“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Did Nobel Laureate, Obama, Jump the Shark with the Bin Laden Shooting Reports?

Killing Bin Laden by any means was just fine with me. It was inevitable that the Islamic beatification of Bin Laden would begin with a vengeance and it has. Obama certainly personalized and owns the killing of Bin Laden and it was a political decision by him to rush out with early details of the raid and take down of the greatest enemy of the United States. Unfortunately the consequences of killing Bin Laden, yet unknown, are beginning to show Obama to be equivocating. Coupled with the killing of Gadaffi's family in Libya, Obama will soon find himself in some very unfamiliar territory for a Nobel Peace Prize laureate. He needs our support on this one.

Osama Bin Laden dead: White House backtracks on how bin Laden died

The White House admitted last night that its initial account of the way Osama bin Laden died at the hands of US forces had been riddled with errors.

Claims that the al-Qaeda leader had died while firing an automatic weapon at commandos were withdrawn, with President Barack Obama’s spokesman admitting “he was unarmed”. A dramatic description of bin Laden using his wife as a “human shield” and forcing her to sacrifice her life also proved to be false. The woman was still alive and was taken into custody with several of the terrorist’s children.
In an embarrassing climb-down, Barack Obama’s press secretary, Jay Carney, admitted that the previous version of events — which came mostly from the chief US counter-terrorism adviser, John Brennan — had been put out “with great haste”.
The about-turn left the US open to accusations of a cover-up and led to calls for video footage of the raid in Abbottabad, Pakistan, and images of bin Laden’s body to be released to end conspiracy theories.
However, the White House suggested that pictures of bin Laden’s body were too “gruesome” to be made public because they could prove “inflammatory”.
Relations between the US and Pakistan, already strained by the fact that Pakistan was not told in advance about the raid, were put under renewed pressure by contradictory statements from Islamabad. It came as:
* David Cameron said bin Laden “must have had an extensive support network in Pakistan”, leaving the country with “searching questions” to answer.
* Five men of Asian origin were arrested after being seen filming at the Sellafield nuclear site in Cumbria.
* The CIA director, Leon Panetta, said they had been only “60 to 80 per cent sure” that bin Laden was living at the compound.
* Mr Panetta also disclosed that the US was concerned that the Pakistani authorities would alert bin Laden if they told them about the operation.
* Material from the hard drive of bin Laden’s computer, described as “the mother lode of intelligence”, was being analysed.
On a day of claim and counter-claim, Mr Carney gave a briefing in which he knocked down a series of statements made on Monday by Mr Brennan and other government sources. Asked whether officials had been caught in a “fog of war”, he said: “We provided a great deal of information with great haste in order to inform you about the operation. Some of the information is being reviewed and updated.”
He then read out a new account of the assault, in which he said bin Laden was found on the top floor of a three-storey building, and as a US Navy Seal team entered: “His wife rushed the US assaulter and was shot in the leg but not killed. Bin Laden was then shot and killed. He was not armed.”
Navi Pillay, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, called on the White House to make public the “precise facts surrounding his killing” to ensure it adhered to international law.
The Taliban issued a statement in which it said the US “lacks strong evidence to prove its claim” that bin Laden was dead.
Ron Paul, a congressman and Republican presidential candidate, said “confusion” in the White House accounts of events in Abbottabad was fuelling doubts. “The question I have is why does our government invite conspiracy theories all the time? Why don’t they show a picture?” he said.
Mr Carney said the White House was still “reviewing” whether it was “appropriate” to release any of the images. He also appeared to cast doubt on suggestions that the US filmed bin Laden’s burial at sea by refusing to confirm that the video existed.
Mr Cameron said the Americans had already done enough to show “reasonable people that bin Laden was dead” before saying that the Pakistani authorities had serious questions to answer over whether bin Laden was being protected while living at his compound within walking distance of Pakistan’s main military academy.
“The fact that bin Laden was living in a large house in a populated area suggests that he must have had an extensive support network in Pakistan,” he said. “We don’t currently know the extent of that network, so it is right that we ask searching questions about it. And we will.”
Mr Panetta confirmed that the Pakistani authorities were not told in advance of the audacious helicopter assault because of fears that the information would be leaked.
He also said the US had been unable to spot bin Laden in his compound from satellite images, meaning the CIA was only “60 to 80 per cent sure” they would find him there.
In Islamabad, the authorities said they had co-operated with the US and had kept the building under surveillance since 2009, contradicting Mr Obama’s account of a four-year CIA operation to identify bin Laden’s hiding place. They also suggested that their soldiers had raided the building in 2003 — two years before the building was even built, according to the US — looking for another senior al-Qaeda operative.
As the men arrested outside the Sellafield plant were being questioned, Mr Cameron said Britain must be “more vigilant than ever” against the threat of terrorism.


