• Welcome to all New Sikh Philosophy Network Forums!
    Explore Sikh Sikhi Sikhism...
    Sign up Log in

S Asia The Death Of An Icon Of Terrorism

Jan 6, 2005
Metro-Vancouver, B.C., Canada
May 4, 2011
The Death of an Icon

Osama bin Laden, the visual icon of terrorism in our fear-driven age, is gone. No one can replace him.

Jihadists will doubtless commit new outrages and hatch new conspiracies. But warriors committed to sacrificing their lives for his murderous cause are a wasting resource unless they can draw new recruits into their ranks. And while Bin Laden may or may not have been the mastermind behind the attacks launched by Al Qaeda and its imitators, he was unquestionably their master recruiter.

Any number of studies have analyzed the intricate pathways by which a young computer programmer here, an out-of-work immigrant there, or the raped widow of a suicide bomber somewhere else have found their way into jihadist cells in a score of countries. Mosque-based activists nurture some, family networks ensnare others, and a few develop overwhelming feelings of outrage or victimization just by reading the news or watching videotapes.

But Osama bin Laden spoke to everyone, including many millions of Muslims who admired his analysis of world affairs but never themselves developed the courage and commitment to follow his logic to its lethal end. He inspired both the suicide bomber and the armchair critic of American and Israeli imperialism.

In 2003 the Pew Research Center’s Global Attitudes Project reported that 59 percent of Indonesians, 46 percent of Pakistanis, and 56 percent of Jordanians expressed confidence that Bin Laden would “do the right thing in world affairs.”

By 2009, however, Bin Laden’s popularity in these representative countries had fallen steeply to 25 percent in Indonesia, 18 percent in Pakistan, and 28 percent in Jordan. Though these numbers are still distressingly high, Bin Laden’s decline as the symbol of resistance to what he called “Crusaders and Jews” was unquestionable.

What largely accounted for this decline was a near total eclipse of his video image. Though the media or jihadist Web sites aired at least 21 Bin Laden tapes between 2003 and 2009, they included scarcely five minutes of live video footage. The leader who had stirred global fascination as a visual icon had been reduced to a sporadic voice of often uncertain identity.

If one looks back now at the two-hour Bin Laden recruitment video that became publicly available in the aftermath of 9/11, the power of his screen presence is unmistakable, particularly in comparison with other jihadist leaders who show up on the same tape. A tall, bearded, austere-looking man with an impressively calm demeanor, he recites poetry, rides a horse, and fires a Kalashnikov. He delivers a sermon dressed in white robe and headdress, he holds an interview wearing military camo and a white turban, he sits on a rocky hillside wearing the vest and rolled-edge Nuristani hat of the Afghan Taliban.

Most impressive are the clips showing Bin Laden giving an open-air sermon. The camera looks up at him reverently from below as if the cameraman is among the audience. The voices of children are heard in the background. The impression is of Bin Laden explaining to a group of ordinary people the problems they face in the world and the reasons behind them. “Muslims must examine Allah’s Book — the Koran — in order to understand their predicament and the causes of their illnesses so that they may find a way out of their entrapment.”

Compared with the two-dozen jihadist videotapes I analyzed in connection with police investigations in 2002-2003, Bin Laden’s propaganda stands out. Not only does it present a plausible argument for jihad against the West, but his visual presence and calm voiceovers convey an aura of authority and leadership even though his name is never mentioned.

His screen presence also far outshadows that of other jihadist leaders. Where they are strident, or ranting, or dull, he is calm and articulate. Where they come across as one-note preachers or pedantic classroom teachers, he appears as a fully formed individual. Comfortable in the mosque, on the battlefield, at the training camp, or in a poetry recital.

One cannot mourn the death of a man who planned or inspired so many atrocities. But we should recognize that his bigger-than-life iconic presence was the heart and soul of jihadist Islam. When U.S. pressure forced him away from the television cameras, his ideology lost momentum. And now that the dogged determination of American counter-terrorism forces has silenced him for good, there is no one who can replace him.

Thank God.

Richard Bulliet is professor of history at Columbia University and author of Islam: “The View from the Edge” and “The Case for Islamo-Christian Civilization.”



