I already wrote about this late last night, as I watched it unfold. I shared with you someof my initial thoughts. Perhaps you were able to read between the lines of exhausted scribblings and see my relief, my worry, and frankly my guilt. My initial thought was that we had just murdered a man. To be sure, he was an evil man, and man that committed terrible acts, and inspired evil and hatred in others. Yet even as the news showed pictures of hundreds of people (maybe even thousands) celebrating his death, I wanted us to pause, just for one second, and really think about this. Our government ordered the murder of a man, and that to me is a sobering thought. I don't say that it was wrong, just that perhaps, must maybe, we don't need to jump right to celebrating it.
However, as I have had time to think, to reflect, and to better understand what happened, I recognized that based on the description of what happened, Bin Laden COULD have choosen to surrender. President Obama didn't send in drones, or attack from the sky killing everyone in the compound. He ordered in people who were able to take "care to avoid civilian casualties" and had Bin Laden decided not to fight, I have to assume that those soldiers had at least been told to accept his surrender. This wasn't "murder" this was one more act of war, in a war we didn't start. That said, I still can't rejoice over the death of a man. Because before all the other words that describe him, the most basic word is "human".