The assassination of Osama bin Laden has be trumpeted by President Obama and his administration as their hallmark foreign policy achievement. “His slogan should be GM is alive and Bin Laden is dead,” said adviser David Axelrod of Obama’s 2012 re-election efforts.
But a new book out seems to indicate that the President wasn’t nearly to decisive in pulling the trigger on the bin Laden mission as the public has been lead to believe.
At the urging of Valerie Jarrett, President Barack Obama canceled the operation to kill Osama bin Laden on three separate occasions before finally approving the May 2, 2011 Navy SEAL mission, according to an explosive new book scheduled for release August 21. The Daily Caller has seen a portion of the chapter in which the stunning revelation appears.
In ”Leading From Behind: The Reluctant President and the Advisors Who Decide for Him,“ Richard Miniter writes that Obama canceled the “kill” mission in January 2011, again in February, and a third time in March. Obama’s close adviser Valerie Jarrett persuaded him to hold off each time, according to the book.
Miniter, a two-time New York Times best-selling author, cites an unnamed source with Joint Special Operations Command who had direct knowledge of the operation and its planning.
Obama administration officials also said after the raid that the president had delayed giving the order to kill the arch-terrorist the day before the operation was carried out, in what turned out to be his fourth moment of indecision. At the time, the White House blamed the delay on unfavorable weather conditions near bin Laden’s compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan.
But when Miniter obtained that day’s weather reports from the U.S. Air Force Combat Meteorological Center, he said, they showed ideal conditions for the SEALs to carry out their orders.
Some would argue that maybe it’s not such a great thing to celebrate the President unilaterally ordering assassinations, even for scum like bin Laden. Some might argue that it would have been better to capture bin Laden, if it were possible, has he would have been an intelligence gold mine.
But setting aside those questions, is the President’s indecisiveness as bad a knock on his leadership as some will make it out to be? I’m not so sure. Most would agree that killing bin Laden was a good decision. Whatever doubts the President had, he ultimately made the decision, and he deserves credit for that as far as it goes.