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President Obama is my choice in this election, a no brainer.  But I'm worried about the policy of targeted assassinations of terrorists in the Middle East.  The attack and killing of Americans in Libya may have been retaliation for the assassination of a top Al Qaeda operative who was a Libyan.  My question is how many people is the U.S. going to assassinate all over the Middle East?

I was very uncomfortable, and still am, about our "taking out" Bin Laden.  Could he have been captured and tried for his crime?  My discomfort comes from the absolute glee that has surrounded that assassination.  Even VP Biden got a round of cheers when he said, "Bin Laden is dead and General Motors is alive!"  Yeah, GM lives and that's good, but shouldn't we be a bit more somber about killing Bin Laden?

I remember Clinton remarking once that we just can't keep killing all the terrorists.  They'll just recruit more and more.  So, what is the policy when it comes to terrorists in other countries?  Just keep using drones to kill them?  That's not possible, is it?

We need to somehow settle the Israeli Palestinian debacle.....that would help.

It just seems to me that if we keep killing them, one or two at a time, they will retaliate again and again and again....how long can this keep going?

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (11+ / 0-)

    Ignorance is the curse of God; knowledge is the wing wherewith we fly to heaven. William Shakespeare

    by lutznancy on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 04:46:10 AM PDT

  •  Because we are running up to an election (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bluedust, downsouth, Thursday Next

    criticism of this policy is met with derision here. Sadly it is also the time when discussing policy that voters are against will be best responded to by the politicians.

    Education is a progressive discovery of our own ignorance.

    by Horace Boothroyd III on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 05:01:29 AM PDT

    •  nothing wrong with criticism. (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      GoGoGoEverton, doc2, theatre goon, cishart

      as long as one is on board with voting for Obama, very few criticisms are unacceptable (limited exceptions for birthed or truther arguments, for example).

      @ diarist: I think your policy preferences are in the minority, so the question is how can you leverage your actions in order to exert more political pressure on the Obama administration.  if I were you, I guess I'd start by flipping over to Amnesty Intl and HRW to see what sorts of action alerts they have.

      •  IDK about that. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Quicklund

        A lot of times, yes, but every now and then there'll be a random downpour on someone. There was an economics diary here last week or so that I honestly didn't quite 'get' - it was very long and I was very tired. But it was running to the left of President Obama on economic policy and seemed to have a bit of substance to it. I believe the diarist also clearly expressed that a vote for Obama was superior to a vote for Romney.

        The bulk of the (flood of comments) were negative, and virtually all focused on his referral to the President as 'Barack' in the middle of the diary, not unlike the way people refer to Romney, former Presidents Bushes and Reagan, and even former President Clinton, Secretary Clinton, etc...

        We don't usually refer to President Obama in that manner around here, but it wasn't as if the guy started spraying the lame name distortions of Mr. Obama's name that are so popular with the right-wing commentariat. The entire substance of his diary was ignored by the majority.

        I firmly believe that President Obama is the best man for the job of the Presidency in such a divided time, and that he is the best President within the last several decades. Nonetheless, he is not immune to criticism from the left.

    •  Voters aren't against drone strikes. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      GoGoGoEverton, joe from Lowell
      Americans are the clear outliers on this issue – 62% approve of the drone campaign, including most Republicans (74%), independents (60%) and Democrats (58%).
      http://www.pewglobal.org/...

      Unless you're talking about voters in other countries.

      Repubs started up the car, hit the throttle and sent it over the cliff, and now they're complaining that the black guy hasn't fixed it fast enough.

      by Bush Bites on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 06:06:12 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Primary Time is the Time. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Horace Boothroyd III

      We haven't had a peace candidate running in the general election for 2 generations.

      We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

      by Gooserock on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 06:10:05 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  You'll have to get beyond Dennis and Gravel... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Quicklund

        ...and find a serious candidate next time.

        But, frankly, I don't know of any serious candidates who would be against military force in all circumstances.

        Repubs started up the car, hit the throttle and sent it over the cliff, and now they're complaining that the black guy hasn't fixed it fast enough.

        by Bush Bites on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 06:33:52 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  It's always been met with derision. It should be. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      auapplemac, Quicklund

      Being opposed to killing al Qaeda commanders is as dog-stupid the day after an election as it is the day before an election.

      But beyond that, you seemed to be confused about American politics.  The voters strongly support killing al Qaeda commanders.  The politicians are listening to the voters on this.  You just belong to a teeny-tiny, itty-bitty minority.

      Also, your criticism of Barack Obama for his success at this endeavor does not harm him.  Sistah Boothroyd, public criticism of President Obama by left-wing anti-warriors like you is absolute, 100% political win for him.  If anyone claims otherwise, you send them to me.  Go on, and let your freak flag fly!

