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Pop Quiz: What Have We Learned About Bin Laden?

05/02/2011 01:31 pm ET | Updated Jul 02, 2011

It's good to see that Osama bin Laden has been neutralized as a political force. Who would argue that that merits a celebration? Bringing bin Laden to justice would also be worth celebrating, but it's not clear to me that that's what happened.

Maybe he went down shooting as we're told, in which case there was no other way this could play out (don't get me wrong -- I'm not the conspiracy-theorist sort at all, just a bit... jaded, I suppose). And certainly, a full-on trial would've been the security nightmare for the ages (although it's hard to imagine that it ever would have come to that, given the Obama administration's complete abdication of a constitutional criminal justice regime and his embrace of the Bush ends-driven military model).

But it's also clear beyond question that a world without Osama bin Laden is a far better place under any metric than a world with him. So let's go with that. And during this day of celebration, I think it's time for a pop quiz on what we've learned:

Question 1. As it turns out, Osama bin Laden was living in a:

A. Secret cave on the Afghan-Pakistini frontier.

B. Terrorist training camp.

C. Constantly on the move under cover of darkness among sympathetic tribes.

Question 2. The country that bin Laden was found to be residing in was:

A. Iraq (where a war with a pricetag approaching $1 trillion dollars was undertaken to attack al Qaeda).

B. Afghanistan (where a war, with a pricetag slated to reach nearly $500 million by year end, was undertaken to attack al Qaeda).

C. Pakistan.

Question 3. The military force that took down Osama bin Laden was:

A. As many as (approximately) 188,000 international troops at any given time, deployed in a regime-changing landwar over 8 years, resulting in nearly 4800 coalition casualties with far more wounded.

B. As many as (approximately) 120,000 international troops at any given time, deployed in a regime-changing landwar over 10 years, resulting in approximately 2,200 casualties with far more wounded.

C. A surgical strike by a small special ops team with minimal casualties over a 45 minute operation.


Bonus "Christian nation" question. Which of the following is not a real Bible verse?

A. "If only you would slay the wicked, O God! Away from me, you bloodthirsty men!" Psalm 139:19

B. "As I live, says the Lord God, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from their ways and live." Ezekiel 33:11

C. "Do not rejoice when your enemy falls, and do not let your heart be glad when he stumbles." Proverbs 24:17

D. "Hey John, after you take revenge on that Pontius Pilate guy for nailing me to this thing, make sure you get the boys together for a serious street party." John 19:25

(Hat tip to my friend Caoimhin who inspired this post... thought your comment could stand being fleshed out a bit.)