As everybody knows by now, the world’s biggest villain, and one-time Time Man of the Year candidate, or was it decade, was killed by American SEALs in a daring secret strike in Pakistan. The guy who’s the alleged mastermind of the 9-11 terrorist attacks had been on the run for so long that he had become like a legend. Bin Laden was living in a compound in a military town close to Islamabad, Pakistan’s capital, and obviously this raises suspicions of how tight Pakistan was to bin Laden, given their already known connections with the Taliban. It was a gutsy call by Barack Obama and it is impressive how efficiently or deadly this mission went off, though not without a hitch as they lost one helicopter. Still I find it raises a few questions. One, the US carried out this mission to capture/assassinate somebody directly within another country without notifying the country’s authorities beforehand. I understand Pakistan hasn’t been a very trustworthy “ally” for the US during their War on Terror, but still what if bin Laden had been in another country? How would people feel if the US went into their country and carried out a hit just like that? One could speculate that if it was a more trusted nation like say, Canada, then they would have gotten notified. Of course, the question would be what if bin Laden had been in a far more dubious nation, like North Korea or Iran? It’d be interesting to see if the US would have risked going into a hostile country or would have been even bolder. Secondly, bin Laden was shot dead, with a direct shot to the head being the likely killshot. Apparently he was unarmed, but was putting up a resistance and allegedly holding his wife as a shield. In that case, the question is couldn’t he have been taken down by a shot to somewhere else? I wouldn’t be surprised though if the soldiers (or SEALs operatives because they are Navy) didn’t give a damn about getting him out alive and were just itching to find a reason to kill him. Third, sure the guy was like the idol of Islamic fundamentalists everywhere. His name was linked to a lot of attacks and he kept coming out with videos taunting the US and the West and “inspiring” and inciting Islamic fundamentalists. However how significant was his role in al-Qaida and carrying out terror attacks in the past few years? Given the sheer amount of effort he had to put into just staying alive and undetected, how likely was it he was still leading strategy or driving goals and giving orders? I think killing him may have brought some emotional closure to the US but in the end was it just a symbolic and empty victory? I hope he won’t become a martyr. The world is better off without him and those like him, but I’m not buying into the mass euphoria over his death.


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