Americans Respond to a Terrorist’s Death
Throughout America, and particularly in New York, news of the elimination of Osama Bin Laden has been welcomed. The thoughts of political and community leaders have ranged from the congratulatory to the cautious. A few follow…
Congressman Jerrold Nadler, in whose district the World Trade center is located, commented that “President Obama’s announcement of the death of Osama bin Laden is important and long-awaited news. Bin Laden, one of the most evil men in history, was responsible for murdering thousands of Americans and tearing an awful hole in the heart of my district on September 11, 2001. Now he is finally dead.”
Mayor Michael Bloomberg, in remarks made at “Ground Zero,” spoke of the “solemn commitment to always remember in our hearts and minds all those we lost.” He spoke of the opening of the National September 11th Memorial” as a powerful and permanent place of reflection and remembrance.
“It is our obligation to ensure that the story of 9/11 is never forgotten,” said the Mayor. With new structures of the rebuilt “World Trade Center” rising behind him, Bloomberg spoke of “the largest, most complicated construction site in North America – and one of the most important in American history.”
“Yesterday, Osama bin Laden found out that America keeps its commitments,” he said. “We affirm our commitments – to all those we lost, to the future we believe in, and to a more peaceful and just world.” “Osama bin Laden is dead, and New York City’s spirit has never been stronger.
The mayor extended the City’s congratulations to “our Commander-in-Chief, all the men and women in our Armed Forces, and in our intelligence community…and as President Obama did, the leadership of his predecessor, President Bush.”
In Israel, the response to the announcement of Bin Laden’s death was robust. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said “The State of Israel joins the American people on this historic day in celebrating the elimination of Osama bin Laden,” calling the death “a resounding victory for justice, freedom and the common values of all democracies fighting against terrorism.”
American Jewish Committee Executive Director David Harris aid “We express our heartfelt admiration and appreciation to the United States government for the relentless pursuit of bin Laden, who had the blood of thousands on his hands…a powerful message of American resolve to go after those who would wreak human havoc in the name of their perverted hatred packaged as fanatical faith.”
Abe Foxman of the Anti Defamation League recognized the “concerns that those sympathetic to bin Laden will now seek to retaliate against the U.S. and its allies in the West, or against Israeli or Jewish targets.” noting that “one recurring theme of bin Laden’s videotaped messages was a special hatred for Israel, often expressed in anti-Semitic terms.” “We must remain vigilant against the ever-present threat of new acts of terrorist violence inspired by his death.”
The U.S. State Department issued a worldwide travel alert notifying U.S. citizens traveling and residing abroad “to the enhanced potential for anti-American violence following recent counter-terrorism activity in Pakistan.”