      Art is the handmaid of human good.

      by joe from Lowell on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 07:48:13 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Crowdsourcing Israeli/Palestinian peace (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Quicklund

    I attended a Truman Institute for Peace presentation at The PPL ("the people's convention," a home for bloggers and other new media covering the DNC in Charlotte) and was introduced to this innovative method for participation in peace efforts: Crowdsourcing peace.

    The S. Daniel Abraham Center for Middle East Peace has created a marvelously interactive map to not only present the details of land-swap offers that have become the foundation of the Obama administration's efforts to negotiate peace between Israel and the Palestinian Territories but also to allow site users to propose workable land swaps.

    For context on the Is Peace Possible? interactive map, check out the UStream from The PPL's event "Innovations in Foreign Policy."

  •  Seems to me the terrorists were (9+ / 0-)

    killing Americans long before we started killing them; the theory that if we stand down that they will as well is just not supportable by the facts. When Clinton said that we can't kill all the terrorists what he was saying was that a policy of killing terrorists, by itself, is not a good long-term policy. Obama has reached out diplomatically to the Arab world and has raised the image of America in the Middle East as much as could be possible after the Bush administration. But he is also killing terrorist leaders where he can, which to me is a better policy of either a) letting them relax and focus on their next attack on innocents or b) making war against the countries in which they are hiding.

    •  And They Were Killing Us Why? (0+ / 0-)

      And are you sure we weren't killling them too, arbitrarily far back in the past?

      We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

      by Gooserock on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 06:11:28 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Oh, how adorable! (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BigAlinWashSt, northerntier
      Seems to me the terrorists were killing Americans long before we started killing them; the theory that if we stand down that they will as well is just not supportable by the facts.
      For how many decades have we been mucking about in the politics of other nations?  To how many dictators have we extended our hand in friendship when it suited our short-term goals?  To how many terrorist organizations have we given the advantage of American funding, training, and weaponry, and how often have we argued that ours were the good guys?  How many times did we remove democratically elected leaders when they ran afoul of our business interests?  Finally, how many innocent people have died while simply trying to live amidst the treacherous tides of our empire?

      This is a long story, and it's hard to understand it if you open the book right to 2001.  The toll of past American realpolitik is quite high, and the law of unintended consequences is always waiting just around the corner.  That an old Cold War attack dog like Osama bin Laden would eventually turn against the hand that fed him should surprise no one.  And, lest we deny our MIC the hecatombs of blood and treasure that are its due, our foreign policy of the last eleven years has no doubt been quite effective in manufacturing the next generation of terrorists.  If we're lucky, we'll have enough quiet years to someday be able to again wonder, "Why do they hate us?"

      •  Yes, quill, yes......exactly. (4+ / 0-)

        We do not want to discuss this because, well, it's too complicated.  Better to keep it simple....suits the politicians and the people....we have a huge history of "mucking about" in other nations......

        Ignorance is the curse of God; knowledge is the wing wherewith we fly to heaven. William Shakespeare

        by lutznancy on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 07:07:28 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yeah, we do. We make mistakes, sure. (0+ / 0-)

          But your mistake is to then draw a line between murderous Islamic terrorists and our mistakes. The terrorists would be there no matter what our Mideast policies were. They need an enemy to boost their fortunes, and as the richest Western country, we are going to be their primary target. Of course, most European countries also are targeted by them, including plenty of places that have never "mucked about". But explaining that is too hard. So it's just our fault, and if we get nicer, the terrorists will get nicer as well. Thank goodness that worldview is only held by a tiny minority of Americans.

          •  Yes, obviously people are born terrorists. (0+ / 0-)

            They pop out of the womb fully formed, like Athena from the head of Zeus, Kalashnikov in hand.

            And if by "nicer" you mean that we stop supporting murderous regimes simply because it might be convenient, refrain from deposing democratically elected leaders like Mossadeq and Allende, try to be a bit more discerning when we decide to train and arm groups like al Qaeda, the Contras, etc. then yes, I think it would help to be nicer.  I'd call that smarter as well, since we can't exactly keep doing what we've been doing for the last decade.

          •  Not mistakes, almost 100% picked wrong side: (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Rizzo

            Haiti - Duvalier (Papa and Baby Doc)
            Uganda - Idi Amin
            Philippines - Marcos
            Iran - Shah Reza Palahvi
            Cuba - Batista
            All of Central America Anti-Communist Fascists

            A lot of the world hates the USA because we deserve it.

            I voted with my feet. Good Bye and Good Luck America!!

            by shann on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 08:31:12 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Dude, in Libya we have been (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Quicklund

              against Qaddafi for decades and supported his ouster by the people. The murder victims were personally involved with helping the rebels in the civil war. We and they were on the right side in this one, absolutely. And what was the result? We've made countless errors as a nation, from our founding forward - there is no one arguing against that. But to assume that the motives of murderous terrorists has anything to do with our actions is just not supported by the facts. The (small number) of terrorists that are out there kill us whenever there is an opportunity, and it doesn't matter whether we are right or wrong. And it doesn't matter who "we" are either - they kill innocent Spaniards and Germans and French people with similar gusto.

