Monday, May 02, 2011

Mission Accomplished (?)

[Edited for a few minor details.]

I woke up this morning to news of dancing in the streets. The Great Satan, Osama bin Laden, is dead and his body thrown into the sea:

Osama bin Laden, the face of global terrorism and architect of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, was killed in a firefight with elite American forces Monday, then quickly buried at sea in a stunning finale to a furtive decade on the run.

Some random thoughts in no particular order:

I certainly hope our soldiers thought to wrap Osama in a fresh pig skin before they tossed his body out the chopper door over the side of the ship.

Whoever fed President Obama this line has a dark sense of humor:

The U.S. official who disclosed the burial at sea said it would have been difficult to find a country willing to accept the remains. Obama said the remains had been handled in accordance with Islamic custom, which requires speedy burial.

Heh. I'm sure our special forces were very concerned about Islamic custom as they dumped a bullet-riddled corpse out the chopper door over the side of the ship the instant they had proof that the body was indeed bin Laden.

This concerns me:

"Intelligence analysis concluded that this compound was custom built in 2005 to hide someone of significance," with walls as high as 18 feet and topped by barbed wire, according to one official. Despite the compound's estimated $1 million cost and two security gates, it had no phone or Internet running into the house....

The compound is about a half-mile from a Pakistani military academy, in a city that is home to three army regiments and thousands of military personnel.

A compound that cost a million bucks to build surrounded by 18-foot walls was built a half mile from three Pakistani regiments and a military academy. And no one noticed. In the movies, the super-villian can build a massively-fortified compound complete with nuclear missiles and a small army of guards in complete secrecy without the need to purchase or transport any of the necessary materials. Sorry, but this is the real world. The materials for those 18-foot walls and whatever was inside them had to come from somewhere. I don't care how well hidden in the hills the site itself was, the materials and people needed to build it didn't just materialize in situ. The most likely source for said materials and people is the near-by town. Ya know; the one with "thousands of military personnel." Which probably tells us all we need to know about how trustworthy this particular "ally" in the War on Terror really is.

[No attempt was made to hide bin Laden's compound. It was built in full view in the middle of a suburb populated by military personnel two New York City blocks from Pakistan's equivalent of West Point. As John Stewart observed on Sunday, if the military academy was a Domino's Pizza, they would deliver to bin Laden on foot. And again, this tells us all we need to know about our Pakistani "allies". ]

On a related note, how will this impact Pakistan's stability? The government that the US recognizes has at best a tenuous hold over what the lines on our maps identify as "Pakistan". Now imagine three regiments of the military pissed to the teeth that Islamabad allowed US forces to kill and body-snatch bin Laden, whom they were likely protecting, from right under their noses.

Personally, I feel the world is a better place with Osama bin Laden a corpse in an undisclosed location at the bottom of the sea. I hope this gives closure to the families of those who died on September 11, 2001. But I doubt this is over.

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