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ishmael
04-06-2010, 12:56 PM
Hindsight, and all that, and please, military people say your piece.

By many accounts we had Osama cornered in the Hindu Kush and let him slip away in the opening days. I don't know why, but as I understand it the order was given to stand down. It seems to me, a wise use of this power would have been to capture/kill him and continue keeping Saddam on a leash. Instead we're in two land wars, with no real end in sight on either front. It's costing us and our allies a proverbial arm and a leg. Now, what do we do?

I'm not posting this to be argumentative. I'd like to hear opinions.

Cuyahoga Chuck
04-06-2010, 09:38 PM
We can all have opinions but ,since it is not known who the person was who, supposedly, let Osama get away and if so , why, any opining is so much yada, yada, yada.
What we do know is it was on the Bush/Cheney watch but that doesn't get us very close to any kind of useful answer.
Put your head to work and come up with a topic where there is at least some latitude for speculation.

skuthorp
04-06-2010, 09:44 PM
Well my opinion was that Osama was too handy a whipping boy and diversion to let him get caught/killed that early on. More use to them alive. Might have short circuited other agendas. Of course I think the previous admin thought they would "win" easily too.

LeeG
04-06-2010, 09:56 PM
Jack, there are a lot of good books about Iraq and Afghanistan. Have you read any? Because if this is another "what was Daniel Boone like?" thread it's just pure masturbation to solicit conversation if you never cared enough to study the topic on your own.

The Bigfella
04-06-2010, 09:57 PM
Given that America's main military venture is the sale of arms, do you really think that catching him is the aim?

Take a look at the sales of US military hardware and software.

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

LeeG
04-06-2010, 10:30 PM
. I don't know why, but as I understand it .



http://www.amazon.com/Kill-Bin-Laden-Commanders-Account/dp/0312567405/ref=sr_1_1/175-0902933-7536707?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1270610726&sr=1-1

Chris Coose
04-06-2010, 10:34 PM
Osama bin Laden is a work of fiction.

skuthorp
04-06-2010, 10:53 PM
Osama bin Laden is a work of fiction.

And who is still writing the book, the arms industry? The religious fanatics? Several governments whose purpose it serves to have an outside distraction? A slew of tribal warlords who are vaguely legitamised as long as they are publicly 'anti Osama? All of the above?

PeterSibley
04-06-2010, 11:02 PM
And who is still writing the book, the arms industry? The religious fanatics? Several governments whose purpose it serves to have an outside distraction? A slew of tribal warlords who are vaguely legitamised as long as they are publicly 'anti Osama? All of the above?

All of the above .War is money ,it suits industry and it's largely painless to the population at large ....who never go to war zones , never get bombed , never visit veterans hospitals and see the row on row of amputated young men who serve this animal .

It is effing vile .

Bob (oh, THAT Bob)
04-06-2010, 11:26 PM
My goal would have been to capture him as quietly as possible, alive. Let all his supporters think he was still alive, then for a time, impersonate him in communiques to his supporters. Find them, kill them. Then announce either his capture or his death in battle.

And don't think I don't agree with all the anti-Bush/Cheney sentiments, I agree. I think justice on both sides of the equation is necessary.

LeeG
04-07-2010, 12:29 AM
Bob, that makes sense, don't think 150,000 troops would be necessary to do that

skuthorp
04-07-2010, 12:54 AM
And don't forget that Osama is a Saudi, that fact has always been central to the way this was initially handled and has since evolved. But we are all complicit here as our economies are addicted to Saudi oil.

Bob (oh, THAT Bob)
04-07-2010, 01:13 AM
Bob, that makes sense, don't think 150,000 troops would be necessary to do that

I totally agree, and argued as much years ago, that more troops were just more targets. Perhaps the "surge" in troop numbers will work. I always look long term. What is our "burn-rate", and what is theirs, in both money and troops? Right now, in a war of attrition, they are winning, at very low cost. Our cost is close to (or over?) a trillion dollars. I'm not saying give up, but constantly reevaluate tactics. That was critical in WWII, when we were losing in the beginning.

PeterSibley
04-07-2010, 01:20 AM
As I've talked about before, my Old Man was career Army Intelligence; the Army Security Agency, to be precise. After Basic, Signal school, DLI for Farsi, he was sent to Afghanistan for a few years; right hard up on the Soviet border. He was a "Weatherman," whose job it was to send balloons up to a hundred thousand feet and see what could be seen from up there. You get the picture.

Good Lloyd, I wish he were still around! Really miss him sometimes, especially when I have a question about the region...

He told me a story about how he'd been sent into town to get supplies or whatever. Oh, in town, it was cups of tea and flowery language and compliments and blessings and praises. But when he got the truck back to wherever, as far up the hill it could go, there were a group of men of indeterminate ages waiting to act as porters. All with the jezzails and the T-sectioned Khyber swords; all smoking through cupped hands, that the tobacco not touch their lips as decreed by Allah and the Prophet. As he would portion each man out his load, they would greet him simply and (he said) kindly: "May you never know thirst."

And up the hills in that thin dry air they would go. For what was for them a respectable wage, doing back-breaking work.


He said that in the little village, they would gather around the well on moonlit nights for tea and stories. He would sometimes join them, spinning American folk yarns for them as best he could (Paul Bunyan, etc.). He asked one of the village elders, once, if they feared the Soviet.

"No," the man laughed. "Why would they want our tea and moonlight?"

Well, the Soviet tried, and they got their asses handed to them. When you have a population willing to fight and fight and fight and fight and keep fighting-- 31 years and counting, at this point-- willing to fight for tea and moonlight, how can you defeat an enemy like that?

No. Far better to make friends, and keep them close. We can kick the Taliban in the bollocks again and again, but unless and until we can get good diplomats on the ground, spread widely enough to actually talk to enough people, we are doomed to fail.

Over tea and moonlight.

Why does that remind me of Vietnam ?