"If someone is calling al Qaeda, we want to know about it."
Yes, sir, you bet. Alright, General Hayden, you've been in charge of finding out if anyone is calling al Qaeda. You've spent hundreds of millions, maybe billions. You've built a data base to see if anyone is calling anyone who calls in a pattern that an al Qaeda member would call if he were making calls. More gargantuan sums of money, time and effort.
Line 'em up and show us the results. Let's have the perp walk of all the al Qaedas, all the al Qaeda caller uppers you've located, investigated, caught, apprehended and brought to trial! With all this horseshit there must be a whole herd of ponies.
Get on the stand and regale with tales of success. Of plots thwarted. Of desperate measures intercepted. Of terrorists captured or killed.
Tell us how you've located Osama bin Laden.
It's been over four and a half years. Unlimited budget. Unlimited military might. No visible moral constraints. Tell us how you've tracked him down, hung him high and busted up his ring!
Don't tell merely that there have been no terrorists incidents since 9/11. It's a lot tougher action to pull off since then, with every eye of every American, with all the airlines and airports and security companies, the local and state police, immigration and customs, all on alert. We don't have to hear about all kinds of secret stuff you did to stop the next 9/11.
Let's not bother with that namby-pampy wimpy liberal stuff about civil rights, the constitution and no one being above the law not even you and the president you rode in on. You're argument is you gotta do what it takes and the ends justify the means and it is security that makes us safe to enjoy whichever liberties we have left that we would like to enjoy in moderation.
So, let's take it on your terms. We see the horseshit. Show us the ponies.
Or admit that you have failed. Admit that all this effort and show and money, has bought us nought. Let us count the terrorists caught or interdicted. Let us see that it was only through your less than legal programs that we got them.
It can't be that your success is just too secret to share. I expect that it's your failures that hide behind the coy veil of national security.