Tuesday, February 16, 2010


Hey, who would have predicted that this was going to be the area of Barack Obama greatest success as president?

The Taliban's top military commander was captured several days ago in Karachi, Pakistan, in a secret joint operation by Pakistani and American intelligence forces, according to American government officials.

The commander, Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, is an Afghan described by American officials as the most significant Taliban figure to be detained since the American-led war in Afghanistan started more than eight years ago. He ranks second in influence only to Mullah Muhammad Omar, the Taliban's founder and a close associate of Osama bin Laden before the Sept. 11 attacks....

Note that he was "captured several days ag." Regarding the rollout of the news, Juan Cole makes a very interesting point:

...that Joe Biden and others kept the arrest secret, in order to allow further operations against Taliban leaders in Karachi, shows a discipline that Bush and Cheney never had. They were always happy to prematurely release details of ongoing investigations to get a political bump, even if it meant allowing terrorists to escape.

Yup -- Biden was dispatched over the weekend to rebut Cheney's "wimp"-baiting and he said nothing. Very disciplined.

But guys? You should probably take at least a small victory lap. There has to be something you can do that's more than stoic silence but still well short of the "Mission Accomplished" flyboy stunt. At least send Biden to the morning shows to talk about the capture ... subtly, but with pride.

I bet Cheney wouldn't offer himself up for a similar round of interviews. Not at this time.

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