Monday, May 02, 2011
Quotes of the Day: Part 1
"Bottom line -- endless war didn't work. In the end, we found the man who authorized the attacks on 9/11 through good intelligence work and killed him with a very small, targeted strike with our best trained forces. We didn't use an army battalion or a surge or huge ground troops backed up by Abrams tanks. It was a surgical strike pulled off by a small unit. Imagine if we had invaded Pakistan instead to accomplish our objective (they were only nominally cooperating with us -- he was sitting right outside their capital). How little sense would that have made? Just about as much sense as the other wars made -- not much at all. War is the wrong strategy when fighting terrorism."
-- Cenk Uygur in the Huffington Post
I realize that just last week I was criticizing Uygur, but credit where credit is absolutely due: He's 100% right about this. Punishing the Taliban for its collusion with bin Laden wasn't necessarily wrong, but from a pragmatic standpoint -- when it came to accomplishing what should have always been our number one goal -- it certainly wasn't right either, particularly not when bin Laden may have been in Pakistan almost the entire time. And as for our folly in Iraq -- that's not even worth dignifying with an ostensibly cogent argument.
There will be a lot of debate today over every facet of this story -- from the logistical details of the raid, to the political ramifications for the president, to the possible consequences for each and every one of us around the globe. But when it comes to this specific issue, it should always have been obvious that terrorism isn't an army or a country -- it's a methodology, and one that can only be fought with top-notch intelligence and swift, surgical precision. In other words, with brains, not necessarily brawn.