Der Spiegel skirts right up close to accusing the U.S. of a crime in the targeted killing of Osama Bin Laden. They question whether capturing him, putting him on trial, and pronouncing sentence on him might have been justice.
Pr. Obama said “Justice has been done.”
I disagree with both those points of view. Treating Osama Bin Laden like a criminal would not be justice. Nor was killing him justice. We cannot gain justice in the face of a atrocity of this size. If we could capture and kill every person involved in the attacks it would not be justice. Those thousands of our citizens would still be dead, the families that lost their relatives would still be mourning, we would still be dealing with the aftermath.
There could be no justice in this life for what he did. If we could resurrect him over and over and make him die burning, jumping, screaming like his victims, it still would not be justice. It is beyond our reach. If there is justice, it will be meted out by a higher power than us. We’re done with him.
There is still a war to fight, against whatever name you’d like to call the threat. It won’t be just either, it will only be war, and we will win or lose.
The whole history of the world is summed up in the fact that, when nations are strong, they are not always just, and when they wish to be just, they are no longer strong.