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Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden has been killed by the U.S. military and positively identified, according to multiple media reports at 8 p.m. West Coast time. He had been hiding out in Pakistan. President Obama is expected to go on TV to give more facts momentarily.

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Comments

Visduh May 1, 2011 @ 9:17 p.m.

It took nearly a decade (actually longer than that if you count the USS Cole bombing and the embassy bombings) to track down and kill the world's Most Wanted Man? The world's only remaining superpower wasn't looking so powerful when he masterminded some low-tech but ultra-effective attacks against targets on our own soil. This whole thing about bin Laden and Al Qaeda has been "stranger than fiction" for too long. Let's hope it is for real, and that we finally get the real story about him, his beliefs and goals, and organization.

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Don Bauder May 1, 2011 @ 11:15 p.m.

Some Muslims welcome this, others do not. Politically, I believe this will help Obama. Best, Don Bauder

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SurfPuppy619 May 2, 2011 @ 7:29 a.m.

. Politically, I believe this will help Obama.

Sure won't hurt.

The economy is going to be the deciding factor on whether Obama is re-elected.

Carter and GHW Bush both lost re-election bids due to the economy, and Bush had a 90% approval rating, the highest of any Presdient in history, 2 years prior.

Ronnie Raygun had AWFUL numbers and an awful economy in 1982, and it turned gang busters in 24 months and he had the largest victory in presidential history againt Mondale, who only won 1 state, his own-MN.

I don't think the economy will turn,we are too deep in the hole and Bernanke and Geitner need to both be removed from office.

I won't vote for Obama again unless a miracle happens and the economy turns.

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Don Bauder May 1, 2011 @ 11:13 p.m.

It seems that Osama bin Laden is no longer the leader of Al Qaeda. He is their icon, their symbol of power, but not the operational head. We'll have to see whether Al Qaeda becomes more or less militant as a result of this. We are preparing for a revenge hit but the talking heads on TV don't expect one. This event could stimulate or depress Al Qaeda recruiting. Best, Don Bauder

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tomjohnston May 1, 2011 @ 11:24 p.m.

Actually every "talking head" I have heard seems to think reprisal is possible. Most, if not all US military and diplomatic locations around the world have been on a heightened watch since before the raid took place

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Don Bauder May 2, 2011 @ 6:55 a.m.

We will just have to see. If the killing of Osama bin Laden leads to a weakening of Al Qaeda and terrorism, then the mission was indeed a success. If it leads to a strengthening of Al Qaeda and more terrorism, then we will have to reassess this move. In my own opinion, if the mission succeeds, and leads to a sharp drop in our military commitment in Iraq and Afghanistan, or even the complete removal of troops in both places, it will be a great success. We need deep cuts in military spending. Best, Don Bauder

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SurfPuppy619 May 1, 2011 @ 10:44 p.m.

Just heard the news online a few minutes ago, have not seen the TV news yet. Very happy day. Very good day. OBL was a mass murderer and I am happy he is dead.

I had heard on a comment board it was a Navy Seal team.

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Don Bauder May 1, 2011 @ 11:17 p.m.

Seals were apparently quite involved. Joint Special Operations Command is getting credit. Seals, I believe, may be part of that. Best, Don Bauder

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MondoGrapes May 2, 2011 @ 7:57 a.m.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m shedding no tears for this man. But I find myself wondering what the hell this really means. Tojo, Hitler, and Goering had more American blood on their hands than this guy. A lot more. And Tojo and Goering got trial...s. And Hitler would’ve got one too had he not committed suicide. All I think this does is forever cement bin Laden’s status as the eternally convenient boogeyman. A distraction that lasts forever, deflecting attention away from the long line of blunders that led up to those horrible moments on September 11 and the bungling and outright crimes that were committed in its aftermath. By making sure there was no trial, it will also forever bury our own government’s hand in creating bin Laden and al Qaeda. I wonder what unsavory information would’ve been brought to light in a public trial.

And maybe it’s just the conspiracy theorist in me, but I’m also left wondering what horrendous piece of legislation is going to get rammed through the House and Senate now that everyone is chanting “USA! USA!”

