Some of the usual suspects on the left are bleating about the tasteless celebrations of Osama's death by the great unwashed. Here is a Huffer:
While the killing of Osama Bin Laden is being enthusiastically celebrated throughout America and some parts of the world, to say that such merriment is out of order will surely be considered heresy. Nonetheless, I'm saying it--because it needs to be said. For starters, let me say this: "Those of you who are celebrating--could you just pause for a moment and consider: What message are you sending the world?"
But celebration in the streets and on the airwaves is neither appropriate nor advisable--really--no matter what your feelings of elation. Here's why.
"Celebrating" the killing of any member of our species--for example, by chanting USA! USA! and singing The Star Spangled Banner outside the White House or jubilantly demonstrating in the streets--is a violation of human dignity. Regardless of the perceived degree of "good" or "evil" in any of us, we are all, each of us, human. To celebrate the killing of a life, any life, is a failure to honor life's inherent sanctity.
And the reliable Glenn Greenwald:
The killing of Osama bin Laden is one of those events which, especially in the immediate aftermath, is not susceptible to reasoned discussion. It's already a Litmus Test event: all Decent People -- by definition -- express unadulterated ecstacy at his death, and all Good Americans chant "USA! USA!" in a celebration of this proof of our national greatness and Goodness (and that of our President).
...The killing of Osama bin Laden is one of those events which, especially in the immediate aftermath, is not susceptible to reasoned discussion. It's already a Litmus Test event: all Decent People -- by definition -- express unadulterated ecstacy at his death, and all Good Americans chant "USA! USA!" in a celebration of this proof of our national greatness and Goodness (and that of our President).
Let me suggest a thought experiment (if thinking is still allowed on the left) - what do these authors imagine the reaction would have been to the news that Osama had been captured alive and unharmed?
We don't know, of course. But my guess is that the baseball crowd in Philly would still have chanted "USA", crowds would still have gathered at the White House and Ground Zero, people would have celebrated around the country, and the White House would have taken a victory lap.
Welll, then - if the reaction to Osama's capture would have been just the same as the reaction to his death, maybe we aren't tastelessly celebrating his death. Maybe we are just celebrating the end of his era and the triumph of the good guys over the bad guys (sorry for the cryptic reference, libs - Team USA is the good guys.) In which case the handwringing is utterly misdirected.
SINCE YOU ASK: The politics around the capture of Saddam Hussein were complicated by feelings about the war, yet there were still celebrations in the US:
The reactions of surprise and relief in most American towns seemed muted compared with the responses of communities with strong and recent ties to Iraq.
In Dearborn, Mich., where a relatively large number of Iraqi-Americans live, scores of people flooded Warren Avenue early on Sunday morning, honking car horns and beating drums. Parties were planned to last into the evening. One man poked his head from the sunroof of his packed car, to wave an American flag, even as snowflakes fell.
''People were melting the snow with the heat of this celebration,'' said Imam Husham al-Husainy, an Iraqi Shiite leader who runs the Karbalaa Islamic Education Center in Dearborn. ''The real celebration and liberation begins today.''