutors in dealing 
with radical jihad, and this administration believes that these Muslim 
Brotherhood front organizations are legitimate representatives of the 
Muslim American community.
  They have enabled the Muslim Brotherhood to recruit and to show 
others, Look, we're the ones that the White House trusts. We can call 
the White House. We can call and tell them there are three people who 
are giving a seminar at Langley--CIA headquarters--to law officers, 
hundreds of them, and we believe they will be teaching them things that 
are offensive to us. Well, yeah, because they call them what they are. 
They read from their own documents.
  These individuals, who have spent their careers learning and teaching 
about the threat of what Secretary Clinton called the global jihadist 
threat, were stopped in August a year and a half ago by a call to the 
White House. That call also was instrumental in prompting this 
administration through the intelligence department, the Justice 
Department, the FBI, all these departments, into purging documents, 
purging words, purging things from our materials that someone who

[[Page H402]]

wants to destroy our way of life and take us over and make us a 
caliphate may be offended by.
  I can't go into what has been purged because they decided to declare 
it a classified setting when Michele Bachmann and I--and for a while 
Lynn Westmoreland--went through documents to see what had been purged, 
documents that we knew before we went in had supposedly been purged 
because someone who wants to destroy our way of life might be offended.
  Well, I am offended, every American should be offended, and every 
Muslim should be offended that a governing administration put the 
feelings of people who want to destroy us ahead of their oath to 
protect this Nation and preserve the Constitution. It doesn't mean 
anything to preserve the Constitution if you preserve the document but 
you do not preserve the enumerated powers and laws set out in that 
document.
  Last June, four of my colleagues and I wrote to five different 
departments in this administration. In each separate letter--each was 
different--we wrote to the inspector general of each department, and we 
pointed out in each letter specific facts about that department that 
should give rise to an investigation into the influence of people who 
have embraced the idea of civilization jihad and taking this country 
over and subjugating us to sharia law and a religious leader who could 
tell us how to avoid moral depravity.
  There was such an uproar, even by some Republicans--by a few of them, 
anyway. But some in the media went ballistic. Instead of doing their 
own investigation, they start blaming the messenger. But I don't hear 
any of those people attacking Secretary Clinton on her way out for 
saying, By the way, there is a global jihadist threat. It's what we've 
been trying to tell people for a couple of years, at least. There is a 
global jihadist threat. Thank you, Secretary Clinton. You're right.
  Now, for this administration to bring people into top positions who 
do not understand the threat to this country and think that ignoring 
due process of our Constitution and killing American citizens with 
drone bombs is somehow preserving the Constitution, it requires another 
look. It requires oversight. There may be circumstances where that's 
what needs to be done. But I do find it interesting that this 
administration and certain leaders here on the Hill had no problem with 
al Awlaki leading prayers here at the Capitol, here on Capitol Hill, 
prayers by al Awlaki that were videotaped, that you can still find. He 
led prayers on Capitol Hill, and then he goes to Yemen, and this 
administration thinks we better kill him with a drone without due 
process. What were they afraid of? Maybe that he would come back and 
lead prayers on Capitol Hill, or maybe he would be captured and talk 
about who all he led prayers with on Capitol Hill? What was the need 
for taking this man out?
  We're told he had blood on his hands, and so it does seem. But there 
seems to be a problem when leaders of this country will say you cannot 
waterboard to get information, even though it's not a threat to the 
health of the individual--it scares them--but we will take an American 
citizen out who not so long before was leading prayers of Muslim staff 
members here at this Capitol on Capitol Hill.
  It would be a grave mistake for our Senate to confirm John Brennan as 
the chief architect that he has been for his failure to understand and 
comprehend the global jihadist threat that Secretary Clinton has noted 
going out.
  There was an article today, February 6, by Jim Geraghty, and I'm 
quoting from the article:
  Let me throw you a curveball by quoting Adam Serwer of Mother Jones, 
reacting to the administration's release of its legal justification to 
kill Americans believed to be involved with terror without a trial, by 
drone.

                              {time}  1320

  Let me parenthetically note here that I'm not someone who comes to 
the table without an understanding about trials, about evidence, about 
due process, about constitutional rights, and about a death sentence. 
I've signed death sentences. It's a heavy, weighty matter, and as 
someone who has believed in capital punishment in the right 
circumstances, it's still a challenging moment when you watch your hand 
sign an order to have someone put to death. I've done it twice. In both 
cases, the evidence was overwhelming beyond a reasonable doubt. The 
evidence was also overwhelming beyond a reasonable doubt that those two 
individuals murdered an individual or more, knew what they were doing 
when they murdered one or more individuals, were complicit in actually 
either murdering or participating in the murder, and that there was no 
evidence.
  The question put to the jury: Is there any evidence that mitigates 
against the imposition of the death penalty as the Supreme Court has 
found? Any evidence. It's a ``no evidence'' question. Is there any 
evidence that mitigates against the death penalty? That's one of the 
three questions, and that's the standard. That's what juries in States 
that allow capital punishment have had to wrestle with, but I'd like to 
know who is considering those weighty issues in this administration.
  So we go back to Geraghty's article. He quotes from Mother Jones:

       The Obama administration claims that the secret judgment of 
     a single ``well-informed, high-level administration 
     official'' meets the demands of due process and is sufficient 
     justification to kill an American citizen suspected of 
     working with terrorists. That procedure is entirely secret. 
     Thus, it's impossible to know which rules the administration 
     has established to protect due process and to determine how 
     closely those rules are followed. The government needs the 
     approval of a judge to detain a suspected terrorist. To kill 
     one, however, it need only give itself permission.
       Of course, the hypocrisy of most liberals doesn't get us 
     off the hook on the need to have a coherent view on this. 
     Okay, conservatives. Big question now: If this were President 
     Romney, would we be shrugging, concerned, complaining or 
     screaming? I think ``concerned.'' At the very least, you 
     would want another set of eyes--the House or Senate 
     Intelligence Committees or some independent judges--taking a 
     look at the Presidential ``kill list''--right?--at least for 
     the American citizens.
       Our Charles C.W. Cooke said, ``In case my position isn't 
     obvious, I am appalled by any President processing the 
     unilateral power to kill American citizens extrajudicially.''
       Senator Ron Wyden, Oregon Democrat, puts it rather bluntly: 
     ``Every American has the right to know when their government 
     believes that it is allowed to kill them.''

  Geraghty finishes his article by saying, ``That doesn't seem like too 
much to ask.''
  The article in Mother Jones is worth considering. It's dated Tuesday, 
February 5, posted at 8:53 a.m. Pacific Standard Time by Adam Serwer. 
It takes a good look at this issue.
  So what is the result of this administration's deciding secretly or 
some bureaucrat's deciding, ``Yeah, we've got enough. We'll kill this 
man. Yeah, we've got enough. We'll kill this person, this American 
citizen''? How is that working out?
  There was an article published on January 31, 2013, by Catherine 
Herridge. Catherine has a great book out on radical Islam. This article 
Catherine has entitled, ``Al Qaeda affiliate in Africa looking to 
strike more Western targets, intelligence officials say.'' She says in 
her article, quoting Secretary Clinton:

       ``Yes, we now face a spreading jihadist threat. We have 
     driven a lot of the al Qaeda operatives out of . . . 
     Afghanistan, Pakistan. Killed a lot of them, including, of 
     course, bin Laden, but we have to recognize this is a global 
     movement.''

  My comment: It's not a movement that is simply attacking overseas in 
some foreign country. Anyway, it's a good article by Catherine 
Herridge. She understands the threat.
  Let me read a quote directly from White House counterterrorism 
adviser and nominee for Director of the CIA, Mr. John Brennan. He said:

       Hezbollah started out as purely a terrorist organization 
     back in the early eighties and has evolved significantly over 
     time, and now it has members of parliament in the cabinet. 
     There are lawyers, doctors, others who are part of the 
     Hezbollah organization . . . and so, quite frankly, I'm 
     pleased to see that a lot of Hezbollah individuals are, in 
     fact, renouncing that type of terrorism and violence and are 
     trying to participate in the political process in Lebanon in 
     a very legitimate fashion.

  They have not sworn off violence in Lebanon. They have not sworn off 
violence in Egypt, in Syria and, as we well know, in Libya, Albania, 
Tunisia, even in African nations further south.
  I've said before and have expressed my concern of this administration 
in its helping people we didn't know for sure of their identities and 
in encouraging them to overthrow this Nation's

[[Page H403]]

ally, President Mubarak. I expressed concerns before it was done about 
giving military assistance to people that we knew included al Qaeda to 
overthrow a man who had blood on his hands but, since 2003, had been 
this Nation's and this administration's ally, Qadhafi. They 
participated in taking him out--gave military aid to do so--to protect 
al Qaeda and other revolutionaries in setting up a government, a 
situation, that naturally was going to get Americans killed and which 
happened.
  So I applaud Secretary Clinton for noting the global jihadist threat 
on her way out, but I come back to her question that will ring in 
people's ears for years to come when Senators were trying to get to the 
heart of the matter: What happened at Benghazi? Please just tell us 
what happened. We're not going to prosecute anybody here at the Senate. 
We just need to know what happened. Of her question, those words will 
ring: What difference does it make?
  What difference does it make? Americans got killed.
  I was inquiring: Does anybody know has a fifth person died of his 
wounds in Benghazi? What's going on? What's happening to those people 
who were wounded? Who can tell us what really happened?
  What difference does it make? So we can avoid Americans being killed 
like that in the future.
  What if we'd have had an adequate investigation about security at our 
Embassy back when Susan Rice was involved back in the nineties? Did 
they ask for extra security? Did you deny them that security? Did we 
have enough security? What happened to allow our Embassy to be bombed 
and Americans to be killed?

