Mark Mardell Defends The President On Bin Laden Ad

The media has been freaking out for about 24 hours about the President’s new ad featuring Bill Clinton suggesting that Mitt Romney wouldn’t have made the call to kill Osama bin Laden, and Mark Mardell rushes to His defense. I’m not even going to bother linking to criticisms in the mainstream media, because you know Mardell wouldn’t be roused to action if it wasn’t a major problem.

Should Obama politicise Bin Laden’s death?

Short answer: Yes.

Long answer: It’s not His fault if someone else thinks this boastful ad politicizes the killing. And He’s The Man, you know.

President Barack Obama is being accused by opponents of making political capital out of the killing of Osama Bin Laden a year ago.

That’s not surprising – he is indeed making a big deal out of it.

The question is whether doing so is distasteful and whether his campaign is politicising something that should be above politics.

Mardell knows this is a problem. He knows this is “unseemly”.  He knows that using a targeted assassination of someone in cold blood, without due process of law, as a campaign slogan is not the kind of Hope & Change we were sold in 2008. Even Arianna Huffington is calling Him out on it. So what does the US President do? He blames His opponents for it being a problem, and makes sure to remind you of His prowess.

It is just as inevitable that opponents will portray that as unseemly immodesty.

The crudeness of the presidential pitch may put some off, but any row that is created only serves to highlight that Bin Laden was indeed killed on Mr Obama’s watch, on his orders.

Even when it comes to acting like the very kind of warmongering cowboy Mardell loathes with all his being, he still must defend Him to the bitter end. Nothing is His fault, you see.

But please, the BBC asks you to continue to look to him for your understanding of US issues.


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31 Responses to Mark Mardell Defends The President On Bin Laden Ad

  1. George R says:

    ‘Jihadwatych’ (Dec 2011)

    “White House unveils new, toothless plan to fight jihad terror without naming it, and contradicts itself in doing so”


  2. James says:

    Mark Mardell might be a bit out of touch on this one. Arianna Huffington has come out against the advert

    Not that you would hear that on the beeb


  3. RCE says:

    I thought George W Bush ordered the killing of Osama Bin Laden?


    • geyza says:

      He certainly did go on international TV and state the phrase “dead or alive” in reference to getting Bin Laden, or Tim Osman or whatever his real name was. Either way, the CIA could finally retire it’s most famous asset and turn to other acts of misinformation and misdirection instead.

      Do any of the readers of this blog believe that there is any difference in the agenda pursued by Bush and Obama and Mitt Romney?

      They all serve the same agenda faithfully and without question. It really does not make any difference to the world whatsoever, who will win the election in November, IF the GOP delegates back Mitt Romney in August.

      BTW, How many of you know that in the first State Primary, Iowa, which was initially awarded to Romney, and then two weeks later handed to Santorum, has actually gone to Ron Paul?

      Several others have too, as these states actually select the delegates for the convention, and Ron Paul is picking up more and more delegates. He now has enough to force a brokered convention.


      • David Preiser (USA) says:

        And what would your idol do at this alleged brokered convention, exactly?


      • PresidentD says:

        geyza, Iowa does not have primaries. it’s a caucus state. In the Please educate yourself about these things.


  4. John Anderson says:

    I understand that Obama issued a CYA order on the assassination – the practical details and the operation were left to an underling. Obama’s copout was that his approval was “subject to the risk assessment being correct and no new risks arising” or words to that effect.

    Oh – and they would never have tracked Obama down but for information about his courier, gleaned from Al Q prisoners years ago using waterboarding ?

    The REAL story of the election is that Obama is flailing around, making all manner of allegations against Romney and the Republicans – a desperate attempt to avoid fighting on his own pathetic record as President.


  5. John Anderson says:

    This link puts Romney’s words in their proper context.

    Which I think shows that the attempt by Obama and his campaign to paint Romney as some sort of indecisive coward is a blatant lie.

    What is so rich is that Obama has a long track record of indecision – always voting “Present” while a State Senator and then US Senator, pussy-footing about how to interrogate and try terrorist prisoners, failure to deal with America’s debt crisis.

    Obama’s attempt to claim so much credit for the bin Laden killing is now being criticised by Navy Seals :

    and this story has been picked up by the Daily Mail :


  6. Wayne X says:

    I can recall easily the pictures from The White House during the kill Osama (gosh I nearly wrote Obama) and that would have been an insane (oops nearly wrote Hussein that time). I’ll start again….

    I can recall easily the picture at The White House during the kill Osama operation. There was a little frightened shoe shine boy crouching down in the corner. I wondered who it was for a minute but then the penny dropped it was Obama, The President of the United States of America.

    His control of the situation going on thousands of miles away was impressive, it was clear to me that this was a man you could rely on to inspire the guys out there doing the job, putting their lives and years of experience on the line for Uncle Sam, the Stars and Stripes and all the folks back home who had waited years for this vitally important job to be done.



