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The Murder Of Osama

I've been biting my tongue on this, but after having just watched Karl Rove ("The Architect") claiming credit for the Bush Administration, I'm now totally ticked off.  The bilious gloating of invading a country to murder an enemy, the celebrations being drummed up by the media, the likes of FOX's Bill O'Reilly gloating over the killing... it's sickening.

Despite the appearance that western culture is revelling in bloodlust, perhaps people should be asking their neighbours what they think of this.  Maybe it's the company I keep, but I'm getting a sense of strong disagreement with the glorifying.

There's a nagging voice in the back of my head wondering out loud if  all the taunting isn't aimed at regenerating the War On Terror and getting the US stock market moving again.  That 75 trillion dollar deficit's still there, and the DOW hardly moved at the news of Osama's murder.

Anyway, I'm more interested in your opinions than my rantings.  Any takers? 


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Being a Savage

I don't think whether or not those who killed Bin Laden had the "right" to kill him is a very interesting question.  A savage wouldn't.  But FWIW I agree that they did not have such a right.  And in a momentary departure from savagery I suggested the reconciliation of Pakistan and India, reunion of what was once united, as the means of escape from savagery, and that there is no other.  

You are a savage

And that is what makes you and me poles apart because I am not a savage, I don't think any person has any right to kill any other person for any reason.

I most certainly do not believe in extra-judicial murder when over 1 million human beings have been killed to get him.


His head was swollen, purple and disfigured. His body was a mess of welts, cigarette burns and wounds from bullets fired to injure, not kill. His kneecaps had been smashed, his neck broken, his jaw shattered and his penis cut off.

What finally killed him was not clear, but it appeared painfully, shockingly clear that he had suffered terribly during the month he spent in Syrian custody.

Hamza Ali al-Khateeb was only 13 years old.

This has got to be one of the most sickening things I have ever read, can the Arabs sink any lower?.

Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/world/tortured-youngster-becomes-rallying-point-for-syrians-20110530-1fczc.html#ixzz1Ntj5OfOx


I'd probably agree with Richard and his "Romanesque" banning of the private use of firecrackers if I knew what he was talking about. There were ambiguous hints in the newspapers at the time but AFAIK no clear statement that any boy had ever been castrated by a penny bunger going off in his pocket. There are mysterious but powerful forces at work, serving their own ends. No more celebration of the "gunpowder treason and plot" could be allowed by those mysterious forces.

But (did this fit in somewhere?) given the horrors of Pakistan, senior politicians being murdered for the offence of saying non-extremist things, a failed state, an extraordinarily vicious one, a nuclear armed failed state, it seems silly to moralise on the killing within that state on quite good grounds of one of the symptoms of those horrors.

At present there seems no possibility at all, absolutely none, that the Indus Valley will not be wiped off the earth by total nuclear carpet bombing at a date totally unpredictable, in 5 months, 5 years or 50 years, but certainly when least expected.

I think the only other possibility, at present inconceivable, is that Pakistan and India will embrace each other and make reunion part of the national agenda of both.

The contribution others can make towards such an outcome might be to keep it constantly in view that Jinna was well-intentioned but mistaken, and needs to be demoted from the pedestal on which Pakistanis place him. When Pakistanis in general grant that, there will be hope.

Matt Dillion was a great myth


Professor STANLEY ROSEN, Pupil of Leo Strauss 1949: Strauss was a great fan of American television. Gunsmoke was his great favorite, and he would hurry home from the seminar, which would end at, you know, 5:30 or so, and have a quick dinner so he could be at his seat before the television set when Gunsmoke came on. And he felt that this was good, this show. This had a salutary effect on the American public, because it showed the conflict between good and evil in a way that would be immediately intelligible to everyone.

The hero has a white hat; he’s faster on the draw than the bad man; the good guy wins. And it’s not just that the good guy wins, but that values are clear. That’s America! We’re gonna triumph over the evils of … of … that are trying to destroy us and the virtues of the Western frontier. Good and evil.

The naked truth

The Internet is loaded with some of the most moral people I've ever had the fortune to come across. It's also loaded with multi-millionaire, Harvard graduated, cage fighting, chick magnets.

Thankfully, in the end, most know where their bread is buttered. Human rights lawyers included, probably more so.

An act of war

I seriously think this has been a victory for the good guys. You and I look at the same world a little differently, Richard.  I don't like Islamist lunatics. You probably don't either but I really seriously have no time for them at all. Of course this is not the end of the war but I have a feeling it's an important milestone.

There is no question the attack was lawful. The Pakistanis are pretty sore but I don't think even they are saying anything different. It was an act of an on-going war being waged in self defence by our most important ally.  No question. In that respect the talk of "justice", as it is usually meant, is a little silly. I imagine the President was alluding to a higher meaning when he used the word.

It was humane. In fact surgical. It killed only five and four of those were bad guys. Real bad.  No animals were harmed. Don't forget another option might have been a tomahawk or a smart bomb.

It was gutsy. Not just the guys in the boots. This took real courage all the way to the White House. This has changed my mind about the US President. I once said he was the weakest president since Carter and potentially just as dangerous. I am happy to take that back.

Which leads to another huge implication. Obama has to be a shoo-in for a second term. The Republicans will have trouble finding a competitive candidate. At the moment they are making jackasses of themselves trying to get in on the aftershine. This is a much stronger president than last week in all respects.

It was an extraordinary display of military skill and reach and a projection of US military prowess and national determination in a part of the world where many often respect little else. 

It has been successful beyond all expectation. The intelligence alone, it seems, is priceless. With any luck there will be much more to come. They got his computers for chrissake.

I have no moral qualms at all about the manner of the demise of this man. Not so much as a ripple let alone a muddle. This is war. No where do the handwringers talk about the lives of the team that achieved this remarkable feat. Gone are the days when civilsed countries such as the US, Australia or Israel, could play fast and loose with the lives of their soldiers. To order them to assume an even greater risk to their lives in the pursuit of a fantasy of bringing him back alive was rightly out of the question.

I would feel more queasy about an execution after due process than I do about this killing.  This is war. These men are dangerous. They are doing everyhing they can to kill us because they regard our way of life as an abomination which must be destroyed by force.

"Thou shall not kill" was not a bad contribution to the development of the global human culture even if you took it just on its own. But it never meant you had to bare your neck and let the mad killers slaughter you and your people if you can do something about it. Otherwise the ethic  would not have survived a decade.

V for Vendetta = O for Obliteration? Guy Fawkes and MayDay

November 5 is Saturday this year.. I'm thinking of having a party!  OK I know everyone having fireworks has hurt a few kiddies over the years, but I've thought for years that this wasn't the reason for cessation of Guy Fawkes festivities.  Revolutioin and rebellion?  Ssshhh.. mustn't give the morlocks any notionss...

I watched Wag The Dog again last night.  For a flick realeased in 97 it's still pretty spot-on.  Read the guff about the Navy Seal team then check out Group 303 in the movie.  The only difference is that in the script you yet to see how such propaganda is invented.

Maybe, if the tail's still doing the wagging, we might see Osama's being burned in effigy on Guy Fawkes night?  The invasion of Libya under the Supermoon has demonstrated that the US still enjoyes the Romanesque penchant for nicking days of local signifigance to suit their own calendars and agendas.

Sadly though, the stronger mental picture in my head is of  what might happen, across the world, to many American flags next May Day.  Does Old Glory still hang on the wall over your desktop, Geoff? Not a nice feeling to think of her burning..

I think Paul Morrella's assement was the most accurate.  This is regarded as one of intractable moments in which the US sentiment is "If you don't like what we're doing, tough titties!"  Anyone see A Few Good Men on Gem last night?  That famous monologue of Jack's at the end? "You can't handle the truth", etc.  That's how the US just portrayed itself to the world. 

Thank you again, US Navy

I've moved since then, Richard, but I was careful to put the flag away. Thank you sincerely for the prompt. I have just now gone to fetch it, quite literally, between typing these sentences. It is neatly folded beside me now.

I will be hanging it on the bare wall of my office this very night. To my right I can see the surf of the Pacific Ocean. Technically it is part of the "Coral Sea" and therefore part of the vast battlefield where the US Navy, with RAN and RAAF support, saw off a Japanese invasion fleet, some months before Midway, at the very darkest hour of the Pacific war. 

As you know Richard, I am an old and proud Australian.  Just like you. For that reason, from tonight, on the wall to my left, will hang the flag of the United States. 

Copyright, Geoff?

My great-great-grandfather was a lighthouse keeper who used to fly an American flag.. in the middle of Bass Strait.  Wish I knew why.

Onjya Geoff.   You know where I'm coming from.  Probably Europe should think similarly.  It obvious that the world would be a different place if not for US military participation in WWII.

However, even if they saved the world, do we still owe them carte blanche in defining global interaction?  Is there a time limit?  Or, having saved it, is it now theirs? 

Sleeping under the blanket of freedom

You don't want the truth, because deep down in places you don't talk about at parties, you want me on that wall! You need me on that wall! We use words like "honor", "code", "loyalty". We use these words as the backbone of a life spent defending something. You use them as a punchline! I have neither the time nor the inclination to explain myself to a man who rises and sleeps under the blanket of the very freedom that I provide, and thenquestions the manner in which I provide it! I would rather you just said "Thank you," and went on your way

 Paraded publicly as the attitude of the military in A Few Good Men, this is exactly the image that the US is portraying to the world.

Military men

Aaron Sorkin wrote that. The same guy who wrote The West Wing .

George Orwell wrote something similar in 1945:

Those who ‘abjure’ violence can only do so because others are committing violence on their behalf.

In 1942 he wrote of Kipling:

He sees clearly that men can only be highly civilized while other men, inevitably less civilized, are there to guard and feed them.

Of Sorkin, Orwell and Kipling

And Geoff can I throw in  Mark Twain? who wrote something along the lines of "I never wished any man dead but read plenty of obituaries with pleasure."

Pretty much describes me although I'm perfectly capable of of executing extreme violence on my own behalf. If it's kill or be killed I'll kill every time.

But cold blooded murder? That's where I feel uncomfortable. I said feel, nothing to do with morality. Right and wrong is just a human concept. I'm glad that bin Laden can do no more harm but I will not rejoice in his death. Is this justice to his wives and 24 children? (I'd neck the bastard for bringing all those surplus humans into the world) and that's why I'm against capital punishment. It has ramifications.

Orwell witnessed a hanging in India as I recall and was perturbed by it.

Hiroshima, Dresden make the Twin Towers pale into insignificance and went unpunished. Does that make my position any clearer?

(I note you haven't addressed my last post on this topic.)

and Twain

I am truly astonished this is still an issue, Scott. This was not cold blooded murder. It was not murder. Not every killing is a murder. You have just said so yourself. How can I put it clearer than you have yourself?

A Hanging

Orwell most certainly witnessed a hanging (it would have been Burma where he served as a colonial police officer) and his account of it is one of the most poignant short essays of the last century in the language.

He was reluctant to be drawn in his lifetime on the event he so vividly describes. That has led to at least one of his biographers to speculate it never occurred. It was a literary creation. Perhaps entirely a product of his remarkable mind.

Read the essay if you are interested and I think you can make up your own mind on that one. I had no trouble.

Military men

or more correctly put by:

Kissinger is claimed to have referred pointedly to military men as "dumb, stupid animals to be used" as pawns for foreign policy.

The man who shot liberty vallance

Absolutely brilliant analogy from Marina Hyde in the Guardian between the Osama take-out and the John Ford Western - and also A Few Good Men

And so to Barack Obama, who will forever be The Man Who Shot Osama Bin Laden, with all the inevitable moral grey areas the title implies. Admittedly, the facts about Bin Laden's shooting have been corrected rather sooner than those concerning the death of Liberty Valance. At this rate, it will emerge by Monday that the al-Qaida chief was naked, with his hands up, and shrieking, "Not the face! I'll tell you everything!" when he was gunned down.

But whilst it might appear that the ineptitude of the White House communications department is rivalled only by that of the Pakistani security services, those first golden hours of mythmaking have shaped the narrative that will endure in American consciousness. The legend has become fact.

For my own part, despite considering myself a liberal, I must confess my tears have struggled to liquefy over the manner of the unarmed Osama's dispatch. It's not that my bleeding heart is all out of type A, nor am I summoning the cartographers, having finally discovered the outer limit of my liberal sensibilities. But it has been a while since I've had to make imperfect sense out of this type of moral muddle without the aid of West Wing creator Aaron Sorkin. 

The "morally muddled" left

The link didn't work but I like the analogy with the Ford classic. Now all we need is the song. Richard? Maybe a joint effort?

I bags the refrain:

The man who shot Osama in pyjamas  [bang]
He shot - Osama in pyjamas  [bang]
He was the greatest man of all.

I didn't read the full piece but I always enjoy the moral hand wringing of the wet liberal/left when they see their despised Americans achieve an important victory in their defence. It becomes contemptible when you realise these are often the same people who muttered, often openly, about "blowback" or  the "Americans"  (who could only mean the three thousand mainly office workers who were slowly incinerated) "had it coming" or something. I don't take lectures on morality from moral grubs.

Osama In Pyjamas - the lyrics

Sounds great on a uke,  C and G are all you need.. with apologies to Mike Jackson and the ABC (though I'm pretty sure Mike would love this)

Osama in pyjjamas has fought too many wars
Osama in pyjamas- find him by his snores
Osama in pyjamas is falling down the stairs
'cos on Monday Navy Seals will catch him unawares! 

If Humpty Dumpty was a cannon, this one might stand the test of time..

Fanatics and Saints

It has occurred to me that there may be Democracy fanatics just as there are Islamic fanatics and fanatical adherents of other religions.

Is that what's going on in the world today? Why we are being comprehensively lied to?

Why did the United States, which has been up to its ears in numerous wars and is now expensively bogged in Afghanistan, and on the edge of war with Pakistan, launch a gratuitous war against Libya? Was it in the interests of the United States? If not, it must have been a misappropriation by a dishonest president of funds extracted from United States taxpayers. If so, how?

Why is the planet immersed in a sea of warfare, never-endingly? Who is the universal aggressor here?

The murderous side-show in Libya is a war against traditional monarch, a man who kills as kings killed for 50 centuries. Except that back then the world was empty of people in all but the few locations where the kings ruled, and now it is overflowing with them, the environment needs five billion of them to disappear. So why pick now for a gratuitous was against a traditional monarchical tyranny in another country whose internal affairs are none of our business? Democracy fanaticism?

The tyrants in Islamic countries have all been effective secularists, including, I think, Gaddafi. Have they not all been better friends of the West than a "democratic" state in the Islamic world could be, with its "free" citizens all in reality captives, subject to incessant brain washing, five times a day, killed if they walk away from that captivity?

On Bin Laden, perhaps the "burial" at sea (was there an Islamic funeral ceremony in the plane or is "burial" just more deceptive language?) was a good thing, a genuine attempt to avoid a war of religion, but I can't quite see it.

A few years ago an Islamic cleric in Australia enraged a government member by stating publicly that Bin Laden was a good man.

But how, by Islamic standards, was he not a good man? He killed infidels, and accidentally associated Muslims, but the latter were required to fight for Islam and it can be said that they died in a war that they were morally (according to Islamic morality) obliged to be combatants in.

Will the now immortal Saint Osama cause more harm to the United States than Osama the man ever did?

Spot on

The US public better take responsibility for the hundreds of thousands they have murdered, but we have leaders who think it is great to murder and hunt down and down anyone the US tells us to, like we have done in all their lost adventures since WW11 thanks to the delusion that they saved us from Japan.

It was a cold blooded murder, nothing more and nothing less.

The bright side

Marilyn, The timely demise of Osama means all those harassed asylum seekers can now return to their countries and stop ripping off the Australian taxpayers.

They can even start to think about defending their countries or Allah forbid dying for their country, this will enable us to bring our troops home.

They can start to clean up after the Taliban by getting rid of the streets filled with rubble and open sewers.

Stop building mosques and start building schools for girls also some well equipped childrens and womens hospitals would be a nice touch.

We could perhaps teach them how to look after their women and girls, you would not be against that?

We now find that we have this new technology of stealth helicopters, so if any asylum seekers will not go home we can fly them in at night and drop them in the town square.

Now if we do this across all the muslim run hell holes around the world we will never have to sound The Last Post over an Australian soldier again.

You are surely not against all this?

Dramatic and sudden improvement in attitude

Never mind Marilyn. Think of the up side. The former boss of Al Qaeda is now a much nicer man.

Playing god

Gee, I expected a mannered conversation on some thing that disturbs me, for its utter lawlessness arrogance, but instead have stumbled across a Murder Incorporated meeting.

"Yeh, we got big Louie, the DA cain't do nuthin'"

Where's the body? By what feat of arrogance did the Americans unilaterally dispose of the body, let alone kill the beggar in the first place if, indeed, it was Osama's body they got rid of.

Finally, who was it who first convinced the Americans they were God, with access to a right thought previously beholden only to God, the exclusive bearer of true wisdom, the power of life and death over others?

Their leaders are power drunk maniacs. Look out, Niemoller's words ring more clearly than ever - they have instituted murder as policy, after Macbeth. If certain Americans don't like the way you hold your face, pow!.. you're dead!

They have spectacularly failed to uphold that standard of law and justice they claim differentiated them from people like Osama bin Laden and now stand stark naked before the world as hypocrites and criminals.

If someone assasinates them in turn, people will just shrug and say, "those who live by it, die by it".

Osamas in Pyjamas

So it seems it was Osama's preferral for pyjamas that caused all the dramas when the men of Obama's made Mr Bin Laden jump from his bed linen hiding his skin in, his demise his chemise as the Yanks aimed to please.

War is a Pageant

Richard, it's not the stocked market they are trying to save exactly, rather the USD. It is looking very sick right now and needs all the help it can get.

Right now the DYX is a "healthy" 79.82, not much above its historical low back in 2008 when the globe was on the edge of financial destruction. The Fed's inflationary policy is doing what it was intended to do - trash the dollar by print like hell to avoid default by paying creditors in devalued cash. The consequences of such can be seen by an orderly withdrawal from the dollar by big money into the necessities of life: food, oil, cotton. health-care etc. The name of the game is to buy as much time as possible and to avoid panick, but panic will be inevitable.

Golly gee we have inflation, well just wait.

Remember war is a pageant.

Obama's execution, damn, I mean Osama (poor schoolies will get that confused in years down the track) is about as important as a pimple on Alexander Downer's arse at this point in time.

But iJustin must admit that it is a little bit embarrassing watching a bunch of blokes wanking off madly over the "glorious" execution of a few unarmed bad guys. And no doubt all those "heroic" commando's will be jerking off for the rest of their lives over shooting ducks in a barrel.

I wonder where the missing bits of the chopper will end up - well done lads China would just love to do a bit of reverse engineering. How hard is it to fly a f*cking chopper from A to B? How hard is it for 40 or so heavily armed commandos to kill a handful of unarmed people?

Yep war is a pageant, so in the future at a time not of Osama's (damn there I go again), choosing, rather the USD's, he may well be directed to address the nation with news that will hopefully scare the shit out of the markets as a cynical attempt to keep the dollar afloat while the greedy bastards continue to buy up the necessities of life.

That may be a good time to buy gold, if you can get any by then, otherwise just sit back, eat bread and enjoy the circus.

The law

Scott Dunmore: "Once they knew where bin Laden was he could have easily been contained and his network infiltrated. Now with his murder christ knows what will happen. I regret the man's death for two reasons. I'm against capital punishment for the simple reason that the death of any person causes suffering to others unconnected with the crimes and now we will never understand the enigma that was Osama bin Laden."

I don't know exactly what took place, my guess is that he was shot without struggle, standing face to face with his executioners. It seems logical that both he and they knew exactly the procedure. That's the life he choose, and it appears he died as a soldier without complaint.

You'll note both his wife and child were spared, and people would expect that from a civilised society. Perhaps some assurance was given to Bin Laden about that before his death.

Bin Laden claimed to be a soldier in a war, he was treated as soldier when it came to his death. Many people would argue he should've been treated as a criminal and faced a more dishonourable fate. That's a mercy (every soldier would know what I mean) the USA will never be credited for.

The USA probably could claim they found him guilty through a military court in absentia etc. The USA doesn't need to play this silly game, and my feeling is it most certainly won't. The doesn't need to justify itself to anyone over this situation.

The laws you refer to are nothing more than constantly changing words written down on paper, differing from nation to nation. The universal laws however are those that can never be changed by any court. Those laws are the same today as they were from the beginning, and will be at the end. Bin Laden was judged and prosecuted under those laws. He knew and accepted the outcome because he'd prosecuted some many others with them.

What happened has now happened. Neither Obama nor the USA need to justify these actions to anyone. The USA won't. Others may not like it, however that's not something USA can help. This is simply just one of those very rare intractable issues.

People will learn to deal with the situation because there isn't any other choice.

An impressive post, Paul.

An impressive post, Paul. Thanks.

The company I keep

The 80-odd comments on my Facebook thread have revolved around quite a number of people reacting to the blusterings of one David Davis.  As an example of the pro-murder camp he hasn't exactly done great things for the cause - accusing all detractors of being left-wing conspiracy nuts (same old, same old) left those not accustomed to such rants laughing in his wake. Sadly though, his stance is what's being brainwashed into the public by the media.

I went to a funeral of a great Melbourne bluesman on Tuesday, a lighthearted 400-strong affair with applause and laughter. The one time the celebrant  stuffed up was when he mentioned that that this was a day for rejoicing in death because of Osama's killing. The "lead balloon" hung in the air till he changed subjects. Yep, blues lovers, bikies and musicians must definitely be leftie anit-Americans adopting the cause to suit their agendas..

Was glad, on the plane back, to see a priest trying to stand up to that freak O'Reilly, saying he had trouble rejoicing in any death, and that while Osama's deeds may have been evil it was not his right to say Osama was an evil man, only God's. I think this preacher spoke what's been on many minds..

Another preacher, Architect Rove, was already moving to counter an Obama election win out of this.  He closed his FOX interview by stating that Obama had no right to lay claims to this "success", as he wasn't in office in 2002-03 when the strategy leading to this outcome was implemented.

The bloke who did the best job at making my blood run cold though, was the US Homeland Security boss villainising Osama for hiding behind womens' skirts in a million-dollar "mansion". How could al Qaida's supporters take this as anything but a goad and a taunt? If anything would be likely to create a reprisal surely it's this kind of rhetoric?

Then there's this little matter of the disposal of the body without producing any evidence it was truly Osama. I'm treading carefully on this subject, but reckon that surely we're owed some sort of evidence of the truth of what's been claimed?

Didn't see any increase in security at Tullamarine. In fact, I was quite surprised they let me take my fiddle as hand luggage ... don't these people realise the damage one of these things can do at high altitudes with a well-timed Irish jig? 

The reelection of Obama.

It would have been better perhaps if they had taken the arsehole alive and put him on trial in a glass booth like Eichmann. But these thing are logistically enormously difficult and involve squads of highly trained men and women who put their lives at serious risk. What did our hero of the 72 virgins do in his last moment before a well deserved oblivion? He grabbed one of his wives and used her as a shield. Islamists do that. It's instinctive. A reflex.

The important thing is that he's dead and I for one join with the American people in taking a great deal of satisfaction in  this triumph of justice over undiluted evil. I am also enjoying the discomfiture of the soppy left, especially in Europe, at this sight of an American victory. The same morally perverted deadbeats who bleated about "blowback" in September 2001 are now wringing their hands about "murder". That piece in the Guardian about raping 14 year olds is beneath contempt. People who write that stuff are not worth a response. Europe is sick.

The irony here is that the American president has just assured himself a second term.

Of course this is not the end of the war. But it's an important victory because it shows that the terrorists have likely been infiltrated. It is also an humiliation for the Pakastanis. Good. They deserve to be humiliated.

I congratulate the Americans on their success and salute their skill and courage.


:Islamists do that. It's instinctive."  No Geoff  I think it's a middle eastern thing like the Jews firing over the heads of their women and children at British soldiers.

Just what mental process you employ to conflate "Right and Wrong" with "Left and Right" I don't know and for your information the Americans have retracted the claim that bin Laden used his wife as a shield. The woman very bravely acted on her own initiative and was shot in the leg or do you only selectively memorise the news?

Are you that hateful that you can read the Guardian piece and totally miss the point?

That rape and murder did occur to the best of my memory and American soldiers punished for it albeit all too lightly.

One good Brit ... Is he still breathing?

...it's a middle eastern thing like the Jews firing over the heads of their women and children at British soldiers.

What the fuck are you talking about Scott?  Do you just make this crap up or is there really some nasty little pissant of a former British soldier somewhere who is prepared to put his name to this filthy slander? Come on Scott. Name the grubby scumbag.

Yeah you're right about the thoroughly dead terrorist. The first reports said he grabbed his closest wife and used her as a shield. This was easy to believe because they do that. Turns out he didn't have time. The shield jumped herself before he could grab her.

Irgun and Stern

I thought my comment would provoke a reaction from you Geoff  but must admit to being startled by your vehement denial.

Now under other circumstances I would take offence to the suggestion that I would concoct such a horrific story but since it's emanated from you, feel quite chuffed. I do however take strong exception to the description of a thoroughly brave and decent man who saw active (pointy end) service in North Africa and Palestine as a pissant. When he recounted his experience of the latter he was still in a state of shocked disbelief that anyone could deploy such tactics. He was my next door neighbour when I was a lad. I also heard the same story from another of my father's generation but those details are hazy; it was over fifty years ago after all.

Why this should surprise you I can't understand, These chaps hardly squared up under the Queensbury rules did they?

It comes with the racism

As it happens Scott I know a little about the British rule in Palestine and the anti-colonial Zionist resistance.

There were attacks on British troops and police mainly by Irgun and Lehi. Some of these were pretty gross, especially the retaliations for British atrocities and hangings but for the most part they were guerilla attacks on camps, bridges, transport and stations. There were a lot of bomb attacks including attacks on civilians.There were prolonged sniper attacks on soldiers and police especially in Haifa in 1947 but open firefights with the British army were rare. It was not Haganah policy and it would have been suicidal for Irgun or Lehi to attempt it. Besides, they had their hands full with the Arabs. So did the British.

All of this is well documented. I don't believe the incident your neighbour related ever happened.

Of course in the three way civil war leading up to the British withdrawal there were plenty of examples of civilian populations being caught in crossfire, especially Arab civilians in Haifa and Jews in Jerusalem (who were ethnically cleansed from the city by the British trained and officered Arab Legion.)

I will give your neighbour the benefit of the doubt and allow that in perhaps in the fog of war and blanket British colonial antisemitism and lies, he may have confused himself about what was going on somewhere. The British were good at that. Confusing themselves. It was a confusing situation and let's face it, the British have always had some difficulty distinguishing Arabs from Jews.

Distinguishing Arabs from Jews

"the British have always had some difficulty distinguishing Arabs from Jews"

Well Geoff I still consider myself to be "British" by nature of my birth and (some) of the culture I inherited. "Niggers start at Calais" is part of what I remember and all wogs are the same to me.

This was in the fifties Geoff and Con's memories were still fresh in his mind.

Did you read my link and what did you make of it? More lies?

Hopeless, but a special thanks to Barack Obama for not releasing graphics of the corpse. I have no desire to be confronted with the sight of what was a man, for all his crimes, loved and mourned with half of his skull missing from a hollow point (read dum dum) round. All I've got to say.

No missing link

I don't read those lists anymore, Scott., Sometimes I scan them for what's new. There usually is something. Usually I look to see who or what is behind it and if it's someone new.  It rarely is.

The internet is collapsing under the weight of this stuff. Surely you've noticed that by now.

One man's terrorist

is another's freedom fighter. As long as your cause is righteous, the end justifies the means. Is that how it works Geoff? because some of us know to where that leads and don't talk about the left being "morally muddled" given your position. What the hell is morality? As riduculous a concept as anything humanity has invented. I'm not about morality, I'm about feeling.

The US patriot reflex

Gary Younge in the Guardian:

Americans have a right to grieve and remember those who died on 9/11. But they have no monopoly on memory, grief or anger. Hundreds and thousands of innocent Afghanis, Iraqis and Pakistanis have been murdered as a result of America's response to 9/11. If it's righteous vengeance they're after, Americans would not be first in line. Fortunately it is not a competition, and there is enough misery to go around.
But those who chant "We killed Bin Laden" cannot display their identification with American power so completely and then expect others to understand it as partial. The American military has done many things in this region. Killing Bin Laden is just one of them.
If "they" killed Bin Laden in Abbottabad then "they" also bombed a large number of wedding parties in Afghanistan, "they" murdered 24 Iraqi civilians in Haditha and "they" gang-raped a 14-year-old before murdering her, her six-year-old sister and their parents near Mahmudiyah. If "they" don't want to be associated with the atrocities then "they" need to find more to celebrate than an assassination. Vengeance is, in no small part, what got us here. It won't get us out.

Ex-judicial summary execution

A taker here  Richard, I too am distinctly uncomfortable with the incursion into sovereign territory and assassination; it reminds me a bit of France's incursion into New Zealand. It would appear Richard, it's the company you keep given the mixed reactions to this piece.

"he acted as well with this issue as any reasonable person could expect from a President." Did you put any thought into your piece Paul or just firing from the hip? It was a strategic and tactical blunder from a man I thought had more brains. Once they knew where bin Laden was he could have easily been contained and his network infiltrated. Now with his murder christ knows what will happen. I regret the man's death for two reasons. I'm against capital punishment for the simple reason that the death of any person causes suffering to others unconnected with the crimes and now we will never understand the enigma that was Osama bin Laden.

Thanks for your contribution David.


I don't agree with a number of Obama policies, however, he acted as well with this issue as any reasonable person could expect from a President.

If any person still thinks strongely party political types have a life, I say read some of the "serious" political blogs. It's impossible for a person with anything resembling a life to never have encounted a circumstance that forced upon them a rock solid opinion on something. A person with a life simply cannot make every single daily comment, based solely on what is best for their political organization on the day. These people are androids.

There's a certain type of pond scum, with whatever individual monkey on their back, that finds their outlet in hating every single thing about America, absolutely every single thing. This type oozes a the most ugly negativity. They'll hitch their wagon to anyone or anything that allows them to spew their poison.

People that organize political campaigns for both major parties are professionals. They're more business than politics. They do it for the rewards in the present, and depending on the success, in the future. The type of people that one would hope would know where to draw the line. These people think up the bullshit, they don't believe it, and live their lives by it.

The next round of poison and conspiracy hopefully will cause some pause, and decency will prevail. For the good of all people, including themselves.

In the lead up to the last election it's clear the Dems hijacked the grassroots anti-war movement. It was used as their shit machine against everything Republican. They barred nobody and every degenerate found a home. Every file lie and bit of muck commenced. Of course the good people of the Democrats would never allow their own hands to be soiled with such filth.

Where's the anti-war movement today? The vanishing happened strangely on the day of the Obama election.

It's obvious the same thing is now taking place with the grassroots tea party movement. It's equally obvious Obama's situation has now changed. The degenerates (and their numerous filth and lies) will be searching for a new home. Sadly I think they might find one.

Americans of all political beliefs should declare enough is enough. There's simply a time when "people with a life" know that some things are more important than politics. Behaving in manner resembling a decent citizen is one of those things.

Since 9/11 these conspiracy theories have not only become totally hate filled, they've become dangerous. It's all leading to a place that isn't worth winning an election for.

The Red Queen

You beat me to it, Richard (note: "h", not "k"...). I was going to use Geoffrey Robinson's comments plus, for a different perspective, Clifford May's position that I heard on today's AM. Worth posting, anyway:

RACHAEL BROWN: High profile Australian QC and human rights lawyer, Geoffrey Robertson says the US president has been sloppy with his use of the word justice.

GEOFFREY ROBERTSON: President Obama knows as a former constitutional law professor, justice means fair trial in front of an independent and impartial court.
This is the justice if you like of the Red Queen - sentence first, trial later.

RACHAEL BROWN: He says the world has missed its chance to diminish Osama bin Laden.

GEOFFREY ROBERTSON: Just as the Nazi leaders were diminished at Nuremberg, to see this man not as the tall, soulful figure on the mountain but as someone, an old, hatful and hate filled man screaming from the dock or lying in the witness box would've been a much better way of demystifying him.

RACHAEL BROWN: Clifford May is the president of the Foundation for the Defence of Democracies.
He says putting Osama bin Laden in the dock would've caused a circus

CLIFFORD MAY: There would've been hostages taken around the world by Osama bin Laden's sympathisers and there would have probably been beheadings as they demanded that he be released.
Had there been the kind of trial you want in a courtroom in New York City and had he been convicted, would you have wanted to see him executed? My guess is your answer is no.

GEOFFREY ROBERTSON: I would've wanted him to have what he would most have feared and most have hated, namely a life, a death eventually in a prison farm in upstate New York.
By killing him you have ironically given him the death that he most desired - a fast-track to paradise.
You've made a martyr of him; you've given him exactly what he wanted.

Incidentally, completely agree with you about the triumphalism - but then I would, wouldn't I?

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