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Credit Where It Is Due

May 3rd, 2011

Here’s a question: who thinks that if Palin were president, she would have gotten bin Laden?

No, I don’t, either.

Nor do I believe McCain would have. Despite his bluster about knowing exactly how to capture bin Laden but he would tell us ONLY if he became president, McCain, during the debates, not only gave no clue about how to do it, but he opposed Obama’s idea of unilaterally going into Pakistan were we to find Osama there. Remember? And other Republican contenders echoed that sentiment.

If McCain had won, bin Laden would most likely still be alive today.

Nor does Bush deserve any credit. He had more than seven years to get the job done. He blew it. And he left Obama no leads, those developed only after Obama brought bin Laden back into our sights.

In the end, Obama was the one who got the job done. This was no accident of timing, he was no bystander. He’s not perfect, he’s not a miracle worker, and yes, I don’t like a lot of the crap he’s still doing. But he got this one right, and he didn’t do it at the expense of something else more important.

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  1. Luis
    May 3rd, 2011 at 03:24 | #1

    Wow. I did not expect this. Rush Limbaugh, of all people, giving Obama credit. Not just credit as being in charge, but gave him credit for the whole idea, by himself, as opposed to the military strategy.

    “President Obama has continued the Bush policies of keeping a military presence in the Middle East. He did not scrub the mission to get Bin Laden. In fact, it may be that President Obama single-handedly came up with the technique in order to pull this off. You see, the military wanted to go in there and bomb as they always do. They wanted to drop missiles and drop bombs and a number of totally destructive techniques here. But President Obama, perhaps the only qualified member in the room to deal with this, insisted on the Special Forces. No one else thought of that. President Obama. Not a single intelligence adviser, not a single national security adviser, not a single military adviser came up with the idea of using SEAL Team 6 or any Special Forces.”

    Of course, he could very well be wrong, just as he may be wrong in suggesting that torture got the intel that led to the op. But just that Limbaugh is willing to actually credit Obama, and not Bush, and not even the military–that’s pretty stunning.

    Update: Should’ve known–Limbaugh was being sarcastic. When he gives more credit to Obama than even liberals would… that should have been a dead giveaway. Limbaugh never does that. This is the guy who, on Letterman, was asked to say one nice thing about Clinton, the kind of thing that even the most implacable foe is usually able to do regarding his worst enemy. Limbaugh was struck dumb. For some reason, I just figured that Limbaugh (a) was more anti-Osama than anti-Obama, and (b) wanted to gain points for being gracious so he could use it as capital later to attack Obama in some other way. But, nope. His hatred for any liberal outstrips even such maneuverings.

  2. Luis
    May 3rd, 2011 at 03:26 | #2

    By the way, on Google Maps, this is where bin Laden was living:


  3. Roger
    May 3rd, 2011 at 13:41 | #3

    It really sounded like McCain was criticizing Obama for tipping his hand and *announcing* he would be willing to attack a target in Pakistan (rather than saying directly that he himself wouldn’t attack a target in Pakistan) – it sounds like McCain felt that this was not a good idea diplomatically (in re: to relations with Pakistan) and strategically (in tipping your hand to your target)… though, really, he is: 1) a hypocrite as Obama points out (“bomb, bomb, bomb Iran”), and 2) making too much of the whole thing… of course both al Qaeda and Pakistan have got to figure that the U.S. is willing and capable of bombing targets in countries without consulting the country in question (e.g. Sudan and Afghanistan bombings under Clinton).

    That said, yes, I believe that you are correct, McCain or Palin would have not pursued this the way that Obama has – with the focus, skill or discretion that Obama has. And, indeed, McCain would have most likely involved Pakistan – which probably would have blown it (being that there are leaks and moles in their intelligence agency).

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