      •  Yeah, and the Treaty of Versailles was too harsh. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        OIL GUY, doc2

        Really, when you look at it, you pretty much have to give a pass to anyone who attacks the United States.  If you go far enough back, you can find something we did to deserve it.

        Art is the handmaid of human good.

        by joe from Lowell on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 07:42:15 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I'm not saying we give people a pass; (0+ / 0-)

          I'm suggesting that we recognize the things we've done to help bring about these situations so that we may avoid creating similar monsters in the future.  I thought that was clear.

          I've been stationed in a country where we once supported (with good reasons, I'm sure) a repressive government.  I came to know the locals very well, and I can tell you that it's not the sort of memory that fades quickly.

          •  You make a huge, unquestioned assumption: (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            doc2

            You assume that al Qaeda is genuinely motivated by anti-imperialism, and that their actions are a response to ours.

            I have a lot of criticisms of our foreign policy, too, but it's a mistake for a rational, decent person to project his own motives onto someone who joins a civilian-massacring death cult.

            Art is the handmaid of human good.

            by joe from Lowell on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 08:23:29 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Even if they aren't, which is also an assumption, (0+ / 0-)

              I'm talking about far more than just al Qaeda.  It's a big world, after all.

              •  That's another problem: (0+ / 0-)

                You look at the actions of terrorists, and assume that they speak for the broader society.

                Well, not always; only with Muslims.

                Art is the handmaid of human good.

                by joe from Lowell on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 09:21:01 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Sometimes they do. (0+ / 0-)

                  Not always, but very little in society emerges from a vacuum.  Of course, "broader society" is a problematic term, as societies are rather multifaceted affairs.  I think you'll that these groups almost always enjoy the support of at least a segment of the population and have at least some political support, or they'd find logistics and coordination difficult.  The IRA had Sinn Fein, Hezbollah holds quite a few seats on the Lebanese parliament, that sort of thing.

                  This is true of most organizations, not just terrorists.

                  •  More often, they seize on popular issues... (0+ / 0-)

                    to make themselves more popular among the masses.  For instance, for all of the AQ rhetoric about Israel and Palestine, they don't carry out any actions against Israel.  They're just seizing on rhetoric that is popular with their target audience to try to gin up support.  This isn't just limited to terrorists, of course; look at the election-year rhetoric of the Tea Party candidates, vs. their actual actions once in office.  Or, look at how International ANSWER used opposition to the Iraq War to collect donations and newsletter subscriptions.

                    It is true that there are some groups with genuine, broad support that also engage in terrorism, but that's not what we're talking about with al Qaeda.  Al Qaeda is more like the Manson Family than like Hezbollah.

                    Art is the handmaid of human good.

                    by joe from Lowell on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 10:05:22 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

            •  Final point: (0+ / 0-)

              No matter what al Qaeda's motivations may or may not be, we cannot escape the fact that we armed, trained, and funded them.  I'm certain bin Laden was well on the path to insanity already, but we still chose to make him more dangerous.

              •  No, we didn't. That's a myth. (0+ / 0-)

                Bin Laden set up a parallel funding/training system during the Soviet Afghan war specifically because he didn't believe in working with the United States, or taking our money.  He thought that working with us would pollute the purity of the jihad against the communists.  Al Qaeda grew out of that parallel system.

                Now, the Taliban is different.  Many of them were American clients.  But bin Laden's organization wasn't taking American funding or training; they were supplying their own.

                Art is the handmaid of human good.

                by joe from Lowell on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 09:23:58 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  You're the first person I've ever heard say that. (0+ / 0-)

                  Do you have a source you might refer me to?

                  •  I think it's on bin Laden's wikipedia page. (0+ / 0-)

                    It's not something I learned mainly on the internet.

                    The only evidence anyone ever offers for the theory that we worked with him is a photo of him with the Pakistani ISI general who was in charge of funding - which is exactly what you'd expect if bin Laden was raising funds for the cause, which is what he initially did, before he started organizing his own cadres.

                    Art is the handmaid of human good.

                    by joe from Lowell on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 10:01:00 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  I can find nothing definitive. (0+ / 0-)

                      If you ever remember your source, I'd still love to see it.  What I've found amounts to little of substance.  That said, given the laundry list of other unsavory types we've admitted to supporting, an omission of bin Laden would be stranger than his inclusion, especially given his proximity to a cause we were intimately involved with and his not-yet-a-mass-murdering-crazy-person status among certain circles at the time.  He may have refused aid himself, as you suggested, or had it filtered to him through Pakistan, but ol' Bandar (for what that's worth) begs to differ, and the ones denying it on our side are also strangely vehement about it, as though they're trying to distance themselves from something they'd rather not be associated with.  The lady doth protest too much.  Or does she?  Who can say?

