For John, BLUF: Is there still a terrorist threat out there?. Your chance to vote.
Over at The Manchester Guardian we have Columnist Jason Burke telling us "Algerian hostage crisis does not mean we are back to dark days of extremism". The lede:
Since the beginning of the Algerian hostage crisis, David Cameron has repeatedly emphasised the seriousness of the threat such incidents pose. Al-Qaida in the Maghreb [AQIM] and other northern African groups, he has said, pose a "large and existential threat" that is "global [and] … will require a global response … that will last decades". It needs to be "top of the international agenda", he said on Sunday.Mr Burke suggests that since Prime Minister David Cameron didn't arrive at Number 10 Downing Street until 2010 he might have a lack of perspective.
Meanwhile, over at The Telegraph we have Columnist Janet Daley is saying "Al-Qaeda is back – big time.".
Killing Osama bin Laden (or rather, signing off on the ongoing military operation that killed him) might have given Barack Obama a great electoral pitch, but what exactly did it accomplish for the security of the United States and its interests? Al-Qaeda is back – big time. As a man who knew something about indefatigable terrorist organisations once said, “They haven’t gone away, you know.” As we learn more of the horrific details of the Algerian hostage crisis, it becomes clear that the old outfit is getting on just fine without its nominal head, scoring a hit of quite spectacular global proportions, which threatened nationals from as large a number of countries as would ever be likely to gather in one place of employment.On this side of the pond we have things to celebrate, like another change of government by peaceful means. Well, it is the same President, but some of the cabinet is changing. We are not focusing, in public, on the Long War. But, the Long War is still out there and it may link up with drug cartels that are roiling Mexico.
So, where are we? Are the dark days behind us or are we seeing more of the same in our future?
Regards — Cliff