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Bin Laden is dead. The news made me happy. I don't want to feel pleasure about the death of another person, no matter how much he deserved it. But apparently I don't have a choice. I've been delighted since last night and the feeling doesn't seem to be going away.

This is the first time that another person's death has made me happy. When the Iraqis executed Sadam Hussein, it was simple justice. When drones kill lesser terrorist leaders, I'm pleased at the result, not the loss of life. Bin Laden was different.  Like many of you, I was watching television on the morning of September 11th, 2001 when the second plane hit the second tower. This time it was personal.  For me, Bin Laden's death is deeply satisfying.

This is the sort of event that defines our national sense of self. The United States didn't stop trying to kill Bin Laden for ten years. We Americans might not do things right on the first try, but betting against us in the long run remains a very bad idea. I'm proud to be an American. I want to be on the team that will gnaw through a concrete wall to get it done, even if it takes ten years.

Tomorrow we'll go back to criticizing one another and complaining about just about everything. That is our way. It keeps us sharp. But today, for just one day, let's enjoy a collective victory. Let's remember those who died on 9/11 and in Afghanistan thereafter. Let's think about the level of bravery and professionalism that went into this operation. And let this remind us that we are part of something bigger than ourselves. 

History turns on psychology. The United States has been in a rough patch for ten years. That changed last night. Buckle up; the next part of this ride is the fun part.

 
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May 11, 2011
This is so American. It took TEN years for god sakes!
Trump found he's reason to proud too.

Ten years ago they stole some CD's from my car. Now I know there's still some hope. Some pround American cop may still find it. They did not get right the first time...
 
 
+1 Rank Up Rank Down
May 5, 2011
Wow, your comments to gbeeton are as defensive and blinkered as I've ever seen you on here. I read precisely because you are never those things. Paraphrasing your attitude of "It's a really big problem that has been going on for a long time, so let's not try to make any inroads into it now." is totally at odds with your analogy of gnawing through the concrete wall.

Regardless of differences of opinion as to what doing the right thing might be, doing the right thing in the past is easy. You do it now and wait.
 
 
+2 Rank Up Rank Down
May 4, 2011
I'm sure if someone had made a Jeopardy question "Where is Osama Bin Laden?" 5 months ago, WATSON would have located him at his upscale residence in Pakistan.

Yeah USA, you have once again brought down a foul and and horrible terrorist/dictator, that you likely brought to power in the first place.
 
 
May 4, 2011
MSEsteve, May 2, 2011:
"Osama Bin Laden is dead. May he rot in hell."

Actually, I am given to understand that rotting is not a process that happens in hell, as the primary effect is cauterization.

 
 
May 3, 2011
Scott,
Kudos on this great blog post. It is always fun to read the opinions of one of the most widely-known cartoonists around, on interesting topics such as this.
I vaguely remember September 11th, 2001, because I was 5 years old and in the first grade at the time. When I arrived home from school that day, I remember my parents looking frenzied, intently watching the news channel and witnessing the two jets smashing into the side of the buildings, one-by-one. Of course, I didn't realize the significance of these attacks; my parents explained to me later that evening about what went down, and I have had nightmares of that day ever since.
Now, ten years later and with both Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden dead, I feel as if a great weight has been lifted off of our nation's shoulders. I feel that the gray stormclouds of America's past have disappeared and given way to the sun's smiling face. I feel that we have been given (and I apologize for this upcoming pun) a ray of hope.
Scott, thanks for providing great insight on the well-deserved and final end to the world's most hated terrorist, Osama bin Laden. Best of wishes to you, and keep up the funny Dilbert comics.


Longtime Dilbert reader,

Alec
 
 
-2 Rank Up Rank Down
May 3, 2011
Scott said: "Should we back al qaeda's plans to create a caliphate so they'll like us? Anything short of that still makes us the enemy."

It's none of our fracking business what form of government they choose. You don't have to endorse or resist those plans. Just stay out of them. Had the US let them do their own thing in the first place - without interference - then there would be no al qaeda. The US *created* bin Laden and his followers.

[I agree with your plan to change the past. Once we get that fixed, we should be good. -- Scott]
 
 
+1 Rank Up Rank Down
May 3, 2011
Scott do you also feel happy on the million plus the americans have killed to avenge the 3000 dead?......by the way we did not even get to see the body......
 
 
May 3, 2011
"I mourn the loss of thousands of precious lives, but I will not rejoice in the death of one, not even an enemy. Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that" - Martin Luther King, Jr.
 
 
+15 Rank Up Rank Down
May 3, 2011
People dancing in the street chanting praises for the death of another human being. They sing their praises to god and laugh happily. Much of the arab world on 9/11.

People dancing in the street chanting praises for the death of another being. They sing their praises to god and laugh happily. Much of the United States after Osama Bin Laden was killed.

Is it justice? I being an american did feel a momentary twinge of happiness at the death of Bin Laden. The mastermind behind countless deaths and new ways of creating terror. Then I heard about the celebrating.

My mind flashed back to the pictures and movie clips of people in the arab world, which countries and religions I don't know, singing and dancing because of the Twin Towers going down. I felt a bitter anger at these people for celebrating the death of other human beings and thought that western culture is better than these barbarians, because we would never do that. I thought that we were better, somehow more thoughtful, more enlightened, more intelligent.

Now I see that was merely an egotistical thought. I feel that while I don't agree with the celebrations that took place after 9/11 I now find that there is common thread between their celebrations and ours. The common thread appears to be justice.

However, now that I have had time to process it I do wonder if it was justice. Was it necessary to kill Osama Bin Laden, perhaps. Rather than having him kept in Guantonomo or tried on US soil a simple "casualty of war" is far better, maybe.

