Just one day after the Navy SEALs’ daring raid, Democrats were already outlining plans to seize the opportunity to portray President Barack Obama as a decisive leader who should get full acclaim for green-lighting the assault that brought down bin Laden.
The subtle but unmistakable jockeying provided a revealing glimpse into how official Washington thinks: Even in a rare moment of national unity, the political stakes provide a temptation – and even an imperative – for the parties to jostle for maximum advantage.
White House Press Secretary Jay Carney told reporters Monday that once Obama took office, “he made sure that we would revitalize our focus on Osama bin Laden and the hunt for him.”
But a former top intelligence officer, speaking on condition of anonymity, asserted that Bush routinely asked him about bin Laden during Thursday morning briefings about CIA operations.
“I’d walk in there and he would just say, ‘So where are we on bin Laden?’” the official said. “He was very focused on it – this was always a top priority. I’d think, ‘Oh, hell – he asked me that again.’”
And dozens of statements Monday from Republican officeholders mentioned Bush’s role after 9/11 – with several even quoting Bush as saying, “Whether we bring our enemies to justice or bring justice to our enemies, justice will be done.”
But one Democratic communications hand sent advice to a slew of other Democratic operatives in the wake of the announcement hammering on the need to make sure Obama comes out on top .
“In your day jobs, do not let Republicans turn this into continuing the Bush legacy. This has to be about Obama’s decisive leadership,” the guidance said. “He is the one who oversaw bringing bin Laden to justice, much like how Bush failed to do so at Tora Bora and then claimed Osama wasn’t a priority.”
Gee, so that’s why they all seemed like they were on the same page with this; they were! It was written in the memo…
It makes me wonder if Barney Frank isn’t slipping a bit. I mean, was he freelancing, or had he already received the talking points?
In the end though, as I’ve said before, it won’t matter; the truth will come out. In fact, ACE has an excellent, detailed, time-line of the events over the years that culminated in the successful SEAL team raid this past Sunday. I’d suggest that you check it if only for your own edification. And especially so if you live in a “deep blue” state like myself, and anticipate that this will be a hot topic on the summer barbecue/drinking circuit.
Because facts are stubborn things; and the facts are that it was a long way to Abbottabad. And the very measures and actors that the aces of agitprop vilified for years are the same ones they are hailing today. Indeed, our pal Jeff Goldstein at Protein Wisdom has a set of clips posted which illustrate how the Make-Believe-Media used to engage in moral posturing, vis-a-vis “torture”, which they are suddenly very quiet about in the wake of Sunday’s announcement. What a difference having a Democrat in the White House makes…