It’s great news that our military finally killed Usama bin Laden!
Justice has been served, but I’m uncomfortable with some of the reaction. I agree with what Radley Balko writes:
There was something unsettling about watching giddy crowds bounce around beach balls and climb telephone poles last night, as if they were in the lawn seats at a rock festival. Solemn and somber appreciation that an evil man is gone seemed like the more appropriate reaction.
We should remember how America-haters partied in the streets after 9/11. Glenn Greenwald points out that our reaction could stir more violence:
Whenever America uses violence in a way that makes its citizens cheer, beam with nationalistic pride, and rally around their leader, more violence is typically guaranteed.
And of course the death of bin Laden doesn’t mean that we’ve won the War on Terror. One CNN commentator declared that the war has ended. Cameras captured US naval cadets chanting “I believe that we have won!”
But let’s not kid ourselves. Greenwald asks legitimate questions:
… [W]hat, if anything, is going to change as a result of the two bullets in Osama bin Laden's head? Are we going to fight fewer wars or end the ones we've started? Are we going to see a restoration of some of the civil liberties which have been eroded at the alter of this scary Villain Mastermind? Is the War on Terror over? Are we safer now?