Truth, ide­ol­ogy and the end of Osama bin Laden

The Washington Times Weekly - - Commentary -

Frus­trat­ing! That’s the ap­pro­pri­ate word for what is hap­pen­ing in the wake of the Osama bin Laden raid. Be­sides the pre­ci­sion of the Navy SEALs, the big story to emerge from the ac­tion is that co­erced in­ter­ro­ga­tion gave the CIA vi­tal in­for­ma­tion used to track bin Laden to his lair. Cur­rent CIA Chief Leon Panetta has con­firmed that.

Of course, that ex­po­si­tion is em­bar­rass­ing to the left, in­clud­ing Pres­i­dent Obama, Vice Pres­i­dent Biden and Sec­re­tary of State Clin­ton, who are all on record as say­ing co­erced in­ter­ro­ga­tion does not work. Ap­par­ently, they were wrong in a big way.

The nails-on-the-black­board part of this story is that some lib­eral pun­dits are try­ing to deny the un­de­ni­able. The spin they are us­ing is that a “mo­saic” of in­tel­li­gence led the CIA to bin Laden. It was not water­board­ing or what­ever. To para­phrase Panetta: We’ll never know if we could have got­ten

just

the same in­tel with­out the wa­ter.

That’s true, but who cares? It is the duty of the fed­eral gov­ern­ment to pro­tect Amer­i­cans from harm. And that’s what the Bush ad­min­is­tra­tion did when it signed off on co­er­cive ques­tion­ing.

The record shows that just three men were wa­ter­boarded: Khalid Sheik Mo­hammed, Abu Zubay­dah and Rahim al- Nashiri, all al-Qaida big shots. Un­der duress, KSM gave up vi­tal in­for­ma­tion that crip­pled his ter­ror group and ul­ti­mately led U.S. authorities to watch bin Laden’s top Pak­istani courier. Even­tu­ally, that man led the CIA to the com­pound out­side Islamabad.

But still, the far left won’t budge. No mat­ter what the facts are about the ef­fec­tive­ness of co­erced in­ter­ro­ga­tion, they will deny them. In­fu­ri­at­ing.

The sane pol­icy go­ing for­ward is this: The pres­i­dent and only the pres­i­dent should have the power to or­der co­erced in­ter­ro­ga­tion, in­clud­ing water­board­ing, if na­tional se­cu­rity is

Three men were wa­ter­boarded: Khalid Sheik Mo­hammed, Abu Zubay­dah and Rahim al-Nashiri. Un­der duress, KSM gave up vi­tal in­for­ma­tion that crip­pled his ter­ror group and ul­ti­mately led U.S. authorities to watch bin Laden’s top Pak­istani courier. Even­tu­ally, that man led the CIA to the com­pound out­side Islamabad. But still, the far left won’t budge. No mat­ter what the facts are about the ef­fec­tive­ness of co­erced in­ter­ro­ga­tion, they will deny them.

en­dan­gered or Amer­i­can lives are on the line. One man makes the de­ci­sion, and his or­ders are car­ried out by an elite in­tel­li­gence team an­swer­able di­rectly to him.

So if Obama doesn’t want to or­der water­board­ing, fine. That’s on him. But the elected leader of the nation should have the power to make the de­ci­sion.

It is ironic that many on the far left openly cel­e­brated the death of bin Laden. So, guys, let me get this straight: It’s OK for U.S. forces to shoot a ter­ror­ist in the head, but it’s not OK to wa­ter­board him if lives are in dan­ger? Good grief.

It is long past time for Amer­i­cans to re­ject ide­ol­ogy that en­dan­gers hu­man be­ings. We live in a dan­ger­ous world chock full of dooms­day weapons. Com­mon sense should dic­tate how the fed­eral gov­ern­ment de­fines strate­gies to pro­tect us. How many times have you heard ide­o­logues say that co­erced in­ter­ro­ga­tion does not work?

Well, it does. Ask bin Laden. Wait, we can’t.

Vet­eran TV news an­chor Bill O’Reilly is au­thor of the book “Pin­heads and Pa­tri­ots: Where You Stand in the Age of Obama”.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.