I'm ebuillent at this moment, happy for a man I've never met, Mr. Raymond Davis. Mr. Davis is, I submit, an American hero. Mr. Davis was reportedly freed today from his Pakistani prison where he has been held hostage since January 27th when he killed two gunmen in Lahore who made the bad mistake of brandishing their guns at Mr. Davis.
If nothing else, I hope this teaches a lesson to both our friends and foes. It's an old lesson many American street cops and hoods alike know and understand: DON'T POINT A GUN AT AN AMERICAN UNLESS YOU INTEND TO USE IT, BECAUSE THE AMERICAN IS ASSUMING YOU INTEND TO USE IT AND WILL REACT ACCORDINGLY.
You can find a good, brief overview of the entire situation here at http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/mar/16/cia-spy-murder-pakistan-blood. The US media ignored the situation, and it later came out with good reason, for the first several weeks of the story, to protect Mr. Davis, but the Pakistani media went absolutely bersko over the story. I'll blog later about the gullibility and foolishness of much of the Pakistani news media, but I'll also say there were a few voices of reason in editorials amongst the torrents of Anti-American BS that came tumbling down the pike of Pakistan's news and internet media and bloggers.
EDIT: I'LL BE POSTING SOME MORE LINKS ON THIS STORY FOR THOSE WHO ARE NOT SO FAMILIAR WITH IT. IF YOU ARE AN AMERICAN, I URGE YOU TO READ THE SAGA OF RAYMOND DAVIS.
UPDATE: HERE'S AN EXCELLENT OP-ED PIECE BY JOEL BRINKLY, CALLED PAKISTAN A BAD INVESTMENT FOR U.S. AT http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/03/19/INCD1IBS31.DTL , FROM OF ALL PLACES, THE SAN FRAN GATE/CHRONICLE.
IT ENDS WITH:
What does Pakistan do for the United States?
Steal our money, threaten and imprison our people, loathe and abuse us. Why can't anyone in Washington ever seem to figure this out?
In this case, although media reports have varied (more on why they have varied later in this essay), Mr. Davis apparently used the trusty Glock 9mm pistol to dispatch these would be robbers or assassins to their virginal islamic reward with deft skill and apparently excellent shot placement. I say apparently because Mr. Davis was defending himself while driving a car and shooting at these robbers/assasins on the motorcycle(s). That's some bang up shooting.
A former Special Forces soldier, protecting our country, Mr. Davis was most recently working in some capacity for our CIA, our government. The media reports have labeled him as a contractor, but those with any knowledge at all about US intelligence agencies know that sometimes employees are called contractors and vice versa.
In any event, to me it matters not whether he was a contract employee to the CIA, an actual Federal Government employee or soldier. In Pakistan, he was serving our country. He put his life on the line for all of us.
Those liberal pundits, one of them a good friend of mine, who say Mr. Davis caused more problems than he was solving, fail to consider that Mr. Davis was carrying out orders and keeping himself from being killed while on duty for America. Those liberal pundits have never worked a public safety or military job where it was necessary to carry a gun and possibly use lethal force to protect others. They have no right to criticize that which they will not do themselves to protect this country.
One reason I have gotten so interested is that this could have been me. Between being a police officer and going to law school, I considered several career paths that I didn't take, such as federal law enforcement or perhaps the intelligence community. Certainly, I have friends who went to work for both, and during the past 20 years as a lawyer working in law enforcement, I have met many other folks who have worked in various federal law enforcement and intelligence community jobs. And if it wasn't me, it easily could have been a friend or someone just like them and just like me. Americans.
Secondly, as I said, I have many friends and acquaintences who work or have worked in federal law enforcement and intelligence. They are dedicated. For the most part, the "troops" in these organizations are incorruptable. Honest. Committed to mission. Dedicated. I see Raymond Davis just as I see my friends who work for us, the citizens, to keep us safe from things that are too scary for the liberal pundits to consider.
Let me say at this point that I've been following the Raymond Davis saga on a daily basis since it happened. I'm a world news junkie, and I caught a blurb in a foreign newspaper a few hours after the shooting occurred back on January 27th, nearly 2 months ago. I set up a google alert the next day to follow the news. I've read hundreds of articles since then, mostly in the highly jingoistic Pakastan press and blogosphere, where rumor and innuendo rage like a California wildfire in a drought. What was clear was that at least 90% of the Pakistani press was doing their best to deprive Mr. Davis of any tortured sense of the notion of justice and to inflame the ignorant/poor followers of the radical islamist sect that bubbles like a volcano ready to explode in Pakistan against the far more sensible and rational ruling party.
For two months now, as I've follows the travails of Mr. Davis, I've started post after post. At least 10 of them, and probably closer to 20 that I never published. The wife and many other friends said although my opinion didn't amount to much, nobody involved in the situation would want you blogging your opinions about it while Mr. Davis was in custody. And I had to admit they were right.
First thing that needs to be said is that President Obama and our government did a great job in trying to get Mr. Davis home. From Senator Kerry to Secretary Clinton and undoubtedly tens of thousands of people working on many public and private fronts around the world, I'm proud that our government stood firm and told the Pakistanis how the cow ate the financial aid package. That we had to buy the freedom of Mr. Davis matters not, all that matters is that our man is coming home alive.
If you have not paid attention to this historical event over the past few months, let me recommend you listen to a "leaked" tape recording of the interrogation of Mr. Davis by the so called police in Lahore. He asks for water, they ask him how much money he has. Mr. Davis stands firm in the corrupted and ignorant and American hating police presence, and this is one of many things we can be proud of Mr. Davis for. He didn't beg. He didn't whine or cry. He was a man about it and took their crap, knowing what was coming, and behaved as we would want an American Hero to behave in similar circumstances. He showed no fear and he took no crap. Well done.
In looking at pictures of the crime scene and of the alleged possessions of Mr. Davis, as leaked early on in the Pakistani media, again, to prejudice the highly emotive public against Mr Davis from the outset, I did see a Glock and some Glock magazines. The picture was such that I couldn't tell if it was a 17 or a 19, but either way, I'd like to see Glock make a Raymond Davis Model. Seriously. I'm not kidding. And I'd buy one.
I hope our government gives Mr. Davis some form of compensation above and beyond his normal pay rate for spending so many days in a Lahore jail and then prison. In fact, how about a lump sum tribute payment to a hero and his family to acknowledge that there might be some psychological and physical affects of this time as a hostage upon them. I mean, we pay US prisoners found to have been wrongly imprisoned, how about giving Mr. Davis and his family a large payout, perhaps in an annuity, where he can not worry about working for awhile and can get he and his family together and healing.
I mean, he's already served our country in war for nearly a decade. How much more could we want from the man? What can he give us that he has not already? He's given us valor, service for country in extremely hostile conditions that rival any war zone, honor and most importantly, he had the respect for himself and for our country to stand up to his captors at all times. We'll soon find out if it was true, but the press reports had it that the guns of the prison guards were taken away from them out of fear one of their radical islamist selves would assassinate Mr. Davis. What do we owe the man for that kind of stress? One million? Five Million? I suggest those are good numbers to start with, tax free of course.
I'll have more to say later, but for now the most important thing every American can say is "WELCOME HOME, MR. DAVIS!"