zaterdag 4 november 2017

Transparent Lies

We don't use the word “lie” with abandon in these pages. It’s used far too often in public life, to the point at which nearly every statement someone disagrees with is characterized as a “lie.” The L-word is tightly regulated in parliamentary bodies—in Congress, for example—and rightly so. Once you call someone a liar, the good faith that allows for healthy debate is no longer possible.

On the subject of the Osama bin Laden documents, though, as Stephen F. Hayes and Thomas Joscelyn report in this issue, the administration of Barack Obama lied repeatedly and lied flagrantly. The documents were retrieved in the May 2011 raid on bin Laden’s compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan. Obama rightly hailed the mission as a success, not only because U.S. forces killed the man responsible for the deaths of nearly 3,000 Americans on 9/11 without suffering a casualty, but also because they carried away an enormous trove of information about bin Laden’s global terrorist network. A senior intelligence official who briefed reporters at the Pentagon said: “As a result of the raid, we’ve acquired the single largest collection of senior terrorist materials ever.”