The Navy SEALS were great; it’s the White House that’s bungling the operation *UPDATED*

This is right on the money:

What I expected on Sunday evening as I waited for Obama to finally appear on television was a more detailed explanation of what transpired, beginning with a brief summary of the intelligence leading up to the operation and ending with photos of the compound and bin Laden himself. Rather than a presidential appearance with the pomp and circumstance of red carpets and the like, I expected the President to appear in the White House briefing room to make a statement and then leave the details and follow-up questions to the likes of his Press Secretary as well as military personnel who had been briefed on the details of the operation. Not surprisingly, I was disappointed.

It is now Wednesday and conspiracy theories abound due to the scarcity of information provided by the White House. I do not doubt that the American military killed OBL. I am, however, disgusted that the White House is offering contradictory stories. And I am disgusted by the silence that we hear from the media while questioning what in the world is going on. When presented with pictures of US soldiers abusing Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib, the New York Times and other mainstream publications could not wait to print the pictures (and partake in the demonization of the American military) without regard to the risk posed to soldiers in the field. In this case however, the White House is holding back on releasing the photographs of bin Laden claiming that the release could be inflammatory.

[snip]

As more information becomes available, such as the fact that Obama took 16 hours to make his final decision because he had to “sleep on it,” he continues to look like the incompetent leader that he is. According to this report, “the president stunned officials when he told a national security meeting that he wanted more time to think — and disappeared out of the room. The head of the CIA and other senior intelligence officers who were keen to proceed were left tense as they waited for the president’s decision.”

Be sure to read the whole thing.

UPDATE:  Vodkapundit makes the same point.

Be Sociable, Share!
  • abc

    Charles, until you offer a better candidate, I’ll stick with Hersh.

    BrianE, political ramifications relating to Pakistani and wider Muslim relationships are non-trivial.  Otherwise, what poltiical ramifications are you talking about?  Where is the huge Dem/liberal outcry against failing to take OBL alive?  Not sure I follow the logic…

    Libby, why is the cut-off 1 hour rather than 24 hours?  And why do you get to make it?  Were you as bothered when Bush spent several minutes reading to little kids rather than leaving immediately when he first heard the news about the 9/11 attack?  I find it funny that people on both the left and the right focus on minutiae rather than big picture, important stuff.  Yes, Bush looked a bit foolish lingering in front of kids, apparently to avoid alarming them–as if that was a great cost in light of the grave situation–but he also acquitted himself well at Ground Zero and in bolstering CIA operations after 9/11.  So liberals who harp on those 18 minutes or whatever it was look rather silly.  I kind of view your comments in a similar light.  But that is just my opinion.  Perhaps you can explain in non-partisan terms why 1 hour is okay but 16 is not…

    jj, the conflicting information is indeed puzzling, but I still view it as bad suture work after a successful, high risk surgery.  The surgeon saved the patient, so those details seem rather small by comparison–in my opinion.  Would you rather have a botched raid with impeccable communications after the fact, or a successful raid with botched communications?

  • Danny Lemieux

    ABC recollects fondly what Michael Moore taught him, ” Were you as bothered when Bush spent several minutes reading to little kids rather than leaving immediately when he first heard the news about the 9/11 attack?  I find it funny that people on both the left and the right focus on minutiae rather than big picture, important stuff.  Yes, Bush looked a bit foolish lingering in front of kids, apparently to avoid alarming them–as if that was a great cost in light of the grave situation–but he also acquitted himself well at Ground Zero and in bolstering CIA operations after 9/11.”

    Funny you should mention that now – your timing is impeccable:

    http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,2069327-1,00.html

  • Charles Martel

    abc, I’ll be your friend and pretend, like you, that you never said “universally regarded.”

  • Danny Lemieux

    ABC, I presume you are a Harvard grad, right?

  • abc

    Thanks, Charles.  Can I say “widely regarded”?  Is our friendship solid enough for that??

    Danny, does it matter?

  • Charles Martel

    Much better, abc. You da man!

  • abc

    Danny, I knew that Time was in the tank for Bush, but this is really great.  Bush saved the minds of those kids by lingering there rather than quietly leaving minutes sooner.  And who is more expert to judge that than an adult with recollections of his elementary school years?  I’m glad we have that straightened out.  Mind you, it never bothered me much that he sat there.  Whatever news they supplied could not have been enough for him to understand just how big the news really was.  However, this idea that his sitting there for those extra minutes protected children.  That is just precious. 

  • http://zachriel.blogspot.com/2005/07/liberal-v-conservative.html Zachriel

    BrianE: If Obama was having moral qualms with killing bin Laden, he shouldn’t have.

    That was almost certainly not the issue. The most important consideration was probably the ramifications of failure. It could have led to a serious incident with Pakistan, and that could have led to political destabilization. Even success could have led to political turmoil, though so far the situation is still calm. Indeed, it is your naïve concept of executive decision-making that seems flawed. It is clear that Obama made the right decision at the right time. Bin Laden is dead. No Americans were hurt. There was minimal collateral damage. According to what we know, by any reasonable measure, the mission was a success. 
     

  • Danny Lemieux

    Danny, I knew that Time was in the tank for Bush, but this is really great.

    LOL, ABC! Btw…the kids quoted are 16 years old, not adults.

    re. your Harvard pedigree, no….doesn’t matter, but it does add a flourish of parsley to the beef, don’t you think? 

    I suspect that you don’t have kids, either, right?

  • abc

    wrong.

  • Charles Martel

    Well, if you want to see the measure of a man, watch how he handles the small stuff as well as the large. If it had been Al Gore who had lingered those few minutes so as not to alarm the children, I doubt that the issue would have ever been raised. I sure wouldn’t have raised it, and I’m a right-wing troglodyte. 

    I certainly know that abc, who has so earnestly implored us to give Obama a break, will just as earnestly counsel the Zachs and Sullivans of the world to give Bush the benefit of the doubt regrading those moments in a classroom almost 10 years ago.

  • BrianE

    Otherwise, what poltiical ramifications are you talking about?  Where is the huge Dem/liberal outcry against failing to take OBL alive?- abc

    You’re probably right. I always underestimate the hypocrisy of the Dem/liberals.

    Indeed, it is your naïve concept of executive decision-making that seems flawed- Zachriel

    No. No, I’m sure my characterizations of how experienced executives function is accurate.

  • abc

    Charles, I thought I just did.

  • http://zachriel.blogspot.com/2005/07/liberal-v-conservative.html Zachriel

    BrianE: No, I’m sure my characterizations of how experienced executives function is accurate.

    That certainly isn’t clear. We have examined just the one example, where the executive made a decision that was a matter of life or death, for the soldiers involved, and possibly many more people, a course of action with many avenues of failure (which could even include regional instability and war). After months of planning, he gave orders to execute the mission. The operation succeeded in killing a dangerous terrorist, with no loss of American lives. So far, the diplomatic situation is calm. From everything we know, it was a resounding success. Yet for some inscrutable reason, you don’t think he did a good job. 
     

  • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

    Bush was never confronted with a decision he needed to make in the classroom. Acting on incomplete information too hastily is just almost as bad as procrastinating for 16 hours.

  • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

    Frankly, I wouldn’t trust Z or abc here to make an executive decision on what to have for breakfast.

    That sorta says it all.

  • BrianE

     
    Well, apparently I was wrong on this.
     
    After months of planning, he gave orders to execute the mission.- Zachriel
     
    Kicking and screaming.
     
    White House Insider: Obama Hesitated – Panetta Issued Order to Kill Osama Bin Laden

    Nothing changed with the president’s opinion – he continued to avoid having one.  Every time military and intelligence officials appeared to make progress in forming a position, Jarrett would intervene and the stalling would begin again.  Hillary started the ball really rolling as far as pressuring Obama began, but it was Panetta and Petraeus who ultimately pushed Obama to finally act – sort of.  Panetta was receiving significant reports from both his direct CIA sources, as well as Petraeus-originating Intel.  Petraeus was threatening to act on his own via a bombing attack.  Panetta reported back to the president that a bombing of the compound would result in successful killing of Osama Bin Laden, and little risk to American lives.  Initially, as he had done before, the president indicated a willingness to act.  But once again, Jarrett intervened, convincing the president that innocent Pakistani lives could be lost in such a bombing attack, and Obama would be left attempting to explain Panetta’s failed policy.  Again Obama hesitated – this time openly delaying further meetings to discuss the issue with Panetta.  A brief meeting was held at this time with other officials, including Secretary Gates and members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, but Gates, like Panetta, was unable to push the president to act.  It was at this time that Gates indicated to certain Pentagon officials that he may resign earlier than originally indicated – he was that frustrated.  Both Panetta and Clinton convinced him to stay on and see the operation through.

    I have been told by more than one source that Leon Panetta was directing the operation with both his own CIA operatives, as well as direct contacts with military – both entities were reporting to Panetta only at this point, and not the President of the United States.  There was not going to be another delay as had happened 24 hour earlier.  The operation was at this time effectively unknown to President Barack Obama or Valerie Jarrett and it remained that way until AFTER it had already been initiated.  President Obama was literally pulled from a golf outing and escorted back to the White House to be informed of the mission.
    Read more: http://socyberty.com/issues/white-house-insider-obama-hesitated-panetta-issued-order-to-kill-osama-bin-laden/#ixzz1LQv1qboR

    Interesting. I have no idea if this is legitimate or not.

  • Pingback: Good Grief… Now the CIA Admits There Was No Live Video Feed During Osama Raid | The Gateway Pundit()

  • BrianE

    OK, it’s fake, but it’s a better story than the WH is telling.

  • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

    My initial surmise is that the SEAL team decided to do this before hand, in order to ensure that there would be no last minute cancellation of the mission op. Thus they knowingly and deliberately sabotaged their own camera feed and explained it away as a “technical malfunction”. Helmet cams has been going on since forever. It’s not something they would have failed to maintain because it was new or they were inexperienced or they didn’t have the time/resources.

    They were determined to get OBL dead, one way or another.

  • jj

    How odd.  In my circle Sy Hersh is widely recognized as a blazing a**hole.  Pretty much how I regard him mytself – and I’ve even met the smarmy little SOB.  Guess it depends on your circles.  When he apologizes to Team 6 for the Cheney crack, I’ll (perhaps) regard him as something other than a urinal.

    Until then abc, I’m going to go with the idea that I know him – and you don’t.  (Unless you are Alan Colmes.)

  • Pingback: AntiObamaBlog.com » The Obama Administration’s cloud of confusion explained()

  • Pingback: The Obama Administration’s cloud of confusion explained *UPDATED* | News Patriot()

  • Pingback: Someone Authorized The Killing Of Bin Laden, But It Wasn’t Obama – UPDATED | Sheya()

  • Pingback: Dinocrat » Blog Archive » We know what they weren’t watching()

  • Pingback: The Obama Administration’s cloud of confusion explained «()

  • Pingback: Dinocrat » Blog Archive » What does the incoherent narrative tell us?()