|"Hey. Over Here! Anybody Seen My Dialysis Machine?"|
"Think about it," writes columnist and former Reagan Treasury Secretary Paul Craig Roberts. "What are the chances that a person allegedly suffering from kidney disease and requiring dialysis and, in addition, afflicted with and low blood pressure, survived in mountain hideaways for a decade? If bin Laden was able to acquire dialysis equipment and medical care that his condition required, would not the shipment of dialysis equipment point to his location? Why did it take ten years to find him?.....This morning’s headline has the odor of a staged event. The smell reeks from the triumphalist news reports loaded with exaggerations, from celebrants waving flags and chanting'USA USA.' Could something else be going on?"
Conspiracy theories usually pop up after the death of a larger than life figure. Elvis sightings have been reported since he succumbed to a drug overdose. Princess Diana is hiding out somewhere with her lover Dodi: she staged her own death to get away from the paparazzi. Truther Kevin Barrett claims Bin Laden has actually been dead since shortly after the terror attacks. "If in fact US authorities suspected Osama Bin Laden was involved with 9/11, and was still alive, they would have pulled out all the stops to take him alive" Barrett blogged. " And if they had screwed up royally and killed him, would they have immediately dumped the body at sea?! Given the formidable case that Bin Laden died in 2001, obviously US authorities would have taken pains to prove to a skeptical world that the corpse or specter or whatever it was they possessed was the real Bin Laden. Feeding the body to the fishes so fast looks...well, calling it 'fishy' would be an insult to the scaly denizens of the deep."
No doubt about it - conspiracy theories are fun. I used to love wrapping myself up in the weekly paranoid cocoon of tongue-in-cheek "X-Files" episodes. The only trouble is, I don't think our government is smart enough to have concocted such a convoluted fraud as a fake Osama assassination. Too many people were involved. The truth is out there, all right. A group of highly trained Navy Seals* took out a murderous creep and now the politicians are using it to their own advantage. That seems pretty above-board to me.
* Update 5/4: I took some well-deserved criticism from a reader, John from Louisiana, over my original characterization of the squad as "killing machines." I have revised my copy accordingly. A more apt description is that the military utilizes its members as machines of war, damages their psyches in many instances, but by no means robs them of their core humanity. I stand corrected and thank John for his thoughtful commentary.