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After the boss battle

A quick response on the news story of the past few, which I posted elsewhere.

Recently, I was asked about my opinion of my country’s assassination of Osama bin Laden.

I don’t exult in the assassination of anyone.  Killing one’s enemy is never a path to true superiority.  This doesn’t mean that I had any tears at all for this twisted and murderous soul.  He didn’t hesitate to kill either, and his perversion of a religion noted for its enlightenment and peace-seeking is a true blasphemy.  Whatever fate he now endures is likely too lenient.

Nonetheless, I’ll admit that when I heard the news, I had pretty much no reaction whatsoever.  I think it was a reaction borne of cynicism about my country’s leaders and their motives, a deep-seated disgust at al-Qaeda and their actions, and mostly a sadness that peace in the world seems so elusive.

I do not believe in the wilder conspiracy theories regarding the attacks on my country on 11 Sept 2001.  It was obviously a conspiracy, but one perpetrated by Osama bin Laden’s organization of criminal fanatics, not American government officials.  I do, however, believe that those government officials were both extremely lax in the defense of this country, and extremely quick to take full advantage of the attack to further their own extremist agenda, which involved hegemony over the Middle East to secure its resources, and a global expression of military force; a sort of “perpetual” war.  This doesn’t involve much conjecture on my part; this is stated outright in position statements by these politicians drafted well before the attack.

As a Green, I didn’t think, as so many of my countrymen did, that the election of a Democratic President would change that much, but I did hold out some hope that there may be a marginal improvement over George W. Bush.  There has been some slight improvement in some areas; this definitely isn’t one of them.

I think this was the principal cause of the despair and the numb reaction.  Will we cease being a nation which assassinates and tortures as a matter of affairs of state?  Will we pull our troops out of Afghanistan, where there is no clear motive for our fighting?  Will we be safer, here or abroad?  Will the government return to us our civil liberties which they have stripped since 2001 with an un-Constitutional “PATRIOT Act”, and will they rescind other actions that have marched us toward a police state?  Will we have accountability for the decisions made in this so-called “War on Terror”?  Will the “military-industrial complex” — that war machine that President Eisenhower warned us of so long ago — ever grind to a halt?  Will anything really change?

I fear I know the answer to these questions, and that’s why I didn’t react too much to the death of Osama bin Laden.


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