And what the hell does this really mean in terms of strategy? He was already effectively neutralized in some forsaken corner of Pakistan. Does that mean that we win? Can we bring everyone home now? Does it also mean that the trillions of dollars that we have spent in the last ten years on these wars was worth it?

Or does another terrorist simply take his place? This reminds me of when law enforcement leaders and politicians declare a big public victory when some gangland drug kingpin is taken out. You haven’t eliminated the problem. You neutralized one small symptom. And another will simply step into the power vacuum because you’ve ignored the root problem which is: why would kids turn to drugs and gangs in the first place?

You think this is going to stop terrorism? Why do people turn to it in the first place? I’ve got some news for you, those people do NOT hate us for our freedom. They hate us because our government has meddled in their affairs and we have propped up some pretty awful people as rulers in those countries who have plenty of blood on their hands as well.

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Don Bauder May 2, 2011 @ 9:16 a.m.

You ask some very perceptive questions. I am disheartened to see that this morning, politicians are telling Americans that the war on terror is not over. What they are doing is winking at Wall Street and saying, "Don't worry. You won't have to worry about peace. The spending will continue." You are absolutely correct when you say that the hatred in these countries has arisen as a result of the West meddling in their affairs. This goes back many decades. Remember how Arab countries were carved up after World War I? I still worry that Osama bin Laden's killing will exacerbate terrorism rather than quell it. We will have to see. Best, Don Bauder

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tomjohnston May 2, 2011 @ 9:34 a.m.

Mr. Bauder, You say you're disheartened politicians are telling Americans that the war on terror is not over yet you yourself say you worry that Osama bin Laden's killing will exacerbate terrorism rather than quell it. Would you prefer that those politicians, including the President, lie and tell us that everything is fine and that there's no longer anything to worry about? I don't understand the logic of your statement. Perhaps you would explain it to us. With that said I'm off. The count down has begun. Nine more days left until freedom.

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Don Bauder May 2, 2011 @ 11:49 a.m.

In my judgment, the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, while billed as part of the war on terrorism, are no such thing. That's why I was hoping that our pols of both parties, having disingenuously told the public that those two wars were necessary to fight terrorism, would now declare victory with Osama bin Laden's death and accelerate the departure of troops from both those war zones. These wars -- which have intensified Middle East terrorism, rather than quelled it -- have been a waste of trillions of dollars. Military spending must be slashed. We have to stop fighting Orwellian wars that have their roots in economic stimulation. Best, Don Bauder

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MURPHYJUNK May 2, 2011 @ 9:43 a.m.

too bad he was not captured and interrogated, I bet there would have been a lot of useful info to gain ( if they made it all public)

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Don Bauder May 3, 2011 @ 8:57 a.m.

I agree: it would have been better if we had captured him. But a fight broke out and there was apparently no choice for U.S. military. Best, Don Bauder

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Laurin May 2, 2011 @ 11:44 a.m.

That pic is a fake as it says in the text with the picture. And anybody looking at it should be able to clearly see it's a fake.

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SurfPuppy619 May 2, 2011 @ 1:24 p.m.

Well, I don't read German, but it does not appear to be fake, as it is with 8 other pics and they are not fake.

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Laurin May 2, 2011 @ 2:15 p.m.

Dude, are you serious. Take a look again From the bridge of the nose down, the picture is fuzzy and above the bridge of the nose it's not. Look at the beard. Even though its fuzzy, it is identical in coloring and shape as the pic on the right. Look at the difference in the skin color. Above the bridge of the nose is different tha below it and in the pic on the right it's not. Even the color of the skin on the neck is different from the rest of the skin and in the pic on the right it's the same. The head also seems too big. Look at the hand on the shoulder in the fake pick. By proportion it makes the head appear too big. BTW the text says this is the same picture was also published in a Middle East online newspaper. You also might want o take a look at this photo.

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=10723030

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Don Bauder May 3, 2011 @ 9:08 a.m.

