NEWS ANALYSIS: New Yorkers, Americans Celebrate the Death of Bin Laden; But Does That Mean the Troops Come Home?

NEWS ANALYSIS: New Yorkers, Americans Celebrate the Death of Bin Laden; But Does That Mean the Troops Come Home?

WASHINGTON, D.C. (HNN) – The man who plotted the September 11, 2001 terrorists that changed life in the United States and throughout the world is dead.  President Obama told the nation tonight that intelligence sources had known his location for some time. They awaited an opportunity to take him out.

Early Sunday, Obama gave the word to members of the special operations team about 80 miles from Pakistan’s capitol city to carry out an assault.

"Today, at my direction, the United States launched a targeted operation against that compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan. a small team of Americans carried out the operation with extraordinary courage and capability," the President said.

Obama struck a less than boastful tone in his brief announcement, although he said the death of bin Laden was "the most significant achievement to date in our nation's effort to defeat al-Qaida.

"His death does not mark the end of our effort. There's no doubt that al-Qaida will continue to pursue attacks against us. We must and we will remain vigilant," he added

 Following the announcement , a crowd gathered outside the White House chanting, “U.S.A., U.S.A.,” and a smaller group gathered at Ground Zero to celebrate.

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg said, "The killing of Osama bin Laden does not lessen the suffering that New Yorkers and Americans experienced at his hands, but it is a critically important victory for our nation -- and a tribute to the millions of men and women in our armed forces and elsewhere who have fought so hard for our nation," he said in a statement.

"New Yorkers have waited nearly 10 years for this news. It is my hope that it will bring some closure and comfort to all those who lost loved ones on September 11, 2001," he said.

A very random survey of those studying early Monday morning in the Drinko Library resulted in serious thoughts of propelling “a moral victory” from a Ripley , WV sophomore to “it’s great” from a Huntington , WV woman, and smothered smiling laughs and giggles that implied ‘who cares?” Of those giving an answer, only two ventured a more expressive statement. Neither believed the death of Bin Laden would end the wars.

By contrast, those celebrating at Ground Zero often told CNN (and others), “it’s over, bring them home.”

al Qaeda’s terrorist attack which leveled the twin towers of the World Trade Center and damaged the Pentagon became classified as the first foreign attack on U.S. soil. The deaths of 3,000 Americans led to Congress approving military action in Iraq.  

 However, the attacks have justly been classified as ‘the day that changed America.’  Whomever you speak , they have a recollection about where they were and how it impacted them.

The nation sent troops off to the Middle East searching for phantom Weapons of Mass Destruction.

Despite the officially related version of September 11, credible and questionable sources have continued to swear that the full tale of the WTC collapse remains buried in concrete dust.

 Still, whether you accept, challenge, question, or disagree with the government’s account, the actions led to the wars in Iran and Afghanistan but to the now abolished red-orange-green terror alert levels, the embarrassing searches prior to boarding planes, and tightening of security within the United States. Prior to 9/11, few locations (federal courts, for example) checked visitors with metal detectors, but the ease with which the airplanes crashed into the skyscrapers and Pentagon made identity cards around the neck a mandatory accessory for media, government workers, and those at airports.

CNN reporter, Joe Johns, discussed his own whereabouts on that day Friday evening at the Marshall University honors convocation. He happened to be in his office near the Capitol when the story broke --- first, as small plane hitting one tower. As another reporter recalled “we were all Americans that day,” in his speech Johns explained how unknown relationships impacted strangers. The interconnection between the brave heroes of Flight 93, which likely had a D.C. destination, could have prevented Johns himself from being injured or killed.


9/11 ended the optimism of youth, twentysomethings and a few years beyond. Many in and around those age groups had not known war in their lifetime, had not been touched by mass death, and had not experienced the feelings of both fear and patriotism that swept across America.

That same demographic had not experienced a deep recession. They had not found it necessary to pull back rather than grow. They courageously moved forward, but a new temperance of caution melted their enthusiasm, just as the outbreak of AIDS, essentially ended the era of so-called ‘casual sex.’

With gasoline prices at record levels and threatening to plunge the nation back into recession, will the killing of America’s Public Enemy #1 alter the country’s outlook? How about the lawmakers in D.C. Will they find a mutually advantageous middle of the road or continue deadlocked?

Though no one will ever kiss on an elevator from the first to the 110th floor of the World Trade Center (whew, that was one long breath), will troops come home, funds be redirected for U.S. infrastructure, and the dollar become strong as military spending lessens?

I don’t know. Hey, Joe, down there in D.C., if you were still visiting MU, what would you predict? Tell me on AC 360.

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