Wolf Blitzer asked good questions and persevered with follow ups without overt gotcha questions. On the down side, he went to breaks promising to return to the question and get a broader response, then asked a new question after the break. I wonder whether someone higher up was dictating that behavior or Wolf was being loose with his rhetoric.The major difference between this debate and the AFA debate last Saturday is that the entire debate was devoted to national security issues. Better late than never. I readily admit my opposition to Huntsman, Perry, Paul & Romney, but even a stopped clock is right twide every 24 hours. Huntsman said that we need to find a balance between security and liberty and that the state and federal governments must cooperate against terrorists. I do not view security against terror attacks and liberty as antagonists. I see the former as a necessary foundation for the latter. Citizens of states and members of organizations inimical to America should not expect perfect privacy nor should their contacts and close associates. When the CIA find names, addresses, phone numbers and email addresses on documents in terrorist training camps, or in the possession of captured terrorists, exploiting that information with surveillance, wire taps & intercepts is not an assault on or threat to liberty, it is essential to national security. That is why I support maintaining and strengthening the Patriot Act. In the most recent bomb plot case, the FBI declined to get involved, leaving the case to the locals. I doubt that FBI participation would have made a major difference, but I don't have all the facts. What would have happened if the NYC PD shared their attitude about the suspect and dropped the investigation? Huntsman stated the obvious: that sanctions against Iran & Syria won't work because of Chinese & Russian opposition. He is right about that. I am firmly convinced that sanctions would fail even if they had global support & cooperation in their enforcement. At the end of the debate, Huntsman said named China as the major unrecognized foreign threat and unemployment & debt as domestic threats stemming from a lack of leadership. He is right about that but events and trends in Latin America, particularly alliance with Iran and Hezbollah also require attention. Huntsman favored foresight over hindsight, saying that history will tell the outcome of the "Arab spring". He seemed to be critical of President Obama's neglect of the Green Revolution in Iran and intervention in Libya. He implied that we should be more deliberate. I say, that when two Islamic enemies of ours fight each other, we should be spectators, not in the corner of either. Huntsman said that terrorism is permanent, meaning that it poses a continuing threat for the long term. Of course, he was stating the obvious. We need to look beyond the burning trees to the burning forest; bring on the bulldozers, He said that the deficit hampers growth, which is true. Unfortunately, growth is the only way out of the deficit. Wasteful spending must be stopped. Asked about the efficacy of drone attacks in Pakistan in defeating al-Qaeda, Huntsman said that Washington is dysfunctional, that we need a Washington that works and should bring our troops home from Afghanistan. He restated the obvious about Pakistan without proposing a solution. Of course, there is no solution, short of the ultimate solution. which nobody is willing to implement. Paul called the Patriot Act "unpatriotic", that it exchanges liberty for security. Paul wants to know what we'd do if a terrorist looked like Tim McVeigh. That straw man argument must be refuted. Tim's partner had a Filipino wife; their test bombs did not work until after the partner visited his wife and presumably met with al-Qaeda bomb makers to get technical advice. The infamous "third terrorist" was described as looking like an Iraqi. How many of the recent terrorists were not Muslims and either Asiatic or Arabian? Yes, they are recruiting Caucasians, but those terrorists all have one thing in common. They are Muslims. Profiling is not the answer. Pat downs are not the answer. Body scanners are not the answer. Identify Muslims and exclude them from mass transit terminals & vehicles. If you want to prevent terrorism, get the Muslims out of here, away from us. We need a candidate and nominee who will abandon pc and state the obvious truth. Islamic terrorism is a function of Islamic doctrine; texts & teachings, not age, race, gender or national origin. Allah said that he would "cast terror". Allah said that he "cast terror". Allah said that believers are only those who "fight in his cause", "killing others and being killed". Moe said that he was made victorious with terror. Muslims get Brownie Points for "any step" taken to "injure or enrage" disbelievers. What part of that do the candidates not comprehend? Has any of them read the Qur'an & hadith? Terrorism is an act of worship! If you need to obtain a clue, read the confession of Khalid Sheik Mohammed & associates. Paul said that he would not participate in an Israeli attack on Iran's nuke project, that we need to get out of Israel's way, mentioning their supposed possession of nuclear armed missiles. Who will be the first to explore the ramifications of that last bit? Green light, anyone? That begged for a follow up question, ` Paul referred to the Iraq & Afghanistan as needless and unnecessary wars. When a nation sponsors an attack that kills 3000 and does billions of dollars in property damage, retaliation is necessary to deter further attacks. Exterminating the principals who dispatched the attackers and their support network is necessary to prevent further attacks. Retaliating against Afghanistan & Iraq was necessary but insufficient. Peace and security will not be established without the total elimination of the root cause of terrorism: Allah's word and those who believe it. Unfortunately for those who love to chant "racist, bigot, Nazi, hater, Islamophobe", there is ample evidence to substantiate my statement of objective factual reality. If you doubt this, obtain a clue from Allah's perfected, immutable word: 8:12, 39, 57, 60 , 65, 9:5,29, 38, 39, 111, 120, 123, 33:26, 27, 59:2, 13, 61:10-12 & Sahih Bukhari 4.52.220 from whence issue war & terror. Reasonable and rational readers will click those links and scroll down to the successive ayat; bigots will not. I can point a fool to wisdom but I can't make him read. Perry would privatize the TSA and strengthen the Patriot act. Not without a super majority of Conservatives in both houses! He says that we should remain involved with foreign aid, but not write blank checks, apparently feeling heat for suggestions of zero sum foreign aid budgets. He wants to use every possible sanction against Iran, including cutting off the central bank. The problem is that sanctions do not work. Iran will have enough fissile material to produce a bomb within one year. Sanctions take months to implement, running us out of time without accomplishing anything. Romney wants a slower drawdown in Afghanistan instead of a precipitous withdrawal. He wants to drag them toward modernity. He wants to prevent Afghanistan from reverting to a launching pad for terrorism. If we stay, they bleed us to death in a war of attrition, exploiting domestic impatience. If we leave, they return to status quo ante. We are in this bind because Shrub needed to nuke Afghanistan but invaded instead. Romney appears to be oblivious to the fact that nothing can be accomplished while the population and government of Afghanistan remain Islamic. Romney cites failed leadership; how about failure to submit a budget? He says that cutting men and material weakens our defense. Kind of obvious, ain't it?
