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Author Topic: Confirmed: Bin Laden Dead
The Rabbit
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quote:
Also what I said was that "if a fictional federal agent is believeable to pull off that shot, being a federal agents and a crack shot", somehow I'm supposed to believe that real life navy seals whose training is probably the best in the world somehow is less believeable?
All kinds of things are believable in a fictional story that aren't IRL. Its called "voluntary suspension of disbelief".

Best training in the world for what? Navy seals, like all military, aren't trained to capture criminals. They are trained to fight wars. In a war, the objective is to inflict the maximum damage on your enemy with the minimum risk to yourself and your comrades. That second part is critical. You don't win wars by taking risks in order minimize enemy fatalities.

In civilian law enforcement, there are no enemies to be vanquished. There are suspects and the objective is to capture suspects to be tried. The parameters are completely different.

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J-Put
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Really, that's the thing they drill into you most in the military? Because in my experience it's always been to shoot to eliminate the threat. If he so much as reached for his pocket, put a hand behind his back, or made any sudden movement my training would tell me to stop him from doing whatever he's doing.
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Flying Fish
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You know, the amount of conspiracy/what-ifs/weird scenarios out there is amazing, if not unsurprising. Two interesting things I've recently heard kicked around:

UBL was shot by his own forces, because he didn't want to be taken alive.

The helicopter didn't crash, it was intentionally hard-landed, abandoned, then burned in order to leave behind evidence of US involvement which could be photographed/ ogled by local Pakistanis/ etc.

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Destineer
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quote:
Obama has decided not to release the photos. His rationale is they won't convince the skeptics and they're likely to inflame anger because of their gruesome character.
Or, in other words: Redacted! Sigh.
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Blayne Bradley
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quote:

Based on what?

Did anyone read Mucus's link above? Most of the counter arguments are meaningless without that context because you don't even kow what you
re arguing against!

quote:

By burst fire I mean, aim, fire fire fire fire, re-aim, fire fire fire fire, reassess, aim, fire fire fire, etc.

You're not sprawing in a room, your not "having alot of nerves" and thus holding down the trigger until your out of ammo or everything in front of you stops moving. Also, moot considering Mucus's link above which I was referring to.

quote:

Really, that's the thing they drill into you most in the military? Because in my experience it's always been to shoot to eliminate the threat. If he so much as reached for his pocket, put a hand behind his back, or made any sudden movement my training would tell me to stop him from doing whatever he's doing.

What the hell is it with people not reading what I write and simply making up crap to put their instead?

Repeat after me:

"THESE ARE NOT MUTUALLY EXCLUSIVE CONCEPTS NOR DID I SAY THEY WERE."

If you have a situation where the guy is standing there and trying to reach for something that's also enough time for training to kick in and shoot to wound.

Wounds of course, I know damn well, hurt alot and completely incapacitate most people, thats why they're effective for capturing people if your trained to do it.

quote:

Best training in the world for what? Navy seals, like all military, aren't trained to capture criminals. They are trained to fight wars. In a war, the objective is to inflict the maximum damage on your enemy with the minimum risk to yourself and your comrades. That second part is critical. You don't win wars by taking risks in order minimize enemy fatalities.

Capturing enemy soldiers, especially officers for intelligence gathering purposes is an important part of war.

Hey look, its called the "war" on terror.

Funny that.

edit: but yes fire discipline IS one of the most important things they drill because you can use up all of your ammunition in under a minute if you just spray, even machine gun crews aren't support to fire in anything other than bursts.

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Samprimary
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Can you stop trying to emulate SA posters and calm down please
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Blayne Bradley
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quote:
Originally posted by Samprimary:
Can you stop trying to emulate SA posters and calm down please

When people's first reaction to perceived inaccuracy isn't to call someone clueless.

and to add to my above point, I know that in the Canadian military the FIRST thing they tell you "being a soldier is not about killing people".

Also when you collaborate this with reports like "It takes 250,000 rounds to kill a single iraqi militant" it becomes clear that "killing" is faaaaaaaaaar from whats being taught.

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Flying Fish
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quote:
Originally posted by Blayne Bradley:


and to add to my above point, I know that in the Canadian military the FIRST thing they tell you "being a soldier is not about killing people".


