Typing this, I hesitate. Is this a mere death? An assassination? A murder? And if not the latter, why not? Mass murderers and perpetrators of genocide have been brought to trial, yet the U.S. now abandons established paths of justice. They’ve “taken him out.” Have we already tried bin Laden in our media, determined him guilty beyond doubt, not worthy of justice except the justice that we see in death? Or is it because we’ve pinned the deaths of thousands of U.S. soldiers on him when after all, it was a U.S. president who decided to invade Afghanistan and Iraq?
Is there catharsis in the news today? Do the families of those killed on September 11 feel their loss is vindicated? Do the revelers in front of the White House rejoice in the death of another man, his face familiar to some of them since their early school days, or in the success of their president, or perhaps, for the idea that something evil is no longer in the world? And that America has eradicated it? They’re chest-bumping on the mall. Boozing it up at Ground Zero.
Marwan Bishara writes at Al Jazeera, “Killing the Alibi,” that the U.S. has now lost it’s excuse to be in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Mark Crispin Miller asked the provocative question last night, Is the War on Terror over? His question highlights the lie that we are at war with one man and not an ideology or social or political climate.
Comparing conservative U.S. and conservative Muslim reactions to OBL’s death, from Mother Jones.
At Religion Dispatches, Sarah Posner lists some early reactions from Christian leaders.
David Corn on the presidential politics that play into Osama bin Laden’s killing.
Mark Levine reminds us to now think of the costs of the wars.
CNN collects reactions from the likes of Hillary Clinton, Leon Panetta and other politicals.
Abby Ohlheiser sends us word of “deatherism,” in which skeptics deny that OBL is really dead; DNA tests couldn’t possibly have been completed so quickly.