Well here we are, five years later.
Many of us said "don't go" but we were shouted down. Now, five years later and hundreds of thousands of dead, Bin Laden's still running around making home movies — and George Bush and Dick Cheney are still talking about patriotism and waving the flag.
Suppose Bin Laden supporters in Pakistan, where he enjoys the support of more than half the country, rose up and a war breaks out on a larger scale? Suppose it goes nuclear and Russia or China get pissed and things get hairy? These were the demons lurking in Bush's thoughts and he could not bring himself to confront them. So instead of dealing with the intricacies of such a potentially messy engagement in Pakistan and Kashmir, Bush and Cheney decided to squander the balance on their international 911 credit card by invading Iraq, making false claims about their involvement in 911 and WMD to sell their "poor mans war".
But the "bitch of the bunch" is where we are now.
Stuck literally between “Iraq and a hard place”.
Because now, that momentum is gone. The balance on our international 911 charge card is zero. In fact, it’s overdrawn. We are morally bankrupt as far as the rest of the world is concerned, so I guess it’s only fitting as far as fate is concerned that we’re also financially bankrupt as well. Problem is, we need the international credit to buy our way out of here. We need that international good moral credit to do the hard things we’re going to have to do to either capture or kill Osama Bin Laden and his thugs.
We know where they are. They’re in or around Kashmir or other remote regions in Pakistan, protected by his loyalists. All we have to do then is go get him right? Like we should have done when we had him cornered at Tora Bora and Bush let him go, like he did for about 70 his family members 2 days after 911 (still waiting for an answer on that one). But unfortunately Kashmir is a disputed region between two cold war countries, both that happen to be nuclear armed. And the US military is not allowed in, nor is the UN.
What we need to go get Bin Laden is “momentum”. Like the momentum we had right after 911. But that momentums gone and it ain’t coming back. Even if we were to be attacked again we won’t likely garner the international empathy we had post 911. Not after we’ve squandered their previous empathy so wantonly. Instead we’ll likely see a cold shoulder, and probably more than one lecture by other nations about starting wars with people who never attacked us. But we won’t gain their overwhelming support. The kind of support we’d need to initiate a US led UN supported incursion into Pakistan to get Bin Laden.