Then maybe they're doing it wrong.

[Wink]

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J-Put
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quote:

What the hell is it with people not reading what I write and simply making up crap to put their instead?

Repeat after me:

"THESE ARE NOT MUTUALLY EXCLUSIVE CONCEPTS NOR DID I SAY THEY WERE."

If you have a situation where the guy is standing there and trying to reach for something that's also enough time for training to kick in and shoot to wound.

Wounds of course, I know damn well, hurt alot and completely incapacitate most people, thats why they're effective for capturing people if your trained to do it.

You're not understanding what I'm saying. I've had the military training you're talking about, and according to everything I've been taught you do NOT shoot to wound. Wounds are NOT effective at incapacitating people. You shoot to eliminate the threat. More often than not that means that you shoot to kill.
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Samprimary
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quote:
Originally posted by Blayne Bradley:
quote:
Originally posted by Samprimary:
Can you stop trying to emulate SA posters and calm down please

When people's first reaction to perceived inaccuracy isn't to call someone clueless.

and to add to my above point, I know that in the Canadian military the FIRST thing they tell you "being a soldier is not about killing people".

Also when you collaborate this with reports like "It takes 250,000 rounds to kill a single iraqi militant" it becomes clear that "killing" is faaaaaaaaaar from whats being taught.

Going back to the start of this whole brouhaha: You said that shooting to wound is 'relatively easy to do' and this flies in the face of pretty much everything the military knows. It is actually extremely difficult to do, to the extent that it is not just only discouraged, but in combat arms theory is completely disregarded. You really don't know what you're talking about here. Ask anyone who's actually been in the armed services and trained with modern military firearms. I'm sure you can find a couple.

From everything else you're saying in order to apoplectically defend your initial statement, it is like you are basing the apparent capacities of the seals on impressions gleaned by video games. Your concrete analyses are inundated with fantasy.

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Flying Fish
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The oak is strong, and it is broken by the wind.

The willow is flimsy, and survives many great storms.

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Stone_Wolf_
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quote:
Did anyone read Mucus's link above? Most of the counter arguments are meaningless without that context because you don't even kow what you
re arguing against!

I didn't argue anything, it was a simple question. And yes I read it, and found it mostly inconclusive. It hints, it suggests, but it does not constituent proof of anything in my book.

quote:
and to add to my above point, I know that in the Canadian military the FIRST thing they tell you "being a soldier is not about killing people".
Osama bin Laden was not killed by the Canadian military.

quote:
Also when you collaborate this with reports like "It takes 250,000 rounds to kill a single iraqi militant" it becomes clear that "killing" is faaaaaaaaaar from whats being taught.
This statistic is not about shots aimed at targets in the open, but about the tactic called "covering fire". If you are being fired upon, you take cover. To make the enemy take cover, usually the SAW (Squad Automatic Weapon) lays out fire, so that the rest of the squad can safely take aim on enemy combatants and take the shots. The statistic in no way suggests what you would have us believe.
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Flying Fish
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Blayne, do everyone (including yourself) a favor and be a willow, my good man.

You can do this by typing and posting, "Okay, maybe shooting to wound isn't as easy as I first thought."

If you insist on being an oak, I'm afraid all of us windbags (me included) are going to have to just keep blowing until you snap.

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Blayne Bradley
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quote:
Originally posted by Samprimary:
quote:
Originally posted by Blayne Bradley:
quote:
Originally posted by Samprimary:
Can you stop trying to emulate SA posters and calm down please

When people's first reaction to perceived inaccuracy isn't to call someone clueless.

and to add to my above point, I know that in the Canadian military the FIRST thing they tell you "being a soldier is not about killing people".

Also when you collaborate this with reports like "It takes 250,000 rounds to kill a single iraqi militant" it becomes clear that "killing" is faaaaaaaaaar from whats being taught.

Going back to the start of this whole brouhaha: You said that shooting to wound is 'relatively easy to do' and this flies in the face of pretty much everything the military knows. It is actually extremely difficult to do, to the extent that it is not just only discouraged, but in combat arms theory is completely disregarded. You really don't know what you're talking about here. Ask anyone who's actually been in the armed services and trained with modern military firearms. I'm sure you can find a couple.