                              {time}  1330

  What difference does it make? Because if we'd known in the nineties 
what went wrong, maybe we could have avoided Chris Stevens, our SEALS, 
those four Americans that we know of being killed.
  What difference does it make? It makes a difference to their families 
if they're alive today or dead because we were not properly secured.
  What difference does it make? It makes a difference to future 
families who lose loved ones in the service of their country because 
people stonewalled and would not give us the information as to what 
went wrong, what happened. Just tell us.
  We're supposed to trust the administration? Not only with a 
bureaucratic decision by one person that he think he's got enough 
information to go kill an American citizen without a trial, now we have 
to say, oh, well, we will trust them to make sure that nobody gets 
killed again, but it has already happened. And then by the 
stonewalling, we don't know enough about where the weapons came from. 
We don't know enough about what went wrong to know how those weapons 
that we may have provided in a country where we provided the 
revolutionary help, now has resulted in Americans and others being 
killed in Algeria.
  What difference does it make? I'm sure the people who died in Algeria 
would like to have their family members back. That makes a difference.
  What difference does it make? It doesn't make any difference if you 
don't care who lives or dies. But if you want to protect Americans in 
the service of their country, it makes a real difference. And it's our 
duty to try to protect them.
  The New York Times had an article by Gregory Johnsen back in November 
titled ``The Wrong Man for the CIA.'' He said:

       With the resignation of David H. Petraeus, President Obama 
     now has a chance to appoint a new CIA director. 
     Unfortunately, one of the leading candidates for the job is 
     John O. Brennan, who is largely responsible for America's 
     current flawed counterterrorism strategy, which relies too 
     heavy on drone strikes that frequently kills civilians and 
     provide al Qaeda with countless new recruits. Rather than 
     keeping us safe, this strategy is putting the United States 
     at greater risk.
       For all of the Obama administration's foreign policy 
     successes--from ending the war in Iraq to killing Osama bin 
     Laden--the most enduring policy legacy of the past 4 years 
     may well turn out to be an approach to counterterrorism that 
     American officials call the Yemen model, a mixture of drone 
     strikes and Special Forces raids targeting al Qaeda leaders.
       Mr. Brennan is the President's chief counterterrorism 
     adviser and the architect of this model. In a recent speech, 
     he claimed that there was ``little evidence that these 
     actions are generating widespread anti-American sentiment or 
     recruits for AQAP,'' referring to al Qaeda in the Arabian 
     Peninsula.

  Perhaps the initials ought to be, instead of AQAP, the initials the 
administration, the government likes to use, instead of AQAP, maybe it 
ought to be MBCH, the Muslim Brotherhood on Capitol Hill, where al 
Awlaki that this administration killed with a drone strike led prayers.
  Back to the article:

       Mr. Brennan's assertion was either shockingly naive or 
     deliberately misleading. Testimonies from al Qaeda fighters 
     and interviews I and local journalists have conducted across 
     Yemen attest to the centrality of civilian casualties in 
     explaining al Qaeda's rapid growth there.

  Rapid growth there needs to be noted. People that have actually done 
an objective analysis have found al Qaeda is not diminished. Radicals 
are growing to the point that Secretary Clinton would note the jihadist 
threat as she leaves.
  The article says:

       The United States is killing women, children and members of 
     key tribes. ``Each time they kill a tribesman, they create 
     more fighters for al Qaeda,'' one Yemeni explained to me over 
     tea in Sana, the capital, last month. Another told CNN, after 
     a failed strike, ``I would not be surprised if 100 tribesmen 
     joined al Qaeda as a result of the latest drone mistake.''
       Rather than promote the author of a failing strategy, we 
     need a CIA director who will halt the agency's creeping 
     militarization and restore it to what it does best: 
     collecting human intelligence. It is an intelligence agency, 
     not a lightweight version of Joint Special Operations 
     Command. And until America wins the intelligence war, 
     missiles will continue to hit the wrong targets, kill too 
     many civilians and drive young men into the waiting arms of 
     our enemies.
       Without accurate on-the-ground intelligence, our policies 
     will fail. George W. Bush launched two major ground 
     invasions, and Mr. Obama has tried several smaller wars. 
     Neither strategy has worked. In Yemen, which has been the 
     laboratory for Mr. Obama's shadow wars, AQAP has more than 
     tripled in size after 3 years of drone strikes. When the 
     United States started bombing Yemen in 2009, AQAP had just 
     200 to 300 fighters. Today, the State Department estimates it 
     has a few thousand. Since 2009, the group has attempted to 
     attack America on three occasions, coming closest on December 
     25, 2009, when a would-be suicide bomber narrowly failed to 
     bring down an airliner over Detroit. When it tries again--and 
     it will--the organization will be available to draw upon much 
     deeper ranks.
       Not surprisingly, American officials reject the claim that 
     current policy is exacerbating the problem. In June 2011, Mr. 
     Brennan declared that ``there hasn't been a single collateral 
     death because of the exceptional proficiency, precision of 
     the capabilities we've been able to develop.'' This came 
     almost exactly a year after a botched drone attack in Yemen 
     killed a deputy governor and four of his bodyguards instead 
     of the intended target.
       Under Mr. Brennan's guidance, the United States has also 
     adopted a controversial method for determining how many 
     civilians it has killed, counting all military-age males in a 
     strike zone as combatants. This means that Abdulrahman al 
     Awlaki, a 16-year-old American citizen killed by a drone in 
     October, was classified as a militant despite evidence that 
     he was simply a shy teenager whose father happened to be 
     Anwar al Awlaki, who had been killed by American missiles 2 
     weeks earlier.
       The strikes Mr. Brennan asks the President to approve 
     frequently lead to civilian casualties. Indeed, the first 
     strike Mr. Obama ordered on Yemen, in December 2009, 
     destroyed a Bedouin village that was mistaken for a terrorist 
     training camp. American missiles killed more than 50 people, 
     including 35 women and children. Watching that strike live on 
     a grainy feed the military calls Kill TV, Jeh Johnson, the 
     Pentagon's top lawyer, later admitted, ``if I were Catholic, 
     I'd have to go to confession.''
       Mr. Petraeus's departure presents Mr. Obama with an 
     opportunity to halt the CIA's drift toward becoming a 
     paramilitary organization and put it back on course. For all 
     of the technological advances America has made in a decade of 
     fighting al Qaeda, it still needs all of the old tricks it 
     learned in the days before spy satellites and drones.
       More and better intelligence from sources on the ground 
     would result in more accurate targeting and fewer civilian 
     casualties. That would be a Yemen model that actually worked 
     and a lasting and effective counterterrorism legacy for Mr. 
     Obama's second term.

  That's Gregory Johnson from The New York Times.
  Another good article by Patrick Poole on June 6 of 2012, ``Meet John 
Brennan, Obama's Assassination Czar.''

       A relatively unnoticed article by Associated Press reporter 
     Kimberly Dozier 2 weeks ago outlined new Obama administration 
     policy changes which consolidated power for authorizing drone 
     attacks and assassinations

[[Page H404]]

     under political appointees within the White House.
       The article identifies White House Counterterrorism Chief 
     John Brennan as the official assuming the role of Obama's de 
     facto assassination czar, raising concerns even within the 
     Obama administration that the White House is increasingly 
     turning into ``a pseudo-military headquarters'' under the 
     direction of just a few senior Obama administration 
     officials.
       Adding to these concerns are serious questions about 
     Brennan's qualification for this role.
       Even before the 2008 election, eyebrows were raised over 
     Brennan's role in the Obama campaign. An employee of The 
     Analysis Corporation, of which Brennan was CEO, had 
     improperly accessed passport information for Hillary Clinton, 
     Obama's Democratic primary challenger at the time, and GOP 
     nominee John McCain. At the time, Brennan was a top adviser 
     to the Obama campaign, and Brennan's employee was not fired. 
     One of the key witnesses in the case was found murdered in 
     his car outside his church while the investigation was still 
     ongoing.
       Brennan was involved in administration intrigue related to 
     the release of convicted Libyan Pan Am Flight 103 bomber from 
     a Scottish jail in August 2009. At the time of Megrahi's 
     release, when he returned to Libya to a national hero's 
     welcome, Brennan described the release as ``unfortunate, 
     inappropriate, and wrong'' and called for his reimprisonment. 
     However, Obama administration documents obtained by The 
     Sunday Times revealed that the White House had secretly 
     informed Scottish authorities that they found compassionate 
     release more palatable than the reimprisonment of Megrahi in 
     Libya.
       Brennan also came under fire after would-be underwear 
     bomber Umar Farouk--and I won't try that last name--nearly 
     brought down a U.S.-bound Northwest Airlines flight on 
     Christmas Day 2009. British intelligence authorities had 
     notified their U.S. counterparts of an ``Umar Farouk'' 
     meeting with al Qaeda cleric Anwar al Awlaki in Yemen, and 
     Umar Farouk's father had warned of his son's increasing 
     extremism to CIA officials at the U.S. Embassy in Nigeria. 
     However, Umar Farouk was never added to the U.S. no-fly list, 
     nor was his U.S. visa revoked.

                              {time}  1340

  And but for, as I understand it, him sweating too much around his 
posterior that helped defuse the bomb and then the work of some heroic 
passengers to stop him once he tried, the crew was--the passengers were 
saved. But it was certainly no thanks to the Obama administration or 
Mr. Brennan.
  Now, back to the article. Patrick Poole says:

       Following this stunning and nearly fatal intelligence 
     failure which prompted members of both the House and Senate 
     Intelligence oversight committees to call for his 
     resignation, Brennan lashed out at the Obama administration's 
     critics in a USA Today editorial. He claimed that the 
     ``politically motivated criticism and unfounded fear-
     mongering only serve the goals of al Qaeda.''