                      In any event, even if he was somehow the only guy over there not getting guns and money from us, I think I can safely speculate that this would not have been due to some kind of prescient vetting process the CIA was using to weed out potential lunatics.  We may be screening these guys more carefully now, but I doubt we were back then when the Red Menace was still writ large in our minds.

                      •  Again, we didn't omit him. He omitted us. (0+ / 0-)

                        Reagan and his CIA would have loved to work with him, I'm sure.  You're absolutely right that they worked will all sorts of other "Afghan Arab" jihadis.

                        Isn't it funny, though, how there isn't anything definitive (or even terribly compelling) supporting this claim, and yet it's unquestioned conventional wisdom?  You literally never heard anyone point out what I said - it's more-or-less universally "understood" and extremely common - and yet nobody can find anything to indicate that it's true.

                        Art is the handmaid of human good.

                        by joe from Lowell on Tue Sep 18, 2012 at 01:37:11 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Not quite. (0+ / 0-)

                          There are a lot of people who say it's true, a lot of people who say it isn't, and reasons to be suspicious of all of their motives.  None of us want to be associated with bin Laden, and after a point, bin Laden's credibility would have suffered if he had been cozy with us in the past.  There is every reason for this partnership to have happened, and every reason to have kept it on the down low for all involved.

                          The only thing that tips my personal scale towards doubting the counter-narrative is that bin Laden wasn't bin Laden yet, if you follow me.

  •  You Should Be Worried.. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Rizzo, MsSpentyouth, Thursday Next

    tit for tat killing has been one of the failed policies used by Israel for some time now.

    i.e. Hizbollah kills an Israeli soldier, and eventually the Israeli army kills 3-4 guys responsible for the killing.. then Hizbollah or another group kills an Israeli.. and the Israel army kills those people responsible.

    ad nauseum...

    it's a total farce. we have now adopted the same policy in Afghanistan.. it's not working.

    NPR reporting FOUR more of our military personnel were just killed in Afghanistan.

    FAIL.

    "A civilization which does not provide young people with a way to earn a living is pretty poor". Eleanor Roosevelt

    by Superpole on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 05:29:40 AM PDT

    •  And your solution is.....? (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Quicklund, doc2, St Alia of the Knife

      Progressives will win only when we convince a majority that they, too, are Progressive. And... It’s the Supreme Court, stupid!

      by auapplemac on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 05:43:12 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I think there is this belief (7+ / 0-)

        that if we stop killing terrorists that they will go away peacefully.

        •  LOL... (0+ / 0-)

          what a weak load.

          As I stated, Israel has been using the tit for tat killing response to their terrorist problem for decades... the problem is STILL there.

          is THAT what you call successful policy?? hah hahh hah!! sure, pal.

          obv you've got no skin in the game-- i.e. nobody in your direct family is going to die in Iraq or afcrapistan.. so all you got is the usual feeble partisan political viewpoint-- which is more or less useless.

          the notion that tit for tat killing strategy regarding terrorists is a great strategy is conservative.. this is exactly the strategy that "geniuses" like stumpy McCain, Romney, Ryan, etc. agree with. you're in good company there, pal. LOL....

          "A civilization which does not provide young people with a way to earn a living is pretty poor". Eleanor Roosevelt

          by Superpole on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 08:05:28 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  We are not engaged in a tit-for-tat. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            auapplemac, Quicklund

            We are targeting active leaders of terrorist cells, to keep them on the move and to kill them before they can strike. They are targeting innocent Americans wherever they can be found. There is such a huge fucking difference that it boggles the mind that you don't see it. American policy and Israeli policy are two very different things (and al Qaeda and the Palestinians are also very different groups); nice try trying to conflate the two.

      •  Revise immigration policy (0+ / 0-)

        so that radical islamists are legally denied visa entry to the USA and other western countries. This will have impact in the various countries of origin--that the ideology of radical islam is so bad that even the tolerant west can't allow its supporters entry.

      •  TOTAL Pullout from"The Graveyard of Empires" (0+ / 0-)

        also known as afghanistan.

        it's a disaster.

        but we're not pulling out-- Panetta more or less said as much a few months ago when he was there.

        I wonder if you.. how many people are aware of the $Billions we just spent building state of the art military bases in afghanistan??

        are you even aware of this?

        "A civilization which does not provide young people with a way to earn a living is pretty poor". Eleanor Roosevelt

        by Superpole on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 07:57:22 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I would be angry if we had a president (10+ / 0-)

    who did not go after Bin Laden, once he was located. And I was angry at George W. Bush for deciding to stop looking for him.

    Bin Laden was responsible for the deaths of 3000 innocent people, and leaving him out there unpunished, cackling at us, sending out tapes before our elections, was intolerable.

    Now, am I going to nitpick at the SEAL team who risked their lives on this mission? Am I going to ask them why they didn't  take Bin Laden alive, even if it meant they might have died themselves if he was wearing an explosive vest, or may have shot them if he was armed. Nope. Not me.