From everything else you're saying in order to apoplectically defend your initial statement, it is like you are basing the apparent capacities of the seals on impressions gleaned by video games. Your concrete analyses are inundated with fantasy.

I have never played any such video games, I am going by experience with discussions with actual servicemen and people who know servicemen.

Never touched a tom clancy game in my life.

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Lyrhawn
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quote:
Originally posted by Destineer:
quote:
Obama has decided not to release the photos. His rationale is they won't convince the skeptics and they're likely to inflame anger because of their gruesome character.
Or, in other words: Redacted! Sigh.
Given the recent behavior of people predisposed to think Obama is lying, I have to say I agree. You either believe him or you don't at this point. It'll come out some day.
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Flying Fish
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quote:
Originally posted by Stone_Wolf_:

quote:
Its preposterous.
We will never know for sure in all likelihood exactly how it went down.
Especially given this circumstance:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/al-qaeda/8493391/Osama-bin-Laden-dead-Blackout-during-raid-on-bin-Laden-compound.html

Let the conspiracy theories blossom like mushrooms after the summer rain!

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Mucus
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Not sure what the debate is about really anymore.

According to the "current" official American narrative, Osama bin Laden's wife was shot in the leg and left alive while rushing a Navy Seal. This is not contradicted by any other account so far. However hard it is to shoot to wound, its been done.

As for Osama bin Laden himself, no official narrative so far states that he was shot in an attempt to wound him. The "current" official American narrative is that he was shot while resisting in some unspecified manner after his wife was shot. The Pakistani officials that are holding Osama bin Laden's daughter have revealed that she's saying that Osama bin Laden was captured without a shot and then subsequently killed.

This is basically a "he said, she said situation" unless you take into account Obama's two references to Osama's capture and killing.

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Rakeesh
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I think we can safely say that, as a strictly practical matter, it's as difficult to hit one square inch of the body as any other-but if you aim for center mass you've got more room to spare. But then if you aim for center mass and miss, well, you're more likely to still do damage and even kill and not have the person you've just hit still be shooting back at you and possibly kill you.

All of that's pretty obvious. What should be equally obvious is that, yeah, sure, 'shoot to wound' is possible, of course. It's also going to obviously be a lot riskier, and because of that fewer soldiers and police - basically fewer everyone trained to use firearms - are trained to do that, everywhere. I mean, that makes sense too. If you train to 'shoot to wound', your survivability will necessarily go down, because you're more likely to miss that spot you're aiming at, and missing that spot will more likely mean you miss flesh and bone entirely, and the target will still be firing back at you.

All of that is also obvious, when it's sat down and thunk on. What may not be obvious is with all of this hinting about about how it may or may not be objectionable that we may or may not have assassinated ObL, and we should've treated him like a criminal* is, well, what does that mean for the people we actually send to go get the guy? "We need you to put your own life and the lives of your unit at x% greater risk of death or maiming, not to prevent collateral civilian casualties, but to take a mass murdering terrorist alive for years-long trial in civilian court." That's what is being asked with the question, "Why didn't we shoot-to-wound?" or, "Why didn't we work harder to capture?" effectively. It's kind of interesting to me how, around here at least, that (what seems to me, anyway) underlying truth seems to get skirted around.

*And let's, just for the sake of argument, say that ObL is just a criminal. Alright, he's a criminal. Y'know, I don't think there's a nation on Earth where they don't eventually say to the cops, "Alright, at some point you're allowed to just kill the guy, OK? Because giving him anything other than an instant's warning is just giving him an even better chance to just kill the hell out of you while you're serving the warrant." That's setting aside the fact that, y'know, how long has this particular criminal - for the sake of argument - had the chance to turn himself in? At what point have the authorities exhausted their obligation to give the criminal a chance to surrender? After how many years of pursuit?

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rivka
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quote:
Originally posted by Mucus:
According to the "current" official American narrative, Osama bin Laden's wife was shot in the leg and left alive while rushing a Navy Seal. This is not contradicted by any other account so far. However hard it is to shoot to wound, its been done.

