Thursday, June 08, 2006

small victories

the hot news of the day is that abu musab al-zarqawi has been killed... for real this time! sure, we've heard rumors of it happening bunches of times (never mind all the other "al qaeda second-in-command"s that have been killed), but this time it actually appears be true. (reportedly fox news has been airing pictures of the corpse.)

zaraqawi's death is a win for US forces in iraq, no question. of course, they had a number of opportunities to kill him before the invasion and decided not to, but at least he's dead now, right? and sure, the fact that the iraqis already had him in custody last year but let him go (reportedly because nobody knew he was) could be interpreted as a sign of incompetence (or corruption) in the iraqi campaign, but you could also interpret it as a display of zarqawi's keyzer söze-esque supervillainy. either this guy was iraq's lex luthor or the US's terror-fighting skills in iraq are more aqua teen hunger force than justice league. (and if zarqawi was luthor, who's bin laden? brainiac?)

anyway, you have to give them credit for finally accomplishing something they've been trying to do for months. (i'm not faulting the troops themselves—it's not labor's fault when management is inept.) but will zarqawi's death be a major blow to the insurgency, or will he become a martyr and inspire the insurgents even more?

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