Is bin Laden’s death murder?

I remember telling someone the other day when we first learned that Osama bin Laden was killed to “watch how much the story changes in the next couple of days.”

And changed it has. We have gone from bin Laden going down in a blaze of glory as he used one of his wives as a human shield to him being unarmed but “resisting.” How much a sick man who has allegedly been on kidney dialysis for over a decade can resist is questionable.

The story has also changed in regard to his wife, who was dead yesterday and only wounded today … will she still be “wounded” tomorrow?

I’m not sure about everyone else, but killing an unarmed man without a trial is not an execution … it’s simply murder to me. Yes, I know, he’s the prime suspect in the deaths of 3,000 people (or was in one of his many number twos who we pointed as the mastermind many years ago?), but men like Slobodan Milsevic and Augusto Pinochet were responsible for the deaths of thousands more, but each received a trial … or in Pinochet’s case, walked free as a hero for many years. How is bin Laden different from them, aside from being the official head of a state?

And how is bin Laden any different than terrorists like Luis Posada, an airplane bomber that the US has harbored and refused to extradite for his crimes? Would the US be expected to be “just fine” if a Cuban assault team descended on Posada’s home and killed him dead without a trial?

It’s been rather bizarre as many so-called liberals* hail an act of murder as a triumph for the President of the US. They’ve truly come together with so-called conservatives* in disregard for any semblance of rule of law and the idea of civilians in the Muslim world as “collateral damage.”

Apparently, from what I’ve been told, there’s no benefit in taking him alive. Surely, I’d agree that it might have actually harmed a lot of people in Washington and the corporate world if he were. But for everyone else, an open trial for the man might have been an eye opener as to how our government behaves in the world.

Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem to be even what “everyone else” wants either.

*Note: I’ll add that liberal and conservative to me are pretty much meaningless as political labels … especially in the US.

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