Bin Laden's death no reason to celebrate
Monday, May 9, 2011
Category: Opinion > Op-Eds
Well, we've done it. We've killed the man who started it all. We've destroyed the Satan of our time. And now, what's left? What do we have to show for it?
I'm not sure I'm celebrating with you, America.
But let me say this first: I am glad that he is gone. Osama bin Laden was a man whose fervent religious fanaticism led him and his followers to carry out one of the most treacherous acts in the history of humankind. He needed to answer for his crimes. He needed to atone for the blood he spilled. But I'm not sure this does it.
I do not feel that the deaths of thousands of innocent Americans have been properly avenged. Let me also say that I offer my sincere love and thanks to our military forces around the world. You are heroes-I wish you didn't have to be.
Another man is dead. Another soul is gone from the Earth. Fantastic; that means we have one less person to worry about. What about all the other souls?
As I understand it, and I admit to not being thoroughly briefed in the field, Al Qaeda, Hamas and all other terrorist organizations are Hydras. They have multiple evil heads, and when one is cut off, two replace it. How many zealots will now step up to avenge the death of their leader? How many more people need to die before people are accepted regardless of race, color and creed?
Bin Laden may be dead, but his ideals are still alive and well. How much money was spent in the witch hunt to destroy him? How many lives were lost post Sept. 11 to fight the war on terror? How many more terrorists were created after the American military marched through their homes and killed their fathers, brothers and sons?
It seems like history is doomed to repeat itself yet again. Did killing Saddam Hussein make sense of the invasion of Iraq? I don't think so. Did the death of Hitler and his cronies atone for their atrocious crimes? Not in the slightest. Did Napoleon's demise end European land wars and power grabs? Nope.
It seems that the masses, as a whole, have not yet evolved from their primal states. People called for bin Laden's body to be dragged through the streets and his head stuck on a pike. What end would this serve? Only to incite more hate, anger and division between our cultures.
If we keep celebrating this death, how are we better than those who wronged us? An old proverb states that two wrongs do not make a right. At which point did we forget those wise words? If we are unable to take the high road, imagine how hard it is for those on the other side of the conflict. Killing will only lead to more killing, and it will not stop until one group is able to invite peace.
Those Americans that died on Sept. 11, 2001 deserve better. They do not deserve an outpouring of jingoistic pride that only stokes the embers of the fire. They deserve to be remembered and honored in a way in which the world moves towards the elimination of terrorism. Killing leads to more terror-reconciling eradicates it.
Killing Osama bin Laden doesn't end the economic crisis America is facing. It doesn't end the partisan political battles that constantly threaten to tear this country apart. It doesn't end disease, hunger or poverty. It doesn't end our wars.
All it ended was a life.
And celebrate now, America, because tomorrow the sun will still rise, the bell on Wall Street will still ring and all of the problems of the world will still be unanswered.
Eric Dezendorf graduated with a B.A. in history from UC Berkeley in 2009. Reply to [email protected]
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