July 25, 2006

The Hunt for Red Osama

Hatched by Dafydd

Hugh Hewitt quotes from (but does not link to) a speech given by Sen. Harry Reid (D-Caesar's Palace, 100%), about all the terrible failings of Bush administration policy on the war on jihadi terrorism. These four compound sentences encapsulate the very core of Reid's and the Democrats' argument:

We argued that the administration follow the law and make 2006 the year of transition, with Iraqis taking charge of their own security and government, so that American forces can be redeployed by year's end. [That's a "law," that we have to immediately pull out of Iraq? When was that passed? -- the Mgt.]

Our plan would have given the Iraqi people their best chance for success, while also giving America the best chance to confront the growing threats of North Korea, Iran and terrorism.

Our plan would have engaged regional powers to help bring stability to Iraq, and would have reminded the countries of the world of their commitment to invest in Iraq's long-term economic prosperity.

Our plan would have refocused America's military, diplomatic, and economic might on the terrorist threats that face us in Iraq and globally, including Osama Bin Laden-who remains free 5 years after 9/11.

He included, of course, the traditional Democratic contradictions, which I think is a caucus rule:

  • "In the last month, the price of gas has shot past three dollars a gallon." [Yet Democrats oppose any and all drilling and refining of oil, whether off the California coast, in the Gulf of Mexico, or in ANWR.]
  • "In the last month, North Korea -- on the Fourth of July -- tested new long-range missiles." [Which we were prepared to shoot down (if the DPRK had succeeded in launching them) using antiballistic missile systems that the Democrats fought hammer and tooth, delaying us for eight long years.]
  • "In the last month, Hezbollah has terrorized Israel." [Due to Israel having "redeployed" out of Lebanon in 2000, in a way that mimicked a military rout (despite having lost no battles), in response to heavy pressure from Bill Clinton on Ehud Barak.]
  • "And in the last month, Al Qaeda may have found a new sanctuary in large swaths of Somalia." [From which we "redeployed" in a panic under orders by Bill Clinton, paving the way for al-Qaeda to move in as squatters.]

But that's all milk spilt over the bridge. I want to "focus like a laser beam" on Reid's "redeployment" plan. If the Democrats can be said to have any sort of strategic plan at all in the war on jihadism, it's to find an immediate exit strategy.

But what is their positive vision to put in place of fighting wars? They do actually have one, and Sen. Reid alluded to it in this speech: Democrats believe that we should put all our resources into hunting for Osama bin Laden.

That's it; that's the plan. (It should be a new Tom Clancy novel: the Hunt for Red Osama.) Since war is nothing but a big police investigation anyway (see the previous post), the focus should always be on arresting and trying the perpetrator, rather than thwarting future acts.

But what fascinates me is that we already tried this in miniature... and it was an unmitigated disaster. Does anybody here remember Somalia?

The Wikipedia account is more or less accurate:

[Mohamed Farrah] Aidid hindered international U.N. peacekeeping forces in 1992. As a result, the US put a $25,000 bounty on his head [in August 2003] and attempted to capture him. On October 3, 1993 a force of U.S. Army Rangers and Delta Force operators set out to capture several officials of Aidid's militia in an area of the Somalian capital city of Mogadishu, controlled by him. Although technically successful, with the capture of several "tier-one personalities," the operation did not completely go as planned, and between 500 and 1000 Somalis, as well as 19 American soldiers, died as a result.

The people of somalia were later angry at the Rangers and supported Aidid. Videos showed Somalis eating the flesh of Cliff Walcott and his crew members of Super 64. Aidid himself was not captured. The events are commonly known outside Somalia as the Battle of Mogadishu. [I'm not entirely sure about that video claim; I hadn't heard it before. -- the Mgt.]

The U.S. withdrew its forces soon afterwards (a move viewed by some as a sign of weakening American strength on the international front), and the U.N. left Somalia in 1995. Aidid then declared himself president of Somalia, but his government was not internationally recognized.

