Osama Bin Laden Killed In Pakistan

Perhaps I’m not telling you anything new at this point. I missed this important news last night, I rarely look at the news late on a Sunday night’

Osama bin Laden, hunted as the mastermind behind the worst terrorist attack on U.S. soil, has been killed, President Obama announced tonight.

The president called the killing of bin Laden the “most significant achievement to date” in the effort to defeat al Qaeda.

“Justice has been done,” Obama said.

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Bin Laden was located at a compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, which was monitored and when the time was determined to be right, the president said, he authorized a “targeted operation.”

“A small team of Americans carried out the operation,” Obama said. “After a firefight, they killed Osama bin Laden and took custody of his body.”

DNA testing confirmed that it was bin Laden, sources told ABC News.

Congratulations to President Obama, our awesome folks in the military who carried this out, and to America. Fighting the war on terrorism overseas is one of the things you’ll remember that I mostly agree with in the way Obama is handling it. But, what does this mean?

Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden’s death is politically momentous for : US president Barack Obama – witness the cheering crowds which gathered : outside the White House even before his speech on Sunday night.

Its impact on al-Qaeda, though, is harder to measure.

Peter Bergen, an American journalist, said on CNN that bin Laden’s : death marked “the end of the war on terror”. But many other analysts : would disagree: Al-Qaeda, after all, is a very different organisation in : 2011 than in 2001, with a new cadre of leaders and a wider range of : affiliate groups.

It is by no means the end of al Qaeda and Islamic jihad. They’ve lost a figurehead who makes pronouncements, but, has he really been in control? While Americans were cheering in the streets last night, and rightly so, expect the Islamists to look to ramp up their attacks in short order for this. Ismail Haniyeh, head of Hamas in the Gaza strip said

We condemn the assassination and the killing of an Arab holy warrior. We ask God to offer him
mercy with the true believers and the martyrs.

We regard this as a continuation of the American policy based on oppression and the shedding of Muslim and Arab blood.

And the Democratic Underground reaction

  • Now can we leave Iraq and Afgan??
  • End The War Mission Accomplished!
  • The making of a Martyr. They knew that. What better way? to ensure that “the terrorists” have a renewed reason to “attack” us. It’s not enough to kill women and children, daily, to guarantee high “recruitment” numbers for “the terrorists” than to martyr their “leader”…aka..an old Arab man hiding in a cave with a dialysis machine.
  • yellow terror alert – campaign time – bullshit detection now put my show back on – this sucks
  • This is what they interupted “Brothers & Sisters” for? I thought the big announcement was going to be something important. I wonder what the excuse(s) for continuing the war(s) will be now.
  • I think I am going be sick…

Granted, and to be fair, there are also several comments saying this is a good thing there. But, it looks to me that more are using this as a political kudos for Obama than a win for America. We’ll see what happens with the Islamists now.

Of course, DNC head Debbie Wasserman Schultz and the DNC make it All About Obama

Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.) praised Obama and specifically : credited Obama for “refocusing” U.S. efforts in Afghanistan and : Pakistan, which Wasserman Schultz asserted led to bin Laden’s death.

“President : Obama’s leadership in making the targeting of Osama Bin Laden our : highest military and intelligence priority, warrants our gratitude,” : Wasserman Schultz said in a statement. : “He deserves credit for refocusing U.S. efforts in Afghanistan and : Pakistan to root out terrorism which no doubt helped lead to this : historic announcement.” (snip)

Beyond the Wasserman Schultz statement, the DNC is looking to add bin Laden’s death to Obama’s mantle.

The group wrote on Twitter: “#ThankYouPresidentObama” before adding an updated iteration: “Thank you to our men and women in uniform and #ThankYouPresidentObama.”

President Bush comments

Earlier this evening, President Obama called to inform me that : American forces killed Osama bin Laden, the leader of the al Qaeda : network that attacked America on September 11, 2001.

I congratulated him and the men and women of our military and : intelligence communities who devoted their lives to this mission. : They : have our everlasting gratitude.

This momentous achievement marks a victory for America, for people : who seek peace around the world, and for all those who lost loved ones : on September 11, 2001. : The fight against terror goes on, but tonight : America has sent an unmistakable message: : No matter how long it takes, : justice will be done.

More: a couple of extra thoughts

1: someone emailed to ask why I’m not super excited. Four or five years ago, I might have been. Nothing to do with Obama being president, if it was McCain, I’d still be rather blasé. Islamists didn’t start with Osama, they won’t end with his death. This was a great moral victory, but, it will not change anything. OBL was as much a figurehead as anything else. Still, it is good that he’s getting his 72 male virgins

2: now we wait to see if the other shoe drops. Supposedly, AQ has nukes primed to go in Europe if OBL is killed. We’ll see if the jihadis care: 

3: on reflection, I do have to give Obama credit for have great big brass ones on this. We normally excoriate Obama for not being able to make a decision, but, he made this one fast, and choosing to send a SEAL team deep into a sovereign country to an area near their capitol was a damned tough call.

4: from a political aspect, this earns him some well deserved capital, but won’t affect the election. Also, Manu in his base might be celebrating now, but they will quickly turn on Obama as he continues to prosecute the GWoT.

5: don’t question the timing. It’s what it is. There is no grand conspiracy.: 

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