Arrow-right Camera


Clark: Thanks to all who helped stop monster bin Laden

MONDAY, MAY 2, 2011, 7:27 P.M.

There are those who say it’s always wrong to revel in another’s misfortune.

There are those who say the old “eye-for-an-eye” philosophy has no place in a civilized society.

There are those who say that killing another human being is never justified.

I have three words for those who say these things.

Go pound sand.

Osama bin Laden is dead. We killed him, finally, and I couldn’t be happier.

It’s a good day for America.

My only regret is that this monster who masterminded the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks – this cold-blooded murderer of 3,000 innocent souls – didn’t meet his end sooner and in a much more protracted and painful way.

Maybe that makes me a bad man to say this.

I can live with that.

I’m siding with my president who declared that, “Justice has been done.” And: “The world is a better place without Osama bin Laden.”

Did you hear the speech? Did you catch that proud grin on Obama’s face as he delivered the news?

I’m impressed. There’s a lot more warrior lurking inside this guy than the peaceniks and pacifists ever gave him credit for.

Listening to him speak Sunday night I found myself thinking back on two moments.

Moment one happened during a solo trip to the Big Apple in the 1980s.

Looking for something to do, I wound up taking the long elevator ride to the observation deck of one of the Twin Towers.

The World Trade Center, 110-stories and 12 million square feet of office space set on 16 acres of prime real estate.

They got the name right.

It seemed like the top of the world as I stood in silence and watched the late-afternoon sun transform this mighty city into a brooding texture of shadow and light.

Moment two came during another trip to New York in March 2002.

Barely six months had passed since that terrible day, when a pair of hijacked planes brought the towers down.

New Yorkers were still in shock. The tension everywhere was palpable.

On a clear and sunny Thursday, my lovely wife, Sherry, and I rode the subway to the Financial District. Then we set off walking to that sacred place everyone was calling “Ground Zero.”

Protective fencing had been put up all along the borders of where the towers had stood. The site had been turned into a massive shrine. Tributes and messages had been placed everywhere you looked.

Like the T-shirt with “I love you mom,” written in felt pen. Or the weathered photo of a man identified as Manuel Molina, the word “Missing” boldly written above his face.

Dried roses. Teddy bears. Condolence messages from foreign visitors.

And on and on …

It took us almost an hour and a half to hike the perimeter. We stopped talking to each other after 20 minutes.

There was nothing to say.

Occasionally we would stop and stare in stunned silence into the enormous gaping wound where workers still labored to unearth the dead and clear debris.

It was one of the most gut-wrenching sights I’ve ever seen.

We left feeling devastated and depressed.

Evil is the only word you can ascribe to anyone who would do such a thing.

Sure, I’d love to be one of those gentle butterfly types who believe in peace and love and that all humans have goodness in their hearts.

That is such a load of crap.

The truth, however, is that we live in a real world where some of the inhabitants do truly unspeakable things.

And so I’d like to say thanks to all of those who helped remove this scum bin Laden from the planet.

On Monday morning I hung the flag out on my front porch.

It’s a good day for America.

Doug Clark is a columnist for The Spokesman-Review. He can be reached at (509) 459-5432 or by e-mail at

There are 16 comments on this story »