osama bin laden

Ryan Hammill 05-02-2016

Image via MarineCorps NewYork / flickr.com

On first thought, cheering someone’s death sounds vile. But if I’m honest, I’ve never been so gripped by the sentiment of patriotism as on the day that I sat around a table with more than a dozen men, only one of whom — besides myself — was American. This was the day that President Obama announced that Osama bin Laden had been killed.

the Web Editors 03-02-2016

Image via Hamid Mir/Canada Free Press/Wikimedia Commons

The March 1 release of a cache of documents obtained during the raid that ended with Osama Bin Laden’s death reveals some of the Al-Qaeda leader’s strange concerns.

In one letter, Bin Laden writes to his wife, warning her that the dental filling she received in Iran may have contained a computer chip used to track her movements.

Suzanne Ross 10-23-2015

Image via /Shutterstock.com

Displayed over a blurred image of Osama bin Laden, the headline on the cover of The New York Times Magazine for October 18 reads, “Do we really know the truth about his death? The mysteries of Attobad.”

Weirdly, the article is not an investigation of the truth about bin Laden’s death — it’s an investigation of other investigations. Jonathan Mahler decided to report on two competing narratives about the raid in Abbottabad. His article is a soul-searching reflection on how we can know which version of events is true, or if the truth about our government’s actions can ever be known at all.

After reading his article, it’s fair to wonder if we ever will. If our concern is to learn the facts of the raid, we may easily get lost in a tangle of facts and lies. But that is a truth in itself — a truth of how violence works to destroy the truth.

We need to state the obvious here: the subject of all this reporting is a death by violence. The subject of this story is not the truth. The subject is violence itself.

the Web Editors 05-22-2015

Model breastfeeding, Fox News vs Jesus, 'Street Sense,' Bin Laden's bookshelf, and more!

Sandi Villarreal 05-01-2012
Carolina K. Smith, M.D. / Shutterstock.com

Seattle Times and other U.S. newspapers report the death of Osama bin Laden. Carolina K. Smith, M.D. / Shutterstock.com

A year ago today, I read a Tweet that President Barack Obama was interrupting primetime TV to address the nation regarding terrorism. My heart dropped. All I could think about was that terrifying feeling 10 years earlier while watching 9-11 coverage. It only took about half an hour of speculation on 24-hour news stations, Twitter, Facebook, etc., before reports came out that Obama would be announcing the death of public enemy No. 1, Osama bin Laden. 

My first reaction was relief. The second, I confess, was one of pride—shared by the nation at the time and many still. But at some point in the aftermath, I read a friend’s post that convicted me and brought me back to reality. 

Duane Shank 05-01-2012
Guantamo Bay prison image by John Moore/Getty Images.

Detainees stand during an early morning Islamic prayer at the prison for 'enemy combatants', in Guantanamo Bay. Getty Images.

The anniversary of Osama bin Laden’s death at the hand of U.S. troops has reawakened the political controversy over the use of torture. 

In an opinion piece today, Jose Rodriguez, Jr., former director of the CIA’s National Clandestine Service, says it wouldn’t have happened without torture. He writes of an al-Qaeda operative captured in 2004, who was “taken to a secret CIA prison – or ‘black site’ – where he was subjected to some ‘enhanced interrogation techniques.’”

Shane Crash 05-01-2012
Bin Laden image/meme that's making the rounds in the blogosphere today.

Bin Laden image/meme by Jim LePage that's making the rounds in the blogosphere today.

I’m sipping on a root beer at Barnes & Noble as I work on my revisions for Forest Life. In the meantime I’ve noticed a handfull of debates raging over this photo that has been spreading around the Internet today. This makes sense given that today is the one year anniversary of the killing of Osama bin Laden.

Of course thinking people know that his death did not bring about any worthwhile social change.

Christian Piatt 02-07-2012

I’ll admit I’m a sucker for stories about the malleability of human morality. From the mob movies, where a guy can whack his cousin but better not show his Patron any “disrespect,” to justice-seeking serial killers like “Dexter,” there’s plenty of justified violence to be found.

