The navy seals’ successful targeted killing of Osama, especially coming after the tragic bungling of the attempted targeted killing of Qaddafi, went a long way towards reestablishing the military capability of the American armed forces. The same cannot be said about the confused aftermath. At issue is not merely the treatment of the body so pointedly criticized by Alan Dershowitz. Much more important is the possibility that by redirecting the world’s gaze away from the horrors unleashed by on the people of Libya and Syria, the Obama administration may be snatching defeat from the Jaws of the victory achieved by the death of Bin Laden. Killing terrorists is a necessary but insufficient strategy to win the war against Islamism. Incorporating the Middle East into the democratic camp is the effective and moral road to long term victory. But having taking the lead in the eviction of pro-American rulers, once the turn of anti-American rulers came to feel their people’s heat, Barack Obama reverted to his 2009 Iranian strategy of leading from behind, very much behind.
Hence while the Obama administration is busy not offending radical Muslims, many Arabs view the killing of Bin Laden as Obama’s way of securing his second term without having to help them secure the “hope and change” they are sacrificing their lives for in the Middle East. Indeed, Misrata is turning into a second Srebreniza. Qadhafi’s forces pounded the lifeline port of Misrata
In beseiged Misrata, a rebel spokesman said at least five people were killed as loyalists shelled the city’s port, from which the International Organization of Migration said a ship managed to evacuate about 800 people, including stranded migrants and wounded.
Hundreds of Syrian soldiers raid homes and arrest protesters in Damascus suburb where anti-government demo took place
Military intelligence also turned back a convoy of vehicles loaded with food for the besieged quarters, a human rights campaigner in contact with Banias said. At the centre: Protesters are demanding the removal of President Bashar al-Assad Armed troops deployed in the Damascus suburb of Erbin and in the town of Tel north of the capital, where security forces arrested at least 80 men, women and children, the human rights organisation Sawasiah said.
Wissam Tarif, executive director of the Insan human rights group, said family members had confirmed the detention of 2,843 people across Syria and the real number could be as high as 8,000. More than 800 of them had been taken from Deraa.
Let’s hope the focus on Bin Laden’s demise ends before Qaddafi and Assad have a chance to crash their gutsy populations.
For more, see my History News Network blog Deja vu
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