Archive for Thursday, May 12, 2011

Poll: Bin Laden killing was justified

May 12, 2011


— Was the U.S. right to kill Osama bin Laden? Absolutely, and about time, Americans say.

A new Associated Press-GfK poll shows the nation supporting the raid with rare unanimity, and the glow from the operation is also boosting approval for President Barack Obama’s handling of terrorism and the war in Afghanistan.

Few events have sparked such soaring approval from the nation, and almost nothing has since George W. Bush’s handling of the U.S. campaign against terrorism in the months following the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. Enthusiasm for the risky raid after its success has given Obama some of his highest marks since early in his presidency, and more than half of Americans now say he deserves to be re-elected.

At the same time, many say bin Laden’s death has increased the threat of terrorism against America.

The death, after nearly a decade-long hunt, of the man blamed for killing thousands of Americans also appeared to help boost Americans’ optimism in areas that would seem to have little connection to bin Laden, terrorism or national security.

More Americans — 45 percent, up from 35 percent in March — say the country is headed in the right direction. Still, about half — 52 percent — say things are heading the wrong way, reflecting the effect of more polarizing domestic issues such as the economy, federal budget deficit and health care overhaul.

Despite a sluggish recovery from the Great Recession, 52 percent of Americans now approve of Obama’s stewardship of the economy, giving him his best rating on that issue since the early days of his presidency.

Overall, Obama’s approval rating is up to 60 percent from 53 percent in March and the 47 percent low point following last fall’s congressional elections. It was 64 percent in May 2009, just months after he was sworn into office. Independents, who are likely to be a key voting bloc in the 2012 presidential election, caused the new uptick in support by sliding back to Obama.

The AP-GfK results were striking in that they found Obama with a higher approval rating than other recent polls that generally said he was in the low 50s. Polls often produce varying results because of differences in question wording and polling methodology. Also, during periods when public opinion about an issue is particularly volatile, and at times when the public is being presented with rapidly changing information, it is not uncommon to see wider variations across polls, even those conducted around the same time.

Some conservatives criticized the AP-GfK poll as heavy with responses from Democrats that skewed the results. AP-GfK polls use a consistent methodology that draws a random sample of the population independent of party identification. Such identification is not static and tends to fluctuate over time along with other political opinions. However, the change in party identification in the current AP-GfK poll is not a statistically significant shift from the previous poll in March and could not by itself explain the poll findings.

The poll reflected somewhat mixed feelings by Americans about the ramifications of the bin Laden raid and the general trend of terrorist threats.

Although nearly nine in 10 of those polled approved of killing the al-Qaida leader, 50 percent said it increased the threat of terrorist acts against the United States. Seventeen percent said it decreased the threat, while 31 percent said they believed it had no effect on terrorism.


Richard Heckler 6 years, 5 months ago

Obviously BUSHCO had no interest in bin Laden, al Qaeda or the Taliban. As long as bin Laden was alive the war could grow and grow and grow. The USA could keep a closer eye on oil that does NOT belong to us.

The Taliban and al Qaeda have been in and around Pakistan for years = not a secret.

People in the USA should be equally concerned about why Bush/Cheney did NOT squash 9/11/01 when the culprits were living reasonably close to the White House.

Did bin Laden,The Taliban and al Qaeda have connections?

Gee how could one small band of foreign terrorists living in the USA take over 4 large commercial aircraft virtually simultaneously? USA big brother is everywhere. How did this happen? This is my greater concern.

Richard Heckler 6 years, 5 months ago

Bush Family Values: War, Wealth, Oil

February 8, 2004 - The Los Angeles Times

by Kevin Phillips

Ironically, the Bush family's century of involvement in oil, armaments and global intrigue has never been at the center of the national debate since the Bushes starting running for president in 1980.

Millions of Republicans who have loyally voted for Bushes in three presidential elections simply have no idea. Here are circumstances and biases especially worth noting.

