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Osama Bin Laden

It has been over 9 years since I’ve watched the news.  A few days after we entered the war in Afghanistan, I decided that I couldn’t watch the news anymore.  I couldn’t watch the images.  NPR followed a few months later.  I dipped in and out of newspapers for the last few years.  Somehow, you pick up what is happening in the world via osmosis; it just seeps into your skin as you ride the Metro or walk through the streets.

At 10:30 pm, we climbed into bed to watch the news on CNN.  At first, I was half on Twitter, joking through the anxiety.  And then as the news started leaking out, I set down the computer and stared at the television screen.

And I could feel this strange sadness bubbling up into my throat as we waited for the announcement.  That whatever was said wouldn’t erase everything that came before.  That I didn’t feel necessarily safer.  Every time the newscasters repeated the troops killed, the people lost in the attacks, it felt like nothing could ever be done to overcome the devastation of the last almost ten years.

I was so relieved that this person wasn’t in the world anymore.  It is strange to celebrate someone’s death.  It made me feel like I wanted to cry and couldn’t.  Like how words collect on the tip of the tongue, my tears were strangely caught somewhere between my windpipe and the lump in my throat.

Today, May 1st, was Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day.  Back in college, we used to sit in a cage on Library Mall and read the names of the millions who were lost.  Not the entire list, of course, but a scattering of names.  We had been talking around the Holocaust at dinner, trying to figure out what the twins had picked up about history.

I opened the computer again to write this.  To try to take this out of my head.  I have a feeling I’m going to start crying soon — I’m not even sure why I’m crying except that it’s a release.

And the President begins to speak.

Almost 10 years ago, I collected the reactions of my students on 9/11 as we waited in lockdown in our classroom until we were released from school early.  So I’ll ask this question now to pool our words in a single space; the bookend to that moment.  What was your reaction to the news?


1 Seriously?! { 05.01.11 at 11:44 pm }

It’s hard to pick an emotion. Glad about the obvious, but fearful of potential ripple effects. It’s actually really hard to comment…

At the end of the day, this still does not mean peace for all of humanity. That is what is the most troublesome.

So much emotion attached to this. I wish this felt like some kind of closure…but does it????

2 Lollipopgoldstein { 05.01.11 at 11:47 pm }

I cried when he said we gave each other our blood after 9/11. I was thinking about Josh calling to find out where to go to give blood.

And the end of the speech. How many times have we said the pledge by rote without thinking of the words at all?

I feel like this news reopened the wounds after 9/11. Which perhaps had to happen in order to make those wounds heal properly.

3 Tonggu Momma { 05.01.11 at 11:47 pm }

My husband came close to dying on 9-11. He had a 10:30 meeting scheduled at one of the towers. Five of the seven people scheduled to attend that meeting died during the attack.

Tears welled up in my eyes when I heard the news. I must confess I feel relieved Bin Laden is no longer on this earth. But his death does not bring back the lives of the thousands of people who died on 9-11, nor does it bring back the lives of the thousands of US soldiers who have died in Afghanistan and Iraq. And his death does not guarantee that someone else will not step into his shoes.

So I am relieved, yet not at peace, and remembering all over again.

4 ninefirefly { 05.01.11 at 11:56 pm }

There are no words for the emotions. I do not feel closure. I do not feel safer. I feel like we are on the edge of a precipice with an unknown distance to the bottom of the gulch. Who will be the next ‘Bin Laden’?

5 marilyn { 05.01.11 at 11:57 pm }

so long, and way too long in my opinion. So many have died. I am torn. This is a part of me that does not trust the government. Why did it take so long! And does this mean we are going to get out of Afgahnistan? I so appreciate your post. I am Jewish and this is a very powerful day. For remembrance of all the victims of 9/11 and the soldiers on both sides, as well as the victims from the holocaust.