  Let me insert here, if he thinks, Mr. Brennan thinks that questioning 
failures of the Obama administration is contributing to al Qaeda, what 
must bombing innocent people with drones be doing for al Qaeda?
  Back to the article. It says:

       Brennan also defended treating Umar Farouk as a criminal by 
     having his rights read to him upon arrest and trying him in 
     civilian court, rather than transferring the would-be bomber 
     to military custody as an enemy combatant.
       Just days later, Brennan gave a speech to Islamic law 
     students at New York University, where he was introduced by 
     Ingrid Mattson, president of the Islamic Society of North 
     America, at that time. Mattson, who had been involved with 
     the Obama inaugural prayer service, had come under fire then 
     for her organization's longstanding terrorist support.
       During his New York University speech, Brennan defended the 
     administration's highly unpopular move to try al Qaeda 
     operations chief Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in Federal court, 
     which the administration eventually backed away from. He 
     claimed that terrorists are the real victims of ``political, 
     economic and social forces.''

  Mr. Speaker, it's important people understand. John Brennan claimed 
that the terrorists killing Americans, over 3,000 on 9/11, were the 
real victims of a political, economic, and social force.

       Brennan said that Islamic terrorists are not jihadists, 
     referenced ``Al-Quds'' instead of Jerusalem, and described 
     the 20 percent of former Guantanamo detainees returning to 
     terrorist activities as ``not that bad'' when compared to 
     ordinary criminal recidivism.

  The thousands of people that have likely been killed by the 20 
percent of our detainees being returned to terrorist activities 
probably would not consider Mr. Brennan's assessment as not that bad. 
They wouldn't consider that all that accurate.
  Patrick writes a great article. He has another one January 7, 2013, 
entitled, ``Revisiting 'Jihad' John Brennan.''
  Another, by my friend, Andrew McCarthy, on February 4, opposed 
Brennan for CIA Director. I will include these articles in the Record.
  It is time we took a real objective look at people who say their goal 
is civilization jihad and the elimination of our freedom to choose as 
we please and to choose our public servants.

                   [From the PJ Tatler, Jan. 7, 2013]

                   Revisiting ``Jihad'' John Brennan

                           (By Patrick Poole)

       This afternoon at a White House ceremony, Obama announced 
     that his nominee for CIA Director will be `Jihad' John 
     Brennan, his current counterterrorism adviser.
       Back in June, I profiled Brennan here at PJ Media. Some of 
     `Jihad' John's recent highlights include:
       March 2008: John McCain's passport information leaked from 
     John Brennan's company during presidential campaign (key 
     witness murdered during investigation)
       April 2008: Brennan tells the New York Times that US 
     government official must stop ``Iran-bashing''
       Feb 2010: Brennan attacks critics of Obama Admin's handling 
     of ``underwear bomber'' Abdulmutallab as a criminal, not a 
     terrorist, saying that critics are ``serving the goals of Al-
     Qaeda''
       May 2010: Brennan says he wants to build up ``Hezbollah 
     moderates''
       May 2010: Brennan defends `Jihad' as a `legitimate tenet of 
     Islam'
       June 2010: Washington Times editorial slams Brennan, 
     saying, ``President Obama's top counterterrorism adviser 
     knows very little about terrorism, and that's scary for 
     America.''
       Aug 2010: Brennan storms out of meeting with Washington 
     Times editorial staff after he claims he was misquoted by 
     newspaper and editor begins reading Brennan's own quotes back 
     to him out loud
       Sept 2010: Known HAMAS operative given escorted tour of 
     National Counterterrorism Center
       May 2012: Brennan implicated in major White House 
     intelligence breach involving UK/Saudi Al-Qaeda infiltrator
       Aug 2012: Brennan attacks critics of politically-driven 
     White House intelligence leaks
       Sept 2012: House Intel Committee Chairman Mike Rogers says 
     changes in CIA's Benghazi attack talking points blaming 
     Mohammed video happened under deputies committee chaired by 
     Brennan
       Again, these are just some of John Brennan's highlights. We 
     could also add his laughable claims of no collateral 
     casualties from his drone assassination program or his 
     defense of trying Al-Qaeda operations chief Khalid Sheikh 
     Mohammed in federal court or his role in the White House 
     back-door dealing with the UK on the release of Libyan Pan Am 
     Flight 103 bomber Abdelbaset al-Megrahi or his reference to 
     Jerusalem as ``Al-Quds'' in a NYU speech or his claims that 
     the 20 percent recidivism rate for GITMO detainees (those who 
     returned to terrorism) was ``not that bad''. But that would 
     be piling on.
       What should be clear is that John Brennan's role in Barack 
     Obama's disastrous first term should preclude him from any 
     further service in the second term, let alone a promotion.
                                  ____


                     [From PJ Media, June 6, 2012]

             Meet John Brennan, Obama's Assassination Czar

                           (By Patrick Poole)

