Face of the Enemy



Faces of the Enemy

copyright © 2011 Betsy L. Angert.  Empathy And Education; BeThink or  BeThink.org

Today, Americans walk it back, Belatedly, and too late to bring home American and Allied troops who died in battle, government officials released recordings.  The media distributes and discusses these en masse.  Those prominent in the Press and Public Office say “the people have the right to know,” exactly what the tale that could have been told decades ago.  Osama Bin Laden was never more than human, a tragic hero, a comical character, just as you or me.

He had a home, a family. Osama sat around and watched television.  This man, like any of us might, searched for recognition. He sought attention in ways that made sense to him.  Osama Bin Laden had beliefs. He expressed these.  Gratified, when an audience showered him with praise he did more of what yielded greater acceptance.  

Bin Laden came to understand that when he spoke, people listened.  Many appreciated his message.  For good or bad people looked for the hidden meaning.  Countries made deciphering his every word their mission.  Americans and Allies invested trillions of dollars in troops, tanks, and translations all to quell the force of the man known as Osama Bin Laden.

“We did it!” Americans clamored. Some say we “captured” the man we slaughtered.  People poured out onto the streets to celebrate the “mission accomplished.”  We, the Americans are “victorious.” Caught off-guard while with his family, this man was assassinated, Americas rejoiced.

“Ding dong the witch is dead.”  Which “witch” will be next?  Might it be another average guy with ill-intent, or will powerful persons declare it is you or me?  You might say that would never be, but.  .

A week after the massacre, it is now revealed that the real Osama Bin Laden is but a sad and sheltered figure. Past the time when it might have helped save the lives of millions of innocent Iraqi and Afghani people, those displaced, dismembered or just dead, United States Leaders show the people that Osama bin Laden was never more than a mere mortal.  We are now allowed to see that the “enemy” who the world sought and feared, is but a man.  Bin Laden, scruffy in appearance, today, is cast as a megalomaniac.  Americans are told he had an inflated ego. What human would not think him self significant having been given center stage?

When three Presidents, each of whom represents the most “powerful nation” on the planet, formally declares you as “Enemy Number One” might you not consider your forcefulness grand?  To know these Heads of State publicly express the need to have you in their sights how can you not think that you, as an individual must be truly important?  Indeed, anyone with that much command must be a force to be reckoned with.  Given the floor, by those who later would execute him, Osama Bin Laden took it!

Early on, like a character in a book, Bin Laden was assigned a role.  Later, when his performance was recognized a brilliant Osama became more prominent.  The Actor was elevated to the stage.  Broadway beware.  This man mesmerizes. His skills as a speaker, a preacher, a Teacher allowed audiences’ world wide to suspend disbelief.  People forgot that a man has no power beyond what we give him . . .  and oh how we did.  Osama Bin Laden, with our assistance became the “face of the enemy.”

He became larger than life. Feared. Jeered.  “Wanted” “Dead or alive.”  Osama Bin Laden was designated the enemy.  Thus, this human became a faceless monster, an inhuman demon.  Artists, Authors, or perchance more accurately, Administrations painted his picture for us.  “He is a barbarian, an aggressor, a liar, madman, a vile animal that can be exterminated without regret.  Before we make war, even before we make weapons, we make an idea of the enemy.  Every society has its official image of the enemy.”  For Americans and Allies it was Osama Bin Laden.  Tomorrow might it be you?

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1 comment

    • TMC on May 8, 2011 at 9:39 pm

    who was hell bent to achieve his purpose by any means necessary. He was a spoiled rich kid from a billionaire Saudi family with a Western education. To glorify this man is an insult to every one of his victims around the world. It is tantamount to glorifying war criminals. You do a disservice to those who lost loved ones in the many bin Laden-engineered attacks both here and around the world.

    The American people let this happen by continuously electing people to office that do not have their best interests at heart. Obama is no better. One of the reason why the US is reviled is because of what we are doing in the Middle East and Central Asia. Sending unmanned drones to barrage remote villages killing  innocent civilians is just steeling their resolve and will produce the next bin Laden. I do what I can to convince people that we are on the wrong tract in that region and need to remove our military as expeditiously as is possible. No matter what the US does now, there will be consequences for a long time. The damage done may not be reversible or repairable.

    I do not rejoice in any man’s death. OBl’s death is anticlimactic. WE are never going to see the restoration of all that we have lost as Americans.  

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