6 a { 05.02.11 at 12:00 am }

Well, here at the skeptical household, we suspect that he’s been dead and on ice for a while, and the timing is convenient. Our economy has been in the tank, regardless of the “recovery” and we’ve needed something to resuscitate things. No matter how many new products Mr. Jobs puts out, there has been no next big thing to inspire everyone. So perhaps it was time to create a more psychologically comfortable world for us to inhabit. People like to spend money to celebrate. Military success is always good for business. We’ll probably even be able to get more troops home. But that’s just my conspiracy theory of the day.

Regardless, one less fanatic who deals in hate in the world is probably a good thing. If only they had gotten Qaddafi yesterday too…

7 Delenn { 05.02.11 at 12:00 am }

My first reaction was “about damned time”. My second reaction was a complex flood of everything the past ten years have been. The attack and the blackness and grief and unbelievable-ness of every day after being a “day after”. The silence of no planes in the sky. Then the anger–first at the people who did this; then at my own government who used this tragedy for it’s own purposes to fight useless war. The use of “911” as an ideology, forever tainting the memories of those lost. And then the hopeless bickering of politicians both right and left to get anything, something accomplished. And now this. Is it closure? Justice? I don’t know. Maybe if it had happened 3 years ago, 4 years ago…even 6 or 7 years ago. Now…it is a feeling of…I don’t know. I guess it is something that it is the anniversary of that man’s Mission Accomplished speech. Yeah. Empty. The man is dead as he should be/should have been. Justice, in some way is served…but I don’t really feel like celebrating it.

8 My Bumpy Journey { 05.02.11 at 12:07 am }

I will never hear The Pledge without thinking of this moment.
I am relieved, and also afraid of what is to come. Perhaps it is my crazy hormones and stress as of lately, but I have fear.
I am so thankful there is vindication for the thousands that have died. it is so hard….there has been so much sacrifice.

It is hard to digest.

9 Baby Hopes { 05.02.11 at 12:08 am }

Our family suffered a very deep lost on 9/11… I’ve been to Ground Zero once and cried for a long time… I remember feeling a sense of release for things I had held on to for years. I am in shock and have the same sense of mixed emotions…

10 N { 05.02.11 at 1:02 am }

Mixed emotions. So glad that a horrible person is gone. Pride in our troops who have sacrificed so much, but sadness that they’ve had to. A bit of discomfort over the way that the news was received by those I know, and those I don’t. And mostly, a torn sadness, with the knowledge that when one goes away, another will step up.

11 Nearlydawn { 05.02.11 at 1:11 am }

I don’t feel better, I agree with some of the others here… This just makes me wonder what the ripple effect will be.

I know I’m getting all “Golden Rule” gere, but it occurs to me…Will videos of our dancing in the streets give boldness and vigor to the regime? I mean really, didn’t it just boil your blood that people were HAPPY And DANCING because of our loss on 9/11? Didn’t it make you want to take a stand? I, for one, felt all redneck, wanting to form a posse and go kick some a$$.

Don’t the dancing people think someone overseas, or maybe here, might be disgusted by our joy? What if it is enough to re-enliven the taliban like a kicked beehive?

Really, I’m glad we got the guy, but I’m not feeling like doing a touchdown dance. And yes, I lost people too in 9/11, but I don’t feel that all the pain, cost, and further loss since has eased that loss.

12 Vee { 05.02.11 at 1:30 am }

Well I have just come home from taking Boo to his very first movie all excited then I read the news. I am a couple hours behind and still digesting it all. I can’t believe he is dead, finally. I am not sure if this is going to be a good thing or a bad thing. It’s all a bit scary.

13 Tigger { 05.02.11 at 1:49 am }

I am…well, it’s about time we got the sonofa. However, now that he’s gone, what will happen next? My husbands says “now he’s a martyr to his men” and believes that attacks will ramp up, and that there might even be some that strike here at home. I can’t say that he’s wrong, although I’m not sure they’ll attack us here directly again. They’ve already seen our reaction to that – why do it again? I’m happy he’s gone, because he was the face of terrorism…but now we start all over, with a new face that we don’t know.