1) Were they shooting for her leg? Or were they aiming for the trunk and hit the leg?

2) Shots to the leg can become fatal awfully quickly. Two words: femoral artery.

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Rakeesh
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And, y'know, what with one thing and another it's not impossible that ObL's wife was something more than a civilian in a gunfight. I would be wary of writing off *anyone* as just a civilian who'd been connected with a figure such as him-much less after how many days?
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Stone_Wolf_
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Shooting to wound is not done by any professional or well trained operative. How ObL's wife got a leg wound is open to interpenetration. Ricochets, missed shots, friendly fire, strange circomstance are all poissble as well as deliberate shooting to wound.

The way that professional/trained operators attempt to capture high value targets alive is through the use of non-lethal weapons. Non-lethal weapons are effective, but limited in scope, that is, most of them are one shot only, or require an operative to place themselves in harm's reach to use them. So even if the SEALs could have used such weapons in the attempt to capture ObL, and only decreased their odds of survival by a small percentage, I for one am glad that they didn't.

Even if that percentage is so small to be nearly negligible, if it increased the risk to our citizen soldiers (and by my understanding, it would) to use non-lethal weapons which are more effective at capturing but less effective at keeping them safe then they did the right thing.

It is a good thing to attempt to capture hostile combatants, but only if by doing so does not increase the risk to our soldiers.

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Mucus
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rivka:
1) Hasn't been released. They know specifically its the calf though.

I guess technically, maybe they aimed for the torso and accidentally hit the calf, accomplishing a difficult shot by sheer luck? I prefer to think that Navy Seals wouldn't make that kind of mistake in such a small room, but point taken.

2) *shrug* It didn't. She's been taken into custody by the Pakistanis. The Americans want to interrogate her actually.

Not sure what to make of that actually. Maybe you're right and they expected her to die afterwards or maybe they just ran out of space on the helicopter to take her in the first place.

Other news, it seems that double-checking, there's yet another twist
quote:
The officials also say a US commando grabbed a woman who charged toward the group. The fear, the officials say, is that she might have been wearing a suicide vest. The Navy Seal pulled the woman away from his fellow Seals.
It doesn't say whether this is the same woman as Osama's wife. Sigh.
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Mucus
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Ok, more checking.

1) The wife was indeed left behind because there wasn't enough room
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/42900591/ns/world_news-death_of_bin_laden/t/mystery-surrounds-bin-laden-wife-wounded-raid/

2) A relatively detailed account of the whole operation is here
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/42906279/ns/world_news-death_of_bin_laden/

quote:
According to the officials' account, as the first SEAL team moved into the compound, they took small-arms fire from the guest house in the compound. The SEALs returned fire, killing bin Laden's courier and the courier's wife, who died in the crossfire.
The second SEAL team entered the first floor of the main residence and could see a man standing in the dark with one hand behind his back. Fearing he was hiding a weapon, the SEALs shot and killed the lone man, who turned out to be unarmed.
As the U.S. commandos moved through the house, they found several stashes of weapons and barricades, as if the residents were prepared for a violent and lengthy standoff which never materialized.
The SEALs then made their way up a staircase, where they ran into one of bin Laden's sons on the way down. The Americans immediately shot and killed the son, who was also unarmed.
Once on the third floor, the commandos threw open the door to bin Laden's bedroom. One of bin Laden's wives rushed toward the NAVY SEAL in the door, who shot her in the leg.
Then, without hesitation, the same commando turned his gun on bin Laden, standing in what appeared to be pajamas, and fire two quick shots, one to the chest and one to the head. Although there were weapons in that bedroom, Bin Laden was also unarmed at the time he was shot.
Instead of a chaotic firefight, US officials says, the American commando assault was a precision operation, with SEALs moving carefully through the compound, room to room, floor to floor.

There's only one account of a woman rushing the team and that's Bin Laden's wife, so I'm leaning toward the interpretation that to reconcile the AP report and the MSNBC detailed account, one soldier pulled Bin Laden's wife away from the main group and shot her at close range in the leg.

(But who knows! More official changes in the account to come [Wink] )

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rivka
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quote:
Originally posted by Mucus:
2) *shrug* It didn't.

