COMMENTARY | The New York Times reports that President Obama will not release pictures of Osama bin Laden’s corpse. This decision was made primarily because Obama does not think it will sway the minds of those skeptical of the capture and killing of bin Laden and the release of proof might further endanger America by angering the Muslim community.
One thing I find very interesting about this announcement is that Obama is blocking release of the photos because he does not think it will sway the skeptics. This is very strange to me because, just last week, he released his long-form birth certificate because of the increased skepticism caused by the “birther” movement. I think it is odd that he will give into the “birther” movement speculation and release that information but he will not release death photos of one of the most notorious terrorists in the world. I wonder why he would even worry about the skeptics who think he is not born in America but not worry about those who still fear bin Laden might still be alive. This seems like he has the two issues backward as far as importance to the American people is concerned.
I also find it interesting that the whole manner in which bin Laden was killed remains so secret when our whole intent after 9/11 was to capture him. Knowing how the American people feel and especially those who lost loved ones on that day, you would think that Obama would do everything he could to reassure the American public he was no longer a threat.
The photos are said to be gruesome, but we have seen many photos of the American people being killed throughout the War on Terror, so it is odd that we are now being shielded from such photographs. We have been looking for bin Laden for almost 10 years, and I find it strange how Obama would not want the American public to be reassured that he was indeed killed and will no longer be a threat to America.
I also find it odd that Obama referred to the pictures as “trophies” and said we are not the type of people to just wave them around and gloat, basically. This is very strange to me because when we captured Saddam Hussein and killed him back in 2006, MSNBC reported that the video of the hanging was released to the public. It just seems fishy that we captured and killed Hussein and it was all caught on video tape for the American people to see but, with Bin Laden, it is considered a negative thing to see the death occurring.
I realize that we had a different president at the time, but the American people still want to see justice served; it did not harm anyone seeing the video of Hussein. It just appears like bin Laden, who has killed many Americans over the years, gets a respectful death and the pictures are considered a “trophy” instead of justice.
Mark Landler, “Obama Says He Won’t Release Photos of Bin Laden’s Corpse”, New York Times
NBC News Service, “Saddam Hussein executed, ending era in Iraq”, MSNBC