14 Baby Smiling In Back Seat { 05.02.11 at 2:04 am }

I don’t understand the people who feel victorious.

It’s a Hydra.

15 jjiraffe { 05.02.11 at 2:27 am }

I just heard that security is being increased at local synogogues and that’s where our preschool is so I’m a bit scared. My emotions are mixed: that guy no longer being in the world is a good thing. He was capable of so much evil. It’s like Lord Voldemort being eliminated (in fact someone noted on twitter that Osama’s final horcrux was Obama’s birth certificate. That all of it happened at all is scary and disturbing, but Obama seems to have used the right tone in his speech. On a personal note, my cousin is a seal in Afghanistan and we’re trying to get in touch with him.

Lots of feelings. It’s complicated.

16 Mic @ IF Crossroads { 05.02.11 at 6:49 am }

I just woke and heard the news – we went to bed before it was released last night. My initial reaction was of mixed emotions. I’m happy that someone who has such hatred against the United States is no longer on this earth. But personally, I don’t feel this overwhelming sense of victory. For every one Bin Laden on this planet, there are 10 others waiting to take his place. I’d love to think we are in a safe place now, but I know that isn’t the case. In fact, I have this sense of dread in the pit of my stomach that something horrible is about to happen. That the Taliban is just waiting to strike again and retaliate against his death.

17 Rebecca { 05.02.11 at 7:23 am }

I think the celebration is disgusting. As I said on Facebook, an eye for an eye makes the whole world blind. I particularly like the statement “No Americans were harmed [in the raid that resulted in Bin Laden’s death]” Oh, well that’s okay then =/

I get that I am a bleeding heart liberal but I don’t see any cause for celebrating death.

18 tanya { 05.02.11 at 8:21 am }

i am of 2 minds – 1) HOW do they really know it is him (did we have dna samples, etc)…and if even it is him 2) – it took us 10 years to find him (a man who hid in caves)??!!

I don’t think it is a moment to celebrate. I think bringing him in for a trial would have meant more to me, not a dead body.

19 April { 05.02.11 at 8:30 am }

I’m worried about the repurcussions from this. I’m relieved that he is gone, but I’m worried that this will only inspire others like him to try and avenge his death. I am grateful that none of our military were harmed in the action. I wish that his death could ease the pain of the losses that have touvhed so many lives.

I have family in Afghanistan in the military. My brother did two tours in Iraq. I rarely watch the news out of fear for family. I don’t listen to public radio. I read only select parts of the newspaper. The actions taken yesterday will have far-reaching consequences. I’m aftraid to see what they will be.

20 Becky { 05.02.11 at 8:31 am }

I just feel sad. And I wish I could feel relief. But I don’t. I agree with others who have asked “who will be the next bin Laden?” and wondering what kind of rebuttal our celebration will result in. Evil will be reborn. And yet I can not rejoice at the death of another human.

21 Kymberli { 05.02.11 at 8:51 am }

I feel scared. I’m glad the demon is gone, but as Baby Smiling indicated above, there are undoubtedly at least three more willing and ready to take his place. Surely they will start by seeking vengeance. I live adjacent to a military base and my thoughts today are similar to the ones I had on 9/11 – what does this mean for our soldiers? How many more of them will die in retaliation attacks before this is played out…will it ever be played out? I don’t really think so.

I went to sleep last night thinking of my former student, who was called out of my class to learn that his father was the first soldier from our base (Ft. Stewart, GA) who was killed in the war. There is a tree on our campus that was planted in his father’s honor. I’m thinking of planting some flowers there.

22 Angie { 05.02.11 at 8:59 am }

I don’t know how to feel either. His death created another martyr, yet I cannot see how it could have been any other way when you basically start two wars to kill one man. I think I feel sad, because I know that the war of terror does not end with bin Laden’s death, I think it just begins a new era. Sorry to be cynical, just how I’m feeling. Thought this quote was apt, though, “I’ve never wished a man dead, but I have read some obituaries with great pleasure.” -Mark Twain

23 Angie { 05.02.11 at 9:00 am }

I meant war ON terror, but that is an apt typo too.

