Bin Laden Dead: Nothing to Celebrate, Nothing Gained

28 Jumada al-Uwla 1432 – It was late at night and I was moving around in the earth on that Sunday, rummaging and thinking. I turned on the news and there it was in plain view.

The face that for years had stared at the world from news paper pages, television screens and interviews…was dead.

I checked to make sure that I was not mistaken and quickly found Obama’s speech on the matter. It was confirmed that yes, Usamah bin Laden, that great enemy of the United States, had finally been caught and killed.

I knew, before the news circulated, that they never planned to bring him in and have a trial. There would have been no way Americans would have allowed such a thing. I saw another familiar and sickening sight on that day along with the sardonic smiles: people celebrating.

Indeed, Americans in the street celebrating the death of Usamah bin Laden, kissing each other as if it was New Years Eve and even exchanging gifts. It was supposed to be a day of euphoria, triumph and gloating.

This would come as no surprise to me. Americans have always celebrated people that they have dehumanised and murdered. They celebrated and still do celebrate the murder of indigenous people living in the land.

Americans have and do celebrate the death and murder of the blacks that are in the United States. In the case of a lynching, they put on their Sunday best and even point at the charred corpse as a warning. Readers should not forget that these were also post cards used in the United States up until the 1970s (probably ran out of ink).

Further to this, Americans celebrated and galloped about in pride at the murder of the brother and nephew of Husha` Al-Mukhtar. They even traded pictures. Although it happened in 1969/70, their whereabouts are known and a district attorney has not even visited us or sent any letters regarding the matter.

Lest anyone think that this was the past, Americans murdered Michael Donald 1981 and Mulugeta Seraw in 1988 (a friend of the writer who had most of the cranial fluid in his head emptied by baseball bats.

And what do you know, Tom Metzger, head of the East Side White Pride and WAR, remains free to this day!). They also watched Kris Flavourz die a horrible death outside their home in 1988 and did nothing to help him.

Paramedics would not touch the body and by the time they had arrived anyway it was cold. Nothing but a smirk and, “Sorry there, little fella,” followed by a pat on the head. Let no one be surprised by the Americans.

They have black hearts and are a profligate people. Let it therefore not be strange that 1 mile wide tornadoes, snowstorms that cover all 48 continental states, hurricanes back to back and other assorted things come to visit the “greatest country on Earth.”

Let us look for a second at Usamah ibn Muhammad ibn Ladin. I had always and still do hold deep convictions against his theological positions and those of Ayman Zawahiri.

Although saying that, I refuse to allow myself to fall into the trap of casting him as some new brown Hitler in the Middle East that had to be stopped in order for “freedom to ring from sea to shining sea.”

Besides, Adolph Hitler was European. Just a moment. Come to think of it, so was Joseph Stalin, Benito Mussolini, Slobodan Milošević, Radovan Karadzic, General George S. Patton, General Douglas MacArthur, Charles DeGaulle, General Bernard Montgomery, Dwight Eisenhower, Teddy Roosevelt, George Washington,

Ulysses S Grant, the Green River Killer, the Zodiac Killer, the Boston Strangler, Ted Bundy, Ted “the Unabomber”Kaczynski, Timothy McVeigh, Jack the Ripper, Dr. Harold Shipman, Jeffery Dahmer, Earl Shriner, Myra Hindley, Charles Manson, Ian Huntley and scores of others.

I first came to know of Usamah bin Laden in the mid 1990s of the kafir calendar while on the West Coast of the United States (that great moral landscape of the United States that boasts some seven serial killers, two of them still at large; perhaps there could be a war against them?).

Bin Laden had just released a series of communiqués against the United States for atrocities that it committed. The next time I would hear of him would be the bombings in Tanzania and a series of incidents in the later part of 1988. I kept seeing pictures of him, rida’ on his shoulder and Kalashnikov by his side, smiling serenely into the camera.

The myth of Usamah bin Laden had been created. Since 1990, the Soviet Union was no more, so in the absence of the USSR, a larger than life enemy was needed. Usamah was the Hitler or the Russian Politburo and his group, “Al-Qaeda,” (Ar. Al-Qa`idat ul-`Aridah) had become more fearsome than the KGB.

His first prime time interview was seen on more than 10 stations in the United States, even interrupting reruns of sitcoms and daring to cast aside Mad About You and Seinfeld as covered in the newspapers the following day.

Not content with the translation, I went to the original Arabic and listened to that without American help in translation (keep in mind that these are the same people that took us from Mahom to Mahomet to Mohammed and finally reached Muhammad, so why would I trust them to interview someone realtime?).

There were a number of articles and small booklets released from Usamah bin Laden and statements to the press. The most interesting of these was in 1999, where he warned Muslims to stay out of and away from high buildings in New York City. This was so newsworthy that it made it to the English news stations.

In the United Kingdom, I looked from across the water as the 11 September 2001 attacks occurred. I headed to their website to download and read whatever materials they possessed for justification of such a cataclysmic attack.

I downloaded them and kept them in a safe envelope. Somehow I knew these would become collectors items but also rare to find in the future. Within these same documents was the justification and reasoning behind why he had ordered the attacks.

Facing numerous news blackouts I had to watch the interviews by download from the original Arabic. With all the written documentation and interview evidence (from their own website and secular sources) it made me incredulous to see Muslims in English argue over whether or not he had committed the acts.

No matter how many proofs came out, Muslims continued to ostrich their way through the discussion. When the Taliban movement in Afghanistan asked him to leave before the US launched the attack – after conferring with 1,000 scholars – this was still not proof enough for the “where’s the proof” people.

Usamah bin Laden, along with Zawahiri, went on the run. Their fame spread far and wide as the United States was simply unable to complete the simple mission of finding one man and “bringing him to justice.” They had every other person: the dry cleaner, the baker, the candlestick maker, housed at Camp X-Ray. However the main one was missing.

The head of the new super organisation was missing. According to past president, William Jefferson Clinton, he had made moves to kill him in 1998, launching missiles from ships to hit and take out key Al-Qaeda milk pasteurising factories, frightened shepherds and Usamah bin Laden (who incidentally had relocated to Afghanistan) in Sudan.

Now he is supposed to be dead. If he was not dead before or soon after the attacks in 2001 (due to kidney disease) and was indeed killed by the Americans on last Sunday, I still remember a number of things:

I stridently disagree with his theology and a number of his pronouncements. I am one of the people who can say that I have sat down and listened to his numerous speeches.

It is not the content that has drawn people to him, but rather the way that Bin Laden spoke that captured their attention. Charisma and the careful use of language is what captured the minds of his audience.

Keeping this in mind, I would never celebrate the death of any creature. If the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, did not celebrate the death of his enemies, I cannot celebrate any other.

If Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal, may Allah have mercy on him, did not celebrate the death of his enemies, I cannot celebrate any other. If Abu Umamah, may Allah be pleased with him, calling the Khawarij of his time apostates when looking at their heads on the steps of the grand palace in Damascus wept due to their astrayness and harming others, why would I celebrate someone else’s death?

Finally, I would advise that every reader remember this fact. Usamah bin Laden, as long as he did not commit major kufr or shirk or declare the permissible impermissible or vice versa, if Allah chooses to punish him, will emerge from there and be entered into the Paradise.

But even the best unbeliever will never see even the faintest waft of goodness from the breeze of the Paradise and will never know his Lord. Let the Muslim remain sombre and not be swept up with American euphoria; rather let him remember to say after the death of any human being: Indeed to Allah we belong and to Him we shall return.


brother in Islam

Al-Hajj Abu Ja`far al-Hanbali