* In all the debates, John Kerry criticized Bush for allowing Public races to get dollars by deadline Osama bin Laden to escape at the battle of Tora Bora in December 2001 by relying on unreliable local proxy forces. There is a pinch of truth to this charge--the locals on the ground entered into constant negotiations with the Taliban and al-Qaeda remnants that may have allowed more of them to escape than would have otherwise. But there is no guarantee that bin Laden was present at Tora Bora. The reliance on local forces was part of a strategic choice Kerry supported at the time--to avoid a mass infusion of U.S. forces that might cause a nationalist backlash in Afghanistan. Even if the U.S. had wanted to send thousands of troops into the impossible terrain of the White Mountains, it is doubtful that they could have been deployed in time to make a difference. So this Kerry line-of-attack is exaggerated enough to qualify as a cheap shot, which makes it all the more disappointing that Bush never uttered a peep in response.
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