    You can nitpick that way if you want. I don't think it's reasonable or fair, though.

    No, targeted assassinations is not the only way to address terrorism, but it's an important tool. It does disrupt their operations, and whatever you say, I think it does have an impact on their recruiting.

    •  Society is not a suicide pact (4+ / 0-)

      Every nation has their own view of law but I am unaware of any which forbids defending one's self against people who are seriously trying to kill you. When people are trying to kill other people, be it a world war or two enraged strangers, the people directly involved prioritize survival #1 and playing by the rules #2.

      In every war and in whatever this is, terrorism, when sub-national groups set about to kill civilians, there are shameful acts and legal gray areas. The best we can do is improve over time to form more just human societies.

      But in doing so we still have to deal with the very real and oft times brutal world. The challenge before us is how to defend our society from the brutality while at the same time building towards that more just future? Calm measured discussion is always welcome, but it must start with the recognition we humans are imperfect animals.

  •  We all have our worries. n/t (5+ / 0-)

    Romney '12: Berlusconi without the sex and alcohol!

    by Rich in PA on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 05:31:45 AM PDT

  •  It is a complex issue. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    auapplemac, joe from Lowell, OIL GUY, doc2

    Bushco raved about hunting down those responsible for 9/11 and those who attempt similar acts anywhere on the globe. Yet their anywhere stopped at the mountains of Tora Bora.

    A great deal of the problem originated from Pakistan where the Taliban originated from and Al-Quida found and still finds safe harbor.  

    Bin-Laden had been living inside of Pakistan's "West Point". Terrorist training camps are operating with impunity  in northern Pakistan. We have would be perpetrators of terror traveling from the U.S. and other countries to that area for training.

    Numerous plots has been stopped in a number of states. Where the evidence tied the would be perpetrator to that part of the world.  The failed times-square bomber was allegedly funded by some individuals around the Boston area through a mechanism where (in their culture) money is typically passed to individuals in need of help. The men that arrested were here on work visa that we specifically for religious related work yet they were working at non-religious jobs.

    Some links related to several cases in Massachusetts.

    http://www.csnwashington.com/...

    http://www.cbsnews.com/...

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/...

    If these countries we give billions to annually are not going to stop these activities it seems like our government has no choice.  They will not stop.  If there is one improbable aspect of this presidency it is that this President has the balls to protect this country like no other candidate would have ever done.

  •  In the on-going war with Al Queda (5+ / 0-)

    and like minded groups, targeting killing is one of our best tools.  Just have to make sure the target is correct and try to keep so-called collateral damage to a minimum (which is not alwarys so easy).  It's a war.

  •  I'm not somber in the least about (6+ / 0-)

    the killing of bin Laden. When he was killed, you were truly somber? How bad was it, did you have trouble getting out of bed? Did you feel you had to have a drink? Come on man, just how somber were you? I'm guessing that you weren't really all that somber.

    •  As a resident of NYC.. (4+ / 0-)

      I was thrilled when bin Laden was killed-I think most NYC residents were. The whole city seemed, at least to me, to breathe a collective sigh of relief.

      "Well Clarice, have the lambs stopped screaming?"

      by buffie on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 05:58:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Who knows? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      doc2, joe from Lowell

      There were a few people here who were really down on it.

      Personally, I thought it was about time.

      Repubs started up the car, hit the throttle and sent it over the cliff, and now they're complaining that the black guy hasn't fixed it fast enough.

      by Bush Bites on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 06:27:32 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Well past time, actually. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        doc2, St Alia of the Knife

        He should have died or been captured at Tora Bora.

        I didn't like the outsized celebrations, like the cheering in the streets in DC, for the same reason I don't like it when an NFL defensive back does a celebration dance because he put a hard hit on a wide receiver who just caught a ball for a 26 yard gain.  Yes, it was a good hit, but it was sort of embarrassing that we let him go that long.

        Art is the handmaid of human good.

        by joe from Lowell on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 07:39:21 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  First of all doc2, I'm not a "man," I'm a gramma (0+ / 0-)

      Secondly, yes I was somber and I was uncomfortable......and no, I don't have all the answers.....but I was uncomfortable.

      Ignorance is the curse of God; knowledge is the wing wherewith we fly to heaven. William Shakespeare

      by lutznancy on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 06:30:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Okay, I believe you, you (0+ / 0-)

        were somber and uncomfortable when Osama bin Laden was killed. With 350 million people, we can't be unanimous on anything. But America's euphoria over bin Laden's death was about as unanimous as we get.

    •  Ladies and gentlemen, Mr. Niccolo Machiavelli; (0+ / 0-)
      In a well-ordered republic it should never be necessary to resort to extra-constitutional measures; for although they may for the time be beneficial, yet the precedent is pernicious, for if the practice is once established of disregarding the laws for good objects, they will in a little while be disregarded under that pretext for evil purposes.
      -Ten Discourses on Livy
      I was somber, not because of what we did in this particular case, but because of what we may yet do now that this precedent is established.
      •  What precedent was established? (0+ / 0-)

        That if you commit mass murder, we will do all in our power to hold you accountable?

