Usama bin Laden, aka Emmanuel Goldstein has been officially “deaded” by the US mainstream media, followed swiftly by a confirmation from the American Commander-in-Chief, President Barack Hussein Obama.
Of course, Bin Laden could have died anytime in the last 10 years. We know he is not alive. We know this because it would be very inconvenient if he resurfaced alive after being declared dead by the US President. For those still wondering about Benazir Bhutto’s statement about him being murdered, well she clearly referred to him being alive both before and after that legendary video, and the person she was referring to was obviously Daniel Pearl, the journalist. That’s why nobody made a song and dance about it.
That we have not seen a single authentic video of him in around a decade means that he has become an irrelevance to everyone bar the infantile Americans who were celebrating last night. He just became a bogeyman. His life made no difference in the last ten years, except to serve as some kind of humiliation to those chasing him, in some kind of decade-long real-life running of the A-Team, and to some people who saw him as the only man standing up to American imperialism. His death will make little difference. There will always be a reaction to American imperialism. That is the way of the world. And there was no real Al-Qa’ida organisation either.
Any rag-tag bunch of terrorists, usually backed by Western agents in a sting-operation or a false-flag operation could go around calling themselves Al Qa’ida. To them, Bin Laden was an idea. The idea was simple – a figurehead of opposition to the West.
Now this put many Muslims in an awkward position. For a decade, our loyalty has been questioned. We have answered through our deeds and our actions, for the most part, quietly, and in my case, vocally on the old Suspect Paki blog. My angle was always that I had nothing to prove, that I resented having to prove myself, or defend myself. Again. After years of racism and going through the hatred of foreigners in the 70s and 80s, there was somewhat of a lull in the 90s. Then 9/11 happened and suddenly, Islamophobia became the acceptable face of bigotry.
So the question we Muslims were asked by President Bush was “are you on our side, or are you on the side of the terrorists?”. Easy question for those jingoistic, flag-waving, dumbstruck Americans to answer, who went on to spawn the hateful likes of Malkin, Geller, Coulter et al, but as most of the smart Americans (and that’s about half the country, even if Murderoch’s Fux News sometimes makes you think otherwise) – and the rest of us, especially Muslims, resented the false dichotomy.
We are neither on the side of the Muslim killers, the rapists of Muslim women, the dismember-junkies of murdered Afghan children, the permanent despoilers of lands through the use of depleted uranium, the holocausters of Fallujah in a hellish haze of white (like the angel of death) phosphorous, nor were we on the side of those who also kill civilians, but in smaller numbers and with less sophisticated weaponry. We were on the side of peace. And we didn’t appreciate lies being told to support wars whose only beneficiary was, is and will continue to be the Military Industrial Complex.
Muslims, as I am fond of telling friends, are not like the Borg. Although we feel the pain of others in the Ummah, the family of Muslims, we do not all think the same way. This should be no surprise. We should learn the lesson of early 20th century Europe and where such a mindset leads us. Muslims, like Jews, like Christians, like those with no faith, or any faith, are as varied as the rainbow in their thoughts and feelings. So when you read me, you should know that although there will be others in the Ummah who share my view, many won’t.
Usama Bin Laden (there is no ‘O’ when you transliterate Arabic), whatever he did right, whatever he did wrong, was a Muslim. When a Muslim dies, we say “inna lillahi wa inna ilaihi raji`oon”, which means “To God we belong and to God we return”. We don’t pass judgment on his eventual destination, it is only God who can do that, whatever the wishes of those crude jingoists on the Whitehouse lawn last night.
When we hear some people talk of justice, we wonder about the million your armies caused to die in Iraq, and that was after Albright said it was worth killing half a million Iraqi children through the brutal application of sanctions and a no-fly-zone. And that was after destroying the infrastructure of the once-proud and advanced civilisation of Iraq in Desert Storm, a pretext for establishing permanent bases in the Holy Land (near Mecca and Medina) and keeping the balance of power tipped in the favour of the West. We hear of your justice and wonder how many millions were internally displaced in Iraq, in Pakistan, in Yemen, in Somalia, in Afghanistan. How many children killed. How many drone strikes against families. How many bombed weddings. How many raped girls. How many burned boys. How many women and children raped by your sick-psycho-soldiers in Guantanamo that so upset Seymour Hersh and compelled that lying, upwards-chin-pointing President of yours to hide the facts in case your sick-psycho-soliders got some comeback. God forbid that any of this could enrage young men with time on their hands and a recession to face and nothing to do bar look at painful videos on YouTube or read harrowing accounts on blogs whilst wondering why the bankrupt, paid-off mainstream media could stay so disgustingly, cravenly silent.
