With the latest National Intelligence Estimate finding that Al Qaeda "has protected or regenerated key elements of its Homeland attack capability," the White House took to the Sunday shows to fight the obvious conclusion that Dubya's neocon foreign policy has utterly failed.
Their talking point? Pakistan screwed up and let Al Qaeda establish a "safe haven."
Here's White House Homeland Security Adviser Fran Townsend on Fox News Sunday:
They've been able to take advantage of the agreement between President Musharraf and the tribal elders in the federally administrated tribal area to find safe haven, to train, to recruit.
And here's Director of National Intelligene Mike McConnell on Meet The Press, responding to a question how could last year's intelligence estimate say Al Qaeda was "seriously damaged":
...what happened? What’s different? What changed?
In Pakistan, where they're enjoying a safe haven, the government of Pakistan chose to try a political solution. The political solution meant a peace treaty with a region that's never been governed -- not governed from the outside, not governed by Pakistan.
The opposite occurred. Instead of pushing al-Qaeda out, the people who live in these federally- administered tribal areas, rather than pushing al-Qaeda out, they made a safe haven for training and recruiting. And so, in that period of time, al-Qaeda has been able to regain some of its momentum.
Who would be stupid enough to get behind a peace agreement with militants tied to Al Qaeda?
George W. Bush, of course.
Townsend and McConnell somehow forgot to mention that peace agreement was "encouraged" by the White House, and publicly endorsed by Dubya -- as noted by LiberalOasis recently.
(And Fox News Sunday and Meet The Press neglected to bring it up as well.)
The Bush Administration did not prioritize going after the actual terrorist threat, instead choosing to pursue a permanent occupation of Iraq as a policy goal, whihc has created more terrorists.
While the Bush Administration is trying to use this safe haven to shift blame to Pakistan, the fact is the safe haven is the direct result of a policy that the Bush Administration is directly complict in crafting.
Once again, the failure is their own.