  7. Beeboidal says:

    Mardell might like to elicit a comment from the White House regarding this from the Weekly Standard.

    This latest ad contradicts President Obama’s own pledge after he took out bin Laden. “You know, we don’t trot out this stuff as trophies,” Obama told CBS soon after the terrorist mastermind had been taken out. He added: “Americans and people around the world are glad that he’s gone. But we don’t need to spike the football.”

    With the Obama campaign’s latest ad, it’s pretty safe to say that the president is now OK with “trot[ting] out this stuff” and “spik[ing] the football,” as long as it helps him get reelected

    Nah, Dream on, Beeboidal.


  8. James says:

    You know things are going bad for the Democrats when they rip off Dan Fanelli, now he’s mad.


  9. Wayne X says:


    His work as a very successful civil rights lawyer used the very potent weapon, the charge of racism, to compel financial institutions to make loans to unqualified borrowers; those loans came back to devastate the American and world economy.

    I really do wonder if the USA has been on some sort of ‘trip’ into an Obama dream world and will only wake up when they see the king has no clothes… and nothing under them?


    • David Preiser (USA) says:

      Many people have woken up to that. The problem is that the mainstream media and Hollywood have so much emotionally invested in Him and in retaining the cultural power that comes with being aligned with Him that they’re going to do anything to keep re-elect Him.

      I don’t know what can overcome the combined power of the mainstream media, whatever has replaced the JournoList, Media Matters, St. Jon Stewart, and Hollywood.


  10. Louis Robinson says:

    School days are very instructive. When I was a boy, the school bully sneered at all positive proposals and, though lazy and slothful, took credit for everything that went right, thus ingratiating himself with the teachers. So it is with life.
    (By the way, every bully has his Mardellesque minion.)


  11. George R says:

    Incidentally, ITV has 2 hour documentary tonight, 9 pm:

    “The Hunt for Bin Laden”

    “Romney to Obama: Stop playing politics with bin Laden killing (+video)”


  12. Guest Who says:

    Another ‘view’ for Mr. Mardell to ponder or, perhaps go into overdrive to counter…


  13. TPO says:

    I have heard from a couple of sources, but I’m not sure how accurate it is, that the decision to deal with OBL was not taken by Obama.
    A different scenario is that OBL’s whereabouts were known for several weeks, if not months. Obama kept vacillating on what to do, mainly influenced by Valerie Jarrett.
    Exasperated by any coherent plan, Leon Panetta and Hilary Clinton, in a fait acompli, ordered the SEAL team to move. Once it was initiated, Obama was dragged off the golf course and like a rabbit caught in the headlights was briefed about what was taking place.
    The photo op shots were then taken of him watching it take place.


    • David Preiser (USA) says:

      I’ve been reading the same thing. There’s a Panetta memo being passed around as “proof” that the President ordered it, but it seems pretty obvious that He was really just being informed of a plan already in motion and simply let it go forward. I know that can be read as Him “giving the order”, but the word came from the national security adviser of the President’s order, which isn’t really the same thing. When this gets larger press it will become clear that any President would have done the same thing and there goes His pathetic attack on Romney.

      The best the White House spin machine can do – naturally repeated by Mardell like a herald reading the king’s latest dictum – is that “it happened on His watch”.

      He doesn’t spike the football: He just waves it in His opponent’s face.


  14. DB says:

    D’oh! Looks like that Clinton ad is yet another own goal from the Obama team. Breitbart has video of Romney from a 2007 Republican campaign debate saying this about Bin Laden: “He is going to pay and he will die.”
    In the same answer Romney also says: “This is about Hezbollah and Hamas and Al Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood. This is about a worldwide jihadist effort…”
    Romney’s mention of the Muslim Brotherhood is worth noting. Earlier this month the Obama administration quietly released $1.5b aid to the Brotherhood-led Egyptian government. The Romney team should be able to capitalise on that.


  15. David Preiser (USA) says:

    May as well put this here. I noticed the BBC’s article on drone attacks has finally been pushed off the front US & Canada page by the latest excitement about their darling Occupiers. But that article was so nicely even-handed, no complaints from the anti-war crowd, no scowling at “justice from the point of a gun” or anything.

    Where’s the anti-war crowd now, BBC? Where are the human shields? Why haven’t you had interviews with any of the people you used to have on when Bush was in charge?


    • DB says:


    • DB says:

      Here’s how that BBC article on drone attacks would’ve read if a Republican was president:

      Civil liberties group denounces [GOP President’s name] administration’s defence of drone attacks

      The Republican administration’s highly controversial use of drone warfare against so-called militants has been condemned in the strongest terms by the American Civil Liberties Union.
      The ACLU claims the number of civilian deaths at the hands of American drones runs into the … etc etc”


  16. DB says:

    Spike! Obama arrives in Afghanistan.