- ‘Gay Jeans’ that fade into rainbow-colored denim created
- Divided court strikes down big porn award
- Jimmy Carter: Don’t hurt Russian people with sanctions
- Oldest ex-MLB player dies in Cuba, 2 days shy of 103rd birthday
- ‘Top Gun’ for drones: Squadrons of carrier-based killers have Navy’s approval
- Bill Clinton to endorse Charlie Rangel for re-election
- Pfc. Bradley Manning is now Pfc. Chelsea Manning: Court says so
- Secret base U.S. special forces used to train Libyans now under terrorist control: report
- 9th suspect in N.C. kidnapping turns self in to FBI
- L.A. sheriff admits to testing flyover spy program without notifying residents
GREEN: Body of evidence
Americans need proof of dead villain like Libyans were given
Five days after being killed, Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi was finally buried at dawn in an undisclosed location in the Sahara desert. This would have been five days too late had President Obama been calling the shots. Osama bin Laden’s remains were famously disposed of within hours of his death and “eased into the sea” in conformance with Islamic practice, according to the White House. Families of the victims of bin Laden’s atrocities have to take the government’s word for it that he’s actually dead because the Obama administration continues to refuse to provide proof.
To date, no photos or video of bin Laden’s body have been released despite numerous requests and a lawsuit filed by watchdog group Judicial Watch. The Obama administration made clear in a recent response to the lawsuit that presidential preference is the driving force behind its stonewalling. Oddly for a legal brief, its very first background point of reference quoted a transcript of an interview Mr. Obama gave to “60 Minutes”: “It is important for us to make sure that very graphic photos of somebody who was shot in the head are not floating around as an incitement to additional violence.” The brief additionally fretted, “The mere release of these images of Osama bin Laden could be interpreted as a deliberate attempt by the United States to humiliate the late al Qaeda leader.”
That’s political rather than legal reasoning, Tom Fitton, president of Judicial Watch, told The Washington Times. “It fits in with the American apology tour. He thinks America shouldn’t be documenting its victory.” This president acts as if giving Americans a chance for closure through viewing the terrorist’s remains is too triumphalist - as if it’s poor form to celebrate victory over evil. Such meekness misses the point. It’s human nature to need the resolution provided by viewing a corpse.
As Dr. Daniel Strait of Asbury University explained, “We have to see the dead body for confirmation in an age of political fictions. After 9/11, one of the things that caused the most grief was the inability to bring the body back. We need to see it and rally around it in a concrete way so that grief is directed towards something solid and not merely experienced in the abstract. In particular with tyrants, there’s a need to make sure the death is real to deal with the accumulation of the emotions, fears and apprehensions.”
The Libyan people have no doubts whether Gadhafi’s reign of terror has ended. After his death, streams of the murderer’s former subjects lined up in Misrata to verify that their personal bogeyman was indeed no longer a threat. Even in an active state of decay - darkening skin and leaking fluids, according to Reuters - the curious and the fearful wanted to see for themselves that justice was done.
The best proof of victory is always the remains of the defeated foe. Much of Homer’s “Iliad” describes fighting over the bodies of Greek heroes, with reciprocal triumphs and desecrations. In modern times, most of the 34 states that use the death penalty offer victims’ families the chance to see justice served. At least they’re given the choice.
Anneke E. Green is Assistant Editorial Page Editor for The Washington Times. Follow her on Twitter: @AnnekeEGreen
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Anneke E. Green, former Deputy Editor of Op-Eds for The Washington Times, was previously a books editor for Regnery Publishing and served in the White House speechwriting office of President George W. Bush, as a leadership staff member to then-Senate Majority Whip Mitch McConnell, and a stint as a policy advisor and press liaison at the Administration for Children and ...
- GREEN: Obama's incorrect 'acts of terror' assertions
- GREEN: Ryan pick is popular, bold
- GREEN: Food stamps for votes
- GREEN: Gun beats knife
- GREEN: Twitter Gitmo
Latest Blog Entries
TWT Video Picks
By Andrew P. Napolitano
Obama's veil of secrecy is pierced
Get Breaking Alerts
- Pentagon plans to replace flight crews with 'full-time' robots
- 'Top Gun' for drones: Squadrons of carrier-based killers have Navy's approval
- Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy hailed as patriot, ripped as lawless deadbeat
- Kansas will nullify local regulation of guns
- America is an oligarchy, not a democracy or republic, university study finds
- Obama avoids 'red line' for China; prepared to impose tougher sanctions on Russia
- Brain surgery victim struggles with Obamacare: 'It's scary'
- 2-week truce for hot sauce maker, California city
- Twitter blocks accounts critical of Turkish government
- U.S. pilot scares off Iranians with 'Top Gun'-worthy stunt: 'You really ought to go home'