Fix Opinion Terrorism

Osama Is Dead. Do His Ideas Live On?

MILAN, Italy — While all over the world thousands of people are celebrating the death of one of the most untraceable terrorists of history, I can’t prevent myself from feeling a bit uncomfortable.
Though I obviously condemn terrorism, I am strongly against any form of violence. I am a convinced pacifist.
Anyway, I can’t stop asking myself a simple, but maybe uncomfortable question: by killing Osama Bin Laden have we really made a significant step in the fight against terrorism?
I wish I could be convinced that, yes, we did.
I wish I could agree with President Barack Obama that, with Bin Laden’s death, the world is a better, safer, more democratic place.
But what I ask myself is: isn’t it a bit too simplistic to pretend that killing one man, even one so influential, will shake an organization like Al Qaeda to its foundation?
I can understand the thought that his death is reassuring, especially for those who were deeply affected by his criminal and horrible actions. I’m afraid, however, that removing one man is not enough to stop lots of people who were, and still are, able to kill themselves and thousands of innocent strangers for an idea.
Obama said that justice is done, and it might be. But will this kind of justice really strike at the root of the problem?
Will the death bin Laden effectively be more than a reassuring thought?
I was deeply struck by a quote by John F. Kennedy that bears remembering: “A man may die, nations may rise and fall, but an idea lives on. Ideas have endurance without death.”
Let’s hope, though, that Kennedy and I have been a little too pessimistic, and that this has been a truly good day for America and the whole world.

Eugenia Durante is a Senior Reporter for Youth Journalism International.

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