OPTIONS WERE LIMITED. The compound was in a residential neighborhood in a sovereign country. If Obama ordered an airstrike and bin Laden was not in the compound, it would be a HUGE DIPLOMATIC PROBLEM. Even if Obama was right, obliterating the compound MIGHT MAKE IT NEARLY IMPOSSIBLE TO CONFIRM BIN LADEN'S DEATH.http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory?id=13512344
Said Brennan: "The president had to evaluate the strength of that information, and then made what I believe was one of the most gutsiest calls of any president in recent memory."
OBAMA TAPPED TWO DOZEN MEMBERS OF THE NAVY'S ELITE SEAL TEAM SIX TO CARRY OUT A RAID WITH SURGICAL ACCURACY.
Before dawn Monday morning, a pair of helicopters left Jalalabad in eastern Afghanistan. The choppers entered Pakistani airspace using sophisticated technology intended to evade that country's radar systems, a U.S. official said.
OFFICIALLY, IT WAS A KILL-OR-CAPTURE MISSION, SINCE THE U.S. DOESN'T KILL UNARMED PEOPLE TRYING TO SURRENDER. But it was clear from the beginning that whoever was behind those walls had no intention of surrendering, two U.S. officials said….
…. Thanks to sophisticated satellite monitoring, U.S. forces knew they'd likely find bin Laden's family on the second and third floors of one of the buildings on the property, officials said. THE SEALS SECURED THE REST OF THE PROPERTY FIRST, THEN PROCEEDED TO THE ROOM WHERE BIN LADEN WAS HIDING. A FIREFIGHT ENSUED, BRENNAN SAID.
Ahmed and his brother were killed, officials said. Then, the SEALs killed bin Laden with a bullet just above his left eye, blowing off part his skull, another official said. Using the call sign for his visual identification, one of the soldiers COMMUNICATED THAT "GERONIMO" HAD BEEN KILLED IN ACTION, ACCORDING TO A U.S. OFFICIAL.
There’s conflicting stories about the raid. Was it a kill raid or as these article says kill or capture. Did Bin Laden fire at the SEAL team or did he not have a chance to. Finally, I don’t see the “gutsiness” of the call that the administration is spinning. It was a good call, but there were risks associated with anything he did.
Raid on UBL yield mother load of intelligence
THE ASSAULT FORCE OF NAVY SEALS SNATCHED A TROVE OF COMPUTER DRIVES AND DISKS DURING THEIR WEEKEND RAID ON OSAMA BIN LADEN’S COMPOUND, yielding what a U.S. official called “the mother lode of intelligence.”
The special operations forces grabbed personal computers, thumb drives and electronic equipment during the lightning raid that killed bin Laden, officials told POLITICO.
“They cleaned it out,” one official said. “CAN YOU IMAGINE WHAT’S ON OSAMA BIN LADEN’S HARD DRIVE?”
U.S. officials are about to find out. The material is being examined at a secret location in Afghanistan.
“Hundreds of people are going through it now,” an official said, adding that intelligence operatives back in Washington are very excited to find out what they have.
“IT’S GOING TO BE GREAT EVEN IF ONLY 10 PERCENT OF IT IS ACTIONABLE,” the official said.
This may be more significant than actually killing UBL.
Re: re: Er, Not Exactly
Dan, I think that’s exactly right. Over a year ago, I wrote a column about the Obama policy to choose “kill” when the options are kill or capture — A POLICY DRIVEN BY THE BOX IN WHICH THE OBAMA LEFT HAS PUT US BY MAKING IT SO MUCH MORE DIFFICULT TO DETAIN AND INTERROGATE ENEMY COMBATANTS. As I said back then, I agree with my pals Marc Thiessen and Shannen Coffin, to name just two, that it would be far preferable to capture and interrogate top terrorists. Fresh intelligence from high-ranking, insulated sources is the most valuable defense we have against terrorist attacks. Still, I’ve been inclined to cut the Obama administration some slack on this score.
Largely, that’s because of low expectations. I was afraid that Obama would abandon the fight. He hasn’t. As long as he’s killing terrorists, that’s a lot better than abandoning the fight, even if it’s not optimal — optimal being: capture, interrogate, and execute at some later point, after their usefulness as intelligence sources fades. The Obama administration ought to rethink this, but they’d then have to rethink everything that has caused them to end up with this policy. I wouldn’t hold my breath on that.