The question is not whether it is fake. The question is whether the Arab world will believe it is real, and whether it will inflame or satisfy the majority. Best, Don Bauder

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Don Bauder May 3, 2011 @ 9:06 a.m.

How do you know the others aren't fake? Best, Don Bauder

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Don Bauder May 3, 2011 @ 9:04 a.m.

What difference does it make whether it is a fake or not? Best, Don Bauder

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Don Bauder May 3, 2011 @ 8:58 a.m.

There is controversy about that pic. Best, Don Bauder

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Rocket_J_Squirrel May 2, 2011 @ 2:45 p.m.

I KNOW that the caption says it's alleged and false, but you've got to admit, many people are wondering how he looked after getting two rounds to his head. (There probably wasn't nearly as much left as the fake picture shows).

Tschuss!

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SurfPuppy619 May 2, 2011 @ 5:39 p.m.

Recent reports say the first round was to the chest, second to the head.

I read earlier it was two to the head.

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Don Bauder May 3, 2011 @ 9:02 a.m.

It seems to me there are more important things to discuss than where he got shot: for example, will this rattle or please the moderate Arabs? Best, Don Bauder

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Laurin May 2, 2011 @ 5:45 p.m.

One to the head, left side I believe , and one to the chest. I would imagine he was down from the chest wound and then a SEAL put one in the side of his head, so as not to disfigure the face since they were using facial recog and biometrics as part of the id verification. Remember, this was a kill mission, not a capture mission. I couldn't care less what he looks like. Bottom line, he's gone. You know it, I know it and Al-Quaeda knows it. Case Closed.

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Don Bauder May 3, 2011 @ 9:01 a.m.

Although we supposedly have DNA proof it is he, we probably haven't convinced the Arab world of that. Best, Don Bauder

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Visduh May 2, 2011 @ 10:30 p.m.

Quibbling about pictures of a corpse misses the main point. The Paks were complicit in sheltering him, while professing to be on our side and assisting our war on the terrorists. The fact that they've been on on both sides of the fence has been obvious for a long time. We deal with the Pak government because we have no other option, not because we trust them. Reports are that the Paks were not alerted or advised about this operation until it was complete. For once the US showed some smarts. The US in essence invoked an international version of "the right of hot pursuit", and took him out without informing the locals. (How "hot" it was after a decade-plus is debatable.) They don't like it? Tough! Now their president is denying that they had any knowledge of his whereabouts. How absurd is that? Plenty. Did the US military shuck is carcass off the USS Vinson? Who knows, but as long as we never admit to keeping the pitiful remains, the fanatics will have one less thing to rage about. It is a long overdue step, but not a truly significant one in the big picture. We'll be dealing with this islamo-facsism and islamo-terrorism for a long time to come.

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Don Bauder May 3, 2011 @ 9:14 a.m.

Good points. And the main one we must ponder is this: have the West's actions through the decades been a major force in creating this islamo-terrorism? We keep saying that they hate us because we democratic. But do they hate us because of our decades of meddling in their affairs? How about the creation of Iraq after WWI? How about our role in putting the corrupt shah in power in Iran? How about the Iraq war based on lies concocted by the Bush White House? And an Afghanistan war that began as pursuit of bin Laden and then turned into regime change? Best, Don Bauder

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SurfPuppy619 May 2, 2011 @ 10:56 p.m.

The Paks were complicit in sheltering him, while professing to be on our side and assisting our war on the terrorists. The fact that they've been on on both sides of the fence has been obvious for a long time. We deal with the Pak government because we have no other option, not because we trust them

And we still give them several BILLION per year in aid-can ANYONE explain that??? In the middle of a depression where 20% of our own people are unemployed or under employed????

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Don Bauder May 3, 2011 @ 9:15 a.m.

In trimming our budget, we must look at foreign aid (or whatever it actually is) along with the military. Best, Don Bauder

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Psycholizard May 2, 2011 @ 10:58 p.m.

I wouldn't believe any statement about the capture. For once our leaders can lie in a good cause, protecting our sources. My guess is that a Pakistani informed and asked our help to stay alive. The truth kills sometimes.

