Tomorrow is the first anniversary of the death of Osama Bin-Laden.
During the 2008 campaign, Romney and others dismissed as naïve the idea that we would strike Osama Bin-Laden on Pakistani soil without the permission of Pakistan. In the end, that was exactly the sort of bold move need to topple Bin-Laden, disrupt al-Qaeda and achieve an important milestone in the war against terrorism.
Obama said at a press conference in the White House:
I just recommend that everybody take a look at people’s previous statements in terms of what they thought was appropriate to go into Pakistan and take out bin Laden. I assume that people meant what they said when they said it. If there are others who have said one thing and now suggest they would do something else, then I would go ahead and let them explain it.
Romney seeks to minimize Obama’s signature accomplishment. Romney said that “even Jimmy Carter would have given that order.” The Romney campaign misleadingly quotes Bill Clinton as saying “That’s the call I would have made” suggesting that the attack was obvious. However, the full quote from Bill Clinton paints an entirely different picture:
“When I saw what had happened, I thought to myself, ‘I hope that’s the call I would have made.'”
In fact, during the 2008 campaign, Romney himself erred on the side of caution:
“It’s not worth moving heaven and earth spending billions of dollars just trying to catch one person.”
— Mitt Romney, Associated Press Interview, April 2007
“I do not concur in the words of Barack Obama in a plan to enter an ally of ours… I don’t think those kinds of comments help in this effort to draw more friends to our effort.”
— Mitt Romney, quoted by Reuters in 2008, on the United States entering Pakistan to kill Osama bin Laden.