Under former President George H.W. Bush (Bush-41), the American military initiated a humanitarian operation in Somalia in 1992; but under President Bill Clinton, it morphed -- especially after the "Blackhawk down" incident -- into a massive manhunt throughout that country, which is smaller than either Afghanistan, Pakistan, or Iran (let alone the combination of the three that would be our actual target area to search for bin Laden)... with only one of those three countries willing to allow such a search in the first place: the one we occupy, Afghanistan.

I remember the humiliation of the Hunt for Red Aidid: day after day, week after week, Rangers ranged up and down Somalia, but were unable to catch Mr. Aidid. News reporters were considerably more successful, however, for he popped up fairly regularly, like Whack-a-Warlord, to taunt us and hoot at our pathetic, bootless efforts.

And of course, despite keeping a very high profile (unlike bin Laden), we never managed to catch Aidid in two years of hunting... and then we quit looking and just yanked our troops out. In fact, in October 1993, Clinton had told everybody that we were pulling out in six months, whether we found Aidid or not. The sole target of the Democrats' current battle plan -- Osama bin Laden -- actually cited Clinton's retreat from Somalia as evidence that al-Qaeda could hit the United States with impunity, because we were paper tigers.

Astonishingly enough, Aidid dodged us until March. Then when we evacuated, Aidid emerged from his very public "hiding," crowned himself president, and was promptly shot to death by a rival warlord.

The lesson should be clear: it is virtually impossible to find a single, particular person hiding in a death zone... particularly when he is well-heeled and well-served by fanatical followers who move him around secretly. There are too many caves, too much land, too little "society" to ensare him in its net.

Bin Laden doesn't have any credit cards and he doesn't use an ATM. There are no security cameras in the wilderness of Afghanistan, Pakistan, or Iran -- at least none that we can view. And our satellites are virtually useless trying to pick a single guy out of millions: we don't have Star-Trek "sensors."

And even if we managed to spot him, what would we do... beam him up to the mothership? By the time we could get a Predator close enough to shoot a Hellfire, bin Laden's caravan will have moved on.

Like every other Democratic plan, their GWOT strategy is a prescription for disaster: it would gift us only with humiliation and failure, make us the laughingstock of the world, and squander all the work we have done rebuilding our military capability after eight years of Clinton -- and we still haven't fully recovered from a scant four years of Carter.

If you want to understand "fractals," there is no better place to start than by carefully reading Democratic initiatives: they look stupid as a whole; and the deeper you look, the stupider they get.

Hatched by Dafydd on this day, July 25, 2006, at the time of 4:29 PM

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» The Fractal Democratic Strategy for the War from The American Empire
Dafydd over at Big Lizards has a very insightful piece today, on the Democrat’s strategy for waging the War on Terror: ...If the Democrats can be said to have any sort of strategic plan at all in the war on jihadism, it’s to find an immedia [Read More]

Tracked on July 25, 2006 4:48 PM


The following hissed in response by: KarmiCommunist

Generalissimo!!! Great Stuff, and you are on a roll!!!

Roll On...

The above hissed in response by: KarmiCommunist [TypeKey Profile Page] at July 25, 2006 4:39 PM

The following hissed in response by: Stephen Macklin

This post and the previous one on war as a law enforcement exercise are spot on.

I sometimes wonder if we actually know where Bin Laden is and have known for some time but are leaving him be. Imagine the howls of the left if we continued to fight the War on Terror after nailing Ossama! Talk about disproportionate.

The above hissed in response by: Stephen Macklin [TypeKey Profile Page] at July 25, 2006 4:50 PM

The following hissed in response by: Terrye

And what happens if they can't find Osama? Do they just get bored and give it up?

No, right now they are too busy judging Maliki to bother with much else.

I can not believe these people. Left to them the terrorists could take over Iraq. Left to them Saddam Hussein would be still be financing Hamas and God knows who else. And yet, they want Maliki to be refused the right to speak to Congress because he is not supportive enough of Iraq. Well neither is Kofi and they kiss his butt every day.

