Jim Dolan reports from Pakistan on the death of Osama bin Laden
Osama bin Laden played out his final years, not a warrior or a jihadist, not a soldier bravely facing the enemy or the infidel. Bin Laden was as far from the front as you are. No, his final days were as “The Pacer,” the CIA name given to the peculiar and pathetic old man who walked up and down inside the walls of his compound… afraid to go out, afraid to go near windows or cell phones, Howard Hughes with a stooped back and slightly longer beard. In his room, he fine tuned the details of attacks that took place only in his mind, pathetically plotting another moment in the terror key light. So sorry to disappoint.. Bin Laden was like a convict in the prison yard… nowhere to go and nothing to do but wait for the fullness of time and what promises to be the harsh judgment of history.
The final retreat in a lifetime of them was into a tiny room running in vain from the fate he’d earned ten thousand times over. One in the head, one in the chest and he never felt the floor. Did anyone see the sun come out?
At what point do you suppose, his followers realize just how bankrupt the philosophy of hate and murder is? After fifteen years of non-stop terror, what has it all gotten them? Not an acre of land nor a seat at the table. Governments hunt them but they’ve achieved nothing. They are, to be fair, good at killing innocent people. This is not a difficult task, but they have perfected it.
Now, contrast that with the remarkable success of this fruitful Arab Spring. Governments that stood firmly on the foundation of oppression, have toppled into the sea of history; others are teetering. They seized the moral high ground, a plateau bin Laden and his minions can’t arch their necks enough even to see. And they did something al Qaeda never did: they won.
A Special Forces soldier in Baghdad who was considering retirement was asked a few years ago what he would do after the military. “I’m not sure,” the soldier said. “There’s always someone needs killing.”
Osama bin Laden needed killing. And there are more out there.
The President has said he won’t release the pictures of Bin Laden’s corpse. It’s a good decision. They will convince no one in this age of photo shop, and who cares if people believe he’s dead? He is.
Still, it’s a shame Aymen al Zawahiri can’t get the chance to see what he’s getting himself into, what his future holds. Live by the Khalishnakov and die by the M-16.
Or, take a seat in Tahrir Square with a few thousand friends, depose a ruthless tyrant and change the course of history.