Trump says US forces cornered IS leader in dead-end tunnel

President Donald Trump announces the death of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi on Sunday. Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP

Congratulations to Delta Force, the entire U.S. military and President Trump for this weekend’s successful mission against the terrorist murderer Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.

A Delta Force unit flew into a Syrian village Saturday, easily blew through al-Baghdadi’s defenses and chased him into a dead-end tunnel.

There, Trump says the terrorist detonated a suicide vest, killing himself and three children. No U.S. troops were killed or seriously injured. A military dog was seriously wounded.

Al-Baghdadi was a lawless criminal who falsely portrayed himself as a religious zealot and the leader of an imaginary nation. He perverted the teaching of Islam into the worst horrors imaginable. Under his corrupt reign, the supposed Islamic State stole what it wanted, killed any who were less than submissive and inspired weak-minded followers to strike out at against the democratic world.

In the end, al-Baghdadi’s imaginary caliphate was a wrecked shambles. As vividly described by Trump, who watched the operation from the White House Situation Room as it played out, he died a coward, not a martyr.

As important as the death of al-Baghdadi’s death is, it does not end the threat of the Islamic State. His followers — those who fought in Syria and those who fantasized of doing so online — will likely seek revenge. While they have no real operational base outside of the internet, their deadly potential remains very real. As before al-Baghdadi’s death, security will require vigilance.

President Trump gets credit for his resolve in targeting al-Baghdadi and for approving the mission, but the greatest applause is due the Delta Force soldiers who hunted down al-Baghdadi. We are all proud and grateful for their bravery and skill. Their valor has made the world a little safer and the United States a little prouder.


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