For what it may be worth, I THINK THE REAL INTELLIGENCE LAPSE HERE IS NOT THE FAILURE TO INTERROGATE BIN LADEN (AS MUCH A COUP AS THAT MAY HAVE BEEN). IT IS THE HASTE TO GET IN FRONT OF THE CAMERAS AND TAKE CREDIT. Not that Obama doesn’t deserve credit — that’s not my point.
THE REPORTS COMING OUT TODAY INDICATE THAT THE “MOTHERLODE” OF INTEL (computers, hard-drives, discs, documents, etc.) was found in bin Laden’s compound. Officials are saying it may be the most significant trove of information about al-Qaeda ever seized. Well, if that is the case, there is a good chance that it could have helped analysts figure out where other top Qaeda leaders (like Zawahiri) are, where important camps are, and where active cells are located. But THE ONLY WAY YOU CAN EXPLOIT THAT KIND OF INFORMATION IS BY KEEPING QUIET ABOUT BIN LADEN FOR A FEW DAYS WHILE THE ANALYSTS GO THROUGH IT AND GET THE LEADS TO THE MILITARY AND INTELLIGENCE OPERATIVES SO THEY CAN ACT ON IT — maybe roll up other key parts of the organization. Once you go public on bin Laden, it tells everyone else in al-Qaeda to get in the wind. The intel trove will still be very valuable for other reasons, but you’ve lost the opportunity to capture other big fish.
This may or may not be the case. I’m not sure how you keep this quiet if you can’t trust the Pakistanis and you took Bin Laden in their country. But you wonder if this was even considered before Obama went on TV to make the announcement.
You’re stupid if you believe Bin Laden is dead
Activist Cindy Sheehan Posted this comment on Facebook earlier today.http://nation.foxnews.com/cindy-sheehan/2011/05/02/cindy-sheehan-says-bin-laden-death-hoax
'I AM SORRY, BUT IF YOU BELIEVE THE NEWEST DEATH OF OBL, YOU'RE STUPID. Just think to yourself--they paraded Saddam's dead sons around to prove they were dead--why do you suppose they hastily buried this version of OBL at sea? THIS LYING, MURDEROUS EMPIRE CAN ONLY EXIST WITH YOUR BRAINWASHED CONSENT--JUST PUT YOUR FLAGS AWAY AND THINK!'
What’s the old joke that seems to apply to Ms. Sheehan. “Of all the things she’s ever lost, she misses her mind the most.”
The Left’s obsession with the rich
….To begin, STIGLITZ MAKES THE TIRED ARGUMENT THAT OVER THE LAST 25 YEARS THE RICH HAVE GROWN RICHER, WITH THEIR INCOME ACCOUNTING FOR 25% OF THE U.S.'S TOTAL IN CONCERT WITH "CONTROL" OVER 40% OF TOTAL WEALTH. He notes that 25 years ago, the top 1% could only lay claim to 12% of total income, and 33% of total wealth.http://www.realclearmarkets.com/articles/2011/05/03/joseph_stiglitzs_1_fallacy_and_why_we_cant_trust_99_of_economists_98984.html
Of course it's what he left out that really informs such a discussion. Indeed, had he bothered to ask one of his research assistants to pull up a Forbes 400 issue from 25 years ago, he would find that the team picture is vastly different. OUR TOP EARNERS CERTAINLY ARE RICH, BUT AS A CURSORY GLANCE AT THE MOST RECENT FORBES 400 REVEALS, MOST WEREN'T MEMBERS IN 1986, THUS EXPOSING STIGLITZ'S SUGGESTION OF A STRATIFIED TOP 1% AS STUPENDOUSLY FALSE.
Not content to be wrong just once, Stiglitz continues to embarrass his profession with the absurd suggestion that the rich, for being rich, "become more distant from ordinary people." That's a nice thought, and probably true insofar as they usually live in nicer neighborhoods, but it's also a misread of how they got there.
