Opinion

A Tale of Two Terrorists

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Posted: Jan 12, 2020 12:01 AM
The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com.
A Tale of Two Terrorists

Source: Office of the Iranian Supreme Leader via AP, File

It was the best of people, it was the worst of people…

Osama bin Laden deserved to die. Only the fringe of the fringe disagree with this statement (looking at you, British Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn), which is why no one seemed to mind when Seal Team 6 invaded Pakistan to upgrade his train ticket to Hell to first class.

Make no mistake: the word “invaded” is the correct word. We did not have permission to enter, nor did we tell them we were coming. There was a chance, however remote, of something horrible happening that could have started at least a serious battle, if not a war, with Pakistan had things gone horribly wrong. Thank God things did not go wrong and the al-Qaeda leader is now fish excrement.

Taking risks in foreign policy is a part of the deal, even the best plans can go horribly wrong. See the President Jimmy Carter-ordered mission to rescue the Iranian hostages in 1980 that resulted in the tragic death of 8 U.S. service members.

“Operation Eagle Claw,” as it was called, planned and plotted with care, then things turned bad. It was aborted.

The raid that killed bin Laden, “Operation Neptune Spear,” worked. The world’s most wanted terrorist had his head ventilated by Rob O’Neill and no American lives were lost.

The country was ecstatic, justice had finally come to the man with the blood of 3,000 Americans on his hands.

Almost immediately, the raid was politicized to benefit President Barack Obama. After all, he was facing re-election. Democrats in and out of the media had themselves a new catchphrase: “gutsy call.”

Leftists insisted the order to authorize the raid was a nearly unparalleled act of courage on behalf of Obama, and additional drool was released down liberal chins while remarking on how “cool” he was at the White House Correspondents Dinner the night of the raid, when it was still secret.

The order to go was the right call, but it was also the only call. There was little chance of a war with Pakistan over it, and if bin Laden had escaped during any delay in giving the order and the public found out, that would’ve been the kiss of death for a second Obama term. Even if it had ended in failure or tragedy, the American public would have understood why the order was given.

Still, Obama was treated as a hero after giving the only order he really could have. Fine, to the victor goes the spoils.

Now compare that to the reaction from those very same people to the operation that killed another terrorist mastermind, one with the blood of at least 600 American soldiers and tens of thousands of civilians around the world, Qasem Soleimani. The Iranian government monster has been killing his own people and anyone else he saw fit at will for decades. His fingerprints were all over the murder of American contractor Nawres Waleed Hamid on December 27th, and on the invasion of the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad days later. Hamid’s blood on Soleimani’s hands was still wet when he was liberated from them, and the rest of his body, on January 3rd.

You would think the killing of a man actively killing Americans would be met with some semblance of the relief that greeted the death of a hermit in a self-build prison in Pakistan. You would be wrong.

The very same people whose catchphrase had been turned into “gutsycall.com,” which redirected visitors to Obama’s reelection website (and fundraising operation), not only didn’t heave a sigh of relief, they expressed outrage.

These liberals claimed Soleimani’s death could lead to war, that it would lead to anger against America in the Muslim world. The Venn diagram of people driven to anger over the death of an Iranian terrorist leader is roughly one circle filled with the same people driven to anger over the killing of bin Laden, but OBL’s killing didn’t elicit a similar reaction in the press.

Part of the lack of public sighs of relief that Soleimani died last week was due, in part, to the American media’s lackluster job of reporting on Soleimani over the years. An amusing part of the “tisk, tisk” media reaction were admonishments from Democratic journalists saying, “If you didn’t know who Qasem Soleimani was before tonight, spare me your ‘hot takes.’” It’s their job, of course, to inform the public about what’s going on in the world and who the major players are, so it was more of them exposing how poorly they are at doing it than anything else.

Still, they knew better. “Iran will retaliate,” they insisted. And Iran did…by bombing dirt and empty buildings. We knew they were coming even before they tipped us off through backchannels.

They needed to save face. The launching of missiles was for domestic consumption. They needed to show the fanatical faction of their public they would avenge the hero they’d built up, lest those willing to support and engage in the murder of their fellow countrymen who don’t share their zealotry for being oppressed could lose faith.

The whole thing was a political show.

Iranian state media parroted government talking points. What the Iranian government likely did not predict was how the American media and Democrats would do the same.

The portrayals by the left could not have been more different from the bin Laden raid. Osama was a monster who deserved to die, Soleimani was a national hero so beloved his popularity spilled across the entire region.

Iran shooting down a Ukrainian airliner and watching Democrats blame America for it was just the cherry on top. Our enemies don’t need to waste money and energy on trying to destroy America, they just need to be patient and wait…liberals are trying to do it for them.

Derek is the host of a free daily podcast (subscribe!), host of a daily radio show on WCBM in Maryland, and author of the book, Outrage, INC., which exposes how liberals use fear and hatred to manipulate the masses. Follow him on Twitter at @DerekAHunter.