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Washington Times article
Bin Laden’s strategic ambition was to suck the United States into prolonged guerrilla wars. Being a man of the East, he understood that Afghanistan is the graveyard of empires. Britain, czarist Russia, the Soviet Union - their armies were broken by Afghanistan’s harsh terrain and fierce tribes. His aim was to bankrupt America, slowly bleeding us as we fought one counterinsurgency operation after another. In short, he set a trap - and we rushed headlong into it.
Americans have long maintained that a man’s home is his castle and that he has the right to defend it from unlawful intruders. Unfortunately, that right may be disappearing. Over the last 25 years, America has seen a disturbing militarization of its civilian law enforcement, along with a dramatic and unsettling rise in the use of
paramilitary police units (most commonly called Special Weapons and Tactics, or SWAT) for routine police work. The most common use of SWAT teams today is to serve narcotics warrants, usually with forced, unannounced entry into the home. These increasingly frequent raids, 40,000 per year by one estimate, are needlessly subjecting nonviolent drug offenders, bystanders, and wrongly targeted civilians to the terror of having
their homes invaded while they’re sleeping, usually by teams of heavily armed paramilitary units dressed not as police officers but as soldiers. These raids bring unnecessary violence and provocation to nonviolent drug offenders, many of whom were guilty of only misdemeanors. The raids terrorize innocents when police mistakenly
target the wrong residence. And they have resulted in dozens of needless deaths and injuries, not only of drug offenders, but also of police officers, children, bystanders, and innocent suspects.
-- You are 17,600 times more likely to die from heart disease than from a terrorist attack
-- You are 12,571 times more likely to die from cancer than from a terrorist attack
-- You are 11,000 times more likely to die in an airplane accident than from a terrorist plot involving an airplane
-- You are 1048 times more likely to die from a car accident than from a terrorist attack
--You are 404 times more likely to die in a fall than from a terrorist attack
-- You are 87 times more likely to drown than die in a terrorist attack
-- You are 13 times more likely to die in a railway accident than from a terrorist attack
--You are 12 times more likely to die from accidental suffocation in bed than from a terrorist attack
--You are 9 times more likely to choke to death on your own vomit than die in a terrorist attack
--You are 8 times more likely to be killed by a police officer than by a terrorist
--You are 8 times more likely to die from accidental electrocution than from a terrorist attack
-- You are 6 times more likely to die from hot weather than from a terrorist attack
As we mark Osama bin Laden's death, what's striking is how much he cost our nation—and how little we've gained from our fight against him. By conservative estimates, bin Laden cost the United States at least $3 trillion over the past 15 years, counting the disruptions he wrought on the domestic economy, the wars and heightened security triggered by the terrorist attacks he engineered, and the direct efforts to hunt him down.
What do we have to show for that tab? Two wars that continue to occupy 150,000 troops and tie up a quarter of our defense budget; a bloated homeland-security apparatus that has at times pushed the bounds of civil liberty; soaring oil prices partially attributable to the global war on bin Laden's terrorist network; and a chunk of our mounting national debt, which threatens to hobble the economy unless lawmakers compromise on an unprecedented deficit-reduction deal.
INDIANAPOLIS | Overturning a common law dating back to the English Magna Carta of 1215, the Indiana Supreme Court ruled Thursday that Hoosiers have no right to resist unlawful police entry into their homes.