The Bushes and the military-industrial complex: George H. Walker and Samuel Prescott Bush were the dynasty's founding fathers during the years of and after World War I. Walker, a St. Louis financier, made his mark in corporate reorganizations and war contracts. By 1919, he was enlisted by railroad heir W. Averell Harriman to be president of Wall Street-based WA Harriman, which invested in oil, shipping, aviation and manganese, partly in Russia and Germany, during the 1920s.

Sam Bush, the current president's other great-grandfather, ran an Ohio company, Buckeye Steel Castings, that produced armaments. In 1917, he went to Washington to head the small arms, ammunition and ordnance section of the federal War Industries Board. Both men were present at the emergence of what became the U.S. military-industrial complex.

Prescott Bush, the Connecticut senator and grandfather of the current president, had some German corporate ties at the outbreak of World War II, but the better yardstick of his connections was his directorships of companies involved in U.S. war production. Dresser Industries, for example, produced the incendiary bombs dropped on Tokyo and made gaseous diffusion pumps for the atomic bomb project.

George H.W. Bush later worked for Dresser's oil-services businesses. Then, as CIA director, vice president and president, one of his priorities was the U.S. weapons trade and secret arms deals with Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia and the moujahedeen in Afghanistan.

In his 1961 farewell address, President Dwight D. Eisenhower warned about how "we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex."

That complex's recent mega-leap to power came under George H.W. Bush and even more under George W. Bush — with the post-9/11 expansion of the military and creation of the Department of Homeland Security. But armaments and arms deals seem to have been in the Bushes' blood for nearly a century.

Richard Heckler 6 years, 5 months ago

The S&L scandal is by no means the only incident of questionable, and actually illegal, financial activity that the Bush family has been involved in. The line of questionable, illegal, and unethical businesses practices goes back at least to Prescott Bush Sr., George Bush Sr.’s father.

Prescott Bush was a Senator from 1952 – 1963. Previous to his time as a Senator Prescott was a banker and businessman. Prior to the American entry into WWII Prescott Bush was director of Union Banking Corporation. Union Banking Corporation helped to finance Hitler’s regime.

The Concentration Camps of Nazi Germany were labor camps that the Nazis used to make products for their regime as well as for sale to raise money. Prescott profited directly from the Auschwitz labor camp.

In 1942, after Hitler declared war on America the United States government seized the Union Banking Corporation under the Trading with the Enemy Act as a front operation that was supporting the Nazis.

Much of the profits from the operation were already pocketed by Prescott however, and $1.5 million was put in a trust fund for George Bush Sr.

For more on Prescott Bush's ties to the Nazis see:,12271,1312540,00.html

Flap Doodle 6 years, 5 months ago

merrill, you never mention how much Joe Kennedy admired Hitler.

Kirk Larson 6 years, 5 months ago

As did many wealthy industrialists of the 30's.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 5 months ago

I really don't care about Osama bin Laden being assassinated without a trial. Was that any different than Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow's murder spree being stopped by their assassination on May 23, 1934?

In the greater scheme of things, May 23, 1934 was not that long ago. At that time, everyone seemed to be just fine with Bonnie and Clyde being stopped from murdering any more people. There is no telling how many lives were saved by that action, and it seems that they just couldn't be caught to be put on trial.

How is Osama bin Laden any different?

Well, besides the fact that he murdered thousands more people than Bonnie and Clyde ever did.

independant1 6 years, 5 months ago

obl killing justified? certainly, he painted the bullseye on all by himself, what a wealthy rogue!

independant1 6 years, 5 months ago

obl killing justified? certainly, he painted the bullseye on all by himself, what a wealthy rogue!

Scott Drummond 6 years, 5 months ago

Justified? Absolutely. Glad we have a President willing to do it.

Flap Doodle 6 years, 5 months ago

Glad we had a President who authorized the necessary steps to find OBL.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 5 months ago

But - the majority rules, didn't you know?

jonas_opines 6 years, 5 months ago

Nothing validates justification but what we decide will do so.

JustNoticed 6 years, 5 months ago

Suppose OBL had thrown his hands in the air in an unequivocal gesture of surrender? What then? Vengeance I can do without but I am glad we're spared the never-ending circus that would have ensued if we were holding him alive.

