As others see it: Obama gets the creditAs the details of the operation to kill global terrorist Osama bin Laden trickle out, it’s becoming clear that the Americans who accomplished the task are among the nation’s best military units.
By: The Forum, Worthington Daily Globe
As the details of the operation to kill global terrorist Osama bin Laden trickle out, it’s becoming clear that the Americans who accomplished the task are among the nation’s best military units. Not only was the actual assault on bin Laden’s compound executed with extraordinary skill, but also the intelligence and planning that had to come first were nothing short of remarkable. The success in eliminating the criminal responsible for some 3,000 American deaths on Sept. 11, 2001, helps rehabilitate the U.S. intelligence community’s credibility. Its reputation, battered since the first Iraq war, has been restored.
President Barack Obama’s Sunday night address to the nation was pitch-perfect. He was a focused commander in chief. He credited intelligence agencies and the military with developing a detailed and accurate picture of where bin Laden was hiding. He approved use of a small force of highly trained and motivated soldiers, who not only got the job done but did so without losing a man or causing any innocent civilian casualties.
This was no seat-of-the-pants operation. The president and his team waited until they were sure bin Laden had been located and that U.S. forces could get to him. When they moved on bin Laden’s lair, the raid was over in less than an hour.
Also remarkable was the secrecy surrounding the plan. Allies, some less reliable than others, were notified only after the raid was under way or was over. Key members of Congress got the word when the raid was going down. In a town where leaks are routine, the plan and subsequent action to get bin Laden were kept under leakproof wraps. That alone is a testament to the administration’s skilled handling of the matter.
Three presidents have tried to corral or kill bin Laden. That effort has been intense for about a dozen years, going back to Bill Clinton’s presidency and through the terms of George W. Bush. But the al-Qaida murderer was done in during Obama’s watch. The president and his intelligence and military teams get the credit. They deserve it. ...
The politics will play out later. The second-guessers and hand-wringers will have their say. But for today, the nation can take some satisfaction in the takedown of a fanatical, international criminal.