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Ding Dong, The Witch Is Dead



May Day...not a holiday here so much in the United States, but perhaps now that will change.


My day started out a jubilant one just on general principle. I knew that I didn't have anything to do, and therefore I planned on going to the beach for a much needed respite. It was a gloriously sunny day here, and while it was still springlike and cool in the air temperature, the ocean salt air and the sun at my back made for a wonderful and tranquil day. I came back home a bit early to take in a couple of hockey playoff games (natch, the Sharks won :D), and I had my notes all ready for what I was going to put in my next blog entry: thoughts that bubbled up as I watched the waves crashing along Pescadero State Beach, which happens to be my favorite.


I follow President Obama on Twitter, mostly because he'll give a heads-up on some interesting tidbits that the news sources will 'scoop' shortly thereafter. At 8pm Pacific Daylight Time, he tweeted that he was about to address the nation, and I very honestly didn't think much about it. Shortly thereafter, I saw a tweet from ABC News, that Osama Bin Laden was dead, and that the President was about to address the nation.


Um, what? Come again? Osama Bin Laden, that sonuvabitch who has directly or indirectly killed thousands of people around the world? He's dead? Really???


Details are coming in through the news, and the tweets have been wonderful to read. Some have been smart-ass in nature, which I personally love. Others are more reverent, more subdued, and thankful for the thousands who had tracked this unholy man, and many of them lost their lives in doing so. The ones who are particularly annoying to me right now are those who are being overly cautious, pointing out that there will be retaliatory attacks and those who are insistent that we should never let our guard down...as if reminding us that cutting the head off the hydra will just create 2 new ones. Look, I know that there will be retaliatory attacks--I even said it in my post on P.Clod's post--and to think that they won't happen is foolish. There will also be more Al-Qaeda activity...the #2 guy is still out there. But this is truly a time for the world to rejoice, that justice did prevail.


And the first person that I wanted to reach out to when I heard the news? An ex-boyfriend...the one that I talked to as I watched the second plane slam into the Tower on September 11th. I don't have his number or his email, and I don't know where he is right now. Yet for some reason that's the first person that I wanted to talk to...the person who I shared that stunned moment with almost 10 years ago.


An hour after the announcement hit the airwaves, there are crowds of people coming to the White House, which they're showing on the news. People are singing the national anthem, chanting "USA!", and coming together as one. I wonder if the politicians will do so, too, and get stuff done in the government in a bi-partisan manner. Nah, that's too much to ask.


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There is a certain sense of justice in that a man who lived by the sword has been well and truly killed by it.


I do understand the public jubilation I saw on the news as americans react to the story that their bogeyman was done for. Was this celebration exaggerated by the nnews? There's a part of my british character that sits uneasily with this sort of indulgence especially when it does nothing to stem the need for islamic revenge.


I also note the choice of navy SEALS to enact the mission. After the Deltas accidentially killed a british woman they intended to rescue, one wonders if they shouldn't have been allowed to ressurect their reputation. Then again, with Bin Laden in their sights, I also understand the need for no unnecessary risks, hence the lack of reports to pakistan authorities.


It was said a few years ago that the SAS had Bin Laden in their sights but were refused permission to fire. I have no idea how true that story is, but no matter, the bad guy is down. We shall to wait and see how significant that event was.

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You bring up some very interesting points, Calders. 9/11 has been an enormous chip on the shoulders of those in Washington and New York, particularly the latter, and many New Yorkers wear that chip as a badge of courage. Certainly it's hard to begrudge them that...after all, it was their buildings that were destroyed, their symbols...and mostly their people who perished or who were casualties. So I understand those celebrations...it was a release of pressure, a cathartic celebration.


Funnily enough, what many forget is that the 4 planes that were turned into missiles, they were headed to San Francisco and Los Angeles. We lost people...just as innocently. There were some people who celebrated here, but no where near the throngs that you saw on the news, which were at the White House and in a couple of spots in NYC.


Here's another tidbit: Fremont is a suburb in the Bay Area, and is home to the largest Afghan population in the US, and one of the largest in the Western world. They celebrated there...but almost in a way that was more expected. There were genuine tears of freedom...many felt that the Taliban could easily come back as long as OBL was alive. So, with his death, sure, the Taliban could come back, but they won't have the symbol and supporter that they once did...they will be weaker. That was a celebration that I really wanted to see.


As for the forces...oof...I think with any Public Enemy, if you got 'em in your sights, then take 'em out...it just happened to be the SEALS. No matter who it is, there is no question that there were multiple intelligences that were involved, and now it's being reported that Pakistan feels embarrassed for not knowing where OBL was. Call me skeptical, but I find that hard to swallow.

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