Kirk Larson 6 years, 5 months ago

Waterboarding is torture according to everyone who has had it done to them including journalists and Marines. Why don't you try it sometime. Even John McCain, who knows a bit about torture, says so.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 5 months ago

It seems to me that 9-11 was very obviously a declaration of war.

Maybe we should have put the Emperor of Japan and Hideki Tojo (Prime Minister of Japan) on trial for attacking Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941 instead of quickly accepting their offer of war?

If you declare a war, there are consequences for that action. It is very unfortunate that the people who bear the brunt of the consequences for it actually had nothing to do with the decision to go to war in the first place.

Osama bin Laden declared a war, and paid the price. So what?

Russell Fryberger 6 years, 5 months ago

Just imagine all the terrorist activity if we had captured Obama Bin Laden and put him in prison. Yes he is better off dead and I hope they wrapped him in bacon before they dropped him in the ocean.

jhawkinsf 6 years, 5 months ago

None yet on this thread, but I've seen people calling for Bin Laden's capture and trial, similar to those held after WW II for German war criminals. Several problems come to mind with that reasoning. The tribunals held after WW II produced swift trials and swift punishment. That would not be a likely scenario now. Any good lawyer would delay the course of the trial for years. They would ask for any and all classified materials and appeal decisions that didn't go their way. It would be a fishing expedition the likes of which our legal system has not seen before. In other words, the trial would last years. Justice delayed is justice denied.
If convicted, Bin Laden would appeal. Those appeals would last years. Punishment, at least as for the death penalty, simply would not happen. The most probable outcome is the Bin Laden would die of natural causes while in prison. Before he dies, he would be getting the best medical attention money could buy. His medical needs have been well documented. He would have access to a lifestyle superior to that he had in his compound.
Germany, after the war, was a thoroughly defeated country. Al Qaida is not. What would they be doing during Bin Laden's legal process? If the hijack a school bus and threaten to blow it up unless we release Bin Laden, what would we do? What if they hijack 10 buses? Or 20? How could we possibly respond? Was the killing of Bin Laden justified, even if he had tried to give up? I'd have to say yes. I applaud those who made that decision, a decision that probably saved more lives in the long run.

Charlie Bannister 6 years, 5 months ago

Mass murderers generally meet their waterloo in heinous fashion. Hitler, Mussolini, McVey, Saddam Hussein, Hussein's two demon seed sons, Bin Laden, and on and on. I shed not one tear for them. They are all in hell where they belong and justice has been done. It may not always be courtroom justice, but it is justice just the same. Good riddance.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years, 5 months ago

Maybe if you ever read them, you could answer your own question.

K_Verses_The_World 6 years, 5 months ago

Took a stranger to teach me, to look into justice’s beautiful face And to see an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth

jafs 6 years, 5 months ago

Actually, it was Bush and company that declared terrorists to be undeserving of Geneva convention protections (as prisoners of war).

jhawkinsf 6 years, 5 months ago

Wasn't it the behavior of the terrorists themselves that made them ineligible for protections of the Geneva Convention? Because they did not behave like soldiers, they are not awarded protections that soldiers deserve.

jafs 6 years, 5 months ago

That's a matter of interpretation and point of view.

I was responding to DB's incorrect claim that it was "liberals" who claimed that terrorists can't be at war with the US.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 6 years, 5 months ago

So, are you opposed to all such assassinations, or only those undertaken by black Democratic presidents?

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 5 months ago

You might also point out that a lot of people said about anything in order to justify the President's executive order to destroy Hiroshima and Nagasaki in order to end World War 2.

The important thing is - it worked.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 5 months ago

Hmmm, now, let's see, who started the war?

Japan started it, we finished it.

The end.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 5 months ago

Over 60 million people were killed in World War 2.

"Thousands and thousands" were not very many casualties compared with the total number killed.

independant1 6 years, 5 months ago

some people just need to be killed - obl was one.

