Sunday, September 18, 2005

The New York Times Magazine recently had an in-depth article recounting just how Osama bin Laden was able to escape in Tora Bora.

A key segment:
One of them was Brig. Gen. James N. Mattis, the commander of some 4,000 marines who had arrived in the Afghan theater by now. Mattis, along with another officer with whom I spoke, was convinced that with these numbers he could have surrounded and sealed off bin Laden's lair, as well as deployed troops to the most sensitive portions of the largely unpatrolled border with Pakistan. He argued strongly that he should be permitted to proceed to the Tora Bora caves. The general was turned down. An American intelligence official told me that the Bush administration later concluded that the refusal of Centcom to dispatch the marines - along with their failure to commit U.S. ground forces to Afghanistan generally - was the gravest error of the war.
Apparently, the public needs to be reminded that 1) after fours years since 9/11, Osama is still free to roam the planet and yet Saddam has long been locked up, and 2) CIA director Goss said just a few months ago that we have an "excellent idea" where he's located.

I once again must invoke the Clinton rule: just imagine the above under a Clinton presidency. The rabid GOP would hoist on us constant reminders of Osama's relative freedom and the bungling of his capture. We would've seen Willie Horton type images of such in campaign ads.

And yet the Osama screw-up is just one of many instances that have accumulated proving GW and his gang to be as clueless and inept as any administration in history. I have always taken consolation in one thing: in the years ahead when GW is put into proper perspective by historians and the like -- undoubtedly casting him in the brutally negative light deserved -- I'll be able to tell my curious son and daughter, "no, I never voted for him."

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