Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab couldn't ignite the bomb in his underwear on Flight 253 on Christmas Day. All he managed to blow up was a worldview.
His failed attempt put paid to the notion that terrorism is the byproduct of a few, specific U.S. policies and of our image abroad. This view dominates the left and animates the Obama administration. It informs its drive to shutter Guantanamo Bay, to get out of Iraq and to cater to "international opinion." If we are only nice and likable enough, goes the theory, the Abdulmutallabs of the world will never be tempted to violent mayhem.
Only the young Nigerian didn't appear the least bit moved by President Barack Obama's commitment to close Gitmo in a year. He didn't seem to care that Khalid Sheikh Mohammed will get a civilian trial in New York. He didn't appear to be fazed at all by Obama's Cairo and U.N. speeches, or a year's worth of international goodwill gestures. He just wanted to destroy an airliner.
Rich Lowry is a New York Post columnist, the editor of the National Review and a Fox News contributor. To continue reading his column, click here.
Rich Lowry is editor of The National Review and a Fox News contributor. He is author of the new book "Lincoln Unbound: How an Ambitious Young Railsplitter Saved the American Dream--and How We Can Do It Again" Broadside Books (June 11, 2013).