  • osama.gif
    32.6 KB · Reads: 233


Jan 29, 2011
Vancouver, Canada
There are many things being said. First make him The Devil from being a frail scheming man. Then kill him when he is unarmed, and nearing death due to renal failure. NATO has wars in middle east and there was no Osama in Libya. They will switch from one dictator to a de-centralized one in form of elected govt. Muslims and Sikhs will be still persecuted for looking like Osama though he is believed to be dead. Pakistan is next in the line of troubling regimes. Obama still not sure to come in next year. Donal Trump is a business tycoon trying to run for president. He felt he couldn't run the show behind the scenes anymore. Chaos still rules.
Jan 6, 2005
Metro-Vancouver, B.C., Canada
Bin Laden's 'will' apologises to his children

Terrorist mastermind says don't join Al Qaeda

Published Wednesday, May 04, 2011

In a four-page document dated December 14, 2001, claiming to be Osama bin Laden's last will and testament, the terrorist mastermind apologises to his children for neglecting them in favour of jihad.

Al Qaeda founder Osama bin Laden did not want his children to join the terrorist organisation, the Kuwait-based Al Anbaa newspaper said citing his last will and testament.

He prohibited his children from taking part in his terrorist organisation and from "going to the front", the newspaper said.

According to the Arabic daily, the document is written on a computer and signed "Your Brother Abu Abdullah Osama Muhammad Bin Laden."

The late Al Qaeda leader predicted he would be killed as a result of a "betrayal" and ordered his wives to not remarry.

Various reports say bin Laden fathered between 12 and 26 children and married four women.

Bin Laden, believed to be 54 years of age, was killed in Pakistan by US special forces
The document, which was first published in a Lebanese newspaper in 2001, has resurfaced this week following the insurgent's death at the hands of the Navy Seals six team on Sunday, reports Daily Mail.

US intelligence sources remain sceptical on its authenticity however, despite it being cited in a recent Senate report, said the UK daily.

In the will bin Laden compares himself to a seventh century caliph and suggests his children need to forge their own way in life rather than ride on the back of his name, said Daily.

'As for you my children: Forgive me for not giving you except but a minimum amount of my time since I have begun my call for jihad,' bin Laden allegedly writes in the will.

'And I advise you not to join in the work of Al Qaeda.' This is in direct contrast to what one of his children told the Guardian newspaper in 2009.


NOTE: Other reports on the internet state that he forbade his wives to re-marry & to focus on the "good upbringing" of his children!


ੴ / Ik▫oaʼnkār
Dec 21, 2010
Let us see what he achieved,

  • Gratification for self through few (apparently four) wives and many children
  • Destruction of many muslim and non-muslim lives especially young muslim men in the name of Jihad and promise of Hoors (concubines) and Heaven.
    • Note he practised the promise on earth himself
      • Could not wait to go to heavenlol
  • Accentuating of hatred between Islam and everyone else
I wonder about the mind set of people who follow him or are proud of him. I am sure they have reasons.

What has humanity come to!

Sat Sri Akal.


Apr 3, 2005
Geelani calls for Friday funeral prayers for Osama

Geelani calls for Friday funeral prayers for Osama


Hardline Hurriyat Conference leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani [ Images ] has called for funeral prayers on Friday for terrorist Osama bin Laden [ Images ], who was shot dead in Pakistan on May 2 by a US navy team.

Geelani has appealed to imams and people to hold funeral prayers in absentia for bin Laden after the Friday prayers in the afternoon, a Hurriyat spokesman said in a statement.

Terming him a 'martyr', Geelani said bin Laden was not just one person but "he represented a thinking which opposed foreign occupational forces".

"His heart bore the pain of the entire Muslim ummah (community). He gave up his life of comfort to fight for their cause," the statement said.

The separatist leader said he wanted to participate in the funeral prayers but he has been placed under house arrest by the police since early this morning.

Geelani appealed to people to pray for the liberation of Kashmir [ Images ], Palestine, Iraq and Afghanistan from the occupation of forces.


1947-2014 (Archived)
Jun 17, 2004
Re: Geelani calls for Friday funeral prayers for Osama

kds1980 ji

Just two points of clarification.

1. There may be some readers who will confuse this Geelani with the PM of Pakistan, in spite of variant spelling. This is the person quoted in the article.

Syed Ali Shah Geelani http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Syed_Ali_Shah_Geelani

2. Given that he is in Jammu Kashmir where India continues to battle with an independence movement, the comments made of Gellani, are provocative. They sound as if they are aimed at the US, but in truth not the US alone.


