May 2, 2011
What It Doesn't Mean
As we all raise our glasses and toast the toasty hellish roast in which Osama bin Laden is just now finding himself -- is he disappointed that he won't be getting those seventy-two raisins? -- let's spare a few thoughts about what the long-overdue assassination doesn't mean:
- It doesn't mean the end of the War Against Radical Islamism or Islamist adventurism and attempted conquest, more's the pity.
Ever since at least Tora Bora (possibly before), Ayman Zawahiri has been the real operational boss of al-Qaeda -- what's left of it, after the kills and captures we've carried out in the intervening decade; we've mowed them down like scything wheat.
Remember Musab Zarqawi, the head of "al-Qaeda in Iraq," desperately begging bin Laden to send reinforcements? The U.S. Army and Marines not only didn't leave, as bin Laden had promised, they poured into Iraq like a tsunami overtopping a levee. A year after Zarqawi sent that letter, we killed him too. There's very little left in the al-Qaeda organization these days; and bin Laden's role has long been confined to being the "spiritual leader."
In any event, Hezbollah, Hamas, and even the Taliban have long since overtaken aQ as our core enemies in the War Against Radical Islamism.
- It doesn't mean that Barack H. Obama is now guaranteed a second term, as a friend of mine worries.
See everybody and his unkie's monkle knows that we've had death squads out trying to kill not only bin Laden but Zawahiri and many other top al-Qaeda leaders ever since 2001; in fact, we've been extraordinarily successful -- which is why nobody has heard a peep from al-Qaeda for many years, ever since the Anbar "awakening," other than the occasional video or audio tape.
So nobody's going to buy the idea that the successful hit was due to B.O.'s brilliant Special-Forces leadership, though some might pretend to believe it for political impact. By contrast, a huge percentage of Americans might well be offended that Obama is trying to grab credit away from the CIA snipers! The preposterous and insulting claim will just make Obama seem even more smuggish, conceited, and self-absorbed than voters already think him.
He will get a short-term bump in the polls, but that's just euphoria at bin Laden's death. After a few weeks, it will drift right back down to where it is now... particularly as reality sinks in that bin Laden himself has been a dead letter for years.
But there's an even more embarassing possibilty here. We know that Saddam Hussein used a lot of look-alikes, precisely to confuse the myriad of people who wanted to see him attain room temperature. Is it completely impossible that Osama bin Laden might do the same? There must be other extremely tall Arabs who are cadaverously thin and can grow a beard.
Imagine, just suppose, that when the CIA returns the body to Langley, or wherever our main CIA medical facilities are found, and they compare the DNA of the corpse to samples taken from bin Laden's relatives... imagine that the analysis proves that the deceased is not, in fact, OBL. After Obama has made his triumphal credit grab, to find out that it wasn't even the tall man himself would be so humiliating, so perfect an example of "pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall," that Barack Obama would become the world's laughingstock.
What would that do for his reelection chances?
It will probably turn out to be bin Laden; but we're never sure until we're sure, eh?
- Finally, it doesn't mean that bin Laden now becomes a world martyr, radicalizing millions upon millions of ordinary Moslems and rallying hundreds of thousands to the cause. That train has long since sailed.
I cannot but believe that the vast majority of Islamdom has grown weary of constant combat. (I exclude the Palestinians from this war-weary cohort; but the rest of the ummah thinks they're totally insane anyway.) Besides, those radicals who are desperate to fight for their brother Moslems have their own causes to occupy their energies -- mostly in trying to overthrow the dictatorial, national-socialist governments that litter the Middle East like broken promises on the marble floors of Congress.
I doubt that bin Laden's call for a world-wide caliphate (with himself the Caliph) ever held much appeal to Moslem Arabs in Yemen, Lebanon, Egypt, Libya, let alone to Persian Moslems, Indonesian Moslems, or Chechen, Bosnian, Indian, or Chinese Moslems. Even if they cheered his attack on the World Trade Centers and the Pentagon, it wasn't a pledge of loyalty to al-Qaeda so much as Schadenfreude against America and Israel, for those radical Islamists who see us as the Great and Little Satans, respectively.
If his life did not inspire, his death will likely not radicalize. We may see some riots, but that's due to the very fact that (presumed) non-Moslem CIA snipers done in the old man of the mountains. When some new outrage displaces the current one, bin Laden will be forgotten like yesterday's cud.
But still, there is an excellent chance that Osama bin Laden, who "needed killin'" more than almost anybody in the current era, has gone to meet his judgment and his doom. So let's celebrate what the assassination was -- the ignoble, ignominious end of one of the world's most evil men -- but without falling into the error of making more of it, for better or worse, than it truly signifies.
Hatched by Dafydd on this day, May 2, 2011, at the time of 1:35 AM
The following hissed in response by: Stephen Macklin
Just Another Dead Terrorist.
The above hissed in response by: Stephen Macklin at May 2, 2011 4:44 AM
The following hissed in response by: snochasr
Latest news says the body was promptly buried at sea, "respecting Muslim custom" and because "no nation would accept the body. Mighty convenient, if your poll numbers need a boost, isn't it? My guess is the body of whomever it was was actually buried where the fake moon landing was filmed.
The following hissed in response by: mdgiles
That train has long since sailed.
The train has left the station.
Or that ship has sailed.
Other than that, is their some reason Bin Laden merited such respectful handling?
The following hissed in response by: mdgiles
BTW, is it alright to hope that Bin Laden is not dead - but has his gonads attached to a field telephone somewhere, while they attempt to "dial up" any information he is still privy to?
The following hissed in response by: Baggi
I won't be surprised if this drives more votes away from Obama than towards him.
Isn't the cynical political ploy of Bush's two terms now exposed? First, the Democrats supported President Bush after 9/11 and the country came together. Then, the Democrats saw a political opportunity and the only reason the anti-war protest movement had any legs at all is because it was funded and supported by the Democrat party.
So, the Democrats made their bed and it was an anti-war bed.
Now comes Obama, one of the big anti-war Democrats who thought to take every opportunity to criticize President Bush and the wars we were involved in.
And what happens? He's exactly like George W. Bush. Yet, where are all the protests? Well, as we've seen, the Republican party isn't going to start to fund and support the Anti-war efforts and even if it did, the media play wouldn't be in support. Obviously, the Democrat party isn't going to fund and support the anti-war movement anymore, not while Obama is in office.
So we're left with the knowledge that it was all politics. Sick, disgusting, politics.
That all alone the Nancy Pelosi's and the Reeds and the Obama's were exactly like George Bush and Dick Cheney, but they wanted the votes of the anti-war left and they got those votes. And, they wanted to bring about morale crushing news stories, over and over again, in order to drive people away from the Republicans.
But now, isn't it exposed? Aren't they all exposed?
The following hissed in response by: Reid's Worst Nightmare
It's actually incorrect to claim that Obama is replicating Bush's foreign policy.
He is superficially replicating the foreign policy of the second half of Bush's second term, in the sense that he hasn't actually made an order to abandon Iraq or Afghanistan, but he has left those wars on autopilot, and is in fact winking at Iranian interference in Iraq (although not at al-Qaeda influence). He has not added anything new to the mix, however, and the indications are that he is simply trying to find a convenient point to withdraw.
He also has preserved some of the original domestic policies of the War on Terror: notably, the most repressive, anti-freedom policies, such as TSA, and has made them even more tyrannical. In fact, DHS is, as you read this, training your local cops in putting down "insurrectionists," defined as gun owners and homeschoolers. Sorry to disappoint you Sixties-type "law and order" conservatives, but the cops are not your friends any more; they are, rather, the trained and loyal agents of repression for the Communist government.
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