Boot, meet mouth... again

Kneejerk #NeverTrumper Max Boot monopolized the bottom of the cesspool in his response to the successful raid that killed Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, easily edging out Nancy Pelosi, Adam Schiff, and the rest  of his media peers.

In his response to the death of al-Baghdadi, a vicious cult leader who specialized in the murder of helpless civilians (particularly young women), Boot chose to concentrate on a single statement made by President Trump in his speech announcing the successful mission: “[al-Baghdadi] died like a coward… whimpering and crying and screaming all the way.” 

Not so, insists the judicious Boot:

Trump could not possibly have heard “whimpering and crying” on the overhead imagery because there was no audio, and Defense Secretary Mark T. Esper and Gen. Mark Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, pointedly refused to confirm those details. The assertion that Baghdadi died as a coward was, in any case, contradicted by the fact that rather than be captured, he blew himself up.

Well, now we do have a complete description of al-Baghdadi’s last moments. It seems that he fled into a tunnel while being chased by a dog. A very fierce, well-trained, and courageous dog, yes, but still a dog. Not a Terminator or a Predator. Al-Baghdadi dragged three children along with him, said to be his own. When he reached the dead end of the tunnel, he triggered the suicide vest he was wearing, killing, in a last act of nihilistic viciousness, all three of the children.

The United States has a tradition of honoring noble enemies. U.S. Army helicopters are named after Indian tribes (Iroquois, Kiowa, and Apache) that fought U.S. forces centuries ago. (It’s a tradition we maintained from the UK, which had a line of destroyers, the Tribal class, named after former enemies of the empire and including Pathan, Asante, and Zulu.) But there are standards here, as with anything else. We will never see a U.S. weapon named the Himmler, the Tojo, or the al-Baghdadi, Allah forbid.

But Boot, self-styled military historian that he is, is not aware of this, or he simply doesn’t care. What’s important to him is contradicting Donald Trump at every last opportunity. No matter what the situation, no matter how wrong he may be, no matter how embarrassing it is to him personally. Come what may, he is going to make that foul, objectionable, unnecessary comment.

We can be sure that Trump will give him plenty of opportunities in the years to come. We’ll be hearing from Max Boot again.

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