I’m at a loss as to why everyone isn’t focusing on the facts of the Orlando terrorist case. I keep hearing liberals and conservatives argue back and forth over whether or not someone on a terror watch list should be allowed to buy a weapon. We already have a solution, and FBI Director James Comey laid it all out to reporters the day after the attack.
Here’s the deal. Omar Mateen was investigated by the FBI back in 2013 for 10 months. He had told co-workers he had family connections to al Qaeda. He said that he was a member of a terrorist organization. He also said that he hoped police would raid his home and assault his wife so he could retaliate and become a martyr.
During that time, he was on a watch list, and Comey says if he’d tried to buy a firearm the FBI would’ve been alerted. But at the end of 10 months the investigation was closed, and he was taken off the watch list. In other words, had he remained on the watch list — as well he should have — the FBI would’ve known immediately when he bought a gun and could’ve acted appropriately. That doesn’t mean they could’ve prevented him from buying the guns, but they could have done a number of things.
They could have interviewed him again and let him know they knew about the guns and were watching him, or they could’ve simply placed him under constant surveillance. Either way, they would probably have prevented the terrorist attack in Orlando.
So, why did they end the 10-month investigation and take him off the watch list? Because Mateen told them he was being marginalized because of his Muslim faith and he made those statements about being affiliated with terrorists to try and taunt his coworkers. And they believed him!
In other words, political correctness got us killed yet again.
On top of all that, several coworkers at the security firm G4S said he constantly talked about killing people and was openly hostile to gays, blacks, and women. One coworker finally reported him and asked for a transfer but nothing happened. This guy ended up quitting.
You want to hear the really scary part? G4S has multiple security contracts with the U.S. government, including the CIA, and helps secure 40 U.S. embassies around the world. My presumption is they didn’t act on these outrageous reports of bizarre behavior for the same reason the doctors working with the Ft. Hood shooter said nothing. They didn’t want to be labeled Islamophobic.
What puzzles me is why more isn’t being made about the facts I just laid out for you. First, the question regarding what to do about people on the terror watch list has already been answered. If you’re on the watch list and you buy a gun, the FBI is alerted. Then one has to hope they’ll actually do something with the information.
Before we all go piling on the Bureau, let’s understand that there are literally tens of thousands of people like Mateen that the FBI is trying to keep track of. Yes, he was born in the U.S., but there are so many suspicious people that have been allowed into this country that Director Comey once said there’s no way they can keep track of them all.
That is the central problem. Again, political correctness has caused this country to turn a blind eye to common sense. There’s only one way to reduce the risk and that’s by denying access to people most likely to be terrorists.
Phil Valentine is the host of the award-winning, nationally syndicated talk radio show, The Phil Valentine Show.