  1. He is losing his nerve:

    President Obama is increasingly doubtful that there's a compelling reason to release a photograph of Osama bin Laden's corpse, ABC News has learned.

    There don't seem to be many skeptics of bin Laden's death in the Muslim world, with bin Laden's wife having survived the attack to identify bin Laden's death both to the Navy SEALs and Pakistani authorities.

    Meanwhile, sources say, Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton are advising the president about concerns at the Pentagon and State Department that releasing a photograph could prompt a backlash against the US for killing bin Laden where one does not seem to currently exist.

  2. He's Daid. He's Daid. He's Daid.

    Fuck the Mooslim World; Fuck the Yew Een, Fuck'em All. He's Daid.

    The Motherfucker attacked The United States, Killed Thousands of Americans, and set off the equivalent of a World War.

    Now, He is Daid. Seal Team 6 killed his ass, and he is Daid.

    Hallelujah, He is Daid.

  3. Now, it's time to get busy, and build a few thousand ethanol refineries.

  4. Man, we need some common sense in Washington, right now, so damned bad.

  5. His screen presence also far outshadows that of other jihadist leaders. Where they are strident, or ranting, or dull, he is calm and articulate.


    One cannot mourn the death of a man who planned or inspired so many atrocities. But we should recognize that his bigger-than-life iconic presence was the heart and soul of jihadist Islam.

    When U.S. pressure forced him away from the television cameras, his ideology lost momentum. And now that the dogged determination of American counter-terrorism forces has silenced him for good, there is no one who can replace him.

    Death Of An Icon

  6. .

    "For they sow the wind, and they shall reap the whirlwind. The standing grain has no head; it shall yield no flour; if it were to yield, strangers would devour it.


  7. The after action publicity activities of the Obama Administration are not that important. Whether the US releases photos, videos or goes dark, not a driving force of future events.

    What is a driving force, whether the military withdrawal from Afghanistan starts on time, or experiences some kind of delay.

    Whether or not the US continues to fund the Jihadists in the Pakistani government and military a more interesting policy matter.

    Should President Obama break with Bush Administration policy and declare Pakistan a State Sponsor of Terror.

    Rather than the Pakistani being declared the premier US ally in the battle against international terrorism.

    Or should the US find some "middle ground"?

    Regardless, the $18 billion in aid to Pakistan, since the raid on NYCity has been more than enough.

    The Pakistani should be cut off the US teat, immediately. Phased out, if need be, as we withdraw from land-locked Afghanistan.

    But cut off none the less.

  8. Maybe, eventually, the lefties will figure out that the missile defense in Poland was all about Pakistan, not Iran.

  9. Whoa, much weaker than expected ISM Services number 52.7

  10. .

    I forget, how many teats does the US have?

    Libya’s rebel government asks for $3 billion in international loans

    BENGHAZI, LIBYA — Libya’s rebel government said Tuesday that it is asking international donors for up to $3 billion in loans, warning that without the cash infusion it will be unable to pay the salaries of civil servants and provide food and medicine to civilians.

    Rebel leaders have urged countries that froze Libyan assets to shift that money to them, but diplomats say there are legal obstacles to such a move. A senior U.S. official said the coalition wants to provide financial support to the rebels, but hasn’t committed to a precise amount and is trying to figure out how to do so legally.

    Top diplomats from around the world, including Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, are scheduled to discuss ways to meet the financial needs of the rebels at a meeting in Rome on Thursday...

    Will US Support Rebel Jobs Program?


  11. For $3 Billion we could build a Billion Gallons/Yr of Cellulosic Ethanol.

    And, a Gigawatt of biomass-powered Electricity.

  12. Hmm, looks like the run-up in gasoline prices might be over (for awhile, at least.)

    Oil stocks up, gasoline and diesel stocks down. same ol', same ol'.

    Economy not "rolling over," yet, but it seems to be kinda "stalling out."

  13. .


    Polite Washington speak for grant, gift, or baksheesh.

    Kinda like how Iraq oil was going to pay for the war.

    Some economists estimate the fully accounted cost of that war will be $3 trillion. Afghanistan another trillion before its over. After 9/11 the FED went into its easy money mode to prop up the economy leading to many of the excesses that have brought us to the brink of bankruptcy.

    Osama may be dead and unable to enjoy it but many would say he won.

    The Tao of Pogo:

    We have met the enemy and it is us.


  14. That money could have made us, honest to God, "Energy Independent."

  15. Our "Balance of Payments" would be in Great shape. A whole hell of a lot more people would be working, and Tax Collections would be much higher (while expenses for Military action, Unemployment, Food Stamps/Medicaid would be much lower.)

    We truly are "the dumbest people in the Universe."

  16. .

    Unfortunately, it was hardly a learning moment to most of the key participants.

    A mere nit, easily recovered from (if they suffered at all), for the Pols, the bankers, and the multinationals. The only people in jail, the little guy.

    It's the way of the world.


  17. Michelle Obama Does the Dougie

    Jeeze, they cropped out her fat ass.

    Two orders of ribs, please.
    or, rather:
    Two Ribs,
    Let's Move!

  18. Rumsfeld on Gallegher show here now:

  19. .

    Her ass can be kinda intimidating in some shots but she's not bad.

    Obama could have done a lot worse.


  20. .

    Rumsfeld on Gallegher show here now:



  21. Germany ramps up Offshore Wind

    They're getting 17% of their electricity from Renewables. About the same as California.

    21st Century.

  22. We'll be bailing out California soon, to keep up payments to illegals and welfare funded, anti-American illiterate Hispanic Breeders. hundreds of billions in Gas and Oil and agriculture remain untapped...

    Brilliant, simply brilliant.

  23. Stuff that cellulose up your blind Green Ass.

  24. ... just suggesting a gentle wipe of TP to clean things up.

  25. Osama's Death May Have Been In The Stars

    Who can deny it was allah's will? Nothing happens but by the will of allah, and the drift of the stars, we all know that.

    Indeed I saw the aligned planets this morn, kinda neat, you should get up early and take a look.

    Blue domed sky today, beautiful weather, we are in the moon of the first flowering of the phlox, my favorite flower. And soon we will be in the moon of the first cutting of the grains, another good moon.

    Have a whinney of a day....


  26. Before I say which Presidential Candidate released the following, tell me what you think.

    First, we should only commit our forces when clear and vital American interests are at stake, period.

    Second, if we have to fight, we fight to win. To do that we use overwhelming force. We only send our troops into war with the objective to defeat the enemy as quickly as possible. We do not send our military and stretch out the mission with an open-ended and ill-defined mission. Nation-building, a nice idea in theory, but it’s not the main purpose of our armed forces. We use our military to win wars.

    And third, we must have clearly defined goals and objectives before sending our troops into harm’s way. If you can’t explain the mission to the American people clearly, concisely, then our sons and daughters should not be sent to battle. Period.

    Fourth, American soldiers must never be put under foreign command. We will fight side by side by our allies, but American soldiers must remain under the care and command of the American officers.

    And fifth, sending our armed forces should be the last resort. We don’t go looking for dragons to slay. However, we will encourage the forces of freedom around the world who are sincerely fighting for the empowerment of the individual.

    When it makes sense, when it’s appropriate, we’ll provide them with support and help them win their own freedom. We’re not indifferent to the cause of human rights or the desire for freedom. We’re always on the side of both. But we can’t fight every war. We can’t undo every injustice around the world.

    But with strength, and clarity in those five points, we’ll make for a safer, more prosperous, more peaceful world. Because as the U.S. leads by example, as we support freedom across the globe, we’re gonna prove that free and healthy countries, they don’t wage war on other free and healthy countries.

    The stronger we are, the stronger and more peaceful the world will be under our example.

  27. You keep conflating issues that are unconnected, Doug.

    Just because they are wrong about one thing doesn't mean they're wrong about Everything.

    How're ya enjoying that "fossil fuel" gasoline over there, dumbshit? What is it, $4.60/gal, or so?

  28. Exxon, and the Saudis are taking good care of you, aren't they, you dumb motherfucker?

  29. Bill to deny federal funds to sancturary cities on deck.

    Vote Democrat and defeat this tyranny. Raza

  30. We fund the Saudis and Brazil and etc rather than to Drill here, baby.

    Thanks to your buddies the Green Socialists.

  31. BTW, E85 is selling for about $2.89/gal in Iowa.

    How does it feel to be among the stupidest of the stupid?

  32. Let's hear it for Federal Subsidies to turn food into fuel.

    Starve, baby, starve!

  33. Let' Blame Speculators

    White House and congressional attacks on oil speculation do not alter the oil market's fundamental demand-and-supply reality. What would lower the long-term price of oil is for Congress to permit exploration for the estimated billions upon billions of barrels of oil off our Atlantic and Pacific Ocean shores, the Gulf of Mexico and Alaska, not to mention the estimated billions, possibly trillions, of barrels of shale oil in Wyoming, Colorado, Utah and North Dakota.

    Some politicians pooh-pooh calls for drilling, saying it would take five or 10 years to recover the oil and won't solve today's problems. Nonsense! I guarantee you that if permits were granted to all of our oil sources, we would see a reduction in today's prices.

    Why? Put yourself in the place of an OPEC member knowing there's going to be a greater supply of U.S. oil in five or 10 years, which might drive oil prices to a permanent $20 or $30 per barrel. What will you want to do now while oil is $120 per barrel? You would want to sell.

    OPEC's collective efforts to sell more would put downward pressures on current oil prices. The White House, U.S. Congress and environmental wackos, by keeping our oil in the ground, are OPEC's staunchest ally. I wouldn't be surprised at all if we discovered OPEC reciprocity in the forms of political contributions to congressmen and charitable donations to environmental groups.

    In the wake of higher gasoline prices, the only intelligent thing that Obama has called for is an end to $4 billion in annual taxpayer subsidies to oil companies.

    To get that done, he has an uphill bipartisan fight on his hands. Oil companies buy off both Republicans and Democrats in order to receive government handouts and special treatment.

    ...and stop subsidies for converting fuel into "flexfuel"

  34. ...and stop subsidies for converting FOOD into "flexfuel"

  35. AFP - Saudi Arabia is unlikely to boost oil production quickly to ease the rise of crude prices, because it needs high prices for its own increased spending, analysts at an international banking think tank said Tuesday.

    After producing 8.6 million barrels a day in 2010, the world's leading oil supplier will only kick up production to about 8.9 million barrels this year, said analysts at the Washington-based Institute of International Finance.

    They said Riyadh needs the higher prices to offset its sharp increase in spending, an effort aimed in part at assuaging Saudis amid a surge in public unrest across the Middle East and North Africa.

    NO Help, here

  36. But, before I go Wal-Marting with the wife, I must report this from the morning paper - Idaho Fuck Up The Fish and Game Department reports plan for aerial hunts of wolves in the Lolo, where they say the elk are "struggling", if the wolf is delisted next week. These nitwits think there is still enough snow in the Lolo that they can catch a few out in the open. The wolves, I predict, being the smart critters they are, will learn extremely quickly what that whoop whooop whoop of the coppers blades really means, and duck 'n timber.

    Is it possible that Idaho Fish and Game supported the introduction of the wolves just to provide themselves with something to do?

    It is possible to conceive it, and a close question. Are they that smart?

    You decide -


  37. Both Doug and Ruf have that fuckin' Tourette's Syndrome.


  38. the estimated billions, possibly trillions, of barrels of shale oil in Wyoming, Colorado, Utah and North Dakota.

    Quite possibly, an overreach in stupidity, even for you, Doug.

    Shell has been trying to figure out how to get that Kerogen out of that marl for years with no result. No one else is even the least bit interested in it.

  39. Sarah Palin fired her Neocon advisors, and released the above 5 points.

  40. Cool, I've now been banned from Watts up with that.

    I guess the Fossil Fuel Company Sponsors got tired of reading my defense of Wind, Solar, and Ethanol. Seems like it was "Wind" that finally broke their back.

  41. I might be the only person in history to get banned from The Oil Drum, AND WUWT.

  42. Congratulations, Rufus!


  43. I am Damned Good. :)

    You folks is in the presence of Greatness.

  44. The below link is very puzzling:

    This is the second thing Obama has done this week that I have liked.

    Did I just type that?


  46. He lost his nerve, afraid to show the pictures. For millennia, victors took the head of their vanquished and displayed it on a pike, sort of let everyone know who was the boss. Dumb shit move.

  47. BILLINGS, Mont. – The Obama administration on Wednesday announced it is lifting endangered species act protections for 5,500 gray wolves in eight states in the Northern Rockies and Great Lakes.

    The move essentially draws the line on the predators' rapid expansion over the last two decades. Public hunts for hundreds of wolves already are planned this fall in Idaho and Montana, and Interior Department officials said Wednesday that the most suitable wolf habitat already is occupied.

    Conservationists have hailed the animal's recovery from near extinction last century as a landmark achievement that should be extended to the Pacific Northwest and New England.

    But the federal wolf program has stirred a backlash from agriculture and sporting groups angry over wolf attacks on livestock and big game herds.

    "To be sure, not everyone will be satisfied with today's announcement," said Interior Secretary Ken Salazar. "Wolves have long been a highly charged issue. These delistings are possible because the species is recovered in these regions. That is a remarkable milestone for an iconic American species."

    Western lawmakers attached a rider to the federal budget bill mandating the move for 1,300 wolves in the Northern Rockies. The rider blocked legal challenges and marked the first time Congress has stripped a species of protections. Protections for those wolves are to be lifted effective with a Thursday notice in the Federal Register.

    About 4,200 wolves listed as threatened in the western Great Lakes also are slated to lose protections following a public comment period.

    A pending petition before the Interior Department seeks to extend the government's wolf recovery plan nationwide. But Noah Greenwald with the Center for Biological Diversity, the sponsor of the petition, said Wednesday's announcement made clear that the government has no such intentions.

    "In our view wolf recovery is not done," Greenwald said. "We're disappointed with seeing the Fish and Wildlife Service attempt to get out from under it."

    Fish and Wildlife officials said they plan to review the gray wolf's status in New England and the Pacific Northwest but did not foresee another reintroduction effort.

    Montana wildlife officials this week proposed a public hunt for up to 220 wolves this fall, out of a population estimated to number at least 566 animals.

    Idaho officials have said they want to reduce their state's wolf population to about 500 animals, versus current estimates of more than 700.

    In addition to the hunts, officials say wolves that attack livestock will continue to be removed by wildlife agents. More than 1,500 wolves have been killed for livestock attacks since the animals were reintroduced to the Northern Rockies from Canada in the 1990s.

  48. Idaho state Rep. Judy Boyle, who sponsored a bill giving Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter the authority to declare a wolf disaster emergency, said hunting alone won't be enough to reduce the number of wolves to levels in which they aren't a threat to livestock or wildlife.

    Under state management, Idaho will continue to ask federal wildlife agents to take out problem packs, including in north-central Idaho's Lolo area, where the state wants to kill dozens of wolves to help restore elk herds that have been hurt by predators and poor habitat, she said.

    "They are very, very effective," Boyle said of the Fish Wildlife Service. "In the Lolo, that's what they're going to need to do to reduce the population before those elk start calving in June."

    No hunts are planned immediately for small populations of wolves in Oregon, Washington and Utah.

    Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin have plans meant to keep the populations at healthy levels while allowing government agents to kill animals that can't be driven away. None would allow hunting or trapping for at least five years, although the states could revise those plans.

    Wednesday's announcement leaves the fate of about 340 wolves in Wyoming unresolved. Wyoming was carved out of attempts to restore state control over wolves because of a state law that would allow the animals to be shot on sight in most of the state.

    Salazar and his staff have been negotiating for months over the issue with Wyoming Gov. Matt Mead.

    Mead said Wednesday that he was hoping for an agreement with the administration to get a bill through Congress lifting protections in his state. The governor suggested legislation that was the only way to prevent lawsuits from environmentalists that could otherwise derail the effort.


  49. .

    Idaho state Rep. Judy Boyle, who sponsored a bill giving Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter the authority to declare a wolf disaster emergency,...


    Stop it. You're killing me.


  50. Butch is a good guy, was married to Simplot's daughter, fore they split the sheets, so rich he don't need to be conrupt, like folks in Detroit.

    I believe the Obama Ad. always had taken the wolves off the endangered species list, but it was a federal judge put them back on. They've been on and off a couple times if I recall the sequence correctly.

    It's about the only thing I can praise the Obama Ad. for right from the beginning. Why they took the position they did I don't know, I suspect O had never heard of the issue, it not being a 'community organizing' issue, except that it's organized our communities against the idiot federal judge.

    Shoot, shovel, shut-up