(by Nathan Burchfiel, CNSNews.com) – Sen. Joe Biden (D-Del.) said Thursday that the United States is no
safer than it was before 9/11 and that he believes al Qaeda is planning
another attack on U.S. soil.

there have been no attacks on our soil since 9/11,” Biden said in a
speech at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. “But we should
not take false comfort from that fact. Our enemies are patient.”

“I believe
they’re planning something as large and complex as 9/11,” Biden said of
the al Qaeda terrorist network. “They’re patient. Remember the first
try on the towers, how long it took for the second. These folks are in
for the long haul.”

Biden said the
Bush administration has failed to make America safer and explained his
plan to secure the nation if given the opportunity. Biden is considered
a likely contender for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2008.

The Delaware
Democrat unveiled a four-point plan he said would make America safer
and more respected in the international community, including
“implementing the recommendations made by the 9/11 Commission,”
securing “loose weapons around the world,” building and promoting
international organizations to deal with world problems and “developing
democratic institutions in the Middle East and beyond.”

The estimated
cost of Biden’s plan to build domestic security would be $50 billion
over the next five years to hire 1,000 new FBI agents and 50,000 more
police officers and to improve communications between agencies.

Biden said the program would be funded by raising taxes on people who make more than $1 million per year.

“Wealthy Americans are just as patriotic as poor and middle class Americans,” he said, but “nobody’s asked anything of them.”

Biden did not say whether he had considered reducing government spending in other areas to offset the costs of his proposal.

Biden reiterated
a proposal he announced in April to divide Iraq into separate regions
united by a central government in Baghdad. In his speech Thursday,
Biden said such a plan “would keep Iraq together by providing each
group breathing room in their [sic] own regions.”

The proposal to
divide Iraq has been criticized by some of Biden’s Democratic
colleagues, including Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts and House
Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California, who said it “could lead to
other challenges.”

Biden acknowledged those criticisms and encouraged his colleagues to formulate their own plans for Iraq that can be discussed.

Josh Holmes, a
spokesman for the Republican National Committee, said it is “clear from
our perspective that al Qaeda is always planning to threaten the
country, which is why we’re fighting the greater war on terror and why
we’re trying to eliminate al Qaeda in Iraq.”

Holmes said Biden “apparently has either forgotten or is ignoring the world we live in today.”

today’s foreign policy must not only include acknowledging threats, it
must include eliminating threats before they strike,” Holmes told
Cybercast News Service. “America is safer today because President Bush
and Republican leaders understand that.”

Reprinted here with permission from Cybercast News Service. Visit the website at CNSNews.com.


1. a) Who is Joe Biden?
b) Why does Mr. Biden believe that there have been no al-Qaeda attacks on U.S. soil since 9/11?
c) Why is it important to know what Mr. Biden’s security plan is for America?

2.  How does Senator Biden rate the Bush administration’s job in making the U.S. safer after 9/11?

3. a) What does Sen. Biden aim to do through his four-point plan?
b) List the four parts of the plan.

4. a) What is the cost of Sen. Biden’s plan to build domestic security?
b) How would he fund the program?
c) To find the funding for necessary government programs, Democrats generally favor increasing taxes, while Republicans generally favor reducing government spending in other areas. Which do you think is the better way?  Explain your
answer.  (Avoid explaining in individual terms: “I’ll never be a
millionaire, so we should increase their taxes” or “I will be a
millionaire someday, so don’t increase their taxes.” – but think about
what is best for the country overall)

5. How did Sen. Biden respond to critics of his plan to divide Iraq into separate regions?


Click here to visit Senator Biden’s website.

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