I respect Bin Laden for two things. The man had more charisma than any American leader of recent times bar Clinton and Obama. In other words, compared to the Bushes and Reagan, Bin Laden seemed like a gentleman. I’m sorry if that offends you, but that’s just how he came across in his interview for Esquire magazine a few years ago – that’s not to say I agree with his views or his stance on attacking civilians, but to ignore his message and his appeal to a minority is to miss the wood for the trees. And I respect him for openly standing up to his family’s decision of allowing the Americans to settle in the Holy Land. If he was genuinely guilty of 9/11, then that was indeed terrible, but has America not committed a thousand 9/11s in return? Is that not enough blood? For every victim of 9/11, America’s blood lust has led to the creation of another 9/11, like some sick, exponential, asymptotic death wish. And what will that beget? Bin Laden becomes irrelevant in the face of so much blood, but indeed, the blood of Muslims has become cheap. Too cheap.
Nearly all Muslims, myself included, disagree strongly with the targeting of civilians, by Western Crusader forces (and yes, they are Crusades, Americans roll with crosses on their tanks and give Pashtun Bibles to Afghans, whilst screaming of the superiority of Christ in your gulags) and by so-called-terrorists, many of whom work at the behest of sell-outs and handlers, hell-bent on creating terror through the planting of a false-flag flower, pregnant with savage destruction.
To us Muslims, all terrorists are the same. Anybody taking civilian life is a terrorist. That makes America the biggest terrorist state the world has ever known. Bombing Hiroshima and Nagasaki was an act of terror. Deforesting and raping Vietnam was an act of terror. Sanctions on the whole Iraqi nation was an act of terror. Killing a million civilians and fomenting the first Sunni-Shi`a sectarian war in Iraq was an act of terror.Afghanistan, an act of terror. Pakistan, an act of terror.
And what has the last decade done to our values? We have presidents who think torture is OK. If that’s what it has done to our presidents, what do you think has happened to the people? It’s created leaders like Sarkozy who ban a minority dress item to pander to racists. Hitler would have been proud. It’s created leaders like Blair who casually drop “Evil Ideology” into a speech. And it has created David Cameron, who panders to the worst excesses of the EDL. That’s just our leaders.
So we put things into perspective. We agree with you, if Bin Laden had done the things you say he has done, we would have liked to have seen YOUR justice applied to him. That is, he should have been brought to a court of law and the evidence against him brought forth. Then he should have been tried by a jury. Any jury. Even though it would have been a sham, even though it would have been a Nuremberg, it would have been something.
Instead, we have an operation against a fancy home. No body. No video. Fake photos. Burial at sea. All rather convenient. Why now? And if intelligence accomplished this, why the need for all those wars? Buried according to Muslim custom? I rather doubt that was the motive. And besides, his body wasn’t buried. Nobody knows what happened to his body, but the truth is, it doesn’t much matter.
I’ll tell you what offends me and upsets many Muslims I know. You call us fifth columnists because you know we feel pain when you murder our fellow Muslims and rape them and press crucifixes into their tortured faces and chop bits off their corpses to parade as trophies. That hurts. You taunt us with this, knowing full well that you are complicit in mass murder and the vilest atrocities human beings ever committed in the name of the tarnished idols of “freedom” and “democracy”. You took a word like “liberty” and another like “terrorism” and you utterly stripped both of meaning. You used these wars of aggression, the ones that conform to Brezizinki’s Grand Chessboard to bolster the fear you created at home, stripping us all, Muslim and non-Muslim alike of our civil liberties and our dignity.
People just went along. They read the mainstream media, full of prostitutes masquerading as journalists (with the notable exceptions of Pilger, Hass and Fisk) pimping your lying bullshit and they lapped it all up. You saw the impending train-wreck of the financial crisis looming and decided to use Islamophobia to distract people. That’s what you powermongers do. When times are tough, divide and rule. Turn the poor against each other. And every time you opened your mouths, Muslim cemeteries were trashed in the North, Muslim women were beaten up by gangs, mosques were vandalised, we are demonised, daily, weekly, monthly, yearly and now look, it’s a decade and it gets worse every year.
So when we see your people whooping and cheering and shouting “USA, USA”, we remember the girls you raped, the boys you raped, the countless hundreds of thousands you brought to a savage, premature end, the countries you despoiled, the lies you told, the hate you sowed, the lies you sold, the future you blighted, a world left unsighted and punch-drunk to get to this comma of a day, it’s only a comma, it was never meant to be a full-stop, it’s just a comma, because your murder will go on and people will stay blind and drunk and Muslims will continue to die so that the dollar can last just a little bit longer.
The enigma that was Usama bin Laden was not created in a vacuum. there was a context and we need to reconsider that entire context. Usama bin Laden is dead. But neither his living, nor his dying, was ever the point.
inna lillahi wa inna ilaihi raji`oon