Where do such seemingly contradictory value systems come from? And do they actually happen in the real world today?

How about the politician who claims a platform that values a respect for “all life,” while justifying war and advocating for capital punishment? Or those who celebrate the death of Osama Bin Laden and Saddam Hussein? And the list goes on.

It’s common in western culture to objectify the Islamic faith, cherry-picking texts from their scripture and plucking choice sound-bytes from extremist leaders, to portray the whole of the religion as inherently violent. This, in turn, is employed to justify violence in-kind, or worse, preemptive violence, as in the case of our invasion of Iraq.

I call this “Dexter” theology.

Duane Shank 01-02-2012

In mid-December, the Religion Newswriters Association released its top 10 religion stories of the year.  

The Associated Press now has its annual poll of U.S. editors and news directors and their choices for the top news stories of 2011.

Since this exercise is certainly a subjective one, your list might also be different from mine or the AP's.  What would you add or delete from these lists?

the Web Editors 12-14-2011
Osama bin Laden in 1997. Image via Wiki Commons http://bit.ly/pJ0ufx

Osama bin Laden in 1997. Image via Wiki Commons http://bit.ly/pJ0ufx

Each year, members of the Religion Newswriters Association, the world’s premier association dedicated to helping journalists write about religion, vote on what they believe are the top religion stories of the year. 

This year, more than 300 religion journalists cast their ballots in an online survey conducted Dec. 10-13, choosing the death of Osama bin Laden on May 2 in a covert operation in Pakistan by U.S. Navy SEALs and CIA operatives ordered by President Barack Obama as the top story of 2011.

See the complete list of RNA's top religion stories of the year inside.

Shane Claiborne 09-16-2011

Last night, death was interrupted when the U.S. Supreme Court issued a stay of execution for a Texas man convicted of a double murder in Houston in 1995.

Duane Buck was set for execution by lethal injection sometime after 6 p.m., Thursday September 15 in Huntsville, Texas. His execution would have been the second this week and the 11th so far this year in Texas alone. Two more executions are scheduled for next week.

Jeannie Choi 08-12-2011

'Sunlight behind clouds 1, Cumbria, 2010' photo (c) 2010, John Davey - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/Here's a little round up of links from around the Web you may have missed this week:

  • Sandwich coasters are fun.
  • Voters put corn kernels into jars with their favorite Republican presidential candidates.
Ed Spivey Jr. 08-01-2011

So now we know why over the past few years our Internet service would sometimes slow to a crawl: Osama bin Laden was tying up the circuits Googling himself. Repeatedly.

The Editors 07-01-2011

Using online and wireless communication to organize large, diverse groups of people has been a key component of the nonviolent Arab Spring uprisings.

Hannah Lythe 06-09-2011
[Editors' note: As part of Sojourners' campaign to end the war in Afghanistan, we will run a weekly Afghanistan news digest to educate our readers about the latest n
Hannah Lythe 05-26-2011
[Editors' note: As part of Sojourners' campaign to end the war in Afghanistan, we will run a weekly Afghanistan news digest to educate our readers about the latest n
Hannah Lythe 05-19-2011
[Editors' note: As part of Sojourners' campaign to end the war in Afghanistan, we will run a weekly Afghanistan news digest to educate our readers about the latest n
Jim Wallis 05-12-2011
After 10 long years, the national conversation on the war in Afghanistan has changed significantly. And now, the hunt for Osama bin Laden, used for years to justify the war, is over.
Eugene Cho 05-12-2011
Like all of you, I was stunned some days ago as I started soaking in the breaking news of Osama bin Laden's capture and death via U.S. military operations.
Debra Dean Murphy 05-11-2011
I can appreciate how difficult it must be to craft a good commencement address. The need to avoid well-worn pieties while also offering something of the best-distilled wisdom of the ages.