24 Wife and Mommy { 05.02.11 at 9:01 am }

I’m extremely torn. On the one hand, I can feel the relief of the U.S. (especially the 9/11 victims’ families)…but on the other, I don’t think it’s truly over, nor do I want to relish in another person’s death.

25 Trinity { 05.02.11 at 9:31 am }

I went to bed last night before the announcement. I found out early this morning when I was reading my Twitter feed on my phone. (There is something that feels really bizarre to about finding out such a significant fact over Twitter.)

I feel an inexplicable sadness, too. I’m not particularly sad that he’s dead; I do feel some amount of relief that someone so wicked is no longer in the world. But I firmly know that the end of his life does not equal the end of his influence.

In so many ways (and I know this might sound harsh, especially to those who have lost loved ones in 9/11 and in the resulting wars–and I don’t mean to sound insensitive in anyway whatsoever) his dealth almost feels…empty. So much damage and loss has happened in these past 10 years (the lives of everyone involved in the 9/11 tragedy, the soldiers who’ve given their life in these wars, the civilian deaths in these wars, etc.) and his death will never erase that. The only way, I feel, to ever right the wrongs that have been committed is peace. (holy kumbaya, batman). THAT is something I would be jubilant about.

I don’t feel any more secure than I felt yesterday. As others have said, I feel fearful of what is to come.

26 Gail { 05.02.11 at 9:38 am }

I have felt very emotional. I thought that the speech was fantastic and loved the inclusion of the Pledge at the end. However, I dislike the celebration of another person’s death. Even though I hope and pray that there is a special layer of hell reserved for people as evil as Bin Laden, I don’t think it is right to celebrate murder. And, I do worry about the repercussions since there are so many people who have pledged their loyalty to him.
All I do know is that I am glad that there is finally news on TV instead of celebrity gossip and reality shows.

27 Meredith { 05.02.11 at 10:31 am }

Thank you for this discussion, Mel. I read the news when I woke up and felt ecstatic. Then I felt worried about retaliation. I appreciate reading other people’s reactions. I would say now I feel glad but concerned.

28 PaleMother { 05.02.11 at 10:40 am }

My husband and I found out this morning when my alarm went off and NPR was reporting what went down. My immediate reaction was to fist pump and hiss, “YES!” … but even as the word escaped my lips, it felt hollow and strangely unsatisfying. There was no pleasure in it.

After the report, we tried limply to put our finger on what it meant. I said, “More people will die … they’ll hit us back. It doesn’t bring anyone back. Nothing has changed.”

Mike hit it for me when he said, “No. It just allows us to turn the page.”

On Facebook, amid the chest-beating and blood-thirsty, patriotic celebration, one person (Taylor Mali) wondered if we were closer to peace.

Not to say this didn’t need to happen. Not to say it isn’t right that he was taken out. But when I saw my cousin’s post “Burn in hell Osama. USA kicks Ass.” I just thought, that’s not enlightenment. That makes us just like “them.” US vs THEM is just the eye of the beholder. If we were really “better,” we’d understand that.

It reminds me of Dr. King … who knew a little something about senseless hatred and violence:

… Through violence you may murder the liar,
but you cannot murder the lie, nor establish the truth.
Through violence you may murder the hater,
but you do not murder hate.
In fact, violence merely increases hate.
So it goes.
Returning violence for violence multiplies violence,
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.
Hate multiplies hate,
violence multiplies violence,
and toughness multiplies toughness
in a descending spiral of destruction….
The chain reaction of evil —
hate begetting hate,
wars producing more wars —
must be broken,
or we shall be plunged
into the dark abyss of annihilation.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Strength To Love, 1963

So I guess my reaction in a nutshell is … Great. They got him. But. I am still looking for the light.