        •  Generally speaking, (0+ / 0-)

          holding someone accountable involves some form of due process.  Even the Nazis had their day in court.

          •  Because we conquered their (0+ / 0-)

            country and took them captive. Sometimes that is not in the cards. As if there wasn't enough evidence to convict bin Laden, he friggin' confessed to the crime, multiple times, on videotape. He bragged about it, for goodness sake. It was not convenient to put him to trial, and it would have certainly resulted in the death of many innocents as his trial and imprisonment raised the ire of terrorists everywhere. I know that you'd prefer that (even knowing that innocents would die) to his execution in Pakistan, but, thank goodness, our president does not feel the same way (nor do most Americans, left, right, or center).

            •  I would "prefer" that? (2+ / 2-)
              Recommended by:
              Murphoney, BigAlinWashSt
              Hidden by:
              GoGoGoEverton, theatre goon

              You, sir, are an idiot.  I've spent every last day since September 11th (actually a few months before that) in active military service.  Seven of those years have been spent overseas, and three of that in the Middle East.  Unless you can claim something similar, I cordially invite you to refrain from speculation about my preferences.

              But here's the uncomfortable truth; a war like the GWOT, rather like the Cold War, can only result in meaningful victory when we convince a majority of would-be enemies that our way is better.  We can do that most effectively when we actually live up to some of that good guy rhetoric we're so fond of throwing around.  Due process of law isn't a matter of convenience, it's a matter of it being the right thing to do if you want to be less of a jerk than the jerks you're fighting.  You're a perfect example of what Machiavelli was talking about.

              And as I said (which you may have missed while you were so busy speculating), I'm less concerned about this particular case than I am about all of the other targeted assassinations we're doing these days, and how much mission creep is possible with this approach, especially now that dead people can be posthumously recruited into terrorism by the act of dying in the vicinity of one.  This strikes me as a policy that will manufacture unnecessary amounts of blowback in the long run, and that will cost lives, which, now that I think about it, you might prefer.

              •  Sorry, I don't go for personal attacks. (0+ / 0-)

                You crossed the line.

                •  And you didn't? (0+ / 0-)

                  Telling me that I want to see innocent people die crosses no lines in your book?

                  •  I'm not going to further debate you (0+ / 0-)

                    on why the risks of bringing bin Laden back for trial would have been horrific. Once you call me an idiot, I move on. Goodbye.

                    •  Ok, you do that. (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      BigAlinWashSt

                      But that subject isn't what we were discussing.  To clarify, I specifically stated that I wasn't concerned about this particular killing (had you read my initial reply, you'd have seen that), but I was concerned where the precedent would lead in the future.  And then you told me that I want to see innocent people die.  That is, IMHO, far worse than anything I said to you.  I have put my life at risk to protect civilians and have lost friends during my career, so perhaps I reacted too strongly, but it was an amazingly condescending statement.

                      Reply to this or don't, as you prefer, but I wanted those points clear.

                      •  Being a serviceman does not (0+ / 0-)

                        make your opinions more valid than others here, and it does not excuse you calling a community member an idiot. You know (or should know) that it is never acceptable to stoop to that level. Why don't you just say you are sorry?

                        •  Fair enough. (2+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          civil wingnut, Murphoney

                          I apologize for calling you an idiot.  That was anger speaking.

                          Per the rest: I never claimed that my career gave my opinions greater weight, and I'm still not entirely sure you know what my opinions even are.  We seemed to be having two completely different conversations.  Maybe it's best to just move on at this point (it's several hours past my bedtime over here anyway), but I think neither of us was actually hearing what the other was saying.  Just my impression.

                        •  You know, I'm pretty sure you owe me one, too. (0+ / 0-)

                          I'm also fairly sure I'm not going to get it, but if you really can't see why what you said was so insulting to me specifically and fucked up in general, then read on.

                          You wildly twisted what I said, turning a very sensible concern regarding the potential long-term consequences of of extra-judicial assassination into a pretty vile accusation.  I was very clear that I was NOT referring to Abbottabad (which was, after all, a military raid), but to the dangers of normalizing a policy of assassination without oversight or accountability, and where that might lead.  You fired back with something that might have come straight from Karl Rove or Dick Cheney.  In fact, I seem to recall them making nearly identical accusations when people criticized the invasion of Iraq.  It was one of their favorite approaches to dissent, and one of the reasons why they were such a detestable lot.  Do you remember Hermann Goering's advice on making people want to kill?

                          All you have to do is to tell [the people] they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger.
                          No matter who we're fighting in the world, is this really the kind of company you want to keep?

