The course of action the U.S. government took in the name of security after the 9/11 attacks is the “greatest mistake that could possibly have been made,” according to retired professor emeritus of Boston University Angelo Codevilla. “The War on Terror” has increasingly become a “war on Americans.”
The former U.S. Navy officer, author of “The Ruling Class: How They Corrupted America and What We Can Do About It” and staff member for the Select Committee on Intelligence of the United States Senate is highly critical of both the Bush and Obama administrations for their failure to understand their role in international relations.
The U.S. government does not understand how to combat international terrorism or respond to its threats. In an exclusive interview with Ginni Thomas of The Daily Caller, Codevilla highlighted the failure of both administrations to understand the enemy, explaining that it makes national security decisions based on a flawed paradigm.
“After 9/11, the U.S. government instituted a system of homeland security based on the proposition that any American is as likely as anyone in the world to commit terrorist acts — and that therefore, all Americans must be screened and presumed to be terrorists until the screening clears them,” Codevilla said.
With this flawed proposition directing domestic security’s strategic thinking and planning, Codevilla said the empowered government takes successive steps down the path towards greater intrusive surveillance and scrutiny, leading to “a largely useless and obnoxious bureaucracy” that is “based on the supposition that we should trust each other less but trust government more.”
Codevilla called this an “unnatural demand” and “one that pushes us to regard each other with suspicion.” He delved into the new poll that found that Americans now trust each other less than they ever have before, as the culture of suspicion permeates American life.
“Decreasing the amount of trust among citizens is probably the worst thing that government could ever do,” he added.
Codevilla further argues that due to the incorrect deductions and conclusions drawn post 9/11 about the motivations and nature of the enemy it was facing, the DHS bureaucracy, the wider national security infrastructure and their mission have been flawed since their inception.
“These people who attacked us had reasons, which are widely supported — in fact, vigorously promoted by the regimes from which they came,” Codevilla said. “The Saudi regime, which we count as an ally, does in fact harbor the most virulent strain of Islam, the Wahhabism. This movement inspired most of the hijackers in 9/11. The others, some of the leaders, were inspired by the Muslim Brotherhood of Egypt, which the Obama administration has been courting and favoring.”
Rather than confronting the movement of Islamic radicalization, Codevilla says that both Barack Obama and George W. Bush blamed acts of terrorism on the perpetrators themselves, instead of viewing them as the incarnations of a murderously ideological movement.
“The Bush administration gave the impression that we were merely dealing with rogue groups, not people supported by major movements which in their turn are supported by major countries,” Codevilla said. “American policy after 9/11 was wrong primarily in giving the American people the impression that those outrages had not been performed by Muslims pursuing Muslim agendas, but by rogues — amorphous rogues who were acting for essentially insane reasons.”
Once that impression had coalesced, Codevilla argued, it lead to a paradigm shift in policy making mindsets that has had serious consequences on the constitutional freedoms of the American people, a “lockdown” of the U.S. This in turn, Codevilla says, has resulted in a breakdown in the trust between citizens and the state — and a breakdown in trust between individual citizens.
Catch the full interview with Professor Codevilla on Monday and Wednesday, exclusively on The Daily Caller.