Monday, May 2, 2011

Bin Laden is dead, remember the moment - and move on

Osama Bin Laden is dead. The mastermind behind so many terrorist attacks over the past 20 years is gone, killed, appropriately so, by United States troops.

Last night and into today, Americans celebrated the death of this heartless, ruthless and I might add cowardly terrorist. There are reports that, ever the coward, Bin Laden died while hiding behind a woman.

It is time to ask ourselves what the death of the world’s most infamous terrorist really means. In short, what is next?

As usual in America, less than an hour after the announcement, some were throwing political accusations about. Anyone who reads my weekly column is aware that no one would like to see Barack Obama out of office more that I. There is no doubt that knocking off Bin Laden is a feather in Obama’s cap.

There are times to disagree with our president and there are times to rally behind him, or at least give due credit for a job well done. This is one of those times. The task undertaken by our military was the stuff that movies are made of.

I do feel for President Obama in this instance. No matter how one feels, politically, about any given president, I cannot think of a more troubling decision that one to eliminate, yes kill, another human being. We can talk about it all we like. “Yeah, I’d have not trouble makin’ that call,” many of us would say.

Think about it though, from the president’s perspective. He is giving an order to kill someone. In giving that order, he is committing a number of United States servicemen to accomplish his order. His order is putting them into a position where there is a likely-hood that they could die. It is their job, we know. But, knowing all of that, are you so sure that you could give the order?

It should also be noted that it is not just the President of the United States who is responsible for locating and killing Bin Laden. President Bush had people hot on his trail and Obama picked up the trail after taking office.

To accomplish the mission that culminated in Bin Laden’s death took years of intelligence gathering. The mission did not require Republicans and it did not require Democrats. It required Americans – working together, as a team, toward a common goal. That is what American’s do best.

I do not wish to judge how, or to what extent, Americans celebrate the death of Osama Bin Laden. Yes, some will argue, he was a human being, after all.

I do not wish to argue how Bin Laden was buried. The decision was made. It is done. Drop it. Second-guessing at this point is useless.

Now is not the time to spend too much time celebrating the victory. The battle has been won. The war is not over. Terrorists are still alive and a sizable number of them would still wish to continue in the footsteps of their fallen leader.

Well done to the CIA. Well done, U.S. military troops. Well done, Mr. President.

Geronimo, Geronimo, Geronimo. (The code name, and “go” signal, for the operation.)

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