29 Queenie { 05.02.11 at 10:57 am }

This happened in the middle of the night for me. When I went to turn on cartoons this morning, the tv happened to be on a news channel, and I saw the “Breaking News” headline. In my sleep-addled state, I saw “Obama” and “dead,” and had to quickly reread the headline to figure out exactly WHO had died. And then, as reality dawned on me, I didn’t know what to think. My initial two seconds of “oh good,” were replaced by “is it?” I don’t think the world is a better place. It’s not a safer place. In fact, like so many Americans abroad, I am fully aware that I may be less safe because of his death. Overall, I think I’m holding my breath, and waiting for the other shoe to drop.

30 Suzy { 05.02.11 at 11:02 am }

I felt and still feel so many emotions. My first reaction was “YES! Vindication for those who lost their lives on 9/11!” But then that turned to anxiety and grief and gratitude.

Anxiety that his followers may plot some type of revenge against the US for the death of their leader. Whether he was their active leader or not doesn’t really matter. The possibility of revenge brings me anxiety. I would have never thought about that before 9/11.

Grief for those who lost their lives in New York, Washington DC, and Pennsylvania on 9/11. And for the service men and women who lost their lives in the war on terror since then. Grief for their friends and family.

Thankfulness for our service men and women who daily put their lives at risk for our freedom and for the freedom of others.

I think one emotion doesn’t begin to cover what I am feeling. My prayer is that the world could be a safer place. However, I don’t know that this will be the even to make that happen.

And as I’m typing this, I know you will appreciate that the Beatles “Imagine” is playing on the radio right now.

31 Hope { 05.02.11 at 11:39 am }

My husband I and talked about this last night. My reaction was very blah. He’s just a figure-head. The organization will go on, and it will be very easy for them to turn him into a martyr to rally around.

To me, it just kind of seemed like the loose end that’s been hanging around for 9 years finally got tied up. My husband pointed out that it’s a great political move in terms of the upcoming 2012 elections.

Like so many other people have said, this doesn’t undo what happened on 9/11. My worry is that it will actually fuel more future terrorist attacks. I don’t know what will bring peace, but I don’t think this was a step in that direction.

32 Somewhat Ordinary { 05.02.11 at 11:39 am }

Honestly my first reaction was one of disbelief. I’m hopeful that he is, but I’m bit cynical in wondering if this happened awhile ago and they crafted the timing of the release. Or, are they just making this up? How do they know it was him? I have heard about the sister’s brain that they matched to DNA to, but that seemed awfully fast turn around on that test. Then the body is buried at sea immediately which I’m reading is normally reserved for death on a ship. What was the point of doing that right away?

I also HATE seeing the people in the streets celebrating. Most seemed like college kids and I wonder if they can really see the heaviness of what is going on. Terrorism didn’t die last night just a person who will be replaced by people who are going to want to get revenge.

I’m actually more worried now than I was before he was dead.

33 KL { 05.02.11 at 12:34 pm }

I guess I’m just worried about what will happen next, and what the real cost was to our troops. I heard somewhere about a downed helicopter. This was clearly not the ending of anything.

34 Kim { 05.02.11 at 1:02 pm }

I’m uncomfortable with the celebrations. I don’t fell sympathy for him, and I don’t dislike that he’s dead. I just can’t sort out my feelings about celebrating in the streets.

I keep debating whether or not I want to take Babel down to Ground Zero to quietly place some flowers there. That is what feels like the right thing to do.

35 Sarah { 05.02.11 at 1:10 pm }

I guess I agree with others who have said it feels like it has reopened a wound from 2001. I don’t like the singing in the streets, that feels wrong. Although I am so grateful for him to be dead. I fear for our country and the retaliation that may follow. I am thankful for all the work of our armed forces. But mostly, I am just sad about 9/11 today.

36 Shelli { 05.02.11 at 1:19 pm }

I had two co-workers that narrowly escaped the destruction in NY on 9/11. I’ve mentioned before, over the years, that it could have been me in those towers. I was there for work just a week before, working, walking, eating, laughing in the tower and completely oblivious that anything bad could happen. OBL took my innocence that day.

