As my wife and I were watching Monk on Netflix tonight, my wife was surfing her phone and started screaming, “WHAT?!” I immediately whipped around to look at her and asked, “Umm … what “what?” Then she said the words I just wasn’t expecting to hear:
“Osama bin Laden is dead!”
At first, my mind couldn’t quite grasp exactly what it was she had just said. I had to actually stop and re-play her words over again in my head to make sure I had actually heard her correctly. After a few seconds of rewinding and replaying, sure enough, the message was the same: she really did say exactly what I thought she said.
It goes without saying that we flipped over to regular TV to see if anything was on the news about it, and there it was–emblazoned across my TV on CBS, breaking news item: Bin Laden is dead and his body is in the possession of the US.
We listened to President Obama’s address to the nation, and really to the world, as he gave some of the details of how bin Laden was taken down and his body taken into custody.
People are gathered outside the White House, chanting “USA! USA! USA!” Words cannot express how desperately want to join them and add my voice to the pride that swells within me. I’m an American, and I am proud to be so. I’m proud of our country, I’m proud of what we represent, I’m proud to say that I AM SO GLAD THAT BIN LADEN IS DEAD. I praise the ground troops who have put in the tireless and countless hours to culminate in this singular moment in the war on terror.
September 11, 2001 was a hard day for me. It was for all of us who live here in the US. But for whatever reason, the night after–September 12–was infinitely more difficult for me. I sat at my computer as my wife was at work on an overnight shift for her position as a caregiver for an autistic girl, and I was overcome with a terror and fear that I never knew was possible. I literally shook with fright as I tried to grasp exactly what had happened, and more importantly why.
As I reflect back on the events of the last 9+ years, and in some of the monumental achievements that we as a country and as a world that desires peace have accomplished, I stand in utter amazement at those who serve in the armed forces. Perseverance, dedication, and love of country … what role models.
Congratulations, USA. Congratulations world. bin Laden is dead. We can rest a little easier tonight, if for just a little while. I mean, I’m a realist; I know that there’s probably a very well-organized hierarchy that will immediately replace him. It does not matter. We will hunt them down. We will root them out. We will find them. We will take them down.
God bless the USA.