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"This Was a Kill Operation"

MsExPat's picture

Reuters reports that there was never any intention to bring OBL back alive to face justice.

Great. So the US has gotten to the point where we not only don't hide the fact that we're going around the world assassinating people. We're bragging about it.

I can't tell you how upset I am about the murder of Osama bin Laden and his family, the clumsy cover up of the evidence (to paraphrase Lambert: Sea Burial My Ass)...and possibly worst of all, the truly ugly spectacle of the cheering and gloating in the USA.

What intrigues me is the Pakistan angle. There's no way that Osama was living large in the shadow of the Army base at Abbottabad without the ISI AND the PK military knowing about his every sneeze. So somebody in Pakistan must have outed him. I wonder: who, and why now?

There's also the possibility that we have known where he was for quite some time.

I'm also wondering about the kill order. Because I don't believe for a moment it was issued out of simple vengeance. I believe it was issued to keep Osama from talking. But now we'll never be able to hear his side of the story.

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DCblogger's picture
Submitted by DCblogger on

signed an executive order authorizing the killing of bin Laden. We conducted airstrikes during Clinton's presidency, we just missed.

a trial would have created prohibitive security issues.

sea burial insures that there is no bin Laden shrine.

it has been obvious for years that the Pakistani ISI has been sheltering bin Laden and other Al Qaeda terrorists for years. Hillary Clinton made some very pointed remarks to that effect. this is one reason I don't feel too bad about violating Pakistani sensibilities.

The Saudi's role in all this needs far more scrutiny.

on the whole, I have a bad feeling about this.

Aeryl's picture
Submitted by Aeryl on

Sure, Clinton authorized air strikes, and it's kinda hard to take prisoners in a air strike.

But this was Seal Team Six. This was "boots on the ground". The opportunity for capture was there, and should have been attempted. These guys are good at what they do, and they were prepared to take prisoners, since apparently some people were captured.

And, I don't think we stop practicing the rule of law, just because it's too expensive. As a matter of fact, the more costly, the more important it is to follow the rule of law, just to demonstrate, it's not just words.

Shrine? Who gives a flying fuck if other people want to revere him? Who cares if people desecrate his body, wherever it ended up. Better to let it become some other nation's problem, than to invite the cloud of suspicion that has been raised by this precipitous act. There should have at least been a post mortem, performed by some third party, with US, UN and Arab officials standing by to confirm it, before whatever burial that was deemed appropriate was performed.

Pakistan, has been and always will, try to play buddy to both sides on this. Us, because we are the big bad wolf who could make life very difficult for the powerful in Pakistan, and AQ and their sympathizers, because they could make life very horrendous for their citizens(already are in many respects. The border areas of Pakistan have degenerated into Sharia strongholds where women are bartered and traded as chattel again, in the same nation Benazir Bhutto was nearly elected in.) They are really in a lose-lose situation, and I don't suppose I can blame for trying to play both sides in this situation. They have relatively little power to affect the actions of either the US or AQ, so I find it hard to hold them responsible.

The Saudis, well as the Sailor likes to say about me and some of, "actions", well that's like getting mad at the scorpion for stinging you.

I do share your unease. My xenophobic coworkers are all "Oh, they're comin' to get us now" I roll my eyes, but I do believe that our troops will take the brunt.

DCblogger's picture
Submitted by DCblogger on

but Clinton's exec order took in the possibility of a hit. We used planes in those days because we had no practical way to do a land operation during the 90's.

Aeryl's picture
Submitted by Aeryl on

Clinton was trying to do an assassination with air strikes. I'm just saying that with that strategy(air strikes) there is no possibility of capture.

With the "successful" strategy we are being told was undertaken, capture was a possibility, and I feel, that is was one they SHOULD have tried, even if it didn't succeed and still resulted in his death. But it wasn't, it was a kill order straight from the beginning, and THAT I disagree with. I don't think we should circumvent the rule of law, and the rights our Constitution establishes for all people, not just Americans(even if it only enforces those rights here), because it's cheap and easy.

Being the alleged beacon of hope and light to the world isn't easy, or cheap, and if we wanted to maintain that status, we should have held to our principles.

editor_u's picture
Submitted by editor_u on

"I'm also wondering about the kill order. Because I don't believe for a moment it was issued out of simple vengeance. I believe it was issued to keep Osama from talking. But now we'll never be able to hear his side of the story."

Remember that there was great insistence on carrying out the death verdict from Saddam Hussein's first trial quickly, in order to follow the law (only law I know of that's been followed by any government since this horseshit began). So he was hanged before the second, arguably more important (if I recall correctly) trial could begin. He would have talked at that trial, probably. Maybe mentioned cozy relations with certain elements of the U.S. Government in the process.

boilermaker's picture
Submitted by boilermaker on

I can see three possible underlying issues regarding this kill operation.
First, the U.S. has been increasing the ferocity of its drone strikes over the last few months.
While the stated purpose of the strikes were to target militants, its clear that they were not really aimed at al Qaeda. Instead they put more and more pressure on the Pakistani military and intelligence community. Were we just killing people until somebody in the Pakistani m/i community broke and told us were to find OBL?
How healthy was OBL? He was know to have been in poor health.
I can't imagine that life on the lam actually improved his health situation. Maybe we knew where he was or at least knew how to find him. He was a useful bogeyman for manipulating the U.S. public. Killing him now would at least serve our government politically. Whip a nice round of patriotic fever. If he died because of deteriorating health, that would be anticlimactic and really wouldn't serve our needs. Which goes to issue number 3.
The media has been trumpeting this killing as a successful illustration of the merger of the military and the intelligence operations. Last week our CIA man was slated to take over our military while a military man is taking over our CIA. Were there grumblings out there? Any complaints now would be downright unpatriotic.

Submitted by Hugh on

This reminds me of an old Russian joke. There was a famous Russian poet who committed suicide under the Stalin regime. Oh really, did he leave any last words? Yes, "Comrades, don't shoot!"

boilermaker's picture
Submitted by boilermaker on

I think the whole reason for Obama releasing his birth certificate was to enhance his credibility with the Osama kill story. Meanwhile anybody who questions the official line is now equated with the birthers.