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Obama 2012: Stealing Bush’s Legacy

Obama is now campaigning on the capture and kill of Osama Bin Laden a year ago today. Really?

Obama railed against and denounced the very policy and procedures that led to the Bin Laden kill. He excoriated Bush for “enhanced interrogation techniques” and waterboarding three (!) top jihad killers. Thousands of lives were saved, but Obama cared more about Khalid Sheik Muhammad's sore nose. Now he is taking credit for those very things? Whiplash. How about the SEALS who took out Bin Laden? Do they deserve any credit? The capture and kill of OBL was ten years in the making.

Much is made of the fact that Obama okayed the kill. Do you mean to tell me he could have said no?

Obama campaigning on Bin Laden shows us he has nothing to campaign on. He catastrophic foreign policy failures are being whitewashed by a complicit propagandist media. Why isn't Obama campaigning on his "cosmic wager" in Egypt and his support of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, Gaza (Hamas) and the United States (CAIR, ISNA, etc.)? Why isn't Obama campaigning on the sharia governments coming to power in Mali, Libya, Tunisia, etc., and on losing north Africa to Islamic supremacists?

Obama should be campaigning on the respect he paid to the body of Osama Bin Laden. How he insisted that Bin Laden be given a full Islamic burial by our soldiers (body washing, Islamic prayer, etc.), or that no photos of the body of Bin Laden be released.

Obama should be campaigning on his deadly new policy, "the war on terror is over," despite the fact that jihad war gaming and attacks against America have never been so high (scroll here).

Obama should be campaigning on our deteriorating relationships with long term allies in Europe and Asia.

Obama should be campaigning on his administration's war on Israel.

Obama should be campaigning on his open mic remark to Russia's president, promising capitulation to Putin's demands after the November election.

Obama should be campaigning on the 15-trillion-dollar debt he incurred, which has irrevocably damaged our nation's strength and power and destroyed our children's future.

The path to bin Laden’s death didn’t start with Obama By Jose A. Rodriguez Jr., Washington Post April 30

But his administration never would have had the opportunity to do the right thing had it not been for some extraordinary work during the George W. Bush administration. Much of that work has been denigrated by Obama as unproductive and contrary to American principles.

He is wrong on both counts.

Shortly after bin Laden met his maker last spring, courtesy of U.S. Special Forces and intelligence, the administration proudly announced that when Obama took office, getting bin Laden was made a top priority. Many of us who served in senior counterterrorism positions in the Bush administration were left muttering: “Gee, why didn’t we think of that?”

The truth is that getting bin Laden was the top counterterrorism objective for U.S. intelligence since well before the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. This administration built on work pain­stakingly pursued for many years before Obama was elected — and without this work, Obama administration officials never would have been in a position to authorize the strike on Abbottabad, Pakistan, that resulted in bin Laden’s overdue death.

In 2004, an al-Qaeda terrorist was captured trying to communicate with Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the leader of the terror organization’s operations in Iraq. That captured terrorist was taken to a secret CIA prison — or “black site” — where, initially, he was uncooperative. After being subjected to some “enhanced interrogation techniques” — techniques authorized by officials at the most senior levels of the U.S. government and that the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel confirmed were consistent with U.S. law — the detainee became compliant. He was not one of the three al-Qaeda operatives who underwent waterboarding, the harshest of the hard measures.

Once this terrorist decided that non-cooperation was a non-starter, he told us many things — including that bin Laden had given up communicating via telephone, radio or Internet, and depended solely on a single courier who went by “Abu Ahmed al-Kuwaiti.” At the time, I was chief of the CIA’s Counterterrorism Center. The fact that bin Laden was relying on a lone courier was a revelation that told me bin Laden had given up day-to-day control of his organization. You can’t run an operation as large, complex and ambitious as al-Qaeda by communicating only every few months. It also told me that capturing him would be even harder than we had thought.

Armed with the pseudonym of bin Laden’s courier, we pressed on. We asked other detainees in our custody if they had ever heard of “al-Kuwaiti.” Khalid Sheik Mohammed, the mastermind of 9/11, reacted in horror when he heard the name. He backed into his cell and vigorously denied ever hearing of the man. We later intercepted communications KSM sent to fellow detainees at the black site, in which he instructed them: “Tell them nothing about the courier!”

In 2005 another senior detainee, Abu Faraj al-Libi, told us that this courier had informed him that Libi had been selected to be al-Qaeda’s No. 3 official. Surely that kind of information is delivered only by highly placed individuals.

A couple of years later, after I became head of the National Clandestine Service, the CIA was able to discover the true name of the courier. Armed with that information, the agency worked relentlessly to locate that man. Finding him eventually led to tracking down and killing bin Laden.

With some trying to turn bin Laden’s death into a campaign talking point for Obama’s reelection, it is useful to remember that the trail to bin Laden started in a CIA black site — all of which Obama ordered closed, forever, on the second full day of his administration — and stemmed from information obtained from hardened terrorists who agreed to tell us some (but not all) of what they knew after undergoing harsh but legal interrogation methods. Obama banned those methods on Jan. 22, 2009.

Read it all. Jose A. Rodriguez Jr. is a 31-year veteran of the CIA and the author of “Hard Measures: How Aggressive CIA Actions After 9/11 Saved American Lives.”


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Atlas Shrugs on 1 May 2012

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