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Don Bauder May 3, 2011 @ 9:17 a.m.

What bothers me is that we are using this as a rationale for our interrogation techniques, many of which defied international law. The claim is being made that intelligence from these interrogations helped us find Osama bin Laden. Can anybody prove that? Best, Don Bauder

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Ponzi May 3, 2011 @ 7:11 a.m.

Our intelligence community has known that Osama was living in Pakistan for years. Why we waited so long is the question.

However, dumping Bin Laden’s body into the Indian Ocean was the smart thing to do. If he were brought to land, his family (of what, 60 siblings?) in Saudi Arabia would have found an obligation to take his remains. That would have probably led to some kind of martyr monument and a pilgrimage of his devoted followers. It’s best he became chum for the sharks that roam those warm waters.

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Don Bauder May 3, 2011 @ 9:19 a.m.

Let's see if the Arab world agrees that it was best to make him chum for the sharks. Best, Don Bauder

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MURPHYJUNK May 3, 2011 @ 7:31 a.m.

if they had a real plan, the story printed would be it, but he would be still alive for interrogation, establishing he was killed would quell any hostage taking over the world to try and free him.

as for the compound being worth $1m, in what 3rd world were they getting their figures from?

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Don Bauder May 3, 2011 @ 9:22 a.m.

At one point, even Dick Cheney was saying that there was no evidence that Osama was behind 9/11. He appeared to take credit for it, but that may have been a propaganda stunt. Still, he was responsible for many other attacks. He could truly be called evil. Best, Don Bauder

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Visduh May 3, 2011 @ 10:32 a.m.

You know MURPHYJUNK, you have a most devious mind. Capture him and then dump the body of a bearded Arab dude off the end of the carrier within ten hours. He never resurfaces, but the US has him. Perfect, priceless and all that jazz!

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Don Bauder May 3, 2011 @ 8:12 p.m.

A lot is being written about conspiracy theories these days. I'm sure you are not the first to think of this. Best, Don Bauder

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Psycholizard May 3, 2011 @ 1:05 p.m.

We know that the Bush Administration failed to get the right information in spite of, or perhaps because of the torture they practiced. Torture failed, end of story. Only those blinded by their love of Sadism could think otherwise,

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Don Bauder May 3, 2011 @ 8:13 p.m.

The torturing, including waterboarding, came long before -- and was halted long before -- the U.S. got tips on Osama's whereabouts. The crediting of interrogation for the Osama killing is just propaganda based on lies. Best, Don Bauder

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tomjohnston May 3, 2011 @ 1:39 p.m.

I have been told the raid was conducted by SEAL TEAM 6. SEAL TEAM 6 was created about 30 yrs ago. After the failed attempt to recue the US hostages in Iran the Navy decided it needed a full-time Counter-Terrorist Team. SEALS are the most BAD-ASS operators in the military and SEAL TEAM 6 are the most BAD-ASS of all. In October of 2001, Bush signed an Executive Order authorizing the assassination of bin laden. It was never rescinded. There was never a question about taking him alive, imo.

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Don Bauder May 3, 2011 @ 8:14 p.m.

Possibly the U.S. never wanted to get him alive. Best, Don Bauder

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SurfPuppy619 May 3, 2011 @ 8:12 p.m.

SEAL Team 6 is supposedly the top SEAL Team.

The SEAL teams are all trained in Coronado, but they split the 6 teams- 3 on the east coast and 3 on the west coast (Coronado).

I have heard conflicting numbers as to the size of the teams, but 100 per team is the number I seem to recall.

I used to live in Coronado and was a regular client of McP's Bar on Orange near the Hotel Del, and that bar is owned by a former SEAL, and the SEALS do party in there.

There is also a t-shirt shop a bloc or two down from McP's-same side of the street- and they sell the SEAL shirts and sweatshirts. One thing about the T-shirt shop, each SEAL class is given a number, numerical number, and they design their very own logo-and ONLY a class member can get the class design(Example=BUD/s Class 407).

