I am now extremely disappointed in the Obama administration for censoring what the American public can and cannot see. Is this the direction in which this nation is headed? The Obama administration made no hesitation to announce the death of UBL, thereby proclaiming themselves the heroes. Now it appears you are backpedaling in an effort to protect your political image. The death of UBL is not about politics. This needless denial of information despite many expressing a desire to see the images is simply giving UBL far more attention than he deserves. Rip off the proverbial band-aid and get it over with. The longer the administration waits or altogether denies the global anti-terrorism community the right to put the final nail in the coffin of UBL by showing us what has been paid for over the last 10 years in the lives of those lost in the 9/11 attacks on the U.S., lives lost in Al Qaeda terror attacks on the U.K., the lives of honored soldiers from around the world, the lives of civilian contractors, the lives of journalists, the many other innocent lives taken in Al Qaeda related hostage situations, and hard-earned tax dollars paid for, the more this ‘success’ is beginning to look like a very well-timed political move.
The need for displaying these pictures has absolutely nothing to do with whether or not the majority of the American or global public trusts that UBL is, in fact, deceased. It has everything to do with justice. I will not use the word ‘closure’ as I don’t believe anything will ever provide true closure to the families of those lost to any and all atrocities committed worldwide at the behest of UBL, but to actually see the monster dead may provide a sense of true justice.
I’ve heard it expressed by many that the pictures are ‘grotesque’. I’m sorry, but no. Grotesque, in my opinion, is a word that defines the images and videos of this epitome of evil ALIVE and spewing his virulent anti-human filth or slaughtering hostages that we’ve been subjected to for the last 10-15 years since UBL decided to take it upon himself to found a campaign of hatred toward anyone who didn’t conform to his radical extremist beliefs, regardless of race or religion.
For those that have said that posting the pictures of this monster dead makes us no better than he was, that it would martyr him, or that it would be inflammatory or offensive, I must strongly disagree. Those that are going to view UBL as a martyr already are. Those that would be inflamed or offended by the images already are. As for making us no better than he was, I must say this. Unfortunately, UBL’s death does not signify the absolute end of the war against terrorism and we, as a global populous, must not bury our heads in the sand and become complacent. Rest assured that, while we have delivered a significant message and blow to terrorists worldwide, they most certainly are not resting in a state of complacency or worrying themselves about what we think. We absolutely must realize that, in fighting terrorists, we are fighting a different kind of enemy here. They absolutely do not follow any official ‘rules of war’. They do not care what anyone else thinks of them. They care only about their objective and will attempt to achieve it by any means necessary. Make no mistake of that. I’m sure that all of us have heard the phrase “Know thy enemy”. While those words are derived from a manuscript called “The Art of War” by Sun Tzu that is over 2600 years old, I believe this wisdom is extremely relevant today. Please take a moment to truly reflect on the full context of the paragraph from which that one well-known phrase is taken. “So it is said that if you know your enemies and know yourself, you can win a hundred battles without a single loss. If you only know yourself, but not your opponent, you may win or may lose. If you know neither yourself nor your enemy, you will always endanger yourself.” By placing excessive concern regarding the public image projected by those administrations around the world that proclaim themselves to be anti-terrorism an epic failure to know the enemy has been committed, thereby continuing to endanger any and all humans who are anti-terrorism.
What does this mean for those of us in the global community who are anti-terrorism? It means that we absolutely must use the tools available to us to ensure that our message clearly and firmly gets through to any and all terrorist organizations. The message that their heinous anti-human actions cannot, should not, and will not be tolerated by any free-thinking individual, nation, or the global community as a united whole. That there will be definitive and precise consequences to their actions. With every moment that passes, the global anti-terrorism community is rapidly losing ground in seizing the momentum of the events that took place on May 1, 2011 to utilize the tools we know are available to us. A display of the photographic and, in my opinion, video evidence of the consequences brought upon UBL is necessary to ingrain the message of what should, can, and will befall any and all perpetrators of terrorism into their minds.
On September 11, 2001, the majority of the world watched in horror the constantly streaming video of planes hitting the WTC, the Pentagon, and the heroic crashing of Flight 93 into a field in Shanksville, PA to prevent it from hitting its suspected target of the White House itself. Make no mistake, this was major propaganda and inspiration for UBL and terrorists worldwide. We, as a nation, along with much of the world that sympathized with us, made a promise that day. We will never forget.
Since the late evening of Sunday May 1st, 2011, the global anti-terrorism community finally had in our collective hands the opportunity to display some propaganda of our own. The proof that we had, in fact, never forgotten and that some justice had finally been served. Unfortunately, the United States government has now, for all intent and purposes, made it abundantly clear that they have indeed forgotten. Insult has now been added to injury. It is yet another sad day in the history of the free world.
Have you forgotten?