A couple of posts on the Security Debrief blog place “eternal vigilance” in an appropriate context during an age of global cultural clashes between the West and radical Islamists, in the garb of Al-Qaeda. In the first post, writer David Olive notes that “only 135 of the 435 current members of the House were in office and voted to create DHS with the passage of the Homeland Security Act of 2002” and some are starting to question whether the U.S. should have a Department of Homeland Security at all.
In the second Debrief dispatch, Olive discusses whether notions of a diminished Al-Qaeda threat are supportable, primarily by referring to a post by Joshua Sinai of The Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs. Sinai’s position is that “every time the threat is underplayed, it is invariably followed by a major attack,” like the ones against the U.S. consulate in Benghazi on Sept. 11, 2012 and the Algerian natural gas plant this past January.
Prudence requires paying heed to history, nay to current events, and remaining vigilant against threats that aren’t likely to diminish, much as we may yearn for them to do so.