My initial reaction upon hearing that Osama bin Laden had been killed was one of shock coupled with a pleasant relief that we finally got the bastard. The ensuing days were flooded with fanfare from media, much of it lauding Obama for his bold, risky, “take command” approach to the situation. Initially I tended to agree with the reports, but after giving it some serious thought I think a more intelligent and intellectual analysis of the process by which he must’ve come to his conclusion will show he really had no other choice. That is to say to the left and to the world that no, Barry has not suddenly become Rambo, Barry was just simply forced to do something other than vote “present”.
Let me illustrate by taking you through a flowchart of sorts which should illustrate clearly that Barry really had only one choice.
1. Do nothing…
This is clearly not a choice, and is political suicide. Were ever it to leak out that Barry passed up an opportunity to get Osama bin Laden, he would’ve confirm the fact that he is a foreign affairs pussy, ended his political career, and further tarnished the reputation of the left as being bumbling idiots when it comes to serious foreign affairs (i.e., dealing with evil people).
2. Alert the Pakistanis, or the ISI, and let them handle it.
Again, a huge political risk. We’ve suspected for years that the Pakistanis are working both sides of the fence when it comes to Al Qaeda, the Taliban, and bin Laden. Giving them any information as to our intent would have perhaps given someone in their ranks an opportunity to tip Osama off, and would have flushed him underground for 10 more years.
3. Bomb the compound from afar.
A terrible option. First off, this would’ve been seen as a more aggressive act than the invasion by our Navy Seals, as it would’ve been an actual attack on Pakistani soil with military implements. Secondarily, it undoubtedly would’ve led to collateral damage and the death of innocents, up to and including perhaps children in the compound. That would’ve turned into an international political nightmare. Lastly, such attack provides no opportunity to prove or disprove the actual death of bin Laden.
4. A surgical attack by special forces, resulting in the death or extraction of bin Laden.
Without a doubt a risky endeavor, and I’m not intending to imply that there is no political risk were such an operation to fail or falter in any way. However, considering the goals and objectives regarding the target, this option is the only reasonable choice. The goals? Capture or kill bin Laden with as little damage to innocents and neighboring structures as possible, as well as affording the opportunity to capture a treasure trove of data and information from the compound.
Any serious analysis of these options should result in a clear understanding that there is only one that is sound. Ultimately these decisions do come down to the commander-in-chief, but without a doubt, when three out of four of your options are poor, and only one allows you control over the situation providing a higher level of expectation that you will be successful, I don’t see this as a bold, brave, gunslinging decision.
Since the day of his inauguration Barack Obama has reluctantly had to backtrack his positions and ideals in the face of the harsh realities surrounding the war on terror. About the only thing he’s been able to change and maintain as a change since he has come in the office is the actual name “war on terror” to “overseas contingency operation”, and the removal of waterboarding from our arsenal of enhanced interrogation methods. Considering some of the most important leads to bin Laden were generated from enhanced interrogation methods, Barry may be forced to rethink that as well.
Our intelligence agencies have worked tirelessly to track down and pinpoint bin Laden, and once we had achieved this goal with some certainty, Barry clearly had only one choice he could make. Every other choice had a much higher degree of risk of failure, and carried with it a much heavier political price to be paid were he to choose those other choices. So, no… I just don’t think that Barry has suddenly found his “John Wayne” genes.
I do applaud the president, the military, and our intelligence agencies for the incredible success of not only the operation to extract or kill bin Laden, but the tireless years of gathering and analyzing information in order to pinpoint his location. On the other hand, I find it disappointing that nowhere in our media will you find such a simple and clear understanding of the truth surrounding his choices as you have just found here on this blog.