Ding-dong the wicked bastard’s dead

This is the way the world ends. Not with a bang but a whimper.

–         TS Eliot

Come on. Admit it. When you heard the news that the international terrorist mastermind was now a ‘late international terrorist mastermind’ didn’t you find it slightly anticlimactic?

I mean, for 10 fucking years we’ve been chasing the bastard behind the 9/11 attacks and now that we got him, it somehow doesn’t seem as thrilling as we thought it would feel.

I wonder why that is? I mean, the attacks were horrific by any standard, and the death toll was catastrophic. A way of life was summarily changed by the actions of one evildoer. A way of life not just in the US, but worldwide came to an abrupt end on that September day.

And now he’s gone. Yet (and I don’t know about you) I don’t feel as exultant as I thought I would.

It’s kind of like fantasizing about a beautiful woman, if you are male (or gay) or a handsome and charming man, if you are female (or gay). And then wooing that person and then finally succeeding in bedding them and it’s, you know, nice. At the same time it maybe puts you in mind of the old Peggy Lee song, Is That All There Is?

I mean, like so many of you, I’ll never forget the day. Etched in my memory bank is being in that little T-shirt shop on Rarotonga (literally a half world away) when I heard about the Towers and the Pentagon and I watched the TV footage, even in that far away place. And I was aghast. Suddenly our tropical paradise didn’t seem so far removed from everything.

And then when it was revealed who the mastermind was, the thought on everybody’s mind was: “We’ve gotta get that bastard!” And George W. pulled out all the stops and waxed bellicose and inexplicably went to war in Iraq, where Bin Laden ‘wasn’t’ but still vowed to get that bastard. But he didn’t. It happened during the Obama watch. Dubya must be pissed about that. And gee, it happened in the part of the world where they knew he was, rather than Iraq. But mustn’t quibble, must we?

Well, they always thought he was in Afghanistan. Turned out he was in Pakistan. Potayto-potahto, I say.

Anyway, He’s dead. Maybe it’ll take a few days to get my head around that. How about you?


12 responses to “Ding-dong the wicked bastard’s dead

  1. Frankly, I’m disturbed by the jingoistic drivel being served up in some sectors over bin Laden’s death. I like this:
    “Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that” ~ Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
    Sorry, no quips today. I don’t find any of this remotely amusing.

  2. Kelly Tindill

    I agree with Andrea…
    And watching the Americans cheer like they’ve won a football game, makes me feel more than a bit queasy. It would have been better for them, nationally, to accept the death of an enemy with quiet dignity.

  3. I have been feeling exactly that, that it was anticlimactic. I’m glad he’s dead but nothing else has changed. His victims are all still dead, and al Qaeda is very much alive. I did a short post about my feelings regarding the celebrating in the streets.

  4. Bin Laden made his choice, and we made ours. I am relieved that the matter is put to rest. I admire the leadership of the U.S. President and the hard work of military personnel. Still, there is no rejoicing in my corner, either.

  5. I have two totally different things to say about this:
    1- I was so grossed out when the local news showed people hanging around the Dallas house of “Shrub” saying they wanted to share that moment with him. Yeah, he didn’t come out.

    2- I will be totally honest here and tell you that my first thought was just this: Yay! That fucker made me have to take off my shoes.

  6. What Andrea said.

  7. Relieved that the mastermind is gone. Disappointed it took so long. Wary that another mastermind will take his place. Saddened that his actions have changed the way we see the world for the worse, making us all more suspicious, more self-protective, less generous.

    He could have done good with his intellect, but chose not to. I don’t like bullies.

  8. So what? He¿s dead, another killer replaces him…we’re still taking off our shoes….

    I was much more affected to learn that Henry Cooper had died.

  9. My worry is that this is just the end of a chapter and very far from being the end of the book

  10. I don’t see how it changes anything. But the whole dancing in the street thing was sort of nasty.

  11. Your comments, everybody, shows the diversity of opinion this pivotal historical event has evoked. Thanks to you all.

  12. I haven’t really thought about it all -that- much. I mean, over the past years his organization has lost most of the support they once had and has been reduced to little, isolated cells here and there. Al qaeda has been mentioned in pretty much anything that could possibly have to do with terrorism since 9/11, but they’re not what they once were. Now adays they’re mostly infamous and tend to get “credit” whether they were involved or not. That said, I think it made sense to kill him once the chance came up. Even if al qaeda isn’t the force it used to be, he could still have become a symbolic something-or-other if he was still alive in a prison somewhere.

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