revolutions have a different lexicon. They demand pluralism, the transfer of
power, transparency and respect for differing opinions. They want to belong to
the modern world and participate in building it. Their demands are from a
lexicon that stands in stark contrast to that of bin Laden."
George Bush was longing for
this moment. To stand before the American people and the world, and declare that
America had killed the man who brought down the Twin Towers. Bush had managed
to take out the Taliban, the regime which had refused to hand over custody of
their guest, Osama bin Laden. And without any convincing justification, he was
able to take out Saddam Husseinís government, and he then watched Husseinís
corpse swing to and fro. And he dreamt of that third big kill. Empires are
like individuals, in that they need revenge in order to cleanse their wounds.
But luck and time were not on his side. It was Barack Obama's fortune to appear before
the world for the big announcement. Another president had other methods. And
who knows, time may show that Obama, because of his ability to take out regimes
and governments, is more dangerous than Bush and bin Laden put together!
A decade ago, Osama bin Laden
rocked the world and brought the war to America. He targeted the symbols of
American success and prestige in New York and Washington. The entire world
stood dumbstruck as they watched the twin attacks. America emerged wounded from
that day and launched her massive military machine, demonstrating an
unprecedented capacity to strike - and to make mistakes.
America can only defeat an
enemy whose address is known. Bin Laden, a stubborn rival with no address, wore
out the United States. He may be in a cave, or he may be in a house, and
nothing seemed to lead to him. He didn't use the phone or the Internet.
Fighting him was harder than fighting a ghost. Every time the Americans tried
to close in on him, they came up empty handed. At the same time, the man proved
very expensive. Enormous sums of money were spent to improve security at
airports, ports, and embassies throughout the U.S., the West and Western-friendly
countries. He was also expensive for the world that he created [the Arab
world], which eventually declared its desire to lift the injustice he brought.
Bin Laden had lost the battle
before he was killed. He lost it in Saudi Arabia where he attempted to destabilize
the country. His fiercely confrontational approach, with all of its dimensions in
terms of security and intellectual and religious thought, reduced the popularity
of the man. He became isolated by a way of thinking that stemmed from despair,
frustration and extremism. He also lost his battle in Pakistan, where he had dreamed
of changing the nature and situation of the government - his only victory being
that the countryís intelligence services turned a blind eye to him.
In recent months, bin Laden
suffered major losses that showed how isolated al-Qaeda had become. Protesters
in Tunis held up no photos of him and his photo went unseen in Cairoís Tahrir
Square. Protesters in Yemen and Libya never attempted to associate themselves with
him. The Arab revolutions and protests have a different lexicon. They demand
pluralism, the transfer of power, transparency and respect for differing
opinions. They want to belong to the modern world and participate in building
it. Their demands are from a lexicon that stands in stark contrast to that of
bin Laden. Bin Laden tried to burn away the line of contact between Muslims and
the West, and he achieved a certain degree of success, especially among the ranks of certain
communities. But the winds of the previous months have demonstrated the desire
of Arabs and Muslims for freedom, dignity and advancement, as well as their
longing to belong to the modern age, rather than resigning from it. ††
Posted by WORLDMEETS.US
The killing of Bin Laden
doesn't mean the end of al-Qaeda, nor does it mean the end of terrorism. It
might be considered an important incident in the battle of symbols, and it
emphasizes the principle of punishing the perpetrator, whoever it may be. But
the battle against terrorism will remain. Eradicating the roots of terrorism
requires a battle against injustice, poverty, marginalization - and occupation.
It requires freedom, unhindered prospects, development, reform and
participation. Perhaps that is why Obama may turn out to be more aggressive
than Bush and more dangerous than bin Laden.
Osama Bin Laden has come and
gone. He was suicide bomber in thought, method and language. He kindled fires in
this capital and that, and ended up setting himself alight. His comrades may
try to avenge his death, but that wonít change the fact that he is a closed
chapter. Osama WAS here.
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