       A relatively unnoticed article by Associated Press reporter 
     Kimberly Dozier two weeks ago outlined new Obama 
     administration policy changes which consolidated power for 
     authorizing drone attacks and assassinations under political 
     appointees within the White House.
       The article identifies White House counterterrorism chief 
     John Brennan as the official assuming the role of Obama's de 
     facto assassination czar, raising concerns even within the 
     Obama administration that the White House is increasingly 
     turning into ``a pseudo-military headquarters'' under the 
     direction of just a few senior Obama administration 
     officials.
       Adding to these concerns are serious questions about 
     Brennan's qualifications for this role.
       Even before the 2008 election, eyebrows were raised over 
     Brennan's role in the Obama campaign. An employee of The 
     Analysis Corporation, of which Brennan was CEO, had 
     improperly accessed passport information for Hillary Clinton, 
     Obama's Democratic primary challenger at the time, and GOP 
     nominee John McCain. At the time, Brennan was a top adviser 
     to the Obama campaign, and Brennan's employee was not fired. 
     (One of the key witnesses in the case was found murdered in 
     his car outside his church while the investigation was still 
     ongoing.)
       Brennan was involved in administration intrigue related to 
     the release of convicted Libyan Pan Am Flight 103 bomber 
     Abdelbaset al-Megrahi from a Scottish jail in August 2009. At 
     the time of Megrahi's release--when he returned to Libya to a 
     national hero's welcome--Brennan described the release as 
     ``unfortunate, inappropriate,

[[Page H405]]

     and wrong'' and called for his reimprisonment. However, Obama 
     administration documents obtained by The Sunday Times 
     revealed that the White House had secretly informed Scottish 
     authorities that they found compassionate release more 
     palatable than the reimprisonment of Megrahi in Libya.
       Brennan also came under fire after would-be underwear 
     bomber Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab nearly brought down a U.S.-
     bound Northwest Airlines flight on Christmas Day 2009. 
     British intelligence authorities had notified their U.S. 
     counterparts of an ``Umar Farouk'' meeting with al-Qaeda 
     cleric Anwar al-Awlaki in Yemen, and Abdulmutallab's father 
     had warned of his son's increasing extremism to CIA officials 
     at the U.S. embassy in Nigeria. However, Abdulmutallab was 
     never added to the U.S. no-fly list, nor was his U.S. visa 
     revoked.
       Following this stunning and nearly fatal intelligence 
     failure which prompted members of both the House and Senate 
     Intelligence oversight committees to call for his 
     resignation, Brennan lashed out at the Obama administration's 
     critics in a USA Today editorial. He claimed that the 
     ``politically motivated criticism and unfounded fear-
     mongering only serve the goals of al-Qaeda.''
       Brennan also defended treating Abdulmutallab as a criminal 
     by having his rights read to him upon arrest and trying him 
     in civilian court, rather than transferring the would-be 
     bomber to military custody as an enemy combatant.
       Just days later, Brennan gave a speech to Islamic law 
     students at New York University, where he was introduced by 
     Ingrid Mattson, president of the Islamic Society of North 
     America. Mattson, who had been involved with the Obama 
     inaugural prayer service, had come under fire then for her 
     organization's longstanding terrorist support.
       During his NYU speech, Brennan defended the 
     administration's highly unpopular move to try al-Qaeda 
     operations chief Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in federal court 
     (which the administration eventually backed away from). He 
     claimed that terrorists are the real victims of ``political, 
     economic and social forces,'' said that Islamic terrorists 
     were not jihadists, referenced ``Al-Quds'' instead of 
     Jerusalem, and described the 20 percent of former Guantanamo 
     detainees returning to terrorist activities as ``not that 
     bad'' when compared to ordinary criminal recidivism.
       During a talk at the Nixon Center in May 2010, Brennan said 
     that the administration was looking for ways to build up 
     ``moderate elements'' of the Lebanese terrorist organization 
     Hezbollah. Two weeks later, at a speech at the Center for 
     Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), Brennan defended 
     the Islamic doctrines of jihad as ``a holy struggle'' and ``a 
     legitimate tenet of Islam.''
       These missteps and misstatements by Brennan prompted the 
     Washington Times to editorialize in June 2010 that 
     ``President Obama's top counterterrorism adviser knows very 
     little about terrorism, and that's scary for America,'' and 
     to warn that ``Mr. Brennan's curious views may be part of a 
     larger move by the O Force to redefine terrorism''.
       Rep. Peter King, then-House Homeland Security Committee 
     ranking member (now committee chairman), called for Brennan's 
     firing, saying:
       Here's the problem . . . and this is from people from the 
     intelligence community too. John Brennan is running 
     intelligence policy from the White House. He is getting in 
     the weeds in different intelligence organizations that are 
     out there. He's doing this from the White House. Obviously, 
     he is not subject to Congressional scrutiny, because he's on 
     the White House staff, and it's a very dangerous situation, 
     where you have a homeland security advisor who is beyond the 
     reach of Congress actually making, running, and carrying on 
     intelligence policy. It's wrong. I'm not aware of it 
     happening before.
       Stung by these criticisms, Brennan demanded to meet with 
     the editorial staff of the Washington Times. During the June 
     2010 meeting, Brennan claimed that the newspaper had 
     misrepresented his views, even as the editors read his 
     statements directly from his speeches posted on the White 
     House website.
       When Brennan was cornered by senior editorial writer Jim 
     Robbins about his views on jihad being a legitimate tenet of 
     Islam, Brennan abruptly ended the interview and stormed out 
     of their offices.
       In September 2010, after I broke the story that a known top 
     U.S. Hamas official had been given a guided tour of the top-
     secret National Counterterrorism Center and FBI Academy at 
     Quantico under Brennan's watch, several former top 
     intelligence and defense officials again called for his 
     resignation.
       Last month, it was revealed that Brennan was implicated in 
     a serious intelligence breach detailing an ongoing 
     counterterrorism operation led by British and Saudi 
     intelligence agencies that had placed an operative deep 
     inside the al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) 
     organization. The White House leak forced the termination of 
     the operation and the immediate withdrawal of the double 
     agent, infuriating our foreign intelligence allies.
       Just two weeks ago, internal White House documents obtained 
     by Judicial Watch through a FOIA request revealed that 
     Brennan and other White House officials had met twice with 
     Hollywood filmmakers preparing a movie about the killing of 
     Osama bin Laden, providing them unparalleled access including 
     the identity of a SEAL Team 6 operator and commander along 
     with other classified information. Amazingly, these high-
     level White House meetings between * * *
                                  ____


