How to feel about the death of Osama Bin Laden is complicated for me. I am so proud of all of our citizens who were involved in locating him; very proud and grateful to any soldier who risked this assignment; but celebrating any death is a little delicate for me. Also, I worry just a bit that in our euphoria we will miss the important part of this.
Watching Morning Joe on MSNBC, I had the opportunity to listen to comments by Zbigniew Brzezinski, Pres. Carter’s National Security Advisor and a very smart man. He cautioned that how important this event is depends on what comes next. He emphasized that this gives our government opportunities and it is important whether we take them or not. Opportunity, because the President’s prestige is much higher than ever, to emphasize that our enemies are the terrorists, not the Muslims of the world. It is an opportunity to reevaluate our role in the Middle East vis-a-vis the war–and the millions of dollars and the young lives we pour into it each week. We, the people, must not be distracted by this from our concern about our economy.
We also need to take the opportunity to look at the reasons for this success. Obama, even if he didn’t want to, continued the policies of Bush and that continuity led to success; the Bush administration made a seamless transition to the Obama administration possible, at least in this area. Somehow behind all of this people of diverse opinions worked together. Intelligence agencies had to curb their competition and cooperate. The military also worked together in amazing cohesiveness.
There is a lesson here for our politicians in Washington and at home; there is a lesson here for each of us, in our professions, our communities, and our families. Disagreement and civilized argument is good for us; it produces more ideas; it makes good decisions and solutions possible. However, we must always emphasize civility. Am I the only person who thinks that is what is missing from the modern world?
Thanks for allowing me to share my thoughts with you. By reading this, you have given me, the teacher that I am, a chance to do what I think good teachers do–raise questions for others to think about. I appreciate it.
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