At a recent fundraising event for President Obama’s reelection campaign, the walking gaffe machine, also known as Vice President Joe Biden stated that the killing of Osama bin Laden in his hideout in Abbotabad, Pakistan was the most “audacious” plan in the past 500 years.
As much as the Vice President’s haphazard and lazy oratorical style is troublesome to most intellectually honest people, it does provide a great opportunity to revisit a seminal part of our history – the American Revolution.
We could compare the Osama mission to individual Revolutionary War engagements like the Battle of Trenton, where General Washington planned and executed a surprise attack that resulted in the important capturing of a Hessian garrison. This bold, daring, and one might say “audacious” plan involved crossing the partially frozen Delaware River with war-wearied troops in the middle of the night on Christmas to combat a brutal and well-trained group of German soldiers.
It was a high-risk, high-reward gamble, and it succeeded because of the extraordinary leadership of Washington who fought side-by-side with his men.
But the War as an aggregate is more impressive, especially when you consider what the colonies and many of the Founders as individuals risked in order to fight for liberty.
If the British had prevailed, the colonies would have been subjected to an even more tyrannical and despotic rule than the one they were fighting to overthrow. And leaders like George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Paine, and many others would have paid the ultimate sacrifice – an irreverent finality to their lives at the bottom of the gallows.
Obviously there are many other pivotal plans in American and world history that greatly surpass the level of audaciousness of the Osama killing. But it’s always helpful to allude to concrete imagery to prove the utter absurdity of bloviating politicians who make careless statements that are entirely divorced from the reality of history.
Perhaps Vice President Biden should crack open a history book right after he removes his foot from his mouth.
By JD Thorpe