I had no access to a television or the internet outside of my blackberry last night, but facebook and twitter were aflutter as the news went viral: under President Obama’s command, a CIA strike resulted in the death of the infamous long, sought after Osama Bin Laden. Shortly following that announcement, the amusing, one-liner thoughts on the matter began: ‘Obama got Osama!’, ‘Obama 2012! Obama’s got this next election in the bag’, ‘Obama and Osama are probably related, lol’.
My thoughts on the matter will be brief. Politics is something I never got into due to some really unfortunate Social Studies-related experiences in High School and a racist American history teacher who I unfortunately had two years in a row. Even today, I have to fight my incredible unwillingness to stay politically informed and force my ass over to CNN.com or the New York Times website… It’s like my adolescent obesity, it was really easy to fall into a terrible rut, but now incredibly hard to develop the right habits to get out of it.
But I digress. My thoughts are short, simple and sweet: this doesn’t feel like justice to me, it feels more like a long, sought after revenge. And the elation of some Americans to this news is a bit unsettling to me.
I don’t think we should rejoice over the death of any man. His life was no more ours to take than the lives he was responsible for taking. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. once said: “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” Following that logic, good can only vanquish evil. Therefore, violence and hate beget more violence and hatred. No matter what atrocities he was guilty of, putting more death, hatred and negativity into this world in the wake of Osama’s terrible legacy will by no means make it a better place in the future.
However, I hope this means that the war that was started ten years ago in the hopes of ending this reign of terror will now end. Maybe ceasing to add bloodshed and death by ending this war will be the beginning of that light that will drive out some of the darkness in our world.
And this by no means will lead to the end of terrorism… the causes, and fuel behind terrorism still exist. The perverse justifications behind terror in the mind of its perpetrators are far larger than one man, and the death of one man won’t change that (even if that man was as great a figure as Osama Bin Laden). We should not herald this as a victory, but rather ask ourselves, where do go from here? What back lash will this bring from his followers? We should be pensive and start having dialogue about the repercussions of this event for America, for the Middle East and for the rest of the world.
So many things are happening in these times… I can’t help but be reminded of a biblical verse (pardon my French, but I learned the Bible in French, lol): “…la scène de ce monde est en train de changer (the scene of this world is changing)” 1 Corinthians 7:31 . Right now, these words are ringing with such truth in my head. My generation and those who have come along for the ride these past couple of decades have witnessed much in such a short period of time… Just really wonder what the culmination of these events will be and what it will mean for the future. Godly fear was instilled in me young. So I can’t help but think after witnessing so many cataclysmic and telling events that, as the Bible warns, a terrible end is near.