The whole Osama Bin Laden affair intrigues me. As Inkling rightly pointed out yesterday, I think the issue raises some very poignant issues about the dignity of the human person. Details are gradually trickling out about the operation itself, the response of America citizens, and hindsight opinions on the role of torture in actually getting the information that led to Bin Laden’s demise. Personally, I found the images of Americans partying in the streets to be a little too similar to those images, post 9/11, of Pakistanis partying in the street. In fact, for some reason these images are slightly more sickening to me (check out the Mercatornet article below). Perhaps because I had tried to convince myself that the western world is actually the better man. Yeah right. I found myself agreeing with these two articles: the first from Mercatornet and the second the more liberal Salon.
My husband, who has been in New York for the last 9 months and obviously made a lot of New York contacts, described the morning he woke up and checked facebook. He described one after another status updates written in the same spirit – a type of jubilation motivated by hate. We were both appalled and bemused.
Perhaps one of the most “off” comments was made by the Peruvian President. He was quick to point out that it was no coinicidence that the Beatification of John Paul II and Bin Laden’s death occurred on the same day. He stated, his “first miracle has been to wipe off the face of this earth and demonic incarnation of crime, evil and hate”. I can imagine John Paul II rolling in his grave.
9/11 literally defined all of my adult years. I was in my first year of university when the towers crumbled. The subsequent years, I also witnessed and participated in countless discussions about how 9/11 changed the world, not to mention politics and world security. The joys of studying politics in such a politically unstable world. I’ve been to ground zero, and even though there remains only a massive hole in the ground (and some construction), it bought a tear or two to my eyes knowing exactly what had happened there – the 3000 lives lost, and all the others effected. I have a very good American friend who watched the towers crumble from Brooklyn bridge, and still, to this day gives a heart-rendering account of the few days that followed in New York. Yes, my experiences are limited and I am in no way claiming to know what America (and it’s citizens) have been through since but such a reaction is dehumanizing, not only to the person who was killed in retaliation, but also to those who are celebrating in the States at the moment.
Here are a couple more articles that I found very interesting on the whole affair. Enjoy (well as much as one can when reading a piece on torture)!
And another which depicts the movements of the president and the Navy Seal operation the day Bin Laden was found and killed.
And then on the other side of the spectrum, we’ve got Hawawira saying Bin Laden should be honoured. hmmmm….not exactly the approach I would have taken either.