                          I was hardly the only one to cross a line in our exchange and you know it.  You used one of the worst tactics of some of our worst people, and I'm sure you're better than that.

                          Hopefully my feelings are clearer now.

                •  Remove your HR doc; not allowed. nt (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  theatre goon, IndieGuy, doc2
                  •  If he apologizes for calling me (0+ / 0-)

                    an idiot, I'd be delighted. I witnessed how you were abused unfairly in the other (rape) diary and so I know you are not one in favor of name calling here.

                    •  The difference is... (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      GoGoGoEverton

                      ...that you are not allowed to HR someone that you are in active discussion or disagreement with -- whether that person insulted you or not.

                      I've seen people punished by admins for that, it's in your own best interest to pull that HR, whether it's otherwise deserved or not.  I'm saying this as someone not involved in the discussion otherwise.

                      Yes, I often dress as a pirate. Your point?

                      by theatre goon on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 08:52:52 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                    •  Doc, I HR'd him too. It's against FAQ to HR (0+ / 0-)

                      someone who you're directly engaged with. That rule is abused too, but you're better than that.

              •  HR'd, personal insult. nt (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                doc2
              •  This had been an interesting discussion until (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                IndieGuy

                it went personal.  I'll blame passion.

                "Differences in political opinion are as unavoidable as, to a certain point, they may perhaps be necessary." George Washington

                by civil wingnut on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 08:49:25 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

          •  Only the ones who survived the war. n/t (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            civil wingnut, Quicklund

            Here's my take on it - the revolution will not be blogged, it has to be slogged. - Deoliver47

            by OIL GUY on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 08:00:22 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Not the ones who (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Quicklund

            didn't surrender.

  •  They also bombed two of our embassies in the 90s. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    joe from Lowell

    Before we even started taking out their people.

    Repubs started up the car, hit the throttle and sent it over the cliff, and now they're complaining that the black guy hasn't fixed it fast enough.

    by Bush Bites on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 06:01:04 AM PDT

    •  More. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      joe from Lowell, gramofsam1
      The 1998 United States embassy bombings were a series of attacks that occurred on August 7, 1998, in which hundreds of people were killed in simultaneous truck bomb explosions at the United States embassies in the East African capitals of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, and Nairobi, Kenya. The date of the bombings marked the eighth anniversary of the arrival of American forces in Saudi Arabia.[1] The attacks were linked to local members of the Egyptian Islamic Jihad, brought Osama bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahiri to the attention of the American public for the first time, and resulted in the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation placing bin Laden on its Ten Most Wanted Fugitives list. Fazul Abdullah Mohammed would be credited for being the mastermind behind the bombings.[2
      http://en.wikipedia.org/...

      Repubs started up the car, hit the throttle and sent it over the cliff, and now they're complaining that the black guy hasn't fixed it fast enough.

      by Bush Bites on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 06:08:26 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  We and Allies Were Imposing Governments in Their (0+ / 0-)

      region since the 10th century or earlier.

      We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

      by Gooserock on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 06:12:45 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  The assumption that (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Bush Bites, sandbox, theatre goon

    the terrorists will refrain from attacking us if we cease killing them is flatly wrong. They are extremists who believe that Western culture is the enemy of their religion and a threat to their way of life, and they are convinced that God wants them to kill Westerners, and Americans in particular.

    "A lie is not the other side of a story; it's just a lie."

    by happy camper on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 06:03:11 AM PDT

    •  The narrative will just change. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      theatre goon, doc2

      They're killing us because we have a shipyard there.

      They're killing us because KFC is there.

      They're killing us because we support women's rights there.

      etc etc etc

    •  Happy, where did you get this idea? (7+ / 0-)

      Was it not from the simple-minded poor excuse for a president, Bush the stupid?  Noam Chomsky and Howard Zinn before he died, said that this notion that they hate us for our freedom in nonsense....they don't hate Sweden or Japan or other free countries!!!  No, they hate us for our policies toward the Middle East, and that has been building for a very long time!!!  Because we do not know history in this country, and I am among those who should study more of it, we do not have a clue about our relationship with the Middle East.....or how we have meddled there.  It's easy to justify anything if we honestly believe that they hate us and want to kill us because we have freedom.....I do not buy that at all.

      Ignorance is the curse of God; knowledge is the wing wherewith we fly to heaven. William Shakespeare

      by lutznancy on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 06:35:36 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Where do you think people get these ideas? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        downsouth

        That's an identical comment you'd see on any conservative board when Bush was Prez.  It's the message pounded into Americans heads by the MSM/Pentagon/Military Industrial Complex propaganda machine.  It appears to be just as strong now as during Bush's early years.

        "The Global War on Terror is a justification for U.S. Imperialism. It must be stopped."

        by BigAlinWashSt on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 06:41:08 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  German embassies are now being stormed. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        doc2, happy camper

        So much for your theory.

        Art is the handmaid of human good.

        by joe from Lowell on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 07:17:35 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  So they think exactly like you! That's amazing! (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        doc2

        What an astounding coincidence!

