Well, it had to happen. Bin Laden is dead and his supporters are licking their wounds.They'll be gathering in dark places to recover their senses and plan how to restore their hero to his accustomed place in Rebel Lore.
Not surprisingly, this has begun on CBC radio. It only took a few days, before the CBC got around to expressing its indignation over the press that bin Laden is getting in the U.S.
We heard it first on Radio One on its Sunday morning newscast (May 8, 8:00 am). There was a report by a CBC reporter on the various ways in which Osama's final minutes were spent. Did the head terrorist possess a gun? Did he hide behind his wife? etc.
The reporter told us that initial versions were incorrect, and later rectified by Washington. Bin Laden had not been armed. There was confusion over this business of using a woman as a shield.
Rather than call this "inaccuracy," or "fog of war," the CBC called it "Smearing bin Laden." The reporter's voice went angry as he spat out the word: Smear.
So there ya are. Washington has had the gall to "smear" Osama bin Laden, and thank heavens we have the CBC to denounce it.
One wonders what other smears the CBC has tutted in the past. For example, did they rush to fix Hitler's good name in WWII? After all, Hitler was often referred to as Schicklgruber, the name of his grandmother. The Allies, big male bullies if ever you wanted to meet some, poured ridicule on Hitler by tagging him the Schicklgruber. Had CBC-Sunday been on the job, perhaps they'd have lodged an HRC action to defend the dictator and the dignity of people with similar, or all Teutonic names.
An even more egregious smear has been committed by Canada's friends in this war against bin Laden. Turns out that Al-Queda's honcho had been tarred with the brand of an aboriginal figure from history. That's like waving the red hankie at the CBC bull. Here's how CBC Radio's Brent Bambury covers these events:
The code name was Geronimo.
That's what the Navy SEALS called bin Laden in the message they sent announcing he'd been killed in action. It's been controversial in the aboriginal community. Geronimo was the first manhunt mandated by federal powers in the U.S. Unlike Osama, the great Apache chief was never captured. He surrendered to authorities.
The U.S. has launched nearly a dozen manhunts since 1885, most of them successful. It's a risky strategic policy, because you're investing your enemy with a nearly mythic status.
Benjamin Runkle is a former paratrooper and presidential speechwriter with a Harvard PhD. He's written a book called Wanted Dead or Alive: Manhunts from Geronimo to Bin Laden. He joins us from Washington.
Superman picked the wrong week for a citizenship snit.
First, President Obama released his birth certificate to prove his citizenship once and for all. Then the bin Laden killing unleashed a storm of patriotic celebration. But Superman is a comicbook character so he wasn't totally in tune with events as they unfolded.
So his threat in Action Comics #900 to renounce his U.S. citizenship to avoid being used as a tool of American foreign policy feels mistimed. Certainly the right wing commentators are saying so. We'll show you why comic book fans are cool with Superman's crisis of patriotic faith.
Ralph Nader says the American left is being left out.
Nader can't find progressive issues on the political agenda. He says the stuff he cares about -- single payer healthcare, a living wage, fighting corporate corruption -- is nowhere to be found. And he wants those things to be in play.
So: will he run for president?
We decided to ask him about that and also about the letter he sent to Stephen Harper during our election campaign. He thinks we should be paying closer attention to the border security perimeter negotiations and what that could do to our sovereignty.