Ever since the killing of the worlds greatest terrorist. The left, the media and even republicans have been turning head over heels praising the president for his wonderful, gutsy and brave decision. While I applaud the president for being part of bringing this evil murderer to justice, calling his decision gutsy is by far a long shot.
According to the timeline of how this all went down. It all started in August of 2010. By February 2011 the CIA had pretty much confirmed that Bin Laden was at the location and plans were set in motion to capture him.
The president met with his security council and discussed various options and missions. It’s safe to say that the president, who has never served in the military, didn’t draw up the plans, it was the CIA and the defense department who presented him with various options. In the meantime while the discussions took place, the SEAL’s and everyone involved began preparations and simulations for the mission so when it comes to it, whichever decision the president will make they will all be ready.
In the final days before the capture. Obama was again briefed with the various options. According to news reports the two final options were either just to blow the place up in which case it would be difficult to prove that we in fact captured Bin Laden. The other option was to send in the SEAL’s who will take him out and make sure that whether dead or alive Bin Laden will go with them.
While there were most likely arguments on both sides in the room. It’s safe to say that the majority advised the president to send in the SEAL’s and making it clear to him how good those SEAL’s were and how capable they were to carry out the mission. It would be crazy for the president to go against the advice of the majority on such a risky mission.
I can understand that Obama had questions and wanted assurance that there will be minimal civilian casualties and that everything would go smoothly. As the commander in chief, those are fair questions. But given the options I doubt there would be any sane person who would have opted for any other option than the one ultimately carried out.
According to one senior administration official, the president convened at least nine meetings with his top national security leaders. Those advisers met formally another five times, in addition to countless briefings among the National Security Council, CIA, Pentagon and Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Yet after eight month of being aware that a mission will go down, after two month of deliberations, preparations, simulations and at least nine meetings. When it came down to it, it still took him sixteen hours to make the call.
The argument some make on why this was a gutsy decision is based on the fact that had the mission gone wrong it would have hurt Obama politically. Basically what they are saying is that Obama put politics ahead of security. The president took an oath to defend the united states, he is supposed to put security first and not weigh political risks in making those decisions. Any person occupying the oval office would have made the same decision. The difference is that some wouldn’t waste sixteen hours calculating how the decision would effect them politically.
Sure Obama deserves credit for making the right decision. But let’s not act like someone else in his place wouldn’t have made the exact same call. Obama gets credit simply because he was the occupant of the office at the time, had it gone wrong he would have taken the blame so he deserves the credit when it went well. But to call the decision gutsy or brave is far by a long shot. The president should be called out for playing politics with the mission instead of putting country first. But no republican has the guts to say so.
Obama’s gutsy decision was simply putting politics ahead of security. This time by the outstanding, exceptional and dedicated work of the US Military, and the grace of G-d, he got lucky.