I am glad they found him. It doesn’t bring closure, doesn’t change anything. I still feel rage thinking about it, dirty that I am happy to rejoice in someone’s death.

I’m still trying to figure out how to explain to little D. He doesn’t know what it was like to walk around like a zombie for weeks trying to process the loss. All he sees is the pleasure in the faces of people talking on the news about a dead man.

37 Kathy { 05.02.11 at 1:20 pm }

I read your post last night as I was still digesting the news. After almost 10 years, it all seemed very surreal to me. I had trouble winding down when I tried to go sleep and so, as I often do when that happens, I wrote about my thoughts and feelings. That turned into this blog entry that I posted this morning, sharing my reaction:


38 lozzi84 { 05.02.11 at 1:33 pm }

My first reaction on learning the news this morning (I’m British living in UK) was to wonder what has really changed. Im not sure the world has gained anything from his death other than creating a martyr for extremists to avenge.
It worries me greatly.
The celebrations outside The White House etc made me uncomfortable. People cheering like they were at a football match. It was reminiscent of Islamic extremists cheering the 9/11 attacks.
I worry that images like that may put American & coalition soldiers at even greater risk as well as make American citizens in volatile countries more vulnerable to attack.
Whilst I’m pleased he’s gone I won’t be celebrating. I do hope his death can bring some closure to those who have lost people in al qaedas terrorist attacks.

39 Keiko { 05.02.11 at 1:53 pm }

I walked into the bedroom, having played several hands of Magic: The Gathering with my husband for the last hour or so. We don’t have cable TV, so there’s no constant stream of news unless we actively seek it online. He had just gotten into bed and was staring at his iPad. “So, Osama bin Laden’s dead. We killed him.”

I felt weird, like I had a weird taste in my mouth. Instantly relieved but then… something. I didn’t have time to process before my sister called me. “I know, Larry just told me,” Isaid even before hello. My mom called on call-waiting. “I know, I’m on the phone with Yuko now and Larry just told me.”

My father’s a photojournalist so anytime big news happens, we call each other. It’s one of our many family quirks.

After it sunk it for a minute, I immediately felt dread about this week. I’m traveling to DC – to the Senate and House offices, no less- for Advocacy Day. I’m hopping a flight from Boston to Dulles, of all airports. I’ll be riding the Metro, the terribly insecure Metro. I know, because I lived in MD for 3 years.

I knew and realized that strange taste in my mouth was this gut reaction at realizing OBL has been made a martyr, and the frightening realization that I could be caught in an act of retribution if I happen to be at the right place at the very wrong time.

This morning, as I listened to all the special reporting on NPR, I just felt sad. Sad that our world has changed so vastly in just 10 years. Sad that oddly enough, I don’t know if the families of 9/11 victims will see this as true justice. Retribution, yes, but not justice. He’ll never be tried in court. And his death still won’t bring back the people who died on Sept. 11th, or the people who have died fighting in the terrorist-fighting motivated conflicts abroad since then. OBL’s death is not a blanket “all the troops come on home now” card. I’m disgusted by some of the more revelrous celebrations. I can understand the swell of patriotism, but I can’t be cheered by or proud of celebrations of death.

Today, I’m just left very conflicted: relieved, sad, frightened at the implications for the very near future. I just kind of want it to be Friday already.

40 loribeth { 05.02.11 at 1:59 pm }

My husband told me this morning as I was getting out of the shower. I’m relieved they finally found him, but I don’t think anyone believes that killing him was the end of our problems, & the more enthusiastic celebrations make me feel slightly ill. Also, as someone who works in one of the tallest buildings in the only country on Bin Laden’s enemies list that hasn’t yet been attacked by terrorists (knocking wood firmly here), I actually feel a lot less safe today than I have in a long time.

41 Sushigirl { 05.02.11 at 2:09 pm }

Hmm. I was pleased for the families that they finally got him, although take little pleasure in someone else’s death.