BTW-BUD/s stands for Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL training. If you get the chance it is cool to go itno the t-shirt shop and check out all the crazy BUD/s Class shirts-some are VERY COOL, but they won't sell you one unelss you're a class memebr, bummed me out.

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tomjohnston May 4, 2011 @ 1:27 a.m.

surfpuppy619, the SEALS are split between the east coast at NAB Little Creek and west coast at NAB Coronado and Hawaii at NS Pearl Harbor. All BUD/s training is done at NAB Coronado, but after BUD/S, they have 4 months of SQT, which is done at various locations. SEAL TEAM 6 is basically black ops, they don't officially exist and there is no official SEAL TEAM 6 designation; officially they're called the Naval Special Warfare Development Group. They even have a separate base in Virginia. As I said, the baddest of the bad. I believe there are 11 teams with nine active and two reserve and about 2500 strong including command and support. They are tasked to JSOC, which means they report to the president and pretty much operate with impunity. If you want a good picture of SEAL TEAM 6, try reading 'Rogue Warrior". It was written by the guy who founded them, Dick Marcinko. I read it several yeaars ago and someone I know who is familiar with the SEALS says it's pretty acurate.

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SurfPuppy619 May 4, 2011 @ 10:54 a.m.

Dick Marcinko was on TV yesterday giving commentary...I have seen his book but not read it, but will soon.

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Don Bauder May 3, 2011 @ 8:16 p.m.

I thought the SEALS stayed in such great shape that they never partied. Best, Don Bauder

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Visduh May 3, 2011 @ 10:02 p.m.

Having an occasional party where they do some "hard" partying doesn't mean they aren't in shape. The social life adds to the cohesiveness of the group, and good fellowship avoids petty jealousies getting in the way of doing the job. Those elite groups can get into some "over the top" rituals and get more than a little crazy at times, but that's just an occupational hazard of being a warrior. (Remember the scandals a couple decades ago when they were hammering the prongs of their badges into their chests? Ouch! They called those "blood" badges. Same sort of thing in the Army airborne divisions. Most of that sort of stuff happened at what passes for parties those guys hold.)

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Don Bauder May 4, 2011 @ 6:42 a.m.

There was no such macho activity in Army clerk-typist school, which I attended in 1959. We were a bunch of sissies. Best, Don Bauder

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MURPHYJUNK May 4, 2011 @ 7:45 a.m.

you should see them turned loose on RNR at patong beach

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Psycholizard May 3, 2011 @ 10:59 p.m.

If the government had tried drugs along with torture, I might believe that the government used torture in a misguided attempt to gain information. Since they did not, and made no real attempt to conceal their actions. I believe they tortured to spread terror to their enemies at home and abroad, and for their own gratification. Certainly the Abu Ghraib photos can be explained no other way.

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Don Bauder May 4, 2011 @ 6:45 a.m.

Self-gratification is one key. The military attracts some people who are bloodthirsty and vengeful by nature -- sort of like prison guards. Best, Don Bauder

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Psycholizard May 4, 2011 @ 2:50 p.m.

The Abu Ghraib perps were prison guards in civilian life. They didn't do anything like their Iraqi crimes here, or at least we haven't heard. It comes down to leadership. Leadership that remains unpunished.

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Don Bauder May 4, 2011 @ 4:22 p.m.

Agreed. America's torture policies came right out of the White House, with legal help from the DOJ. Obama promised not to follow the bloody Bush policies, but it appears he has reneged. Best, Don Bauder

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Psycholizard May 4, 2011 @ 8:35 p.m.

The US has been accused for years of practicing torture, always denying it. The Bush administration did not deny practices that plainly were torture, in fact seemed to be proud of water boarding and the like. This bad leadership infected our troops worldwide. To prosecute enlisted while sparing the President was, and would be again gross injustice. The trouble is, if Bush was brought to trial, a hung jury would be likely, and not guilty very possible. After that result torture might become the standard. Civilization is fragile.

Obama improved our treatment of these prisoners, we'll have to be satisfied with that, because if Trump wins, the torture will be made into reality TV. WHATS MY SECRET for the new millennium.

