OBL has been reported dead. This leads me to three possibilities:
- He really is recently deceased, meaning prior rumours were wrong. If so, points 2 and 3 hold for the US/World generally and Canada specifically.
- US: There goes a big part of the justification for being in Afghanistan. Americans are sick of being at war, no matter what Bill O’Reilly and the CEO of Halliburton want to think. This is the perfect opportuinty for Mr. Obama to say Afghanistan should become a UN peacekeeping mission – of which the US is not a part - or simply to annouce a timetable for withdrawal. Either way, everyone is relieved. If the Afghanis really do not want to be dominated by the Taliban, then they need to prepare to stand up and destroy them. As the uprisings in the Middle East have shown, only if the people unite against an oppressor can they have a chance to be free.
- Canada – There goes a large part of Stephen Harper’s fear-based agenda. Not that the whole thing was based on fear of OBL and Al-Queada by a long shot, but OBL was the foundation upon which the War on Terror was built. Canadians are sick of this war and would like to go back to peacekeeping. The only fella tha’s likely to do that is Jack Layton. The official death of OBL can only hurt Harper and boost the NDP. The timing could not be worse for Harper.
- The fourth possibility is this: It is possible that previous reports of Mr. Bin Laden’s death were correct, and it is just now being officially reported by the United States. If so, points 2 and 3 still stand. The only danger is that Americans somehow discover that Mr. OBL had been dead for some time and their government knew it.
UPDATE: While I have no reason to doubt the official U.S. version, it is awfully convenient that bin Laden was buried at sea.