As we've seen, there have been a number of conflicting and changing stories about what went down during the raid on Osama bin Laden's compound Sunday. The White House has dismissed the bungled facts as a symptom of the "fog of war." But as Bookworm Room notes, while it looks like the SEALs did their job, the White House is botching the entire operation.
So how many different stories have there been? Bookworm counts at least 26:
1) There was a firefight.
2) There was no firefight.
3) Bin Laden was “resisting.”
4) Bin Laden wasn’t armed. (Makes the concept of “resisting” interesting.)
[4.a) And the newest one: the SEALS thought bin Laden was reaching for a weapon.]
5) He used his wife as a shield.
6) His wife was killed too.
7) He didn’t use his wife as a shield. She ran at a SEAL who shot her in the leg, but she’s fine.
8 ) Some other woman — the maid? — was used as a shield. By somebody. Downstairs.
9) That other woman — downstairs — was killed.
10) Maybe not. She was killed unless she wasn’t — and who was she, anyway?
11) Bin Laden’s son was killed.
12) Unless it was some other guy.
13) Bin Laden’s daughter saw him get killed. She’s undoubtedly traumatized, poor dear.
14) They were going to capture Bin Laden until the problem with the helicopter, which was:
A) It had mechanical trouble
B) It did a hard landing
C) It crashed
D) It clipped a wall with a tail rotor, effectively a crash
15.) They were never going to try to capture him; it was always a kill mission.
16.) No, it wasn’t.
17) The chopper blew up.
18) The SEALs blew it up.
19.) Panetta said yesterday the world needed proof and the photo would be released.
20.) Obama said today in an interview he taped with Steve Kroft for “60 Minutes” to be broadcast Sunday that it won’t be released. It’s too gruesome, would offend Muslim sensibilities (something he worries about a lot — I personally do not give a warm fart on a wet Wednesday about Muslim sensibilities), and how would Americans feel if Muslims released pictures of dead Americans?
21.) Kroft — who’s not a total idiot — pointed out that ever since “Black Hawk Down” days, Muslims have been doing precisely that, filming American bodies being dragged through the streets, filming Daniel Pearl’s head being cut off, filming any and everything.
22) Obama gets pissed at CBS, the tape gets cleaned up, that question disappears. (Inside info.)
23.) We got a “treasure trove” of stuff from hard drives, etc.
24.) There were no phone lines, and no internet access at the “mansion,” they didn’t even have TV — what “treasure trove?”
25.) There is obviously in the pictures of the place a large satellite dish. I guess they used it for making salads.
26.) And now, just today: apparently the idea was to capture him, but only if he was naked. There was a suspicion he might be wearing a suicide bomber type explosive vest, or belt. So if he’s not naked and you can’t see if he has a vest on or not – shoot him.
Is this really "fog of war"?