Ever since the twin towers of World Trade Center collapsed in New York on September 11, 2001, United States of America was hot on the heels of Osama bin Laden, the founder and main source of inspiration of al-Qaida, the organization accused of carrying out that heinous attack. Osama was considered as the fountainhead of all terrorist activities across the world and western powers were sparing no efforts to track this elusive leader. There were numerous reports of sightings of bin Laden but catching up on the world’s most notorious fugitive was becoming almost impossible.
In fact, for quite some time, sightings of bin Laden had become a joke, almost similar to the sightings of UFOs (Schabner, 2011). But on May 1, 2011, nearly a full decade after the dastardly destruction of twin towers, the President of United States of America declared that bin Laden was located in a fortress like house in Abbottabad, a garrison town in Pakistan, and killed in a commando operation. This operation had all the makings of a movie thriller and seemed fascinating in its use of latest technology and show of extreme personal courage by the commandos.
The whole operation was carried out by US personnel without any help from their Pakistani counterparts and it was sheer cutting edge technology that hid their helicopters from the prying eyes of Pakistani radars. Pakistan military did not have the slightest inkling that US helicopters had violated their airspace and had ventured deep in their territory, picked out their target and decamped with his dead body. One of the helicopters malfunctioned during the operation and the commandos blew it up to prevent it from falling in Chinese hands.
China, incidentally, is possibly the best friend of Pakistan which is gradually becoming isolated from world community because of its persistent dalliance with international terrorism and using it as a state policy against its neighbors (Schabner, 2011). US President went to extent of lauding this incident as justice finally being meted out to a criminal and to prevent any possibilities of his burial site turning into some sort of pilgrimage site for his followers, his body was summarily buried in deep sea with the world having no idea as to where exactly such burial was done.
After the initial elation is over, the entire incident throws up certain rather unusual questions. The first of course is how Osama could hide in a garrison town without explicit knowledge of Pakistani army. The second and possibly even more disturbing question that surfaces to the mind is when US President’s public approval was at its lowest, some sort of gimmick was absolutely necessary to halt the downward slide, especially as he is due to begin his campaign for reelection very soon (Schabner, 2011).
So, was it a case of extreme valor on the part US commandos and daring use of cutting edge technology, or was it a case of quid pro quo with Pakistani military establishment that handed over Obama in exchange of some as yet undisclosed benefit? This is the question that seems to bother many people around the world, since if such an apprehension is proved correct, it would be another example of US hypocrisy and extreme shortsightedness which it has exhibited time and again in world history and caused numerous crises across the world in foreign shores.
Osama bin Laden eliminated: justice done When US President Barack Obama came on television on May 1, 2011 and declared justice has finally been done by eliminating Osama bin Laden in some far off garrison town in Pakistan, the world for an instant felt a surge of joy and relief at the destruction of that epitome of ruthless jihadist terrorism that took so many innocent lives and maimed numerous more unsuspecting peace loving citizens across the world.
Really, the world felt that finally the long arm the law in a rather unique form had caught up with that man who ridiculed and taunted all tenets of civilized norms and killed people at will all in the name of some ill defined religious cause. The gory photos of collapsing twin towers of New York on out television screens further added to our relief at the death of the prime culprit who unleashed mayhem and senseless destruction without the slightest feeling of remorse or guilt.
Scenes of jubilant public bathed in the all consuming wave of instant patriotism thronging the gates of White House further bolstered the super power image of United States of America and American citizens all over the world felt relived and secure at the thought that now nobody can cause them any harm in any corner of the world as Uncle Sam would be everywhere to protect them from any sort of trouble or discomfort (Schabner, 2011). One question however repeatedly keeps disturbing the mind.
Why did the US Administration release a photo of the dead body of bin Laden and why did they bury his body in deep seas in almost a hypochondriac haste? US Administration is of course ready with an explanation of their queer behavior. They did not release the photograph of bin Laden as that was too gory and they buried him in deep sea to prevent his burial site from becoming a pilgrimage site for his followers as has happened in the case of Saddam Hussein, the deposed and dead President of Iraq (Schabner, 2011).
It cannot be denied that these explanations have their merit, but the world has seen genuinely gory war photographs before and it would have done no real harm in seeing one more such photograph. And, the US could have flown the dead body of bin Laden in United States, at least for a private viewing of the top brass of US military. That would have permanently laid to rest all speculations that seemed to float around about the veracity of the operation and combat.
However, the most disturbing issue that comes up is whether it was genuine effort by intelligence agencies of United States and a case of extreme courage by its commandos or it was some sort of trade off that US Administration had entered into with Pakistan. Obama needed some sort of a magic to revive his steadily flagging popularity graph as he is about to commence his reelection campaign within few months. Killing Osama bin Laden provided that perfect magic that he was so desperately looking for and he could pull it off by making a deal with Pakistani military which handed Osama bin Laden to US in return for some undisclosed booty.
If this has actually been the case then United States has actually boosted international terrorism instead of eradicating it substantially (Schabner, 2011). Osama bin Laden killed in a daring commando raid by US May 1, 2011 will surely be marked as a watershed day not only in the history of United States but also the whole world. It was on this day that terror mastermind Osama bin Laden was eliminated by commandos of United States military.
The world heaved a sigh of relief not only at the news that bin Laden would no longer be able to implement his nefarious plans of inflicting death and destruction on innocent civilian population across the world, but also in seeing the reaffirmation of the age old adage that good always wins over evil. This reaffirmation bolstered the sagging morale of millions of people across the world who had been hapless victims of mindless destruction unleashed by Osama and his henchmen. They once again raised their heads in firm conviction that evil, however venomous it might be, can never win over ood (Schabner, 2011).. Barack Obama, President of United States, could rightly have soaked in vicarious glory and valor of his commandos and could have strode the podium like a victorious Roman Emperor as he returned from a conquest with the head of the fallen king held high on a pike. But Obama did nothing of that and showed remarkable control and composure on such a momentous occasion and he deserved full throated praise for it (Schabner, 2011). But several nagging issues fail to leave the mind. The first, quite obviously, is why did the US military not release a photograph of slain Osama bin Laden?
The argument put forward by US that the photograph would have too gory really does not hold water as only a couple of years back Sri Lankan military displayed the body of slain guerilla leader Prabhakaran with his head barely attached to his shoulder and that of his son with his head partially blown off. It was a commando raid, not a tea party, and such gore and blood is an integral part of such raids. So, the reluctance to publish any photograph of bin Laden raises a couple of other prickly questions too.
The first among those is, did Osama get killed in that commando raid or was he handed over by his protectors, the military establishment of Pakistan, to the US forces in return for some undisclosed booty? The suspicion becomes stronger at conflicting details that kept on emanating from US Administration about the exact nature of combat that floored Osama. Initially it was said that he offered stiff resistance which was gradually changed to he was completely unarmed and could hardly find time to offer any sort of resistance.
US Administration tried to save its face by saying that it was deliberately spreading confusing and conflicting information to baffle the enemy and it is a common ploy in times of war (Schabner, 2011).. But what enemy are these people talking about? Here was a man accompanied by a couple of his wives, children and grandchildren living in a mansion that did not have any modern means of communication and that man has been killed. So, how enemies of United States would be kept at bay by spreading confusing information on the degree of resistance this man had put up before his death genuinely belies comprehension.
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