Friday, November 01, 2019

Imposing justice on a terrorist and impeaching the guy who did it

While the nation watches House Democrats conduct secretive impeachment hearings on President Donald Trump, the president was busy planning and approving a successful raid against the world’s leading terrorist.

Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of ISIS, the global terrorist organization that is responsible for death, destruction and misery over a broad area for many years, is at long last dead.

The Washington Post did it’s best to downplay the event with this headline: “Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, austere religious scholar at helm of Islamic State, dies at 48.” Apparently shame, at last, won out, and that obit-like headline was later changed to: “Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, extremist leader of Islamic State, dies at 48.” Only slightly better.

“He commanded an organization that, at its peak, controlled a territory the size of Britain from which it directed and inspired acts of terror in more than three dozen countries,” The New York Times wrote of the terrorist.

This triumph against terrorism caps an international five-year manhunt involving the intelligence services of several countries.

In a U.S. Special Forces operation with its origins several days ago, al-Baghdadi was located in northwestern Syria. After consulting with military leaders, plans were devised and Trump okayed the raid, choosing the option that provided the highest probability of success. 

The option chosen called for asking al-Baghdadi to surrender, but if necessary to kill him. He refused to surrender, and Special Forces troops stormed his compound, chasing the terrorist leader from it into a dead-end tunnel last Saturday night, where he killed himself and three of his children by detonating a suicide vest. 

U.S. forces collected valuable intelligence information following the raid on al-Baghdadi, and sustained only minor injuries, and no deaths in the operation.

Calling the terrorist leader’s death a "devastating blow" to a terrorist organization that has launched horrific attacks across the world, Defense Secretary Mark Esper said that "we're going to watch carefully [ISIS’] next steps. And as a new leader and leaders pop up we'll go after them as well,” on CNN’s “State of the Union” on Sunday. He also commented that al-Baghdadi "is not just their leader, it's their founder. He was an inspirational leader in many ways."

Michael Pregent, a senior fellow at the Hudson Institute said that there is likely to be a splintering of ISIS into some smaller groups, as the transition to a new leader, or leaders to replace al-Baghdadi transpires.

While acknowledging the obvious success, Congressional Democrat leaders criticized the president for not notifying them in advance, and for notifying Russia, but not them. But there is no requirement to notify Congressional leaders of coming secret military missions, and Russia assisted in the operation. The fewer people who know about a secret mission, the better. And Democrats’ reputation for keeping quiet is not especially good.

Congratulations to the Special Forces, and all involved. It is comforting to see that Trump is doing his job despite the obvious distractions and interference resulting from the years-long impeachment effort.

Speaking of impeachment: ABC News reported “A group of House Republicans stormed a secure hearing room Wednesday, delaying a witness deposition in the ongoing impeachment inquiry.”

What an interesting choice of a verb: they “stormed” a secure hearing room. In this context, “stormed” means a sudden forceful attack by armed troops, such as the storming of the Bastille.

In World War II, roughly 57,000 American soldiers stormed the beaches of Normandy. Dressed in military clothing, complete with helmets, ammo belts and weapons, soldiers exited the boats near the shore, fought their way onto the beaches under fire, climbed the cliffs and killed thousands of the enemy. Thousands of American troops also were killed and injured.

That is the picture created by the choice of the verb “stormed,” which the news media used nearly universally. Warrior Republicans in the House of Representatives fought for conquest over the secretive hearing being conducted in the underground SCIF in the Capital building.

Two dozen House Republicans — men dressed in trousers, coats, shirts and ties; women in dresses, or skirts/slacks, blouses and high heels — walked casually down the stairs to the SCIF (Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility), a secure room where the impeachment inquiry is taking place three floors below ground level. They wanted to attend the secretive meeting that only members of the Intelligence Committee are allowed to attend.

They were asked by the Committee staff to give up their cell phones, and did so. All this was done before the unclassified hearing started. Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., hustled the witness out of the SCIF while the warriors were present, and would not return until they were gone.

Had American soldiers stormed the beaches of Normandy, dressed and behaving as gently as were the Republican warriors armed with cell phones, we would likely be speaking German today.

We have become familiar with — and numb to — hyperbole, overstatement and embellishment by the mainstream media, as its members commit malpractice in support of Democrat/liberal efforts to unseat a duly elected president. This behavior by the media has reached the point where terming the inarguably mannerly entry by Republicans into the SCIF as “storming” no longer raises eyebrows.

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