As opposed to distant, THE TOP 1% OF TODAY HAD A TENDENCY TO GET THERE BY VIRTUE OF HAVING A VERY KEEN AND CLOSE UNDERSTANDING OF WHAT THE MIDDLE CLASSES AND POOR DESIRE. Whereas the other 99% doubtless looked on in awe 25 years ago as the top 1% enjoyed wireless cellular communication ($3,995 for a Motorola phone in 1983, not to mention roaming charges), personal computers (top end models in the ‘90s retailed for $9,000+ - and they didn't work very well), and cable access to the best television channels and movies the world over, MEMBERS OF TODAY'S TOP 1% ACHIEVED SUCH STATUS BY MAKING ALL THREE AVAILABLE AT LOW PRICES TO ALL AMERICANS. Stiglitz complains that the lifestyles of the top 1% cause those "outside the top 1 percent" to "increasingly live beyond their means," but if he ever bothered to understand how fortunes are made, he'd know that a great deal of them are the result of making former top 1% luxuries quite common….
The left simply practices the politics of envy.
Here’s your Wednesday Outrage
....King was commenting on a key finding in a recently-released Government Accountability Office (GAO) report on criminal aliens, which he had requested.
The report showed that the three people were among “defendants where the investigation INVOLVED AN IDENTIFIED LINK TO INTERNATIONAL TERRORISM BUT THEY WERE CHARGED WITH VIOLATING OTHER STATUTES, INCLUDING FRAUD, IMMIGRATION, DRUGS, FALSE STATEMENTS, AND GENERAL CONSPIRACY CHARGES.”
The three BECAME NATURALIZED AMERICAN CITIZENS under the Obama administration, two in late 2009 and one in 2010.
“IT’S OUTRAGEOUS THAT YOU CAN HAVE PEOPLE UNDER YOUR VERY NOSE AND ADJUDICATE THEM THROUGH THE PROCESS AND CONVICT THEM AND THEN TURN AROUND AND GRANT THEM CITIZENSHIP,” King said in response to inquiries from CNSNews.com.....
This one isn’t party specific, but it is a good lesson for people who worship government as the be all end all.
Canada’s Conservatives win coveted majority
CONSERVATIVE PRIME MINISTER STEPHEN HARPER WON HIS COVETED MAJORITY GOVERNMENT IN ELECTIONS THAT CHANGED CANADA’S POLITICAL LANDSCAPE WITH THE OPPOSITION LIBERALS AND QUEBEC SEPARATISTS SUFFERING A SHATTERING DEFEAT.http://www.npr.org/2011/05/03/135949403/canadas-conservatives-win-coveted-majority
Harper, who took office in 2006, has won two elections but until Monday’s vote had never held a majority of Parliament’s 308 seats, forcing him to rely on the opposition to pass legislation.
While Harper’s hold on Parliament has been tenuous during his five-year tenure, HE HAS MANAGED TO NUDGE AN INSTINCTIVELY CENTER-LEFT COUNTRY TO THE RIGHT. HE HAS GRADUALLY LOWERED SALES AND CORPORATE TAXES, AVOIDED CLIMATE CHANGE LEGISLATION, promoted Arctic sovereignty, upped military spending and extended Canada’s military mission in Afghanistan.
Elections Canada reported preliminary results on its website, giving THE CONSERVATIVES 167 SEATS, which will give Harper four years of uninterrupted government.
Good news for our neighbors to the North. At least there is one conservative head of state in North America.
Johns Hopkins study: Hands-free faucets harbor germs
Hands-free electronic faucets can save a lot of water -- and because you don't have to touch them with your grubby fingers to turn them on, have been assumed to help fight the spread of germs, too.http://www.postandcourier.com/news/2011/may/03/johns-hopkins-study-hands-free-faucets-harbor/
But a team at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore has discovered that at their facility, ELECTRONIC FAUCETS WERE MORE LIKELY TO BE CONTAMINATED WITH LEGIONELLA BACTERIA THAN THE OLD-FASHIONED MANUAL TYPE.
So much more likely that the hospital ripped out the new plumbing in patient care areas and purchased traditional fixtures for new clinical buildings set to open in 2012.
"NEWER IS NOT NECESSARILY BETTER WHEN IT COMES TO INFECTION CONTROL IN HOSPITALS," said Johns Hopkins infectious disease expert Dr. Lisa Maragakis, senior investigator on the research. Initially, the team wasn't seeking to compare faucets. Rather, it planned to test new faucets to see how often they needed to be flushed out with the treated water hospitals use to combat waterborne bacterial infestations.
Contrary to what you would expect, hands-free doesn’t reduce germs.