Sunday, May 1, 2011

Al-Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden dead - Barack Obama

Source: BBC News

Bin Laden was top of the US "most wanted" list
Al-Qaeda founder and leader Osama Bin Laden has been killed by US forces in Pakistan, President Obama has said.

The al-Qaeda leader was killed in a ground operation outside Islamabad based on US intelligence, the first lead for which emerged last August.


Mr Obama said after "a firefight", US forces took possession of his body.

Bin Laden was accused of being behind a number of atrocities, including the attacks on New York and Washington on 11 September 2001.

He was top of the US "most wanted" list.

Mr Obama said it was "the most significant achievement to date in our nation's effort to defeat al-Qaeda".

The US has put its embassies around the world on alert, warning Americans of the possibility of al-Qaeda reprisal attacks for Bin Laden's killing.

Crowds gathered outside the White House in Washington DC, chanting "USA, USA" after the news emerged.

Last night there were rumours an operation was going on in an area close to Abbottabad. There were unconfirmed reports of a military helicopter crashing in the area as well.

Witnesses said the whole area was cordoned off and nobody was allowed close although they did hear gunshots and firearms. But nobody had any inkling that this was an operation to get Osama Bin Laden.

For those who keep a close on eye on these matters it wasn't a total shock that he was ultimately hunted down in an urban area.

In the past we have had reports of him being treated in hospitals in Rawalpindi for kidney problems. There was even one report that he was treated in the southern city of Karachi. All of these were officially denied.

And some of the big al-Qaeda and Taliban names in the past have been captured in big Pakistani cities. Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the Kuwaiti-born senior al-Qaeda leader, was captured in Rawalpindi and Afghan Taliban military commander Mullah Baradar was reportedly captured in Karachi.

Bin Laden approved the 9/11 attacks in which nearly 3,000 people died, saying later that the results had exceeded his expectations.

He evaded the forces of the US and its allies for almost a decade, despite a $25m bounty on his head.

His death will be seen as a major blow to al-Qaeda but also raises fears of reprisal attacks, correspondents say.

Mr Obama said he had been briefed last August on a possible lead to Bin Laden's whereabouts.

"It was far from certain, and it took many months to run this thread to ground," Mr Obama said.

"I met repeatedly with my national security team as we developed more information about the possibility that we had located Bin Laden hiding within a compound deep inside of Pakistan.

"And finally, last week, I determined that we had enough intelligence to take action, and authorised an operation to get Osama Bin Laden and bring him to justice," the president said.

On Sunday a small team of US forces undertook the operation in Abbottabad, north of Islamabad.

After a "firefight" Bin Laden was killed and his body taken by US forces, the president said.

He said "no Americans were harmed" in the operation.

'Momentous achievement'

Former US President Bill Clinton said in a statement: "This is a profoundly important moment not just for the families of those who lost their lives on 9/11 and in al-Qaeda's other attacks but for people all over the world who want to build a common future of peace, freedom, and cooperation for our children."

Mr Clinton's successor, President George W Bush, described the news as a "momentous achievement".

"The fight against terror goes on, but tonight America has sent an unmistakable message: No matter how long it takes, justice will be done," Mr Bush said in a statement.

BBC security correspondent Frank Gardner says that, to many in the West, Bin Laden became the embodiment of global terrorism, but to others he was a hero, a devout Muslim who fought two world superpowers in the name of jihad.

The son of a wealthy Saudi construction family, Bin Laden grew up in a privileged world. But soon after the Soviets invaded Afghanistan he joined the mujahideen there and fought alongside them with his Arab followers, a group that later formed the nucleus for al-Qaeda.

After declaring war on America in 1998, Bin Laden is widely believed to have been behind the bombings of US embassies in East Africa, a billion-dollar US warship, and the attacks on New York and Washington.

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Everyone is a genius

Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish on its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid. – A Einstein

Drawing the line in Liberia

Crimes sponsored, committed, or masterminded by handful of individuals cannot be blamed upon an entire nationality. In this case, Liberians! The need for post-war justice is a step toward lasting peace, stability and prosperity for Liberia. Liberia needs a war crimes tribunal or some credible legal forum that is capable of dealing with atrocities perpetrated against defenseless men, women and children during the country's brutal war. Without justice, peace shall remain elusive and investment in Liberia will not produce the intended results. - Bernard Gbayee Goah



Men with unhealthy characters should not champion any noble cause

They pretend to advocate the cause of the people when their deeds in the dark mirror nothing else but EVIL!!
When evil and corrupt men try to champion a cause that is so noble … such cause, how noble it may be, becomes meaningless in the eyes of the people - Bernard Gbayee Goah.

If Liberia must move forward ...

If Liberia must move forward in order to claim its place as a civilized nation amongst world community of nations, come 2017 elections, Liberians must critically review the events of the past with honesty and objectivity. They must make a new commitment to seek lasting solutions. The track records of those who are presenting themselves as candidates for the position of "President of the Republic of Liberia" must be well examined. Liberians must be fair to themselves because results from the 2011 elections will determine the future of Liberia’s unborn generations to come - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Liberia's greatest problem!

While it is true that an individual may be held responsible for corruption and mismanagement of funds in government, the lack of proper system to work with may as well impede the process of ethical, managerial, and financial accountability - Bernard Gbayee Goah

What do I think should be done?

The situation in Liberia is Compound Complex and cannot be fixed unless the entire system of government is reinvented.
Liberia needs a workable but uncompromising system that will make the country an asylum free from abuse, and other forms of corruption.
Any attempt to institute the system mentioned above in the absence of rule of law is meaningless, and more detrimental to Liberia as a whole - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Liberia's Natural Resources
Besides land water and few other resources, most of Liberia’s dependable natural resources are not infinite, they are finite and therefore can be depleted.
Liberia’s gold, diamond, and other natural resources will not always be an available source of revenue generation for its people and its government. The need to invent a system in government that focuses on an alternative income generation method cannot be over emphasized at this point - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Liberia needs a proper system
If Liberians refuse to erect a proper system in place that promotes the minimization of corruption and mismanagement of public funds by government institutions, and individuals, there will come a time when the value of the entire country will be seen as a large valueless land suited on the west coast of Africa with some polluted bodies of waters and nothing else. To have no system in place in any country is to have no respect for rule of law. To have no respect for rule of law is to believe in lawlessness. And where there is lawlessness, there is always corruption - Bernard Gbayee Goah

Solving problems in the absence of war talks

As political instability continues to increase in Africa, it has become abundantly clear that military intervention as a primary remedy to peace is not a durable solution. Such intervention only increases insecurity and massive economic hardship. An existing example which could be a valuable lesson for Liberia is Great Britain, and the US war on terror for the purpose of global security. The use of arms whether in peace keeping, occupation, or invasion as a primary means of solving problem has yield only little results. Military intervention by any country as the only solution to problem solving will result into massive military spending, economic hardship, more fear, and animosity as well as increase insecurity. The alternative is learning how to solve problems in the absence of war talks. The objective of such alternative must be to provide real sustainable human security which cannot be achieved through military arm intervention, or aggression. In order to achieve results that will make the peaceful coexistence of all mankind possible, there must be a common ground for the stories of all sides to be heard. I believe there are always three sides to every story: Their side of the story, Our side of the story, and The truthBernard Gbayee Goah

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