                  [From Ordered Liberty, Feb. 4, 2013]

                    Oppose Brennan for CIA Director

                        (By Andrew C. McCarthy)

       To cut to the chase, a country that was serious about its 
     national security would never put John Brennan in charge of 
     its premier intelligence service.
       Of course, it is by no means clear that the United States 
     is any longer a serious country in this regard. Serious 
     countries do not fund, arm and ``partner with'' hostile 
     regimes. They do not recruit enemy sympathizers to fill key 
     governmental policy positions. They do not erect barriers 
     impeding their intelligence services from understanding an 
     enemy's threat doctrine--in conscious indifference to Sun 
     Tzu's maxim that defending oneself requires knowing one's 
     enemies. All of these malfeasances have become staples of 
     Obama policy, under the guidance of Brennan, the president's 
     counterterrorism guru.
       Still, the installation of a Beltway operator whose metier 
     is misinformation as director of central intelligence would 
     be an epic mismatch of man and mission. It would expand 
     unseriousness to new frontiers of self-inflicted peril.
       The reason is as elementary as it gets: The purpose of 
     intelligence is to see what your enemy is trying to hide, to 
     grasp how your enemy thinks, and how he cleverly camouflages 
     what he thinks. That, to be certain, is the only security 
     against stealthy foes who specialize in sabotage, in 
     exploiting the liberties that make free societies as 
     vulnerable as they are worth defending.
       Mr. Brennan, to the contrary, is the incarnation of willful 
     blindness. His tenure as Obama's top national security 
     advisor has been about helping our enemies throw sand in our 
     eyes and thus enabling the sabotage.
       As I detail in The Grand Jihad, which recounts the Muslim 
     Brotherhood's history, ideology, and self-proclaimed 
     ``civilization jihad'' against the West, sabotage is the 
     Brotherhood's defining practice. Indeed, ``sabotage'' is the 
     word the Brothers themselves use to describe their work. It 
     appears in an internal memorandum, which elaborates that the 
     organization sees its mission in the United States as 
     ``eliminating and destroying Western civilization from 
     within.'' Besides that long-term goal, the Brotherhood's 
     network of American affiliates have pursued the more 
     immediate aim of materially supporting Hamas, a formally 
     designated terrorist organization to which the provision of 
     material support is a felony under federal law.
       None of that is new. It was not merely well known but had 
     been proved in court by the Justice Department a year before 
     Obama took office. I refer to the Justice Department's 2008 
     Hamas financing prosecution, the Holy Land Foundation case. 
     Yet, counterterrorism czar Brennan remains undeterred, a 
     driving force of the Obama administration's ``Islamic 
     outreach''--a campaign to give Islamist organizations 
     influence over U.S. policy. That several of those 
     organizations were proved in the HLF case to be members of 
     the Muslim Brotherhood's American network is clearly of no 
     moment.
       Two such organizations are the Council on American-Islamic 
     Relations (CAIR) and the Islamic Society of North America 
     (ISNA). They were among a slew of Islamist groups who wrote 
     to Brennan in October 2011 to demand a purge of information 
     about Islamist ideology that was being used to train U.S. 
     intelligence and law-enforcement agents. Much of that 
     information was developed in federal investigations that have 
     led to the convictions of violent jihadists. Nevertheless, 
     the Obama administration has slavishly complied (see, e.g., 
     here and here).
       Understand: CAIR and ISNA, though never indicted, were 
     proved to be conspirators in the Brotherhood's Holy Land 
     Foundation scheme to promote and finance Hamas. In fact, the 
     FBI formally cut ties with CAIR as a result of the HLF case 
     (although why they had ties with CAIR in the first place 
     remains baffling). The training materials the Islamist groups 
     insisted be removed include documentation of the fact that 
     terrorism committed by Muslims is driven by an ideology 
     rooted in Islamic scripture.
       That this irrefutable fact makes us uncomfortable renders 
     it no less a fact. Maybe the State Department and the White 
     House press office have the luxury of trading in convenient 
     fictions in order to reduce international tensions. Not 
     intelligence agencies. The point of intelligence--a bedrock 
     of national security--is to see the world as it is, not as we 
     wish it to be.
       Here is how it is: Islamic supremacism, the sharia-based 
     ideology of Islamists, is an interpretation of Muslim 
     doctrine that is entirely mainstream among the world's 
     Muslims. That is why Islamists are winning elections in the 
     Middle East even as they are found aligning with violent 
     jihadists. Islamic supremacism is, in fact, widely promoted 
     by the Brotherhood, and by such tentacles of its American 
     network as CAIR and ISNA, when they are not otherwise 
     deceptively disavowing its existence.
       This Islamist ideology is incorrigibly anti-Western and 
     anti-Semitic. It is deeply hostile to principles of equality 
     and individual liberty (free speech, freedom of conscience, 
     privacy, economic freedom, etc.) that undergird our 
     Constitution, the American conception of civil rights, and 
     the West's conception of human rights. Understand Islamist

