Would it kill the Obama administration to be upfront?
Only one of the five people killed in the raid that got Osama bin Laden was armed and fired any shots, a senior U.S. defence official said Thursday, acknowledging that the new account differs greatly from original administration portrayals of a chaotic, intense and prolonged firefight.
The sole shooter in the al-Qaida leader's Pakistani compound was quickly killed in the early minutes of the commando operation, before the Navy SEALs assault team swept through the house and shot the others, the official said. The details have become clearer now that the assault team has been debriefed, the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak on the record.
He said the raid should be described as a precision, floor-by-floor operation to hunt and find the al-Qaida leader and his protectors, rather than as it has been portrayed by a succession of Obama administration briefers since bin Laden's death was announced Sunday night.
In another development, aviation experts said a helicopter used in the assault appeared to be a stealthier, top secret and never-before-seen version of a routinely used special ops helicopter. The helicopter made a hard landing and was destroyed by the military team at the site, leaving behind wreckage for experts to analyze.
As the SEALs moved into bin Laden's compound, they were fired on by bin Laden's courier, Abu Ahmed al-Kuwaiti, who was in the guesthouse, the senior defence official said. The SEALs returned fire, and the courier was killed, along with a woman with him. She was hit in the crossfire, the official said.
The Americans were never fired on again as they encountered and killed a man on the first floor and then bin Laden's son on a staircase, before arriving at bin Laden's room. Officials have said bin Laden was killed after he appeared to be lunging for a weapon.
White House and Defence Department and CIA officials through the week have offered varying and foggy versions of the operation, though the dominant focus was on a firefight that officials said consumed most of the 40-minute assault:
— "There were many other people who were armed ... in the compound," White House spokesman Jay Carney said Tuesday when asked if bin Laden was armed. "We expected a great deal of resistance and were met with a great deal of resistance."
— "For most of the period there, there was a firefight," a senior defence official told Pentagon reporters in a briefing Monday.
— And though officials later revised these words, White House counterterrorism adviser John Brennan originally said bin Laden, too, took part in the shootout. Later the administration said bin Laden wasn't armed but that there were guns in the room.
Islamofascists hate the West and Obama needs a win to secure a second term. It's that simple. Show a photo with appropriate warnings, have a clear time-line and grow a backbone. You ARE at war with those whom you coddle.
And now, cut Pakistan off. They don't need our money to hide terrorists.
I knew he wouldn't stick around:
Michael Ignatieff is returning to his first love — academia — after leading the federal Liberals to their worst electoral showing in history.
Ignatieff, who lost his own seat in Monday's bloodbath, has been appointed as senior resident at the University of Toronto's Massey College.
He will be teaching at university's faculty of law and the political science department, as well as at the Munk School of Global Affairs and the School of Public Policy and Governance.
Ignatieff is a graduate of the university and an internationally acclaimed academic and author.
Politics is a game for the lecherous and those who vacation in Las Vegas, not for visiting Americans.
The Great Firewall of China gets some new bricks:
China announced a new State Internet Information Office Wednesday to unify the squabbling agencies that oversee the Chinese Internet, which Beijing views as both a potential gold mine and a political threat. The State Internet Information Office appears intended to help improve coordination and rivalry among the dozen or more Chinese government ministries and agencies with a stake in the Internet. It will be based in the State Council Information Office, the government's propaganda and information arm. In February, President Hu Jintao called for stricter government management of the Internet, telling officials they needed to come to grips with the "virtual society" online.
Stephen Harper has apparently taken a page out this book:
One of Prime Minister Stephen Harper's campaign promises was that he would pass the Investigative Powers for the 21st Century Act within 100 days of his May 2, 2011 election. This bill contains some of the most dangerous and oppressive sections in Canadian law.
One example of the dangers of this bill is:Clause 5 of the bill provides that the offences of public incitement of hatred and wilful promotion of hatred may be committed by any means of communication and include making hate material available, by creating a hyperlink that directs web surfers to a website where hate material is posted...
Hyperlinks are at the very core of the internet, they are what enables every internet user to view any available page on the internet and direct others to view pages. This bill will put the control of all hyperlinks into the hands of government bureaucrats and put all Canadian internet users in legal jeopardy.
This clause essentially makes any Canadian posting a link on the internet legally responsible for the content of any web page linked to even though the person posting the link has no control over the content of that page. If the person who does control the page you've linked to changes the pages content you are still legally responsible because you posted a link.
This will make it unsafe for any Canadian to post a link to any page on the internet that he does not control.
If I link to a page that promotes hatred to expose that hatred to someone who may be unaware of it, am I some sort of troublemaker or hate-monger? What the hell is Harper thinking?
Remember when George Bush was attacked for not jumping into action the second he heard about the Twin Towers? Well...
Similar fears started running through Mariah Williams' head. "I don't remember the story we were reading — was it about pigs?" says Williams, 16. "But I'll always remember watching his face turn red. He got really serious all of a sudden. But I was clueless. I was just 7. I'm just glad he didn't get up and leave, because then I would have been more scared and confused." Chantal Guerrero, 16, agrees. Even today, she's grateful that Bush regained his composure and stayed with the students until The Pet Goat was finished. "I think the President was trying to keep us from finding out," says Guerrero, "so we all wouldn't freak out."
Stick it in your ear, leftists.
And now, under the sea.