Tuesday, May 03, 2011

A follow-up to the follow-up

In response to the news that Osama bin Laden had been killed, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said bin Laden "epitomized evil" and had been "brought to justice." In addition to holding that the Nazi gas chambers or the killing fields of Cambodia still clearly outclass anything bin Laden dared dream of (and finding it noteworthy that a database on the World War II Holocaust went online on the same day as Reid's statement), the fact is that bin Laden was not "brought to justice." He was killed.

In fact, a Reuters report by Mark Hosenball said that the raid on Osama bin Laden's compound was a kill mission, that capturing him alive was never in the cards.

But oh no, we can't have that! Americans are too pure for anything like that! Or so an unnamed administration official insisted:
No U.S. forces go in and, if someone surrenders to them, will kill them,” the official says. “There was a presumption that it would likely end in a kill,” the official continued, citing the U.S. government’s expectation that Bin Laden would resist capture. “But to say that it was a kill mission is wrong.” ...

White House counterterrorism adviser John Brennan confirmed that this was not a kill-only mission.... ”We certainly were planning for the possibility, which we thought was going to be remote,” Brennan said of capturing Bin Laden alive. ”If we had the opportunity to take him alive we would have done that.”
So it wasn't a "kill" mission, it was merely a mission in which any outcome other than a kill was "remote."

Thus, there was a kill despite the fact that by the White House's own description, bin Laden was unarmed.

Oh but wait! He may have been unarmed, but he "resisted." He was shot in the chest and the face because he "resisted." How did he resist, especially how did he continue to resist after being shot the first time? The White House outright refuses to say. Maybe this is why:
In planning the operation, a senior U.S. defense official told a background briefing, "there were certainly capture contingencies, as there must be." But U.S. officials said that the "capture contingencies" related to a possibility thought to be highly unlikely: a humble and abject surrender, in which the al Qaeda founder would put his hands up, raise a white flag and beg not to be shot. There has been no evidence presented that anything like this happened.
So simply not being afraid to die, failing to "beg not to be shot," is "resistance." Really. It is. Really.
"Resistance does not require a firearm," [White House spokesman Jay Carney] said. "I'm sure more details will be provided as they become available."
Or as soon as they come up with a good story about how "about two dozen Navy Seals and CIA enablers" were unable to overpower one unarmed man.

"Not a kill mission," my ass.

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