I found the celebrating ugly though. I thought the West were meant to be the good guys and try and salvage the moral high ground (although in my book, that went out the window when Iraq was invaded).

While it’s a symbolic victory, I don’t think it’ll make much difference to the Iraqis, Afghanistanis or the troops out there – in fact, it might actually make things worse.

My thoughts are with the people who lost loved ones in 9/11, 7/7, and on both sides in Afghanistan and Iraq.

42 Lori Lavender Luz { 05.02.11 at 2:15 pm }

I had the same Hydra thought that BabySmiling did.

43 V { 05.02.11 at 2:25 pm }

I didn’t have a reaction at all, I suppose I was numb. My second thought was now what? His death doesn’t mean the end of hate, or terror, and it doesn’t bring anyone back. I felt uncomfortable with the celebrations outside the White House, and it didn’t look much different than that of “the enemy” celebrating their “victories’. I thought you know the one thing humans still have not figured ou,t and that is for better or worse, we are more alike than we are dissimilar.

44 Gail { 05.02.11 at 2:50 pm }

Someone put this quote on Facebook. It certainly fits my thoughts and feelings.
“I have never killed any one, but I have read some obituary notices with great satisfaction.” Clarence Darrow

45 Blanche { 05.02.11 at 3:35 pm }

I guess I’m cynical since I don’t think Bin Laden’s death really changed anything, and probably will make things worse. That is, if it even was Bin Laden. (See, cynical.)

It feels much less impactful (is that a word?) than 9/11 itself. More like a non-essential thread in the tapestry of life has been clipped to neaten it up, but the pattern is unaffected. 9/11 still feels like someone tore the tapestry apart so badly that even the mending of time has left holes where the threads could not be reconnected.

46 HereWeGoAJen { 05.02.11 at 4:19 pm }

I’m having a hard time celebrating a death, even this one, but I am quietly celebrating the lives that will be saved with this.

47 Calliope { 05.02.11 at 4:59 pm }

I was invested in the events of last evening as 9/11 was a HUGE game changing event for all of us. It felt like the end of a book- but not the end of the story. Maybe it will bring closure to some that have been in search of it. I called my roommate that I lived with in 2011 and we talked right up until the President walked to the podium last night.
And then I spent the rest of the evening with my friends on the tweeter.

48 Kim { 05.02.11 at 7:37 pm }

I was devastated by the events of 9/11… even though I was fortunate not to lose anyone close to me. It hit hard to many around me. Call me cynical, skeptical… or just plain pessimistic, but this moment in history does not make me feel better or safer by any means. I think we would be far too naive to believe that the loss of this individual insures any sort of safety to us. I feel no different now than I did 24 hours ago. I am-as several above have stated-more concerned with the ripple effect this may have. I am an intense worrier by nature-and it scares me where we are headed.

49 Peg { 05.02.11 at 8:10 pm }

My first reaction was shock and disbelief. What I didn’t feel was happiness. I didn’t feel like this was something to celebrate. The images of people celebrating downtown in front of the white house was disturbing to me reminding me of images of crowds in the middle east burning flags of the US and chanting hate.

I am glad it is over and we finally found him. I hope it gives people who lost loves ones on 9/11 and other terrorist attacks he caused some sense of justice. I know strategically why we had to do what we did, I just didn’t like the idea of us killing someone. I also worry about reactions by Al Qaeda.

I also thought a lot about how much bin laden affected us and my life in particular. My job completely shifted after 9/11. My husbands as well. Terror alerts are normal Just thinking about 9/11 brings me back to that day. Worry about my husband. Worry about colleagues and clients in the pentagon. Worry about my husband working downtown.

I’m glad this chapter is over. I hope it gives people some peace. It won’t make the people he killed come back though. It’s been a strange last 24 hours.

50 ArianC { 05.02.11 at 8:19 pm }

Frustrated. I feel frustrated. There are so many overwhelming emotions and none of them fit the space alone. They must all exist together to define the moment.

(c) 2006 Melissa S. Ford
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