Are you being deliberately obtuse? No one said that people are never shot in such a way as to wound rather than kill in such a situation.

What was said is that ATTEMPTING to do so a priori is a really bad idea. SW has gone into a fair bit of detail on the subject.

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Mucus
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quote:
Originally posted by rivka:
Are you being deliberately obtuse?

When did you stop beating your wife? Bah.
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fugu13
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Mucus: what was it other than being deliberately obtuse? Someone was wounded with a bullet in the raid. That in no way demonstrates that whoever shot her shot to wound instead of kill. Why did you say it did?
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Samprimary
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quote:
Originally posted by Mucus:
[QB]I guess technically, maybe they aimed for the torso and accidentally hit the calf, accomplishing a difficult shot by sheer luck? I prefer to think that Navy Seals wouldn't make that kind of mistake in such a small room, but point taken.

The military (and two separate police procedure analysts) did a series of studies into house raid style close-quarters battles, first with pistols and other weapons, and found that if two combatants with guns are in very close, point-blank proximity to each other, our cognitive targeting goes haywire, usually compounded by time dilation and heartrate acceleration. IIRC, we're talking maybe all but one in six shots being a complete miss. For two highly trained combatants standing right next to each other.

It's weird. Combat theory is weird, but vital in figuring out how to train, drill, and proceduralize groups like SWAT.

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Jeff C.
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Well everything aside, Obama's approval ratings have gone up (as of this morning) six percent, placing it at about 52%. That's much higher than it was just a few months ago, which makes me think he will probably get re-elected if he rides this Bin Laden train as much as possible, and he probably will.
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Destineer
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quote:
Given the recent behavior of people predisposed to think Obama is lying, I have to say I agree. You either believe him or you don't at this point. It'll come out some day.
He's been pretty truthful about where he was born, but his administration has lied a whole lot in the course of the war on terror (like about whether some Gitmo prisoners were guilty of anything).

In fact, they broke this whole story with an opening salvo of lies that they've now backed away from.

Anyway, I probably believe the current story at this point. But I don't think we should be keeping information from the American people because it might upset Muslims. That's Cheney-Rumsfeld behavior.

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Mucus
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quote:
Originally posted by fugu13:
Someone was wounded with a bullet in the raid. That in no way demonstrates that whoever shot her shot to wound instead of kill. Why did you say it did?

*shrug* That was my honest impression of the narrative that had been put forward at that point. "One of bin Laden's wives rushed toward the NAVY SEAL in the door, who shot her in the leg." I figured if the navy seal accidentally shot a piece of furniture and the shot bounced into her leg or some such, they would have added the simple phrase "by accident" or something. Additionally, as the narrative says, if they wanted to kill her for sure I figured they would have taken two shots like what follows in the narrative for Bin Laden. Instead, this way they probably needed to guard her and make sure she didn't either reach for a weapon or set off a hidden suicide bomb.

I don't appreciate the implication that I'm being less than straight-forward here.

Hmmmm, latest change:
Now there was no massive fire-fight, but in fact only one person with a gun was killed and he never fired a shot.
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110505/ap_on_re_us/us_bin_laden_94

Samprimary: I understand that but still find it doubtful. As msnbc says, it seems less and less like a chaotic fire-fight, and more like a careful precision operation.

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SenojRetep
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quote:
Originally posted by Jeff C.:
Well everything aside, Obama's approval ratings have gone up (as of this morning) six percent, placing it at about 52%. That's much higher than it was just a few months ago, which makes me think he will probably get re-elected if he rides this Bin Laden train as much as possible, and he probably will.

Absent more rapid economic improvements, I'd be willing to bet that Obama's approval will be back to pre-bin Laden levels within two months. The killing of bin Laden will have at most marginal impact on the 2012 election.
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BlackBlade
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quote:
Originally posted by SenojRetep:
quote:
Originally posted by Jeff C.:
Well everything aside, Obama's approval ratings have gone up (as of this morning) six percent, placing it at about 52%. That's much higher than it was just a few months ago, which makes me think he will probably get re-elected if he rides this Bin Laden train as much as possible, and he probably will.