Bachmann says that terrorists should not be Mirandized and that Obama has turned interrogation over to the ACLU. She calls Pakistan the "epicenter of terrorism" and unstable, mentioning that there are fifteen vulnerable nuclear weapons sites. She would continue aid but wants more return on investment; no "blank check". Bachmann opposes amnesty for illegal aliens and the Dream Act. She favors visas for highly skilled technicians.She agrees with Gingrich on the urgent necessity of energy independence so that we can overcome the threat of oil cut off from Iran. She says that Obama's failed policy of appeasement has changed the course of history. She declares Iran's promise to eradicate Israel to be real, not an idle threat. Bachman said that Obama is giving away our victory in Iraq. She lists al-Shebab as an emerging threat already manifesting in her state. . . Cain. wants to keep and improve the Patriot Act and agreed with Santorum on profiling. He would privatize the TSA. He wants to use every means possible to identify terrorists. How do you determine which skunk will spray or which snake will bite? You avoid all of them, don't you? What common association did all the recent attackers share? Cain's response when asked about helping Israel neutralize Iran's nuclear bomb program was that he would join the attack if Israel had good intelligence on the locations of the facilities, a good plan, good chance of success and definition of victory. He opposes precipitous withdrawal from Afghanistan. He wants clear goals before sending foreign aid, emphasizing priority, efficiency and results. Cain says that we know that terrorists have entered from Mexico, so we must secure the border for real. . He says we need to reform the naturalization process and allow states to enforce immigration laws. Cain won't support a no fly zone over Syria. He lists EMP and cyber attacks among the emerging threats to be contended with. Gingrich emphasized the difference between domestic crime and terrorism, which is war. He would strengthen, not eliminate the Patriot Act. In the matter of Pakistan taking offense at our elimination of bin Ladin, Gingrich said that we should be furious about Pakistan's hiding him. He said that hot pursuit should be allowed, there should be no sanctuaries. He would overhaul the CIA. He said that Pakistan should help us or get out of the way. Europe won't back us on sanctioning Iran because they are dependent on Iranian oil. Gingrich would have us increase domestic production enough to replace Iran's European exports in the case of a boycott. He would bomb their nuclear program only as a last resort if regime change was an assured outcome. Gingrich mentioned Chili's social security system as a model for entitlement reform using guaranteed private accounts. Will taking stand on the third rail wreck his candidacy, go unnoticed or serve as a springboard to the White House? Gingrich wants to issue a green card to every foreign student who graduates in math & science. Did he consider the fact that many of them are Muslims who come from areas where hatred of the U.S.A. is rampant? He should be more selective. He would the selective service board system as a model for picking the illegal aliens who should be allowed to stay on a path to citizenship. He mentioned community and church membership as criteria for selection. He might as well stand between lanes on an expressway, he will surely be hit by both sides on this one. `Santorum irritated me by proceeding Islam with "radical", wasting a word when time is critical. the "debate" parallel press conference format does not afford time for wasted words. "Radical" implies the existence of a :moderate", harmless normative Islam, which does not exist and never will. The enemy is Islam, not "radical Islam". He mentioned the time and patience factor, that they will wait us out; that Obama is proving them right. He said that Obama is playing politics with his policy in Afghanistan. That's stating the obvious. Santorum supports profiling at airports. Who needs it? Excluding all Muslims from all mass transit vehicles & terminals is the simple solution which would not subject the general public to unnecessary harassment, indignity and delay. . Santorum favors continuing foreign aid, particularly for development. I agree with Santorum that Obama has poisoned the well of compromise, but I disagree that both sides should compromise more. Appeasing and yielding to Socialists must come to an end. Our economy needs a cure, not more poison.