A hilarious Facebook meme came to my attention this evening.
It shows a mug shot of Osama bin Laden and notes that on May 2, 2011, he was snuffed out by a team of Navy SEALs, Delta Force and CIA commandos. It wished him a “happy anniversary . . . fu**er.”
Wow. Eight years ago tonight, President Obama stood before the nation to tell us and the rest of the world that the “United States conducted a mission that killed Osama bin Laden.”
I remember that evening quite well.
My wife and I were watching TV when we got a news alert that the White House had announced that the president would make “an announcement” later in the evening. It didn’t specify the topic — quite obviously.
Hmm. What could it be? Why would Barack Obama come on in the evening to make some sort of an announcement.
Then it occurred to me. I blurted out to my wife, “I think they got bin Laden!”
Sure enough. There it was. The announcement came. Cheers broke out in front of the White House, and in Times Square and in town squares all across the nation. “U-S-A! U-S-A! U-S-A!
Yes, it was a moment that brought joy to households across the land. The man responsible for the worst singular act of violence on U.S. soil had been killed. He was as dead as dead gets. We cheered.
Sadly, though, bin Laden’s death did not signal the end of international terrorism. The fight has gone on past. It was being fought full throttle when Obama took over from George W. Bush. It was still being fought when Donald Trump took over from Barack Obama.
I don’t know when we can declare victory, or even if we’ll ever able to make such a declaration.
Our dedicated anti-terror network, though, did score a huge single victory when it sniffed out bin Laden, laid the groundwork for this most perilous mission and then waited as the skilled U.S. warriors carried out the order to kill this terrorist monster.
It’s worth noting here today. I only hope for many more such victories as the fight goes on.