Absent more rapid economic improvements, I'd be willing to bet that Obama's approval will be back to pre-bin Laden levels within two months. The killing of bin Laden will have at most marginal impact on the 2012 election.
Not if it can be weaved into a broader narrative of victory over terrorism in the theaters of Afghanistan and Iraq. It becomes a useful centerpiece for that idea.
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SenojRetep
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quote:
Originally posted by BlackBlade:
quote:
Originally posted by SenojRetep:
quote:
Originally posted by Jeff C.:
Well everything aside, Obama's approval ratings have gone up (as of this morning) six percent, placing it at about 52%. That's much higher than it was just a few months ago, which makes me think he will probably get re-elected if he rides this Bin Laden train as much as possible, and he probably will.

Absent more rapid economic improvements, I'd be willing to bet that Obama's approval will be back to pre-bin Laden levels within two months. The killing of bin Laden will have at most marginal impact on the 2012 election.
Not if it can be weaved into a broader narrative of victory over terrorism in the theaters of Afghanistan and Iraq. It becomes a useful centerpiece for that idea.
Maybe, but it would represent a significant deviation from general voting patterns. In general, economic factors are much better predictors of electoral success or failure than are foreign policy achievements.

<edit>Here is Nate Silver opining on the subject, and the next day arguing against himself that maybe it is a bit of a bigger deal. But his evidence in the second piece is pretty weak, IMO; the fact that approval overall tracks more closely to approval on foreign policy than approval on the economy strikes me as evidence that people don't pay much attention to FP. Instead, they let their general feelings about the individual dictate how he/she is doing on foreign policy. To me his evidence could be equally validly interpreted as undermining the argument he's trying to make. I guess we could check this by looking at lagged effects, but he doesn't present any evidence that long-term changes in opinion about foreign policy competence leads to long-term changes in overall approval.</edit>

[ May 05, 2011, 11:26 AM: Message edited by: SenojRetep ]

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SenojRetep
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BTW, on the armed/unarmed question, Dave Weigel has a nice step-by-step of the information released about OBL's access to weapons. The most recent statements from administration officials, quoted within the NYT, is that while bin Laden was unarmed, there was an AK-47 and a Makarov pistol lying within reach.
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Samprimary
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quote:
Originally posted by Mucus:
Samprimary: I understand that but still find it doubtful. As msnbc says, it seems less and less like a chaotic fire-fight, and more like a careful precision operation.

Sigh. On the whole, I am just amazed at how much power theorycrafting has exerted over this whole story. Not yours, but overall. 90% of the commentary on what happened in the mansion is akin to "based on the little snippets, why can't we say this and this happened, and why didn't they do it THIS way?"

Anyway, on the larger front, we're dealing with a major event with fragmented information coming in at a rapid pace, there's going to be confusion. Especially when everybody is going to want to know what's going on immediately.

Did some of the small details get mixed up? Def. Did they do it on purpose? In this incident, probably not.

There's no real advantage to be gained by them knowingly putting out false information on one day only to correct it the second day. If anything it would weaken their position in a way they obviously knew about.

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kmbboots
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Exactly what Samprimary wrote.
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Blayne Bradley
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quote:
Originally posted by Rakeesh:
I think we can safely say that, as a strictly practical matter, it's as difficult to hit one square inch of the body as any other-but if you aim for center mass you've got more room to spare. But then if you aim for center mass and miss, well, you're more likely to still do damage and even kill and not have the person you've just hit still be shooting back at you and possibly kill you.

All of that's pretty obvious. What should be equally obvious is that, yeah, sure, 'shoot to wound' is possible, of course. It's also going to obviously be a lot riskier, and because of that fewer soldiers and police - basically fewer everyone trained to use firearms - are trained to do that, everywhere. I mean, that makes sense too. If you train to 'shoot to wound', your survivability will necessarily go down, because you're more likely to miss that spot you're aiming at, and missing that spot will more likely mean you miss flesh and bone entirely, and the target will still be firing back at you.