The above hissed in response by: Terrye [TypeKey Profile Page] at July 25, 2006 4:51 PM

The following hissed in response by: Terrye

That should have been supportive enough of Israel, not Iraq. sorry, I am too lazy for preview.

The above hissed in response by: Terrye [TypeKey Profile Page] at July 25, 2006 4:52 PM

The following hissed in response by: KarmiCommunist

The Democrat Party is sounding as desperate as Hizbullah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah, as desperate as Mahmoud Komati, deputy chief of Hezbollah's political arm, huh.

The above hissed in response by: KarmiCommunist [TypeKey Profile Page] at July 25, 2006 5:11 PM

The following hissed in response by: Bill Faith

Excerpted and linked at Old War Dogs.

The above hissed in response by: Bill Faith [TypeKey Profile Page] at July 25, 2006 5:13 PM

The following hissed in response by: Big D

What stuns me about the Democrats is the horrible conceit that we aren't really trying very hard to find Bin Laden. What a profound insult to our military commanders, CIA, diplomats, soldiers, etc.

And once they are in charge, by golly, we are really gonna start focusing in on this here Bin Laden character, yesire. No more Mr. Nice Guy stuff.

Hey, I got an idea on how we could catch Bin Laden in, oh, say, about a month. First we nuke Pakistan, southern Afghanistan, and maybe Iran for good measure. Then we send in the marines to sort through the mess and find his body.

This must be what the Democrats want to do, since we've tried everything else.

The above hissed in response by: Big D [TypeKey Profile Page] at July 25, 2006 5:32 PM

The following hissed in response by: KarmiCommunist

Big D,

Enjoyed that Reply!!!

In WW2, Japan attacked us first, so we went to War, with Germany as our main focus!?! Word is, that Hitler committed suicide, and some informant pointed out his burned corpse. Emperor Hirohito of Japan died a free man...around 1989.

The Democrats are weak on Defense, Intelligence, and National Security...even they know it. Four years of Jimmy "The Mullah" Carter created Modern Terrorism. Eight years of Bill Clinton left America at the mercy of its Enemies. Imagine if Gore had actually been elected in '00...or even Kerry in '04!?!

Dualistically speaking...Peace without War is impossible.


The above hissed in response by: KarmiCommunist [TypeKey Profile Page] at July 25, 2006 6:09 PM

The following hissed in response by: Zelsdorf2

Someone one, maybe the Mayor of Las Vegas should tell Harry that OBL may not be in a place that is accessable to U.S. forces, at least if we wish to maintain peaceful relations with Pakistan, which possesses nuclear weapons and is a Muslim nation. All we need is some stupid democrat liberal moonbat to screw up our relationship with Pakistan, like Carter did Iran, for life or death to get a lot more interesting. There may be a time for partisan politics, but with the world situation such as it is. The left does not have a clue how to win the global war on terror, ie islamic radicals. We must prevent history from repeating itself

The above hissed in response by: Zelsdorf2 [TypeKey Profile Page] at July 25, 2006 7:00 PM

The following hissed in response by: ShoreMark

Someone one, maybe the Mayor of Las Vegas should tell Harry...

I don't think anyone can tell Harry anything, but I bet if old Oscar directed Harry not to come 'round Vegas no more, that he'd be ticked off.

The above hissed in response by: ShoreMark [TypeKey Profile Page] at July 25, 2006 7:17 PM

The following hissed in response by: M. Simon

I have definite intel that Osama is in Teheran living in the former US Embassy.

Quick some one tell Reid.

The above hissed in response by: M. Simon [TypeKey Profile Page] at July 26, 2006 3:14 AM

The following hissed in response by: MTF

Another great post. One lesson of the Aidid search may be that we may not get a clean shot at Bin Laden until we back off from our hunt/search a little bit. If he feels more comfortable and pops up in a public place or two, then wham!

The above hissed in response by: MTF [TypeKey Profile Page] at July 26, 2006 7:46 AM

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