[[Page H406]]

     ideology and you will readily understand the ferocity of 
     Islamic resistance to American efforts to promote democracy 
     in the Middle East--not merely jihadist resistance but broad 
     Islamic resistance.
       Yet, in a propaganda campaign reminiscent of those waged by 
     the Nazis and the Soviets, Islamists and their fellow 
     travelers (Brennan-types who might be thought of as ``ant-
     ianti-Islamists'') purport to be champions of human rights. 
     When it suits them, they even feign reverence for individual 
     liberties (particularly when it comes to the rights of Muslim 
     in America . . . but don't you dare ask them how non-Muslims 
     fare in, say, Saudi Arabia).
       The counter to such a propaganda campaign is a job for 
     intelligence agencies. The point of having a sprawling 
     intelligence community on which American taxpayers annually 
     lavish $55 billion--far more than the vast majority of 
     countries spend on national defense--is precisely to see 
     through the deceptions of those who mean us harm, to perceive 
     the threats against us for what they are. That the competent 
     performance of this essential function may be fraught with 
     political complications is supposed to be a challenge for our 
     politicians, not our intelligence agents. The latter's 
     mission of unearthing hidden and often excruciating truths is 
     hard enough.
       Brennan's agenda is the antithesis of the intelligence 
     mission. His goal has been to portray our enemies as a small, 
     unthreatening fringe of charlatan ``violent extremists,'' who 
     kill wantonly and are unconnected to any ``legitimate'' 
     Islam. Thus, he maintains for example that the only 
     ``legitimate'' interpretation of the ``tenet of Islam'' known 
     as jihad is: a ``holy struggle . . . to purify oneself or 
     one's community.''
       Even taken at face value, Brennan's assertion is absurd. 
     There is between Islam and the West no common understanding 
     of the good, and thus no consensus about ``purity.'' In 
     Islam, to ``purify'' something means to make it more 
     compliant with sharia, Islam's legal code and societal 
     framework. Sharia is anti-freedom and anti-equality, so to 
     purify oneself in an Islamic sense would necessarily mean 
     something very different from what we in the West would think 
     of as struggling to become a better person.
       But there is an even more fundamental reason not to take 
     Brennan's remarks at face value: they run afoul of what 
     mainstream Islam itself says about jihad. Have a look at 
     Reliance of the Traveller, the popular sharia manual (it is 
     available on Amazon). It is quite straightforward on the 
     matter: ``Jihad means to war against non-Muslims.'' Reliance, 
     you should know, has been expressly endorsed by al-Azhar 
     University in Egypt (Islam's center of learning since the 
     tenth century) and the International Institute of Islamic 
     Thought (the Brotherhood's America-based Islamist think-
     tank). It is a lot more authoritative than John Brennan's 
     wishful meanderings. Maybe the president actually thinks 
     Brennan knows more about Islam than do these scholars who 
     have spent their lives steeped in Islamic doctrine and 
     jurisprudence. I have my doubts . . . and, judging from the 
     profound influence of these scholars, so do many millions of 
     Muslims.
       In Brennan's world we're to believe that holy war is not 
     much different from the struggle to remember to brush after 
     every meal. In Brennan's world, there is also no need to fret 
     over * * *

  Mr. Speaker, with that, I yield back the balance of my time.

                          ____________________