All of that is also obvious, when it's sat down and thunk on. What may not be obvious is with all of this hinting about about how it may or may not be objectionable that we may or may not have assassinated ObL, and we should've treated him like a criminal* is, well, what does that mean for the people we actually send to go get the guy? "We need you to put your own life and the lives of your unit at x% greater risk of death or maiming, not to prevent collateral civilian casualties, but to take a mass murdering terrorist alive for years-long trial in civilian court." That's what is being asked with the question, "Why didn't we shoot-to-wound?" or, "Why didn't we work harder to capture?" effectively. It's kind of interesting to me how, around here at least, that (what seems to me, anyway) underlying truth seems to get skirted around.

*And let's, just for the sake of argument, say that ObL is just a criminal. Alright, he's a criminal. Y'know, I don't think there's a nation on Earth where they don't eventually say to the cops, "Alright, at some point you're allowed to just kill the guy, OK? Because giving him anything other than an instant's warning is just giving him an even better chance to just kill the hell out of you while you're serving the warrant." That's setting aside the fact that, y'know, how long has this particular criminal - for the sake of argument - had the chance to turn himself in? At what point have the authorities exhausted their obligation to give the criminal a chance to surrender? After how many years of pursuit?

Not just as a criminal, but as a war criminal, there's a difference in order of magnitude here.

They would've captured Hitler to put him on trial.

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rivka
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quote:
Originally posted by Mucus:
I figured if the navy seal accidentally shot a piece of furniture and the shot bounced into her leg or some such, they would have added the simple phrase "by accident" or something.

*blink*

You have SO much more faith in the media than I do.

Past experience tells me that you are an intelligent person. The current conversation would otherwise make me doubt that. Since you are not always entirely direct in your posts (again, this is my impression), I am forced to wonder if your apparent obtuseness is deliberate.

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fugu13
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Given that the entire initial account of the attack was riddled with errors, that are only slowly being corrected, you think the presence or absence of the phrase "by accident" is enough to determine that?

You didn't consider a number of other alternatives, including

1) in the confusion, a SEAL ended up shooting her once instead of twice.

2) a SEAL tried to shoot her twice (probably chest shots, as that's what they're trained to do), but hit her once in the leg and missed with the other.

Then she stopped presenting a threat, so they didn't shoot her again.

Any of those is vastly more likely than that the SEALs were taking aimed shots at legs (which wouldn't be where they'd be aiming in the first place if they didn't want to kill).

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Mucus
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rivka: I don't think there's a media issue here. Or rather, aside from the overwhelming hype and odd willingness of the American media to believe the initial story about the attack, I haven't really seen the media having problems relaying the various twists and turns that the administration has subsequently put out about the situation.

As for whether I'm being direct or not, I've answered this and don't appreciate the apparent implication that the choice is either I'm being obtuse or I'm unintelligent.

I will continue by addressing those parts of the thread that remain above the belt.

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Rakeesh
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Do you really think the American media (or any media, for that matter?) actually believes the initial (as in, hours later) accounts are accurate-setting aside questions of honesty-or are simply reporting fast fast fast?

I mean, to mean that seems much more in keeping with what happens, media-wise. Report what's given, first and fastest.

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Mucus
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quote:
Originally posted by Samprimary:
Did some of the small details get mixed up? Def. Did they do it on purpose? In this incident, probably not.

I'm not sure I agree with this.

The account of the daughter and the account of the administration are clearly conflicting. Someone is definitely wrong, and I suspect on purpose. Whether this is due to the Pakistanis making stuff up for propaganda purposes or the Americans doing it is of course an easy question for some Americans to answer, but I'm going to keep an open mind anyway.

As for the argument that these details were screwed up due to haste, I can understand, but don't necessarily buy. For example, whether the house is worth a million dollars hence proving that bin Laden was living "high on the hog" is something that they've had a long time to verify. But its awfully convenient that that kind of error happens to coincide with other errors like that of Osama cowardly using his wife as a human shield.

The errors aren't random, but are convenient ones. It smells of propaganda and the comparison has been made to the Jessica Lynch story

quote:
The only problem with the official account is that it was untrue. In fact, Lynch's gun jammed and she did not fire a shot; Iraqi hospital staff treated her kindly and tried to return her to US forces; and, there was no need for a raid by army rangers and navy seals as the Iraqi military had fled the day before. Nor, contrary to initial reports, had she been shot or stabbed her injuries had been caused after her truck was hit and crashed.

