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Sunday, May 01, 2011

Osama Bin Laden Dead

Breaking news that Osama bin Laden has been shot and killed and the body is in the possession of U.S. troops.

It is nearly 10 years since 9/11 happened and this is a fitting end for the man who started us down this climate of fear and TSA, and two on-going wars.

I'm sure our children will learn about and remember this 10-year anniversary.

I dreaded the coming of this 2011 September but now it will be easier to face and to honor those who died with the coming of this news. 

8 comments:

Josh Hayes said...

No man is an island, entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main. If a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as if a manor of thy friend's or of thine own were: any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind, and therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.

(John Donne: Meditation XVII)

I can take no joy in this: no person's death is cause for celebration, and the crowds of drunken frat boys celebrating on the live news feeds only serve to drive home the message. Responsible people may mark a man's death with grim satisfaction, or with a sigh of relief, or a host of other moderated responses. Only yahoos celebrate death.

suep. said...

Nicely put, Josh. I'm with you on that. No joy here either, just contemplation of the huge costs of arriving at this point.
-- Sue p.

mascarah said...

This is no fitting end to anything- and no one person (or other region of the world, for that matter)started this climate of fear. I teach 5th grade, and am not looking forward to the conversations today about how this country thinks that shooting someone in the head somehow stands for justice.

seattle citizen said...

Compare images of people in Libya, Pakistan and elsewhere demonstrating in the streets, burning the flag, etc; and of people in the US demonstrating in the streets with flags and beers in their hands.

I can't tell the difference.

basically said...

Thank you all of you for saying this. I have been feeling very alone in my feelings that the celebration of a death of any Life is misplaced. I think I will avoid Facebook for the rest of the day.

What you said, Josh, nails it. Grim satisfaction, sigh of relief, but I am not putting the flag out today.

Michael H said...

"I can't tell the difference"

You are blind and naive.

Flag is up and will stay up for a few days.

seattle citizen said...

Michael H,
I wrote that rhetorically, and perhaps it's not quite accurate, but it disturbs me to see people celebrating death, which is what partying in the streets with flags waving is, and also what "partying" in the streets with flag burning is. It's base and callow.

The US evidently did a very respectful thing, which is to try and give Osama's body an appropriate Muslim burial (at sea) within 24 hours. I don't see any respect (for the the world, for the victims of 9/11, for the dead) in waving flags while chugging beer and yahoo-ing.

To me, flag waving and flag burning are closely related: It's a "us versus them" mentality that is not at all nuanced, is overly patriotic and tribalistic, and is not very respectful.

Braessae said...

Seattle Citizen said: To me, flag waving and flag burning are closely related: It's a "us versus them" mentality that is not at all nuanced, is overly patriotic and tribalistic, and is not very respectful.

I think this is an overly broad indictment. Certainly, "flag waving" can be a sign of hubris, a sort of small-minded neener neener in the face of whoever you are waving it at. But no one I know felt that way when the Chilean miners reached the surface to a blizzard of Chilean flags. The problem lies, in every case, with the quality of the thought behind the action, and the reason for the celebration.

I also disliked the partying crowds, but felt a sense of relief that the mind and soul of one who was so bent towards the destruction of innocent lives is now beyond the boundaries of the world. From here on, the damage he can create is limited to the words he left behind. I am grateful that America finally confronted, and demanded accountability from, the man who publicly took credit for, and then brazenly gloated over, all those innocent people who were incinerated, or crushed by the falling towers or the planes, or who were on the planes that crashed in Virginia or at the Pentagon, or who jumped 100 stories in despair. If he could, on 9/11, have killed every single American, he would have. The man was pitiless.