Den of the Cyphered Wolf

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Omar Bin Laden Statement Response

Roughly one week ago The New York Times published an article reporting on a statement made by Osama Bin Laden's son Omar Bin Laden. Before I continue allow me to say that the younger Bin Laden forsook the path of religious violence his father chose. He was not a terrorist.

He however did, in the statement released after his father's death condemn, the United States for not putting the elder Bin Laden on trial for his crimes. The mission to take down Osama Bin Laden was a kill mission not a capture mission.

I empathize with some of the arguments made in the statement. In the war on terror we have always said that one of the primary differences between ourselves and the terrorists is that we respect rule of law, which includes the rights of the accused. At the end of the day, everyone deserves a fair trial even, though I am reluctant to say it, him. In this we did make a moral compromise, however we came to that compromise because Osama Bin Laden is such a special case.

One thing that concerns me is that people have attempted to use ethos as the reason that he is a special case. He is not a special case because of his crimes or the emotions evoked by them. He was a murderer. All murderers by definition cause death and all murderers cause pain, sorrow and anger for the victims' families, who wish for justice and perhaps vengeance.

What makes Osama Bin Laden a special case is the risk involved in capturing him as well as putting him on trial. If the mission had been a capture mission it would have been more dangerous, and a trial would agitate and perhaps even embolden Al Qaeda.

In the end he was a man who lived by the sword and died by the sword.

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