Home World [책의 향기]Obama hesitates to kill bin Laden

[책의 향기]Obama hesitates to kill bin Laden

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◇The Promised Land/Written by Barack Obama, Translated by Noh Seung-Young/920 pages, 33,000 won, Woongjin Knowledge House

April 2011 during Operation Geronimo to kill Osama bin Laden. Then-President Barack Obama instructed the CIA and the Center for Counter-Terrorism (NCT) to evaluate the possibility that bin Laden was being monitored by the Navy SEALs. The CIA analyzed the probability that he was bin Laden at 60-80%, and the NCT analyzed it at 40-60%. Senior military strategists, including Joint Special Operations Commander William McRaven, put their heads together to kill bin Laden, but the possibility of failure could not be completely avoided. Only the president’s decision remains. Obama recalls the time in his new book: “I knew I couldn’t put in place better processes to evaluate possibilities, and I couldn’t bring in better people to help me judge.”

Obama has published his first memoir about his presidency. He frankly tells the story of his journey to becoming the first black president of the United States and episodes of his first two and a half years in office.

If you read this book, you can see why Obama was nicknamed the so-called ‘no drama’ president throughout his tenure with no political twists. An unwelcome adjective for politicians who need to win votes, Obama was hesitant to use the killing of US arch-enemy bin Laden politically. After four months of deliberation, “In the end, the probability is half and half. Let’s try it.” As the operation succeeded with Obama’s determination, an atmosphere of unity was created in American society. In this situation, before giving credit to the administration, Obama thought about whether “we can only become one by killing terrorists”. The book also includes the appearance of ‘human Obama’. Like other teenagers, he lived a frugal life that did not hesitate to eat cold food after going to college. At the same time, he immersed himself in issues such as ‘which social movements fail or succeed’. Obama’s retrospective, “I preferred incidents to actions,” reminds us of his actions in deep contemplation ahead of Operation Geronimo. Reporter Jeon Chae-eun [email protected]

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