Osama bin Laden dead: student reactions

Leader of Al Qaeda Osama bin Laden was killed in a firefight with United States forces in Pakistan on Sunday. “The world is safer,” President Obama said, according to theNew York Times. “It is a better place because of the death of Osama bin Laden.”Here are what the students at UVM have to say about the death of Osama bin Laden and Obama’s late night speech.   “It’s nuts, because while I was setting a world record for hide and seek with some other UVM students, the US Government was wrapping up their biggest game of hide and seek in a long time. Being from NYC I am really happy to see the guy behind 9/11 brought to justice. It’s a big blow to Al Qaeda and I think it sends a message to terrorists that America does not give up. I mean he’s been on the FBI’s top ten most wanted list since 1998. I also really hope that this is the beginning of the end of the U.S. occupation of Afghanistan, and hopefully the rest of the region.” – Julian Golfarini SGA President   “Osama’s death for me seems like something for the wounded collective soul of the American people to grab onto post 9-11.  Instead of rioting in the streets people should take a step back to think about the implications of this and whether this actually changes anything… perhaps this could be a catalyst for the reevaluation of the US’s heavy military presence in the Middle East?” -Peter Donaghy President of UVM Snowboard Team   “Bin Ladin’s death marks the time for us not to forget the loss of felt by families in the aftermath of 9/11 and the years of toil and struggle by the military to bring us this day. The death of a man and the countless bloodshed from the war that brought this outcome are no reasons to celebrate, but we can all gain strength from this to keep moving forward as a nation.”   -Marvin Enerio- Asian American Student Union (AASU) Treasurer “I’m very interested in seeing what part Osama’s death will play in the reelection of Obama” – first year Meghan Schindler   “I think that this is a good event overall for American patriotism considering were in a time with little nationalism.” – sophomore Andrew Cialek   “I would pick him on my team for hide and seek.” – first year Kyle Andrews   “They shouldn’t have dumped his body in the ocean. They could’ve at least prove his death to the American people.” – first year Jeremy Hecht   “I’m pretty interested in seeing the repercussions of his death globally.” – first year Natalie Wilson   “Osama’s death is a success in our country’s fight against terrorism, and a testament to the courage and strength of our troops. It still feels unnatural to see so many people celebrating the end of a life. I personally would have preferred to see him tried for his repulsive crimes. As some of our fellow club leaders have written, it is important to understand that Osama’s death does not mean the ideals that lead al-Qaeda are dead. We still need to be cautious and cognizant of our country’s ability to impact global relations. I think Obama clearly stated that in his speech, and thoughtfully discussed the importance of giving thanks to our troops who risk their lives for our country every day.” -Molly Kelly-Yahner Water Tower Co-Editor-In-Chief DREAM mentor Vermont State House Intern “This patriotic furor is disgusting.  As Albert Einstein said, Heroism on command, senseless violence, and all the loathsome nonsense that goes by the name of patriotism – how passionately I hate them!?  The US army acted as judge, juror, and executioner when it assassinated Osama bin Laden in a sovereign country.  I don’t defend Osama bin Laden; as a leader of extreme political Islam, he encouraged sexism, anti-Semitism, and other disgusting bigoted views and acts.  However, the US has and still does support leaders who do the same.  He was assassinated because he was a resister of US Empire.  He resisted an empire that is currently occupying Afghanistan, raging war in Libya, bombing Pakistan, continuing to oppress Iraqis, supporting brutal dictators, pushing neoliberal policies in struggling countries, and funding Israel’s atrocities.  As Martin Luther King said, “the greatest purveyor of violence in the world” is the U.S. government. Obama’s suggestion that this makes the world a safer place is inane.  US military campaigns and attacks into sovereign countries have absolutely no chance of producing a safer world, only more retaliatory attacks.  The U.S. needs to get out of the Middle East, now.” – Senior Alex Buckingham “While this is a strange time for the U.S. with the death of Osama Bin Laden, we can not forget that his death does not mean his ideas have died too.” -Trey Denton Chair, Public Relations Committee 2011-2012 Student Government Association Vice President, AMA Marketing Club