        Art is the handmaid of human good.

        by joe from Lowell on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 07:19:19 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  You may wish (0+ / 0-)

        to re-read my comment. Note that I said nothing like "they hate us for our freedom". And I am well aware of our shameful history in that part of the world. Indeed, that history is what gives the ideas of these fundamentalists and fanatics traction among people who would never listen to them otherwise. I would also note that we are not the only country that has been attacked.

        "A lie is not the other side of a story; it's just a lie."

        by happy camper on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 09:58:02 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  A terrorist (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      downsouth

      is by definition an extremist. We have a lot of the home grown kind as well, and the best one can do is try to neutralise their capabilities as much as possible.
      Diplomacy and education is the first choice, prosecution in whatever court of law applies is a second. Surgical removal by drone strikes or assassination is a far inferior way of dealing with dissenters, but better than all out war.
      Unfortunately the American enemies list gets longer by the day and ranges from domestic whistleblowers to foreign dictators who are no longer the flavour of the month, to countries that don't believe in GM crops, to genuinely bad actors such as drug barons.
      The problem is that sorting out justifiable from unjustifiable punishment is difficult. That's generally why things are settled in the courts or in the UN, but that path, while still pursued in some domestic cases, has become second to the "shoot first and let God sort it out" solution in foreign affairs.

      "There's a crack in everything; that's how the light gets in". Leonard Cohen

      by northsylvania on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 06:39:17 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Very few people actually believe that. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BigAlinWashSt

      And we've done plenty over the decades to earn the hatred of rational, not-crazy people.  This creates a sort of petri dish where the real crazy can thrive, instead of being marginalized and discouraged.

    •  Ignoring history won't make it go away (0+ / 0-)

      The US has supported dictators in the ME for 50 years at least.

  •  How long? Forever, or until the US crashes (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    downsouth, quillsinister, Rizzo

    and burns from it's Empire madness.

    "The Global War on Terror is a justification for U.S. Imperialism. It must be stopped."

    by BigAlinWashSt on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 06:30:13 AM PDT

  •  They attack us over videos & comics too... (0+ / 0-)

    ....should we refrain from making those?

    Repubs started up the car, hit the throttle and sent it over the cliff, and now they're complaining that the black guy hasn't fixed it fast enough.

    by Bush Bites on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 06:41:30 AM PDT

    •  BB, no they did not kill our diplomats because of (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      St Alia of the Knife

      that video....they have said it was in retaliation for us killing the Al-Qaeda higher-up who was a Libyan...those other riots in Egypt and other countries is a reflection of anger at us, their own leaders, and on and on.  The video was an excuse, not a cause.  And there are so many factions in each of the countries that have joined the Arab Spring.....voids have been left......leaders are not rallying the countries....a whole host of problems.  

      Ignorance is the curse of God; knowledge is the wing wherewith we fly to heaven. William Shakespeare

      by lutznancy on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 07:03:00 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Rachel did an excellent segment last week.... (0+ / 0-)

        On the killings in Libya....it boiled down to retaliation for killing the Al-Qaeda guy from Libya.....in the law enforcement and intelligence communities, I think it's called "blowback."

        Ignorance is the curse of God; knowledge is the wing wherewith we fly to heaven. William Shakespeare

        by lutznancy on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 09:28:15 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  If you think you can discuss this issue (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    shann

    in earnest here, you make a mistake. And I think you know that.

  •  You write as if fighting al Qaeda is... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    OIL GUY, St Alia of the Knife

    the sum total of the Obama administration's policy towards the middle east.

    What about his support for Arab Spring?  Supporting indigenous liberation movements is a crucial step in isolating the terrorists, and gives those people who might have been inclined to support them a more legitimate, more useful outlet for their political action - street and electoral democracy.

    Art is the handmaid of human good.

    by joe from Lowell on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 07:14:36 AM PDT

  •  Left-wingers, like right-wingers, make the error.. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    doc2, OIL GUY

    of assuming that Muslim terrorists are genuine representatives of public opinion in the Muslim world.  They both look at a handful of hateful extremists and project their beliefs (or what they presume their beliefs to be) onto ordinary Muslims.

    What's next, an explanation of why Timothy McVeigh was basically right but just took things too far?

    Art is the handmaid of human good.

    by joe from Lowell on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 07:23:50 AM PDT

  •  Fascinating conversation. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    nickrud

    "Differences in political opinion are as unavoidable as, to a certain point, they may perhaps be necessary." George Washington

    by civil wingnut on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 08:00:32 AM PDT

  •  I was hoping it was going to be civil..... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    civil wingnut

    I appreciate all the different viewpoints here.....

    Ignorance is the curse of God; knowledge is the wing wherewith we fly to heaven. William Shakespeare

    by lutznancy on Sun Sep 16, 2012 at 08:51:47 AM PDT

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