But, I see the cheering and can't help but feel a kind of kinship with those that attacked us. Not a personal kinship but one of national identity that says that what they want is the same thing that we want, and I wonder why we have to keep killing each other to feel better. Why is the death of another human being a happy day for us or for them.

I say all this while knowing that I'm happy like Scott is about Osama Bin Laden's death. Perhaps that's what makes me an American, to be happy about something but feel guilty about it at the same time. Perhaps this is the uniqueness that we, not that we don't celebrate at anothers death but that we feel guilty about celebrating it. Afterall, those arabs shown celebrating after 9/11 didn't feel guilty later. Did they?
 
 
+6 Rank Up Rank Down
May 2, 2011
I really don't understand what the celebration is about. Bin Laden was not the cause of the terrorist threat to the US. He was a symptom. The root cause is a US foreign policy that encourages people to hate the US and all it stands for. Until you fix that then there will always be a thousand more Bin Ladens waiting in the wings to launch the next attack. Is that really so difficult to understand?

[Should we back al qaeda's plans to create a caliphate so they'll like us? Anything short of that still makes us the enemy. -- Scott]
 
 
+3 Rank Up Rank Down
May 2, 2011
Next on top of the list will be the Joker and the Penguin.
 
 
May 2, 2011
Honestly, I feel pretty much nothing about Bin Ladin being killed. Mainly because it has about zero impact on my life or the lives of about 99.999% of the people in the world, beyond a psychological effect. And no, history does not change on psychology, it changes on actual change. The only effect psychology has is on people attitudes for about 72 hours when they then start to realize their life is exactly the same.

I will feel a deep satisfaction when the majority of the people in this country realize why bin Ladin did what he did - because we've been riding around in our giant military all over the world - and then decide to just stop doing that instead of molesting children and taking naked pictures of them at airports.
 
 
May 2, 2011
I'm glad they got him, but I wonder about the implications for Pakistan that they found him living in the Pakistani equivalent of the Thayer Hotel....
 
 
May 2, 2011
The State Dept said Bin Laden's body was buried at sea in accordance with Islamic practice and tradition.

So this is probably how that happened: Six Navy Seals, exhausted after a successful mission, are in the back of a Chinook helicopter speeding out over the Gulf of Oman. Bin Laden's body is on the floor.

The Special Ops leader (the one with the cigar and crewcut) says it's time to wash Bin Laden's body per Islamic funeral tradition. Groaning at first, the Seals ritually wash his body then carefully transfer it to a special white funeral sheet, while scripture is read from the Holy Koran. Then they pray to Mecca for a few minutes. Finally the pilot is ordered to descend as close to the water as possible.

The pilot manages to get down to within five feet, but this doesn't satisfy the cigar-chomping leader, "Get lower, dammit!" Obviously, no one wants to see a big splash with the funeral sheet slipping off prematurely. Further prayers are then spoken, but just as Bin Laden's body is about to be slipped into the water the Seal leader notices a green smudge on the white funeral sheet. "Who the hell dripped face camo on this sheet?!"

"Sorry sir, but it's so damn hot in here!"

"Well, now we have to clean the sheet!" The Seal leader orders the pilot back north to the mainland where they land next to a convenience store and buy laundry detergent, sandwiches and a case of Old Milwaukee.

Back on the helicopter, they scrub off the stain as they race back out over the water trying to get back on schedule. The leader notices one guy eating a sandwich. "Is that a ham sandwich, private?! You know it's against Islamic practice and tradition to eat pork at a funeral!"

"Sorry, Sir" and the sandwiches are pitched overboard along with the beer.

Finally after re-washing the body and redoing all the prayers they complete the funeral successfully.
 
 
+20 Rank Up Rank Down
May 2, 2011
I find it worrying that anybody who rejects a mainstream opinion and asks rational questions is considered a conspiracy theorist.

It is a valid question to ask why Osama was killed instead of given a trial. You may agree with the killing part but that does not render the question invalid.

It is a valid question to ask why he is "buried at sea". It does not mean you believe that his death is a conspiracy but asking for an explanation is perfectly valid.

If critical thinking and asking such questions is considered the work of a conspiracy theorist, nut job or traitor, it forms the ultimate proof of who really won the war on terror.
 
 
+16 Rank Up Rank Down
May 2, 2011
US economy 101:

killing osama > infrastructure development & subsidised: healthcare, public transit and higher education.

weird ass priorities thanks to which the terrorists still won, or at least succeeded in helping the US get its national debt to a new high.

The only good feeling i get from this is a bit of hope for diminished US induced suffering in the world, I'm happy that you guys are happy, now can you please stop with the military actions and become civilised.
 
 
May 2, 2011
I wouldn't call the death satisfying, but it does bring me a sense of relief that a guy who had to be gotten rid of is gone.
 
 
+2 Rank Up Rank Down
May 2, 2011
Amen, brother!
 
 
May 2, 2011
Scott, I have to agree with you about this. While I don't believe it is right to celebrate and be happy about someone's death, even someone like Bin Laden, I can't help but feel glad that he's gone. It also makes me angry that all the conspiracy theorists are out now to dispute that he's really dead. That convinces me even more that I'm glad he's dead, even though I shouldn't be.

On a different note, I can't wait to see how people will take your blog out of context. I'll just pick out a few phrases to get 'em going:

"...another person's death has made me happy."
"I've been delighted since last night and the feeling doesn't seem to be going away."
"For me, Bin Laden's death is deeply satisfying"
 
 
May 2, 2011
Just another chapter in a story that is a long way from concluding.
 
 
 
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