1947-2014 (Archived)
Jun 17, 2004
Re: Geelani calls for Friday funeral prayers for Osama

Thread Geelani calls for Friday funeral prayers for Osama has been merged with Death of an Icon.

Mai Harinder Kaur

Oct 5, 2006
British Columbia, Canada
YouTube - President Obama on Death of Osama bin Laden

Osama bin Laden is dead.

A simple statement. The new reality.

Osama bin Laden is dead. The boogie man is no more.

Who was Osama bin Laden and how can I react? Was he a monster as so many believe?

There are several sorts of monsters. Some live in the dark. You know the type. They hide in the closet or under your bed – or in the deepest recesses of your mind – until the lights are turned off. Then you must protect yourself by pulling the covers up over your head and lying very, very still. These monsters disappear you pull the covers away and confront them directly and you find they were nothing more than creations of your own mind.

Not all monsters are imaginary, though. They are there, obvious, unavoidable, all too visible. They have names like Aurangzeb, Adolf Hitler, Pol Pot. They do their deeds openly, for all to see, apparently without conscience or caring. These are the ones who run roughshod over the values that we as humans treasure, lacking compassion, seemingly finding pleasure tormenting those with whom they share they earth. On a smaller scale, we call them bullies. They torment those who are weaker than they, unable to defend themseves. Their deeds are malicious, finding joy in the suffering of others. They are murderers of the spirits of others and sometimes murderers of the body, as well.

Then there are the monsters who are invisible, living among us, unseen. Child molesters and rapists not yet caught, undiscovered serial murderers, corrupt and dangerous politicians and cops, more that you can add to the list. These monsters, unlike the first type are real and they know who they are. I do not know whether they choose to be monsters or are forced by some inner compulsion to do their evil deeds.

There is another type of monster, the kind that has no idea that s/he is a monster at all. The next door neighbour who hates Hindus or Christians or Muslims or Sikhs or Jews is a very naive sort of monster. Perhaps the hatred is directed at black people or brown people or yellow people or pink (white) people. (Those called “red” are really brown.) Maybe the prejudice is aimed at girl children and women, or at men. Then, of course, there are the xenophobes, those who hate foreigners or indeed strangers of any sort. For my readers specifically of Indian background, I would include caste prejudice in this unsavoury list. I suspect that more of us are this sort of monster than would care to admit it. Perhaps, even I sometimes am a naive monster.

It is possible for the naive monster to act on her/his prejudices and become a full-blown bigot and a genuine, visible monster.

Then there is the monster who so deeply believes in a cause that s/he will do whatever is necessary to realise that cause. No matter if civilians are killed by accidents (collateral damage) or on purpose (terrorism). No matter the damage done because the cause is all. The end justifies the means. Was Osama bin Laden this sort of monster?

Or was he the worst sort, the most evil who cynically leads others in a cause – perhaps for power and glory – that he himself had ceased to believe in or had never believed in?

I have no way of knowing which of these monsters he was.

Or perhaps he wasn’t a monster at all. Perhaps he was a soul who got lost in the swirling changing mass of stuff around us that we call the World or Maya.

Whatever he was I am not sorry he is dead. He was a scumbag and I think the world is better off without him. My entire being, however, is repelled at public celebrations of his death. I understand them. I myself felt like celebrating when Indira Gandhi was killed. I did not celebrate, but that might have been simply because circumstances prevented it. I was wrong then, as people celebrating now are wrong now.

However evil and vile his deeds, are we just mouthing platitudes when we say all people are children of the same Parent, whatever name you personally use for the Creator? I have lost a brother. A brother who did evil deeds, a brother I am glad to be rid of, a brother I did not love, but a brother nevertheless. It is at times like this that I find it necessary to deeply examine my own beliefs and I find myself not without hypocrisy. I know that Indira Gandhi is my sister, but I am not yet ready to feel it.

John Donne’s immortal lines, which I have heard no one quote at this time, come to my mind.

No man is an island entire of itself; every man
is a piece of the continent, a part of the main;
if a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe
is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as
well as a manor of thy friends or of thine
own were; any man's death diminishes me,
because I am involved in mankind.
And therefore never send to know for whom
the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.​

I must ask myself how does the death of this man, Osama bin Laden, diminish me. I am not yet able to answer this.



Republished from The Road To Khalistan
Last edited:



📌 For all latest updates, follow the Official Sikh Philosophy Network Whatsapp Channel: