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'Gutsy' Obama reaps rewards of 'getting' Osama

Mark Mardell | 14:34 UK time, Tuesday, 3 May 2011

obama_smile.jpgObama got Osama.

That's what some people chanted when the news of Osama Bin Laden's killing broke. But will it have any impact on the President Barack Obama's politics and popularity?

Mr Obama has gone out of his way to stress that "get Bin Laden" was his direct instruction and that the arch villain's death is, in part, his victory. White House officials are doing all they can to capitalise on what looks like a mood of nationwide elation.

Any president who "got" Bin Laden would benefit. Former President Bill Clinton's efforts were mocked by George W Bush. Then he failed too, losing Bin Laden in the caves along the border land, as US soldiers stood by.

But perhaps Mr Obama will benefit more than most. His style of decision making is to take time, to deliberate, to chew over every option. His critics call it dithering. There are now some excellent "tick tocks" as they are called here - blow by blow accounts of the decision making process. But you always have to remember all sources are in the circle, and liable to portray the president positively. It sounds as if Mr Obama gave this decision as much time and thought as all the others but away from the public gaze.

Not only did Mr Obama's security advisor John Brennan praise him, but Republicans have even called his decision "gutsy". He did not simply go for bombs or drones but rather a helicopter raid. One insider is quoted as saying that Black Hawk Down was mentioned a few times in the discussions. When that helicopter did go down, Mr Obama surely thought of Jimmy Carter and Iran.

So he's a risk taker, too. It also makes him look focused on what is truly in the US's national interest. You can argue Iraq wasn't, Libya wasn't, even Afghanistan no longer is. But getting the head of al-Qaeda clearly was a number one priority in the minds of many Americans, and Mr Obama decided it was his as well.

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Even habitual enemies, indeed even Rush Limbaugh, have praised him. At a reception for Republicans and Democrats last night, he got a standing ovation.

So the wind is behind him. Whence will he sail? At a White House dinner for members of Congress, he used Bin Laden's killing as a call for unity.

He said: "We were reminded again that there is a pride in what this nation stands for, and what we can achieve, that runs far deeper than party, far deeper than politics."

From Bin Laden, he moved effortlessly to domestic public enemy number one, the deficit. "It is my fervent hope that we can harness some of that unity and some of that pride to confront the many challenges that we still face," Mr Obama said.

On Thursday, Mr Obama will travel to New York City to remember those who died in Bin Laden's assault on America. I expect more talk of unity but perhaps some big foreign policy themes as well. There are those who think the halo of success makes it easier for the president to confront a military that wants July's Afghanistan wind-down to be small and fairly insignificant. Others, however, think the momentum runs the other way, and that it gives all the more reason to stay and finish the job.

So the killing sends waves that will wash against these shores and those of a wider world. Some are saying this moment assures Mr Obama's re-election. It assures no such thing.
Apart from the obvious point that there can be many other unexpected events that will have an impact, positive or negative, It just doesn't work like that. However huge this event snow seems, wait a couple of months. In the relentless frenzy of the 24-hour media cycle, it will probably be half forgotten by the the time of the election.

This far out, only events that mean change to people's lives on a day-to-day basis have that sort of game changing impact. But image is important. The president has burnished his in the eyes of many Americans and looks like a resolute commander-in-chief. He knows it, and intends to milk the moment for all it is worth.

Comments

Page 1 of 2

  • Comment number 1.

    He knows it, and intends to milk the moment for all it is worth.
    --------------------
    Come off it Mardell,the buck stops with the President by ordering young lives in to harms way,it would haunt him if it turned tragic.Its so easy to snipe from the side lines.Credit for his conduct will do him no harm,he deserves this credit ,good luck to him..

  • Comment number 2.

    The UN Security Council has welcomed the killing, calling it a "critical development in the fight against terrorism". In a rare statement on any unilateral military operation by a member country, the Security Council also urged all nations to remain vigilant and intensify their efforts to bring all perpetrators and sponsors of terrorism to justice. (BBC reports)



    And now let's wait for comments from the usual suspects that UNSC, which includes, prominently, China and Russia, " is in America's pocket". ;-)

  • Comment number 3.

    "Even habitual enemies, indeed even Rush Limbaugh, have praised him. At a reception for Republicans and Democrats last night, he got a standing ovation."
    ***********************
    Wouldn't "opponents" be a better choice than "enemies?" I think I've personally opposed the President in virtually every policy excepting the decision to take out Bin Laden, but I'd never consider myself Mr. Obama's "enemy." And I doubt it's a term other respectful conservatives would use either.
    I think his recent actions deserve a standing ovation. I wish we could do that for the Navy Seals, as well.


  • Comment number 4.

    Actually Pakistan's obvious collaboration with hiding Bin Laden tells us all we need to know about the region. There are no friends of the West there. Mission over. Enough with nation building. There's nothing to build. Obama should use this opportunity to bring everyone home and do a better job of sealing our borders. He has the political capital, right now at this singular moment, to do it.

  • Comment number 5.

    Here in England, it seems our politics is pretty tame when you listen to the likes of Limbaugh and the 'shock-jocks' in rant mode against POTUS Obama.

    Although quietened for now, it won't be long before they are back in their comfort zone - full on rants.

    The binary politics of America might usefully have a third party to take some of the heat, just like our Lib-Dems.

  • Comment number 6.

    Ah, your cowardice.

    "" … But will it have any impact on the President Barack Obama's politics and popularity?
    …""

    Why should?

    ""… he moved effortlessly to domestic public enemy number one, the deficit.
    …""

    Fanny, it is no longer jobs!!?
    Ah!!


    ""… I expect more talk of unity
    …""

    Remember what people uses to call "phony" BiPartisan?
    He was talking about unity since he was elected, remember?


    ""… He knows it, and intends to milk the moment for all it is worth.
    …""

    Really?
    I mean really?

    Why cowardice?
    Give the man what is due.
    If the operation had failed who would be the culprit?

    Gutsy???

    That was an insult.

    Ah!!
    Because the poser guys said so.

  • Comment number 7.

    To mscracker;

    ""… "respectful conservatives" you wrote?""
    About Rush Limbaugh?

  • Comment number 8.

    Mardell writes: "White House officials are doing all they can to capitalise on what looks like a mood of nationwide elation."

    It would be better, in my view, if my country's mood of "nationwide elation" over the death of Osama Bin Laden was tempered and sharply curtailed by a counter-balancing sadness over the death of three of Muammar Gaddhafi's grandchildren.

    The "USA USA" jingoism of America's youth is an embarrassment and demonstrates a woeful lack of taste, class and probity.


  • Comment number 9.

    "It also makes him look focused on what is truly in the US's national interest."
    And it was. Getting Bin Laden has been at the heart of US forign policy for some years now.
    THE WAR AGAINST TERROR. You'd have to be blind to miss how much energy has been focused on this goal. the second poster on this forum has made many comments in the past as to Obama being the same as Osama.tried to link the two. for two and a half years now. No longer can the right try to pretend that Obama is anything else than an American President.

  • Comment number 10.

    maybe obama should have asked pakistan to verify that the dead osama looked like the real osama based on their intelligence (and pmk wouldn't wage on innocent pakistanis) (like he did before anyhow)

  • Comment number 11.

    mscracker

    "Wouldn't "opponents" be a better choice than "enemies?" I think I've personally opposed the President in virtually every policy excepting the decision to take out Bin Laden, but I'd never consider myself Mr. Obama's "enemy." And I doubt it's a term other respectful conservatives would use either."

    That may be a fair point as far as you are concerned but the problem is that too many Republicans are not respectful when it comes to Obama. Witness the buffoon, Donald Trump, and his scraping of the barrel, firstly with the "birther" nonsense and when this was debunked trying to imply that Obama was not clever enough to get to Harvard (dogwhistling that it must have been due to affirmative action despite the fact that Obama graduated magna cum laude and was the fist African American editor of the Harvard Law Review.

    There are also vile idiots like the disgusting Rush Limbaugh who refer to Obama as a Halfrican.

    By all means have a sensible disagreement with Obama on policy differences (I'm disappointed that he has not closed Guantanamo Bay for example) but unfortunately for your argument too many Republicans in the recent past (Huckabee, Palin, Bachmann, Trump et al) have descended into the gutter or turned a blind eye to the racist "birthers" to be called responsible!

  • Comment number 12.

    To Curt Carpenter;

    Wasn't invading Iraq and Afghanistan as well?


    Regarding "" … "White House officials are doing all they can to capitalise on what looks like a mood of nationwide elation." …""

    It is a vaporOpinion, but the author of this blog is prone to such thing.
    What gives conservatives on both parties the edge over USA politics is accepting rabid nationalism for civility.

  • Comment number 13.

    Everything a president does on the international stage requires guts. The only thing that requires no guts is to do nothing a la Carter. I would echo mscracker in that I am an ardent opponent of The One, but not his enemy. I still oppose everything he wants to do domestically but I'm happy that he has broke all of his campaign promises to his far left, surrender-monkey base when it comes to national security.

    Before they start on this thread: Killing Osama is not a violation of his rights; he was an enemy combatant without a flag so he has no rights by international treaty. He could have surrendered, but instead, he tried to use a wife for a shield (not counting on US Navy SEAL marksmanship). Therefore, we, the people have justice because the evil-doer chose to die in a hail of gunfire instead of surrendering. I know the usual left-wing, bleeding heart suspects will ignore these facts, but I have to believe that if I keep repeating them, I may save some lost, left-wing soul from political reality hell.

  • Comment number 14.

    "But perhaps Mr Obama will benefit more than most."

    Nope. Polling of likely voters already shows that no appreciable bump over this for Obama. It might have helped him if this happened a week or two before the elections but, nothing lasting when the USD is collapsing, real unemployment is ~19%, etc.

  • Comment number 15.

    I'm glad that the President had the guts to order a more-risky commando raid rather than a drone strike. There would not have been the same satisfaction if Osama had been killed instantly by a Predator missile. Instead, he died knowing that the jig was up, that Americans had come into his secret lair to bring face to face retribution.

  • Comment number 16.

    @7:
    I like Rush Limbaugh, but don't get to hear him very often. From what I've heard, though, I doubt he would call himself an "enemy" of Mr. Obama & I believe he would "respect" the office of the President.
    Respecting the office doesn't mean agreeing with policies & politics.
    I find most dialogue in the media more intended for ratings than serious conversation.

  • Comment number 17.

    If Alfred Nobel still alive he will be horrified to see his peace prize awarded to a killer.

  • Comment number 18.

    8. At 17:08pm 3rd May 2011, Curt Carpenter wrote:
    The "USA USA" jingoism of America's youth is an embarrassment and demonstrates a woeful lack of taste, class and probity.
    ______________________________________________

    Oh, you who are so intellectual and above the baser instincts of your neighbors; tell us how you would handle the world? If given the choice, would you die for your convictions (assuming you have any) or would you willingly "convert" to Islam and "hit the rug" five times a day? You see, that is the other option. You don’t have to believe me. You don’t have to give any credit to the fact that I have spent most of the last 10 years in the ME and a lot of time before. You can call me a liar and a knuckle-dragging, right-wing Neanderthal, but all of your name-calling doesn’t change the fact that you appear to simply be a fortitude-challenged individual that hinds behind high-sounding intellectual BS.

    I ask this because I see you criticizing both Americans and Brits for their opinions, but I’ve never seen you say if and when you would actually fight for something. Is there anything that you think is worth dying for? Are you just a reprobate cynic that looks down their nose at everyone in the arena (as Teddy Roosevelt put it) or do you have something you treasure enough to fight for?

  • Comment number 19.

    'Gutsy' Obama reaps rewards of 'getting' Osama.
    Really?
    And how will he respond to all the questions that are just starting to be raised?
    Obama got Osama, IF he killed the right man, IF he can prove the DNA match, IF he can explain why he dumped the body in the ocean...IF...
    This assassination would have had far more impact, FAR MORE IMPACT IF Bin Laden had been captured, returned to the United States and placed on trial. Also it would have provided better closure for the survivors.
    White House officials are doing all they can to capitalise on American elation, but after the elation will come the questions, more questions...Will be then revert to the dithier?
    Obama's style of decision may be taking his to take time, deliberating, chewing over the options, but this assassination has as many holes as were probably left in the alleged Bin Laden's body.
    Obama did not simply go for bombs or drones but rather a helicopter raid - all the better for a pinpoint strike, whether or not the deceased was the correct deceased. You don't want to be bombing and droning and then searching for the remains.
    So Obama is a risk taker, too, a focused risk-taker - on things that do not concern unemployment, lack of educational opportunity, wages, employment, bank regulation...
    If you can argue Iraq wasn't, Libya wasn't, even Afghanistan no longer is, but getting the head of the snake was priority # 1, you must be pretty certain that 9/11 was Osama Bin Laden from inside his several caves, suffering from kidney disease and urological problems vs. an INSIDE JOB orchestrated by the elitist inner circle for purposes of creating a war on terror.
    What does the United States stand for? What can it achieve? Assassination?
    As for the deficit...well...Obama has not a clue; Bernanke has not a clue...No American economist or financial expert has a clue; so, it's no wonder Obama said: "It is my fervent hope that we can harness some of that unity and some of that pride to confront the many challenges that we still face." Maybe in his new-found unity he can ask every taxpayer in American to send him $100.00 or so.
    In the relentless frenzy of the 24-hour media cycle, Bin Laden will probably be half forgotten IF the elitist media wants it forgotten, but there will be "truthers", Americans seeking logical, sensible, answers and beginning to wonder about the lies.
    It's a wonder to me how the gentlemen dithier could keep a straight face talking about Osama, which causes me to wonder how he will handle%

  • Comment number 20.

    Here's a blast from the past:
    178. At 03:18am 30th Apr 2011, USSilentMajority wrote:
    JMM
    One other thing... As for Bin Laden, he's already come through our borders and most likely is getting medical attention in Detroit. Just an FYI
    ------------------------------------------------------------------
    Haven't heard from USSilentMajority since OBL's death, have we?
    Wonder what the new pseudonym will be for this right-wing sock puppet when it returns.

  • Comment number 21.

    Truthfully, this is the best thing President Obama has done since taking office...and it was also to me at least the most unexpected...

    Taking down bin Ladin is a victory for all Americans, regardless of political parties...

    Does this guarentee re-election?

    Not necessarily...come around election time, people will be focused on everything...

    But I think it is absolutely a huge boost and now President Obama can always say he was in office when we took down bin Ladin...

    It was his fateful decision to use special forces instead of merely blowing it up, as even though risker, that way we could verify his DNA...a very American decision...

    I think it is very smart to bury him at sea, a wise choice..

    I don't care what hte politics are, this isn't about politics, it doesn't matter, what matters is that it happened and that the victory goes to us all...

    President Obama, our military, our special intelligence, everyone played a role, and all worked together to make this happen the way it did, I have to credit everybody involved and especially the military who did a First class job...

    Mr Mardell says some may forget it by election, but many like myself, we do not forget something as big as this that has defined our generation and we will remember this always...

  • Comment number 22.

    Curt: The "USA USA" jingoism of America's youth is an embarrassment and demonstrates a woeful lack of taste, class and probity.
    --------
    What to you is a lack of taste and class is to people of my generation an emotional release after years of spending our youth in war, as well as our loved ones being killed or injured from this war, we can't get our loved ones back and we can't change their injuries, whether physical or psychological...so much of our blood and our minds has been spilled for this very moment of justice against the very person who began it all...

    9/11 defined our generation the way the Vietnam war defined the late 60' and 70's generation, the way WWII defined the 40's generation...

    In my mind, it is still fresh, I can still remember the images on tv of the people falling from buildings, the planes going down, the pain and suffering felt that day...

    But now this is an end to this chapter and there are other terrorists, but these are new chapters, we closed this one...

    Its a boost when we needed it most...

    With the takedown of bin Ladin, America has got her groove back, we have got our pride back and our spirit is that of a survivor...

    God Bless America and our troops and our allies forever and ever....

  • Comment number 23.

    "Obama got Osama." Not on Fox News, which reported "Obama bin Laden Dead".

  • Comment number 24.

    The right President for a war, but possibly not the right President for peace - if peace there be.

    Obama will have to be careful not to be seen to have completed the mission, and could do worse than look at what happened to Winston Churchill once Hitler was no longer a tangible threat....

  • Comment number 25.

    I am so surprised at remarks from the UK-- like ukwales. After all of the years of suffering bin Laden's pain in both your country and mine, someone thinks that it was a publicity stunt by our President. Truly I think ukwales is an American expat who has close ties to the Teabaggers(sic--intended) . It is a unsettling to think someone would feel as that person does-- shame, shame

  • Comment number 26.

    Well, I guess the old saying must be true:

    Power corrupts and absolute power, corrupts absolutely.

    So if you’re the World’s only Superpower, I guess it’s OK for you to just waltz in and out of whoever’s country you care to, whenever you want to, without any regard to that country’s sovereignty or rights under International Law.

    Maybe I’m missing something here, but wasn’t this OBL’s basic beef with the USA in the first place, the very thing that he witnessed happening in Saudi Arabia and other parts of the Middle East and which radicalised him. Ultimately, hasn’t the USA just vindicated everything OBL stood for?

    Even the Nazis got a fair trial. So much for the Nobel PEACE Prize Winner!

  • Comment number 27.

    This was a decisive and special moment for America and its president. Obama showed strong leadership and the kind of competence devoted to very few in this political generation.

    Whether the electorate in the US can see beyond their gas tanks, who knows, but for the rest of us, the world might just be a tiny bit safer knowing this charismatic, martyr like figure is now dead. No shrine... no body... no cause...

  • Comment number 28.

    Hello Mr Mardell, I do hope you do not mind me contacting you, but I have seen you on the TV several times and I wondered if you were any relation to the Mardell Family as I am doing their family tree and if you do not mind I would like to add you too it Julia

  • Comment number 29.

    And meanwhile Cameron is still clinging to the myth that Pakistan is an ally in the war against terror. Well, he would wouldn't he! Over £500 million of our tax-payer's money is supporting a regime that could not filter out Bin Laden's supporters.

    Meanwhile, come on US and eliminate a few more terrorists: there is a regime in Iran that is exporting terror and inflicting it on their own people. And do not forget that whilst they have supporters in high places in the UK, Hamas is a terrorist regime.

    I see some bloggers here are critical of the fact that Bin Laden was not brought toi trial. Tough. He and his supporters are non uniformed comatants in a war and must accept the consequences.

    God bless the US and its brave soldiers.

  • Comment number 30.

    I applaud Obama's decision to eleminate this Evil Man. Being an orthodox Muslim I beliebe that Osama never represented Islam. He did represent the extremists Mullahs of Islam, who were described by Prophet Mohammad himself as "worst creature on earth". Osama symbolised that. I hope and pray that all Muslims and particlualry Pakistanis sit down and think about the journey of Osama Bin Laden's concept of Islam (terrorising people) verses the peace loveing concept of Isla that Mohammad preached and practiced. Mohammad won hearts and people and Osama lost every thing. I also believe that USA did the right thing to get rid of his body in the sea, so we never see anything of him. Bravo to the far sighteness of Obama by eleminating Osama. I say "Osama killed by the orders of Obama".

  • Comment number 31.

    Apparently, the version now is that he didn't use his wife as a shield and he was unarmed.

  • Comment number 32.

    I expect the glow to fade by the end of the week. If the pictures are not released, may be sooner. Remember Bush #1 . Successful invasion & lost the election. Americans have a collective memory of a nano second. The price of gas & the economy will be back in the front page.

  • Comment number 33.

    He's certainly a risk taker.

    Because if it was a photo double, then he's toast at the next election if UBL turns up again.

    I think that's unlikely, but in the world of media fantasy, anything's possible nowadays......

  • Comment number 34.

    'So the wind is behind him. Whence will he sail?'

    From here, I expect.

  • Comment number 35.

    I agree with Curt Carpenter on the jingoism issue. To me that response was offensive, chilling, and of great concern. It praises unlimited aggression and violence, whether or not against a justifiable target. The victory jig of the Palestinians after 9/11 was condemned in no uncertain terms, so it seems hypocritical to condone the West's version. Unfortunately when I see it I don't see glory or honour: I'm reminded of Abu Ghraib, US torture, Guantanamo Bay, the My Lai and El Mozote massacres, the cowardly bombing of innocent wedding parties and children by drones, the imperialist bigotry of Donald Trump, the rapacious mendacity of GW Bush, the racist attacks on Arab culture and religion by US troops and media, a cynical and murderous arms trade, and a government that is prepared to spend trillions on a military budget equal to the next biggest 10 combined to control every inch of the planet rather than support the health and education of its people.

  • Comment number 36.

    17. At 17:44pm 3rd May 2011, fi00113 wrote:
    If Alfred Nobel still alive he will be horrified to see his peace prize awarded to a killer.

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------
    to 17. As I recall Bin Laden was not awarded a peace prize.

    No 26 wrote.
    Even the Nazis got a fair trial. So much for the Nobel PEACE Prize Winner!

    --------------------------------------------------------------------
    To 26

    I do not recall Hitler's trial. And most of the Nazi's died at the hands of the allies in combat. Bin Laden too died in combat, as a non uniformed combatant. If his supporters are arrested they should be given a military trial, not waste time on a civil trial. We are at war and these terrorists should not forget it.

    Worth mentioning that if he had been brought to trial and put in prison, then scheming politicians would have traded him for an oil deal or something shady.

  • Comment number 37.

    5. JohnConstable wrote:

    "Here in England, it seems our politics is pretty tame when you listen to the likes of Limbaugh and the 'shock-jocks' in rant mode against POTUS Obama... The binary politics of America might usefully have a third party to take some of the heat, just like our Lib-Dems."

    We would indeed and we would reap many benefits from more nuanced choices, not least the chance to create a fiscally conservative party divorced from the religious right. Unfortunately, our political system all but precludes multiple parties, especially at the national level. We actually have multiple registered parties, such as the Green party - though you'd never know it. The problem is that we elect Congress and the President separately, so while we can elect independents, and members of minor parties and pseudo-parties such as the Tea Party to Congress, the Presidency always comes down to a two-horse race.

    Anytime a third candidate comes along, such a Ross Perot, the litany is always the same: "Don't throw your vote away by voting for someone who doesn't stand a chance of winning." More to the point, voting for the third contender will all but guarantee the defeat of the candidate from whichever major party they've split off from. For instance, Obama will be assured victory if the Tea Party decides to field a candidate in 2012. Consequently, except in extraordinary times, we simply don't do this.

  • Comment number 38.

    If a faction of fundamentalists give the order to kill and they publicly celebrate we see it as sick. But if a Western leader gives the order to kill and thousands publicly celebrate..... I'm in NO WAY siding with terrorism, but makes you think....? Rather glad Mr O had the sense to suppress a smile during the standing ovation - Bush would have been a complete Jarhead beaming like a Cheshire cat!

  • Comment number 39.

    25. At 18:42pm 3rd May 2011, wmt wrote:
    I am so surprised at remarks from the UK-- like ukwales. After all of the years of suffering bin Laden's pain in both your country and mine, someone thinks that it was a publicity stunt by our President. Truly I think ukwales is an American expat who has close ties to the Teabaggers(sic--intended) . It is a unsettling to think someone would feel as that person does-- shame, shame
    ------------------
    The only ties I have with tea bagging is when Tesco offered buy one & get one free.
    So here lives a pro American,nonconformist Welshman from Pembrokshire who`s love of beer is only matched by his bemusement of Morris Dancing & the BBC...

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ioQd9jlN_9A&feature=related

  • Comment number 40.

    "So the wind is behind him. Whence will he sail?" Did Mr. Mardell mean whither? If so, it will depend on the weather. Right now the tide is favourable; let's hope the President makes good use of it.

  • Comment number 41.

    IT'S THE ECONOMY, STUPID

    It's a pity that so many are criticising the TV pictures of Americans celebrating Bin Laden's death. A couple of hundred loudmouths in front of a camera do not make a nation. 99% of Americans, glad no doubt as I am, for the demise of a villain, got quietly on with their lives or tried to - jobs are not easy to find just now.

    I do agree with those who say these momentous events will eventually be thrust into the background. The real point of contention, as ever, at the next elections will be the economy: inflation, taxes, and above all, jobs.

    For now, we in Europe, and the USA, must keep our guard up. Bin Laden was a symbol. The real threat lies in the unseen plotters who menace our ordinary lives.

  • Comment number 42.

    No. 36 wrote:

    "I do not recall Hitler's trial. And most of the Nazi's died at the hands of the allies in combat. Bin Laden too died in combat, as a non uniformed combatant. If his supporters are arrested they should be given a military trial, not waste time on a civil trial. We are at war and these terrorists should not forget it.

    Worth mentioning that if he had been brought to trial and put in prison, then scheming politicians would have traded him for an oil deal or something shady."

    To No. 36

    You clearly have a very poor knowledge of history then. Hitler shot himself before they could get to him and many other top Nazis did the same but the fact still remains that every effort was made by the Allies to capture top Nazis alive so that they could be put on trial for the crimes they had committed.

    If we are at War, then OBL and his supporters, by definition can’t be Terrorists, they’re combatants just like any other soldier and therefore, subject to the rules of the Geneva Convention, which was completely disregarded in this instance. You can’t have it both ways.

    Oh and before I forget, in actual fact most of the effort to catch top Nazis alive was so that they could be shipped backed to the USA to work on their weapons programmes and help put Americans in space and on the Moon. I guess the fact that these guys helped murder millions of Jews could be overlooked just for now. And you wonder why many in the World see the Americans as hypocrites?

  • Comment number 43.

    To No. 36

    "Worth mentioning that if he had been brought to trial and put in prison, then scheming politicians would have traded him for an oil deal or something shady."

    What? You the mean the same scheming politicians that caused all this mess in first place, corrupted the Middle East and gave birth to people like OBL?

  • Comment number 44.

    @ BluesBerry

    yours was one of the most ill-informed, overly suspicious, baseless, spineless and laughably ridiculous posts i have ever had the misfortune to read. you criticise obama for not verifying the kill enough - 10 years of intel, DNA match and facial recognition not enough of course - then go on to make you pathetic claims regarding a 9/11 conspiracy - not based in fact, but based on the hearsay of a legion of ignorants - do you see the irony of your own stupidity? i hope you were joking, or else you should be ashamed.

  • Comment number 45.

    Had he delayed it even a bit more, it might have been worth it for the image, but a lot more risky. The Libyan delay was not only risky, it was harmful.

    But I agree. As events unfold, and a lot could happen in the mean time, OBL will be long forgotten. In fact most of us had already forgotten him or assumed he had been killed. This doesn't reduce the importance of this success, and if Obama had a major hand in the planning of it, then he deserves the credit he merits.

    But there is bound to be a reaction, and to use this success for gain internal political advantages might not be advisable. It might be better to turn the page on this, as though the matter, as well as the mad man, are less important than was actually the case. He would gain more by it in all respects. No doubt he's intelligent enough to know that. If he does try to milk it too much, it could be to his political disadvantage.
    There are still other surprises in store for the world, and not necessarily positive ones.

    Hopefully he will allow his forces and Nato to deal more directly with the Afghanis and leave Pakistan with their own problems. For almost 20 years Pakistan has never been trustworthy, and this final discovery is the cherry on the icing.

  • Comment number 46.

    1. At 16:13pm 3rd May 2011, You wrote:
    He knows it, and intends to milk the moment for all it is worth.
    --------------------
    Come off it Mardell,the buck stops with the President by ordering young lives in to harms way,it would haunt him if it turned tragic.Its so easy to snipe from the side lines.Credit for his conduct will do him no harm,he deserves this credit ,good luck to him..
    ------------------------------------

    25. At 18:42pm 3rd May 2011, wmt wrote:
    I am so surprised at remarks from the UK-- like ukwales. After all of the years of suffering bin Laden's pain in both your country and mine, someone thinks that it was a publicity stunt by our President. Truly I think ukwales is an American expat who has close ties to the Teabaggers(sic--intended) . It is a unsettling to think someone would feel as that person does-- shame, shame
    -------------
    wmt,where in my post did I say it was a publicity stunt ?.
    Truly the only thing American about me is my view,check back & see its only been pro.
    I have covered the tea.
    The only shame & unsettling thing, is for some one to read a post & get it so wrong.

  • Comment number 47.

    Hey Mark

    This is not a criticism but more of an observation; I've been reading your blogs since you took over from the other guy and the rate in which you've lost you're independent style of writing is amazing. You've become so critical and cynical of every action president Obama takes these days that you're sounding more like a fox news reporter. Did he or any of his team offend you in anyway? Gee calm down dude. He got Osama...let him have his day. And you are mistaken to think that Americans will soon forget so easily the killing of a man that made them feel like crap for over 10 years. All things will be considered come 2012.

  • Comment number 48.

    No. 42 noted:

    "Oh and before I forget, in actual fact most of the effort to catch top Nazis alive was so that they could be shipped backed to the USA to work on their weapons programmes and help put Americans in space and on the Moon. I guess the fact that these guys helped murder millions of Jews could be overlooked just for now. And you wonder why many in the World see the Americans as hypocrites?"

    The US did not recruit any "top Nazis." It recruited German scientists, most of which were required to join the SS or the Nazi party to continue with their life's work. And of course direct their studies towards weapons research. None of them were responsible for the death camps though unfortunately many of them did benefit from slave labor, especially in the rocket program. But then again, those real Nazis actually responsible did not give them any choice in the matter but to use slave labor.

    There are things about which one can legitimately criticize the US. Your claim that the US recruited "top Nazis" after WW II is not one of them.

  • Comment number 49.

    @46 ukwales.
    Quote "the only thing American about me is my view"

    This is the quickest way to be hated on both sides of the Atlantic.
    You cannot keep all of the people happy all of the time.
    Be honest, let them know how annoying they are and how great we are.

  • Comment number 50.

    24. Life Is A Cabaret

    Interesting point. It's often the case that the killer of the monster sometimes also has to go, metaphorically speaking of course. But sadly Churchill was no longer needed when his excellent job was done, and even if he was never considered a great politician, it was more the above phenomenon than anything else that unseated him. To add insult to injury, his wife had to sell his paintings later on just to make ends meet.

    The same with Nelson, who on his deathbed received solemn promises that Lady Hamilton will be well provided for. She died in poverty.

  • Comment number 51.

    49. At 21:13pm 3rd May 2011, kane

    Hmmm,that seems like fun, perhaps now is good time to remind them about when

    HMS shannon captures uss chesapeake, nah, I like them too much..

  • Comment number 52.

    Manso57 (31), from the account in Tuesday's The New York Times, it was one of the other men killed who was using a woman as a shield.

    It is not unusual for early news reports to contain a few errors of fact, because news agencies are in a hurry to get the news out. It is best to follow the news for a few days to get a clearer picture.

    As for ObL being unarmed, I don't know exactly how his killing played out, not having been there. The White House has stated that he could have been taken alive, that the orders were not to kill him in any event. It is the burden of those who would accuse the soldier who killed him of doing so unnecessarily to support their allegation. I doubt ObL was surrendering, myself.

  • Comment number 53.

    I want to see a US Marine.

  • Comment number 54.


    Al-Qaeda #1 is now gone, but apparently there are others among that lot who are willing to assume command of al-Qaeda, and the question now becomes one of just how many others could in turn be willing to assume command. In other words, OBL is now out of the picture, but could hostilities continue indefinitely?

  • Comment number 55.

    'Gutsy' Mardell reaps rewards of 'insinuating' about Obama propoganda intent - milk it

  • Comment number 56.

    Ref. 17, fi00113:

    "If Alfred Nobel still alive he will be horrified to see his peace prize awarded to a killer."

    If Alfred Nobel was still alive he'd be used to it by now:

    1906 - Theodore Roosevelt
    1919 - Woodrow Wilson
    1953 - General George Marshall
    1973 - Henry Kissinger
    1978 - Anwar Sadat and Menachem Begin
    1988 - UN Peace Keeping Forces
    1990 - Mikhail Gorbachev
    1994 - Yasser Arafat, Shimon Peres, and Yitzhak Rabin
    2002 - Jimmy Carter


  • Comment number 57.

    Has anyone else wondered where are the comments from the thousands of imams around the world? So far, I haven't seen the first one.

  • Comment number 58.

    No. 48:

    Quite frankly, absolute and utter bunkum.

    You have been well and truly brainwashed.

  • Comment number 59.

    To starFloridian #57

    "Has anyone else wondered where are the comments from the thousands of imams around the world? So far, I haven't seen the first one."

    Would you like to speculate what Christian leaders and the Pope should say?

  • Comment number 60.

    athena07 (48) has it right. The U. S. participate in the prosecution of the "top" Nazis at Nuremburg, those who survived the war. Von Braun was not a "top" Nazi, he was their top rocket scientist. Fault him for his role in the war if you like, but was certainly not one of those most responsiblr for the murder of millions.

  • Comment number 61.

    #13 Oldloadr


    "-- he was an enemy combatant without a flag so he has no rights by international treaty"

    You mean if he was wearing a uniform of a specific country --he would have had rights under the Geneva convention ?

    --so the civilians of Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Guantanamo only have themselves to blame for being tortured and killed because they did not wear uniforms ?

    --- NPR has just reported Osama was UNARMED !

  • Comment number 62.

    OldLoadr

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-south-asia-13274176

    ---- the plot thickens !

  • Comment number 63.

    OF COURSE there is a bounce! This is VERY good news. But I remind you his poll numbers weren't falling because of his inability to "Get" Bin Laden, it was because of his inabilitiy to pull the US economy out of stagnation and cultural drift. (By clutural drift, I am referring to his consistent effort to ignore the will of the people in regards to all sorts of liberal causes.) If this doesn't change his numbers will fall again. I remind you of G Bush the first, similar situation.

  • Comment number 64.

    @62.
    I think it thins the plot actually.

  • Comment number 65.

    No. 60

    Sorry but you are simply trying to split hairs over the definition of a "top" Nazi, probably because you can't handle the fact that a former member of the Nazi Party and their top rocket scientist, helped the US put an American on the Moon.

    It's a well documented fact that the US surreptitiously "glossed" over many of the past careers of these individuals because they were "of use". Those other Nazis that were tried publicly, were either of no use whatsoever or they were too well known to be carefully secreted into American society and made to look respectable.

    Irrespective of your definition of a “top” Nazi, the fact still remains that these individuals were members of the Nazi Party (willingly), were prominent within it and most definitely knew what was “going on”, even if they weren’t directly involved themselves and therefore, we’re just as culpable if they then chose do nothing about it. Pursuing one’s life work knowing that it’s at the expense of mass murder and suffering, doesn’t seem a fair trade to me. Maybe you do?

    So, please don’t try to insult all our intelligences by suggesting there was such a thing as a good Nazi!

  • Comment number 66.

    blah blah blah .. yadda yadda yadda .. nothing zilch niet .. blogs of verbiage .. no one stays on track .. sheep just staring into your tv sets, mouth gawping believing the reverberating white noise that spews forth.

    You are all hilarious ... and tragically sad at the same time. You act in exactly the way you are expected to. Silently absorb the hype and spew it forth again and again.

    No one questions .. no one asks what is wrong with this picture. You have all been so anaesthetised against processing your own thoughts.

    Bin Laden dead? really? For 2 days I have watched this BS - typical blanket coverage - make sure its seeps into everyones subconscious - say it enough times and it becomes fact. What have we seen - a video of an empty room and some bloody sheets and the words of a President bombing at the opinion polls with his nation on the verge economic implosion.

    Sorry? .. just let me tie myself down before you repeat that .... the US Special Services OBSERVED ISLAMIC protocol by ditching him overboard?!!! and you BUY THIS!!???

    You all deserve the continued disrespect and contempt that your governments furnish.

  • Comment number 67.

    It is ironic thar Mr. Mardell writes: "His critics call it dithering," because he used the word himself in his March posts about Libya, although he waltzed around a direct accusation.

  • Comment number 68.

    #64

    -- the resistance was--- he threw a flower pot ?

    ---- or did he complain that they didn´t knock before entering the bedroom ?

    ---I thought the seals knew that legs were at the other end of the body ?

    ---the explanations will take years !

  • Comment number 69.

    "So the wind is behind him. Whence will he sail?" Mark Mardell makes a schoolboy linguistic error, here, trying to be clever.

    "Whence" means 'from where', not 'to where'. "Whither" is what he means here, if he really wants to use old language that no one uses any more except when trying to be flash.

    I so wish these populist journos would learn how to write.

  • Comment number 70.

    #58
    Thank you for your persuasive rebuttal. Could you please name a few of these "top Nazis" for me? I would be much obliged.

    As for the topic on hand, I think the unemployment number 16 months from now will be the decisive factor for Obama's reelection, not Bin Laden's death.

  • Comment number 71.

    #65 I_IS Mcool Wrote --

    "So, please don’t try to insult all our intelligences by suggesting there was such a thing as a good Nazi!"

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Rabe

    --sorry to disappoint you !



  • Comment number 72.

    #71

    Sorry, but the article says nothing about Rabe publicly denouncing his membership of the Nazi Party and/or laying down his life to stop the murder of millions of Jews in Europe. As bad as the rest of them as far as I'm concerned.

  • Comment number 73.

    More verbiage on the news today ..
    ----------------------------------
    "..These guys are America's thoroughbreds, says Don Shipley, from Virginia, who spent two decades in the Navy as a Seal.

    "They're the finest guys America has. Your average guy walking down the street just doesn't have it.

    "The guys that become Seals have gifted eyesight, above average intelligence, and are genetically built to withstand a lot of punishment, being pounded a lot. Those are the guys that are qualified to get in but the guys that ultimately come out are thoroughbreds, they're racehorses."
    It is often described as the toughest training available to any special forces anywhere in the world. The drop-out rate is 80-85%. ..."
    ----------------------------------

    I remember the same macho chest thumping BS about the SAS and the Iranian Embassy siege all those years ago.

    Pathetic, hilarious and childish. Oh and how embarrassing is it going to sound when it finally transpires this whole event was staged just like the rescue of Jessica Lynch. Anyone remember that? You read it here first.

    ..and OBL? he was and is nowhere to be seen.

  • Comment number 74.

    Ideologist dead but idea is still alive. Watch out for the follow up by die heart AQ members and OBL followers.

  • Comment number 75.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 76.

    69 ChrisAOnTheBBC writes:
    "So the wind is behind him. Whence will he sail?" Mark Mardell makes a schoolboy linguistic error, here, trying to be clever....."
    ------------------------
    I thought he was just quoting this phrase used by Rush Limbaugh the night before.


  • Comment number 77.

    AMERICA's BEST? CANNOT APPREHEND AN UNARMED MAN?? AND SHOOT A WOMAN IN THE LEG??? ....good for the moral, gloating over the murder of an arch-enemy. But be careful you don't slip beyond the moral and acceptable pale, or you'll find yourself wallowing in the same filth as your enemies. While Obama and his colleagues are safe from any possible reprisals, common Anmericans could get it in the neck, yet !!

  • Comment number 78.

    #72 I_IS MCCool

    --- My main point has been referred --- But you appear not to equate all Human lives as equal --and he saved 200,000 Chinese !

    --- As you said in #65 ---- "So, please don’t try to insult all our intelligences"

  • Comment number 79.

    Margaret Howard

    ---Have you saved any of your latest contributions to the Europe blog before they were ´referred´ ?

    --- a serious victimization problem is becoming obvious --try to begin saving all --before you submit them to the blog.

    ---- referrals are also occurring after blog is closed --to erase some contributions.

    ---- and they are seldom re-judged.


  • Comment number 80.

    re: 66 obamas_bin_liner:

    "blah blah blah .. yadda yadda yadda .. nothing zilch niet .. blogs of verbiage .. no one stays on track .. sheep just staring into your tv sets, mouth gawping believing the reverberating white noise that spews forth."

    Has the inkling ever penetrated through the layers of your conspiracy that it might in fact be you who is farthest removed from reality, wallowing in a delusional fantasy that inures you to reality, and thus marginalizes and immobilizes you?

    Just wondering.

  • Comment number 81.

    Does anyone wonder how lifelong democrat Donald Trump came to be such an ardent Republican? He always seems to be acting up to the extent that he makes the republican party look ridiculous. He also has effectively split the Republican vote. Quite suspicious.

  • Comment number 82.

    #65

    Your comment appeared after I last posted. Anyways, Von Braun was the world's top rocket scientist. That he agreed to join the Nazi party to continue his work, as many scientists did, does not make him a "top Nazi."

    The Nazis who were tried were the ones who did engage in various war crimes. Nazis who were tried and convicted were found to have formulated policy, ran camps, and killed innocents. A scientist who did none of those things, never rose above the rank of "major," and never left his rocket labs is hardly a Nazi leader.

    That von Braun and others turned a blind eye to Nazi atrocities of which they were partially aware is an interesting topic. How should we have dealt with those, like von Braun or Heinz Guderian, who did much to help the Nazis without directly committing atrocities or formulating policy? How should we think about the prominent post war roles of such people?

    But to simplify our view of history to "von Braun had to join the Nazi party to continue his work and therefore was a top Nazi" is nonsensical. The idea that someone's membership alone in the Nazi party is automatically grounds for full moral condemnation is equally nonsensical without delving into what choices that person had and what their actions were.

  • Comment number 83.

    #78

    "#72 I_IS MCCool

    --- My main point has been referred --- But you appear not to equate all Human lives as equal --and he saved 200,000 Chinese !

    --- As you said in #65 ---- "So, please don’t try to insult all our intelligences""

    Neither it seems, does Rabe! Why was he happy to save 200,000 Chinese when at risk to his own life no doubt and then do nothing about the millions of Jews being murdered in Europe?

    Remember, he was back in Germany from 1938 onwards, not during the last year of the War. So he had ample opportunity to do something even if it was just a symbolic public denouncing of his membership of the Nazi Party and everything it stood for.

    Nonetheless he seems a very interesting man who I will look into in more depth but I think it was foolish of you to use him as an example of "a good Nazi". To be a Nazi is not to be good. By it's very doctrine you can't be.

  • Comment number 84.

    22. At 18:30pm 3rd May 2011, LucyJ wrote:
    "9/11 defined our generation the way the Vietnam war defined the late 60' and 70's generation, the way WWII defined the 40's generation..."
    ----
    If you're saying that your generation has allowed a group of Middle East terrorists to "define" your generation, I'd say that's pretty sad. And no excuse for a lack of modesty and decorum in any event.

    But surely your generation's self-image has a little more foundation than a long whine about being caught up in G.W. Bush's two "discretionary" wars, doesn't it? I mean, the WWII generation had a great depression too, and the Vietnam children had the civil rights and ANTI-war movements.

    As for the wars otherwise -- what percentage of your generation has actually had a hand in them? And where HAS your generation been in the protests against those pointless wars? It looks to me like, in the absence of a draft, you people have been "uninvolved" -- to put a kind face on it.

    "With the takedown of bin Ladin, America has got her groove back, we have got our pride back and our spirit is that of a survivor..."
    ----
    That smacks of a disgustingly superficial sort of patriotism in my view. Bad enough that you LOST your pride in the first place without needing to have it restored by a blood-letting in a third-world country (justified or otherwise).

    "God Bless America and our troops and our allies forever and ever...."
    ----
    Especially if we don't have to make any sacrifices OURSELVES (God forbid, God forbid!)

  • Comment number 85.

    Margaret Howard

    --- I have managed to save one of your contributions by chance --after 10 hours of the blog being closed I had ´lost´ at least 6 contributions --and one hour later the remaining 2 were also ´referred´. All of our contributions were on the same topic as those not ´referred´ --- but different opinion. JeorgrG1 was similarily affected.

  • Comment number 86.

    I continue to be embarassed and saddened by the "jubilance" at the death of another human being by Americans; at this point I wouldn't be surprised to see a horde of beer drinking adolescents using their weapons for celebratory fire and burning a Pakistani flag. At the same time, I have no love for the Obamas of the world, no matter what their ideology might be; the mindless and blind killing of general public with bombs defies all defense, regardless of who does it...and, America and Great Britain have each done their share over the centuries.

    Having said that, killing an unarmed man, when he could have been captured fails on two fronts: 1.) it smacks of injustice, and 2.) it misses a public relations opportunity. The opportunity was to show him as a tired, old has-been, who spent his last years of "action" camped out in luxury (in stark contrast to his myth) instead of hunched in a cave eating lizard and dried goat meat, with other "warriors." Now in death, unarmed but resisting, he becomes a martyr...and, once again the U.S. comes off as the unjust oppressor lacking even the virtue to forego shooting an unarmed Osama and his wife.

    If this was an "ordered kill" I hope someone in D.C. will acknowledge that and keep the young SEALS who were likely "just following orders" from looking like undisciplined cowboys.

  • Comment number 87.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 88.

    1) Not a big fan of Obama but must say I'm more in tune with his foreign policy than his domestic policy. Kudos for the mission. The praise or the blame lies with the Commander in Chief. (The buck stops there)

    2) Those who think the soldiers should have endangered their lives so Osama could get a trial. Does anybody but the dumbest dimwit not know that OBL was responsible for thousand of innocent people killed around the world. We lost nearly 3,000 in one whack. Did they get a trial? What were the charges?

    3) If a mad dog is killed in the neighborhood would you be happy or would you require a moment of silence for the dog?

  • Comment number 89.

    Ref 56
    Mikhail Gorbachev is the most evil man. No wondered he is hated by most Russians. While he was receiving his "Prize", his troops (KGB death squad) killing innocent people in Azerbaijan, Tbilisi, Lithuania, Latvia, Moldova etc. It should have been called Nobel War Prize in his case. He was preaching democracy and human rights in the West and at the same time murdering people who wanted to be free from 75 years of Soviet oppression.

  • Comment number 90.

    I_IS_McCool, (#42. At 20:32pm 3rd May 2011)
    ”... most of the effort to catch top Nazis alive was so that they could be shipped backed to the USA to work on their weapons programmes and help put Americans in space and on the Moon. I guess the fact that these guys helped murder millions of Jews could be overlooked just for now. And you wonder why many in the World see the Americans as hypocrites?”
    You are unfamiliar with Operation Paperclip. Follow the link and learn. “Top Nazis!” what a hoot!

  • Comment number 91.

    I_IS_McCool, (#58. At 22:03pm 3rd May 2011)

    ”No. 48:
    Quite frankly, absolute and utter bunkum.
    You have been well and truly brainwashed.”


    Any evidence to support your two claims above?

  • Comment number 92.

    88. At 01:01am 4th May 2011, MaudDib wrote:
    "3) If a mad dog is killed in the neighborhood would you be happy or would you require a moment of silence for the dog?"

    First I'd ask: how do we know this dog is "mad." For all I know, this may be a personal thing between you and the dog. Or maybe you just don't like dogs in general? Or you want to get rid of this particular dog for reasons you aren't sharing with me, that have nothing to do with being mad?

    (Forgive me if that sounds like a rehash of the George Bush/Sadam Hussein thing... wholly unintentional I assure you.)

    So I'd be skeptical first. Very, very skeptical. I would take my time watching the dog -- and YOU as well. Even if you said "Oh you can trust ME! I'm a mad dog EXPERT!)

    But if convinced that the dog was indeed mad, I would kill it myself if I could (not a happy thing) -- and then require a moment of silence for the dog. After all, who knows what drove that dog to madness? Maybe it was YOU -- or even ME -- or a bad, hurting tooth or something!

    The reliance on either-or scenarios is a symptom of a philosophical blindness that seems to be running at epidemic levels today. I put it down to a lack of imagination.


  • Comment number 93.

    1. UKW, well said.

    ----------

    2. Mark wrote:

    So the killing sends waves that will wash against these shores and those of a wider world. Some are saying this moment assures Mr Obama's re-election. It assures no such thing.

    [[Agreed: "Events, dear boy, events." Still, I'm betting that at least one Republican heavyweights woke up on Monday, heard the news, and decided 2016 was a better bet.]]

    "However huge this event snow seems, wait a couple of months. In the relentless frenzy of the 24-hour media cycle, it will probably be half forgotten by the the time of the election. "

    [[Maybe. In general the "week-is-a-long-time-in-politics" view is correct. But some events are landmarks in the public psyche. The fallout from the September 11 attack has been the dominant news story for a decade. The guy was the universal bogeyman, public enemy No. 1, for ten years. The US has spent about a trillion dollars on this. I don't think this one is going to be forgotten any time soon.]]

  • Comment number 94.

    18. At 17:49pm 3rd May 2011, Oldloadr wrote:
    "Oh, you who are so intellectual and above the baser instincts of your neighbors; tell us how you would handle the world?"

    If I told you that, your head would explode -- and I have enough on my conscience already.

    You should thank me for this, but I know you won't. It's OK. I wasn't expecting an invite to your "Osama's Dead!" party anyway.

  • Comment number 95.

    Here's a link to a short, but thoughtful, discussion of some of the legal issues, from CBS News: http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-503543_162-20059382-503543.html

  • Comment number 96.

    i rarely say this but at such a historical moment it needs to be said. Thank god for Navel Seals. Now those evil, soulless, godless, murders can see if you murders ours we will come for you no matter how long it takes.

  • Comment number 97.

    Curt Carpenter, I have read your posts for a long time now, & I have come to be disappointed by their character. Lucy's posts may not be all that deep, but she offers her whimsical self & her culture to the world here; you bring a string of insults. I'm going to be straight with you here, there are times when I become so frustrated by some of the comments on this blog that I want to scream & throw my pc out the window; this is not one of those times. Instead, I feel sorry for your cynicism & shallowness.

    Do you know what I do to ease my mind of the frustrations that the world brings?
    On some days...
    I lay in a thick bed of grass under a large Oak, close my eyes, & let the sun - as bright as a summer afternoon - warm my face through the canopy; on a good day a stray breeze allows moss from a low branch to tickle my forehead.

    On other days...
    I sit on my porch, close my eyes, & let the smell of rain - heavy in the air - pass through my lungs, until the all too familiar patter reaches my ears.

    I believe some release will do you some good.
    Until next time, "soigne toi." - BeL

  • Comment number 98.

    I like the top picture, Obama has that look on his face that seems to say : "Oh hell yeah time to get mah drink on and coast on to another re-election."

    Hehe. Bush Sr. thought the same thing after the first Gulf War...

  • Comment number 99.

    JMay, you should notice, however, that the picture is a stock photo from Getty Images. The context in which it was taken is unknown. The editor just liked the look of it.

  • Comment number 100.

    "14. At 17:35pm 3rd May 2011, Illogicbuster wrote:

    "But perhaps Mr Obama will benefit more than most."

    Nope. Polling of likely voters already shows that no appreciable bump over this for Obama. It might have helped him if this happened a week or two before the elections but, nothing lasting when the USD is collapsing, real unemployment is ~19%, etc."

    I doubt he'll benefit in the long term. All those Muslims he held out the 'Hand of Freindship' to, will question the 'removal' of Bin Laden and Obama's dithering over Libya.

 

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