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Don Bauder May 5, 2011 @ 7:22 a.m.

Many of the strongest opponents of torture, particularly waterboarding, are members of the U.S. military. If we torture our opponents, our own troops are put in grave danger; other countries will have no compunction about torturing our troops that are captured. This whole torturing episode was disgraceful. Best, Don Bauder

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Psycholizard May 6, 2011 @ 8:42 a.m.

Machiavelli argued that fear is more powerful than love, and therefore a reputation for cruelty was desired for effective leadership. Both Saddam and the Republican candidates in 08 were eager to cultivate this reputation.

The Bushies perhaps should have read the rest of the chapter, where Machiavelli explains that indiscriminate cruelty, shooting friend and foe alike, only provokes rebellion, because obedience is no guarantee of safety.

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Don Bauder May 8, 2011 @ 7:46 p.m.

I'm surprised the Bush Republicans got even that far in Machiavelli. Best, Don Bauder

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Lance T Walker May 8, 2011 @ noon

Thank you, America... from a Former Special Ops Vet

I had the opportunity to watch President Obama's thank-you speech to the Special Operations troops at Fort Campbell, Kentucky on Friday.

As a former Air Force Special Ops team member, I've had a pretty businesslike reaction to the successful raid that eliminated Osama bin Laden in Pakistan this week. Basically a "good job, next mission" approach, as one might expect.

I served in the mid 1980s, when the Special Ops program was fairly new and the lessons of the Desert One debacle were still fresh in our minds. Then as now, we trained to do the job because it was important, not for fame or even recognition. We didn't see ourselves as noble, we saw ourselves as necessary.

So I was quite unprepared for the enormous feeling of gratitude that suddenly swelled up inside of me as I listened to the President speak. Even though a part of me knew I was watching pure theatre, pre-written and professionally produced, the words still felt amazingly good.

I found myself actually appreciating the fact that so many people put in so much work just to say thank you. I don't feel shallow, embarrassed, or weak. I feel proud, and honored to have had a part in the development of a fighting force as good as this one is.

But even more important, I feel a sense of gratitude for a nation that knows how to say thank you. And this feeling has made me aware that I haven't said thank you nearly enough to the people around me.

As a businessperson, I know I'll be saying it a lot more to my partners, my associates, and my clients.

And as a man, I'll be saying it a lot more to my friends, my relatives, my loved ones, and even Sabrina, my cat.

You see, I was a young adolescent when the veterans came home from Viet Nam. Many times, the reception they received was not pleasant. To experience such a turnaround, to see and feel a nation's respect, is a wonderful thing to behold, and I've been blessed to see it happen.

To defend this country is an honorable thing. To have a country like this to defend is an incredible thing.

I believe I can speak for all those who have served when I say we understand the value of your affection, even if we don't always say it out loud. And so today, I say for all of us, thank you America.

Thank you for being you.

Happy Mother's Day! (thanks Mom)

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Don Bauder May 8, 2011 @ 7:48 p.m.

The SEALs I have met were tough cookies -- well trained and very courageous. Best, Don Bauder

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Psycholizard May 9, 2011 @ 1:06 p.m.

Terror can only be defeated by courage. Finally we understand this. A thousand smart bombs could not do what that handful of young men did. They showed courage. In this nation grandmothers hurtle along at the speed of a five story fall on freeways full of maniacs, We have courage, but fear thrills us, so a cynical leadership, desperate to keep power, fed our fear until it became paranoia.

We must show the world we can't be frightened, that we respond to threats with cool planning and not panic. Those serving in the armed forces lead the way. Courage is America's secret weapon, we need only to show it, and fools will no longer kill themselves trying to frighten us.

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Twister May 11, 2011 @ 9:26 p.m.

All government news is cover. A little truth is sprinkled into the water as chum, but the big stuff is always invented ahead of time, then leaked to those in the immediate vicinity of the planners, and all of a sudden there are reassignments, sans clearances, often with promotions. I won't mention what happens to the actual witnesses sometimes. It's an "odd" culture.

Just think how difficult it will for the DGZ guy to be a clam.

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