...

Giving evidence at a congressional hearing four years later, Lynch said: "I am still confused as to why they chose to lie and tried to make me a legend when the real heroics of my fellow soldiers that day were, in fact, legendary [The] bottom line is the American people are capable of determining their own ideals of heroes, and they don't need to be told elaborate tales."

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/may/04/us-military-backtracks-stories-history

Maybe the new marketing strategy is to dominate the initial headlines with the best story and let the real story quickly trickle out knowing that most people either won't care about the details or won't pay attention anyway. This also prevents the possibility of a damaging Wikileaks-type headline later on.

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The Rabbit
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quote:
According to the "current" official American narrative, Osama bin Laden's wife was shot in the leg and left alive while rushing a Navy Seal. This is not contradicted by any other account so far. However hard it is to shoot to wound, its been done.
Your conclusion is not supported by the data. The simple fact that she was wounded by the shot rather than killed, says absolutely nothing about the intent of those who fired the shot. For all we know they weren't even aiming at her at all.

We know it is possible, even common, for people to be wounded rather than killed by gunfire. The question is how difficult it is in a real life scenario to intentionally and accurately choose to wound rather than kill.

Police statics show that in a real life gunfight, just hitting the target at all is difficult challenge. In 2006, when New York Police officers intentionally fired a gun at a person, they only hit the person 28% of the time. With those kind of statistics, its highly unlikely that even elite Navy SEALS can accurately hit a person in a particular spot of their choosing in a real life fight.

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Rakeesh
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quote:
Not just as a criminal, but as a war criminal, there's a difference in order of magnitude here.

They would've captured Hitler to put him on trial.

For a civilian criminal trial? And how hard would they have tried to capture him alive?
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Stone_Wolf_
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quote:
Police statics show that in a real life gunfight, just hitting the target at all is difficult challenge. In 2006, when New York Police officers intentionally fired a gun at a person, they only hit the person 28% of the time.
In my experience, cops are horrible shots (except SWAT) in general terms.

Cops have to study a lot of things, quite a bit of it having to do with suspect's rights, procedure, all those laws they have to enforce, etc.

While they do practice, most the time that a cop draws and fires their weapon, it is a surprise situation and their training is primarily not as weapon specialists.

Seriously, the requal test target is about half again as big as a normal silhouette target, they put them at 20 feet, instead of 60 or more and all they have to do is hit the silhouette, center mass is scored the same as barely touching the line.

I'm sure there are normal beat cops who are crack shots, but they never came in and shot at the ranges I worked in.

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Destineer
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quote:
Originally posted by Rakeesh:
quote:
Not just as a criminal, but as a war criminal, there's a difference in order of magnitude here.

They would've captured Hitler to put him on trial.

For a civilian criminal trial? And how hard would they have tried to capture him alive?
They tried pretty hard with the other Nazis. [Dont Know]
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Rakeesh
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Oh? How much actual time did those other Nazis that actually went to civilian court do, for example? There was military presence among both the judges and the prosecution, though if memory serves it was outnumbered by civilians.

Anyway, I was more referring to the effort to actually capture ObL than to perform a civilian trial. How much effort was required to capture the (remaining) Nazi high command alive, exactly? What I can find says that the answer is 'not much' beyond what was already being done to find them anyway. Not very analagous to the ObL situation. The Soviets didn't try to take Hitler alive.

This also ignores the substantial unasnwers question of 'what happens if we've got ObL in captivity for years'? I mean, I'm not saying it's a given that there would be unceasing mayhem for the duration of the trial or anything. I really don't know what would happen. But that's another situation in which the two scenarios don't compare. The Nazis were prostrate at the end of WWII. The same can't be said of the folks who'd be angry if we were holding ObL.

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Blayne Bradley
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Who said anything about civilian trial? Any trial would do. Just as long as its public and its for war crimes and crimes against humanity.
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kmbboots
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How many people are you willing to risk given the security problems of such a trial?
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Ace of Spades
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Anyone but himself.
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