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The October surprise: Osama bin Laden in a morgue?

The day after the seventh anniversary of the horrendous 9/11 attacks comes word from NPR and our colleagues over at the Countdown to Crawford blog that the U.S. seems to have launched a major semi-secret offensive in the rugged Afghanistan-Pakistan border area.

The possible goal: to get Osama bin Laden, the leader of Al Qaeda, before the election or by the time George W. Bush's second term ends Jan. 20.

al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden

How secret the offensive is now is questionable and the tribes in that wild area that have been harboring terrorists for years do not have an air force.

So they presumably would regard helicopters and sophisticated, armed Predator drones patrolling overhead as unfriendly and stay in their caves.

According to the reports, there's been a surge of CIA agents into the tribal areas. They'll blend in nicely with their ties and coats. No word on why now when previous searches have proved fruitless.

Because this is a political blog, we must ask the question: Who would such a deadly event benefit the most politically? Well, maybe Bush, who got scolded by Laura for once saying he wanted Osama dead or alive. But, wisely, Bush is not running for anything these days.

Barack Obama did suggest back in the primaries that he would unilaterally bomb parts of Pakistan if necessary, which Hillary Clinton criticized as naive and provocative to an ally. That sounds like precisely what we're doing now.

If bin Laden was annihilated, John McCain would not, as he has vowed, have to follow him to the gates of hell, wherever they are, reportedly somewhere in the Pittsburgh suburbs.

Meanwhile, Countdown has more on the story right here.

-- Andrew Malcolm

Comments () | Archives (16)

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it will show that Bush finished what he started and that is a big boost for Bush.

the question is will Liberals rejoice on the news? or follow their instincts and try to "understand" bin laden's death?

We could have done this a long time ago if it were not for Nancy Pelosi and all the "MEDIA" who wanted US to surrender to the Terrorists. They campaign in 2006 to bring the troops home. When elected they try time and time again to cut funding, etc,etc. the fought agaiinst the "SURGE" then they said it was not working. WE NEED TO THROW THEM ALL OUT IN 2008

VJ Machiavelli

Keith Olbermann did rightfully chide John McCain for saying he knew how to get Bin Laden, but seemed intent on sharing that knowledge only if McCain is elected president.

Maybe the republicans and McCain had to grudgingly agree with Olbermann (who I no longer like) and won't wait until McCain is elected.

You really don't get it. Osama is alive and well and running for President.

this year there is one thing missing on the 9/11 aniversary there are no audio or video tapes from either bin laden or Zarqaqi , infact they never miss such oppurtunity to taunt the world and show their strength ... they are experts in propaganda . the reason for this may be that there is lot of things happening behind curtains on the theater . this is the indication that they feel its very risky to show any tapes as this may blow out their safe hide outs specially when more and more drones are howering above , i think that very soon we will hear some news about the capture or killing of osama by the american troops , may be with in 2-3 months specialy during the election season

There's as much hate here in America aimed at each other and at the world, specifically the Muslim world, as there is outside America aimed at us.

The hate is the enemy.

One person in a generation understands this and is in a position to change the course.

It's Barack.

There's as much hate here in America aimed at each other and at the world, specifically the Muslim world, as there is outside America aimed at us.

The hate is the enemy.

One person in a generation understands this and is in a position to change the course.

It's Barack.

The gates of Hell are also called The Beltway surrounding Washington, DC.

Aren't you special. I love the hint of snobbish pooh-poohism in your writing. Don't we feel better now?

You can run and you can hide too... really, really, well in fact.

OBL's ugly carcass should have been mouldering about seven years now if Bush hadn't invaded the wrong country. Pathetic political trick!

Bin Laden is dead. The spectre of his vitality is only maintained to promote the GWOT.

Excuse me, but that picture above of Osama bin Laden sure looks a lot like Barack Hussein Obama wearing a beard and a headband.

I think Bin Laden is likely dead. He has suffered from kidney problems for over a decade, and he even had to have one of his kidneys removed in 1998. I think it's highly unlikely that he has survived this long. The US military should instead shift the main focus on killing Ayman Al-Zawahiri, instead of hunting for a likely dead figure. He's the obvious commander of the Al Qaeda by now, and he likely tells the militants what to do from a laptop computer in his Pakistan hideout

Johnny has no idea how to get Osama, he is just talking campaign crap. For kicks he can stạte he still remebers how to fly the à and will personally take Osama out himself.
On the other hawnd, the taxpayers pay billions for the FBI and the CIA and all they can make are excuses.
With all our money we s/b able to plant a neighbor right nextdoor to his rental in Saudi Arabia.

I don't care about October surprises or games. I want a leader, a president. I want someone with brains, not another bottom of the class graduate. Regardless as to what games, tricks, gimmicks will be played, I will vote Obama. He's the best person for the job. Bin Laden, etc. , none of that makes a difference to me. Fine, the catch him, whatever.

Obama 08!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Osama Bin Ladin Is In Iran and has been for a number of years. He's not off shooting off guns In the air because he Is In an underground under water home of his. Buit for him as many has been before nine eleven. Once thought by me to be In Pun Jab Pun Jab Pakistan In 06 Held up In disguised In a high rise Hotel or a few of them before America was In Pakistan and the Pakistanian Police force started locking up Al Qaeda and going to war with them. Other thoughts Is that he Is In an Underground Underwater home of his Off of Ice Land and Green Land.


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About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
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