Flap Doodle 6 years, 5 months ago

racer bozo is beating his favorite drum.

notaubermime 6 years, 5 months ago

If it were a case that Osama bin Laden could have been captured without killing him (by no means a certainty), I am still of the opinion that the best action was taken. Alive and the risk would be great that Al Qaeda would kill large numbers of people in an effort to ransom or terrorize governments into his release. Sometimes the best option is not the most just action. In those cases, I think that one should do what is best and be willing to face the consequences if the action was unjust.

beatrice 6 years, 5 months ago

It doesn't matter what often removed yet re-appearing under new name commentors on these boards has to say about things. They will make a fuss because they hate Obama and have made their opinions well known. So what.

Most Americans are glad bin Laden is dead and approve of the Presidential actions to carry out the mission, and "more than half of Americans now say he deserves to be re-elected." That is what has these people really upset, the fact that our President is approved of by a majority of Americans ... oh the horror. And to think, he earned these favorable opinions based on his actions, not just on the U.S. being attacked.

I don't know who will ultimately run against Obama, so I can't say for sure who I will vote for, but Obama's chances of being re-elected look favorable right now.

Kirk Larson 6 years, 5 months ago

More jobs have been created under two years of President Obama than under eight years of W..

beatrice 6 years, 5 months ago

Okay ... there, I thought about it again. My initial statement hasn't changed. It isn't like the things you mention are all because of Obama's policies. He was the one who was handed the mess, and I feel, as apparently most Americans feel, that he has done a good job of making sure it doesn't become a bigger mess.

independant1 6 years, 5 months ago

the mess handed to him by Bush/democrat house/democrat senate

beatrice 6 years, 5 months ago

The point being that it was handed to him. The current state of the economy is not all on Obama, and it wasn't all on Bush. Clearly, neither party is blameless.

independant1 6 years, 5 months ago

It doesn't matter who is president.

I second that.

beatrice 6 years, 5 months ago

Terrorists who don't surrender when given the opportunity are open to be killed. Once they do surrender, then you can't torture them. No hypocrisy.

However, maybe you are onto something. Perhaps the Republicans should take your line of thinking and build their 2012 campaign on the "We shouldn't have killed Osama" platform. That will be a winner, I'm sure.

By the way, being in favor of overthrowing a nation that didn't attack us but being against entering a country that didn't attack us to take out a single person smells a bit like hypocrisy. Why was going into Iraq to overthrow its government something you agree with but entering Pakistan to kill bin Laden something you are against? Why don't you work that one through and then get back to us with your accusations of others being hypocrits. Until then, we will just recognize your comments for the sour grapes they really are -- your preferred President didn't get to bin Laden so you are upset that another President did. Sour grapes, and nothing else.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 5 months ago

"Any liberals want to explain?"

Liberals don't have to explain anything. All they have to do is point out the obvious thing, which is that they are "good", because of their liberal views.

Of course, they were never in the position of having been a "comfort lady" for an occupying army, never watched their daughter or mother being used for a "comfort lady", never received a telegram notifing them that their son has been lost in a far away battlefield, never have been in the positon of having to shoot an enemy soldier, never watched their home city being destroyed for some political point they don't care about, and never have lost anyone they know in a senseless terrorist attack.

Liberals are "good", and acts of war are "bad", that's all they know.

And of course, they have never read much history, or they would be much more pragmatic.

beatrice 6 years, 5 months ago

Amazing to think that some people are so blinded by their hatred of Obama that they wish Osama bin Laden hadn't been killed.

jafs 6 years, 5 months ago

Well, the obvious distinction between somebody who openly proclaims that he is the mastermind behind terrorist attacks, and a "suspected" terrorist in our custody must be lost on you.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 5 months ago

I've killed a rattlesnake without a second thought!

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 5 months ago

He was directly responsible for the murder of thousands of people.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 5 months ago

He would have killed you without a second thought.

Jay Keffer 6 years, 5 months ago

"I've never killed a man, but I've read many an obituary with a great deal of satisfaction."

Mark Twain

riverdrifter 6 years, 5 months ago

Mark Twain never said that. The quote comes from Clarence Darrow -and it's a damn good one.

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