Ron Paul: Last week I mentioned in my little talk about the medical care legislation going on in the Senate, that it might be a distraction from foreign policy because I believe there were some very important events going on in the Middle East. And I brought up the subject of Yemen because at that time we had known that the Saudis had bombed Yemen and the Saudis are our close allies. We provide them with the weapons and the airplanes, and we did sanction and endorse the bombing of Yemen where there are some Al-Qaida; there is no doubt about it. Because they are scattered around the Middle East and they react to our occupation and if we’re in Afghanistan and we chase them around, they might go into Pakistan and now into Yemen. And I thought this was a very dangerous situation. Well, we’ve all heard now the story that happened on the weekend where this one individual that has come from Nigeria and then through Amsterdam and came in to Detroit and attempted to set off some type of explosive device. Most people who heard it thought it was a firecracker device, but it started a small fire which obviously is very, very dangerous.
But it seems ironic that there is so much excitement about this, and now there is talk about attacking Yemen because there is Al-Qaida there. I saw one headline that fascinated me that said, “Al-Qaida in Yemen threatens United States”. I got thinking, “United States in Yemen threatens United States”. Our presence there is the real problem. But there is now some serious talk about what we should be doing over there and dealing with the Al-Qaida, never addressing the real important subject of why is there Al-Qaida and why do these radicals get motivated in order to commit suicide and these various things. And they get motivated because we’re there in their country and then they organize and the longer we’re there the more they get radicalized against us. So what do we do? We send more troops over there. But this whole issue now about what to do about monitoring people getting on airplanes; it really scares me because we do so much already.
We spend 75 billion dollars on intelligence gathering in this country in order to protect us and make us safe. So with 75 billion dollars we weren’t able to detect this individual where there was a glaring warning sign; like his dad goes to the U.S. embassy and says, “Hey, this guy is losing it and he could commit a violent act”. So they put him on some list and totally ignore him, and he gets on an airplane and starts a fire. So you wonder just exactly what’s going on. It’s either awful stupidity or there must be an agenda. I guess we won’t know that for sure, but I am concerned about what they are going to do to the America people.
When the hijackers that bombed the twin towers were identified, it was looked into and it was found out that the FBI had reported on numerous occasions that they were being trained to fly airplanes but not to land. Nothing was done about it and that was not even a lead, so it was totally ignored. But nobody ever got punished. And now no one is going to get punished for this for not paying attention to this warning.
And so we look now to somebody else getting punished; it will be the American people. You know, they’ll add some more security on to us. First they make us take off our shoes and then our belts and then small bottles of water, and put our computers in the tray and on and on it goes. So something else is going to happen; they won’t let us get out of our seats or look at our bags from the bin above us and thinking that’s going to make us a lot safer.
I’m convinced, though, that one of the main problems we have is that we’ve turned over a very important function to the government. The government is incapable of doing what they’re supposed to do. A function like this should be controlled by the people who run the airlines. But they haven’t done that in many, many years. The airlines like all of the responsibility to fall to the government, so if anything goes wrong it’s the government’s fault. But I often thought about how efficient an armored car company is in protecting the money in those trucks, and nobody has to worry about it. But when it comes to cargo on an airplane, the government has to be responsible and the bigger the problem and the more fear that is built up, the more they take away our personal liberties. They turn us all into zombies and the American people go along with this saying, “Oh, as long as it makes us safer, I guess it’s okay to go along”.
But it’s time the American people woke up and started realizing that there is a bit of propaganda going on and quite possibly this incident will not only undermine our personal liberties, but will also accelerate our intervention and the violence occurring in the Middle East.