We may not only have squandered an opportunity this past weekend, but significantly undermined the reformers.
It has been reported that after Osama bin Laden was dispatched yesterday, he was given a burial at sea, in the “Islamic practice”:
In accordance with Islamic practice, bin Laden was washed and wrapped in a white sheet before buried at sea at 2 a.m. local time, senior U.S. military and intelligence officials said.
This was presumably done in the interest of impressing the “moderate” Muslims of the world with our respect for their religion, but if anything, it does just the opposite. What we were unwittingly implying by that politically correct act was that we agree with those who claim that Osama was a true Muslim, and that we don’t accept the account of the reformers that he was an apostate. What are the latter to make of it? And how does this in any way discourage his supporters, knowing that when we dispatch them to get their virgins (or raisins, or whatever) we will take pains to ensure their safe arrival in heaven?
When will we learn that there is no pleasing these people, regardless of the number of presidential bows and scrapes and apologies? We might as well have brought him back to New York, and buried him in an anonymous grave, after filming video of the body being wrapped in pigskin. It wouldn’t assuage anyone overseas, but neither did what we did, and it would at least make most Americans feel better.
It is long past time for us to stop spending so much time worrying about incurring the wrath of those who make war on us. We need to spend a lot more time working on ways to get them to fear our own wrath.