Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Hands Up, Bin Laden?

The SEAL bin Laden book is out today, just as the DNC begins. Wire reports are mainly hitting on comments from DoD over the legality of the book and what they might eventually do--still not sure--along with some stern warnings to current troops.

Meanwhile the author's intentions remain murky.  It's still strange he would take the chance of publishing without review knowing what might happen.  As mentioned previously the entire brouhaha certainly keeps the "Obama killed Osama" story percolating so the Democrats themselves don't have to, just as their convention starts.  But sans a conspiracy maybe the author had other things in mind:
"The authority (during the raid) was to kill bin Laden," CIA Director Leon Panetta said Tuesday during an interview with PBS. "Obviously, under the rules of engagement, if he had in fact thrown up his hands, surrendered, and didn't appear to be representing any kind of threat, then they were to capture him. But they had full authority to kill him."
A number of experts have told CNN the question of actual legality may come down to bin Laden's response at the moment U.S. Navy SEALs burst into his room. "If a person has his hands in the air, you're not supposed to kill him," said Steven Groves, a fellow at the conservative Heritage Foundation.
The story goes on to quote a US official as saying UBL didn't have his hands up so therefore, clear kill.  I'm not an expert, but geez, if we are expecting people to surrender don't we have to first tell them to put their hands up? If the book is correct he hardly had time, ie,  "I surre.... BOOM BOOM".   His guns weren't loaded and he didn't have on body armor. 

None of which will break any hearts anywhere, including yours truly's. He was the top enemy combatant, not a US citizen, and didn't deserve any leeway--he could have just as easily been running out the door to explode himself in the hall, after all.    

Then again, it might well break hearts in a few places, if true.  The ACLU can't be happy and obviously we have the UN.   Going back to the initial story a UN expert weighed in...
Navi Pillay, the United Nations high commissioner for human rights, told reporters she wants a "full disclosure" of the key facts.
One has to wonder if this amounts to enough disclosure to keep Obama out of the same hot seat as Bush and Blair.  Keep in mind the author of the book is not the shooter and also seems to have some issues with his former mates.  Is he trying to get one of them in trouble, lay down a political hit, or just cash in?   Perhaps the truth will be revealed in how hard he's eventually punished.

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