The Death Of Usama Bin Laden

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In May of 2011, many Americans saw the death of Usama bin Laden as a catalyst for renewed U.S. patriotism and a hopeful next step towards ending the Salafi Jihadist movement. Why, then, is the world faced with an unprecedented amount of Salafi Jihadist groups who prove to be increasingly more brutal in their attacks (cite)? The counterterrorist strategy of decapitation, or the removal of a group leader via incarceration or assassination, is a tactic whose utility is dependent on historical context, group structure/composition, and general popular support. While the death of Usama bin Laden renewed American patriotism and allowed the U.S. to exact revenge upon the group behind the deaths of 3,000 in the 9/11 attacks, it proved ineffective…show more content…
In his 1996 FATWA, Usama bin Laden placed personal responsibility upon each individual Muslim to unify and fight oppressive forces, particularly the United States. With this FATWA comes the distinction of the “near” and “far” enemy, an innovative philosophy utilized by bin Laden and Al Qaeda that illustrates the overarching oppressive nature of the United States to Salafi Jihadist sympathizers. Integrating this ideology into the Salafi Jihadist movement is particularly useful for terrorist organizations, as their fighters—particularly their suicide bombers—are ideologically validated for their actions, and are confident that they will receive a reward in the afterlife should they strike against the enemy. Driven by Usama bin Laden, Al Qaeda grew immensely from 1988-2011, adding on affiliates such as Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) and training militant groups in fatas in Pakistan. The Salafi Jihadist movement and the groups responsible for its mobility have gained international attention (and sympathizers), creating a strong base to work towards the creation of the caliphate. What, then, was the impact of Usama bin Laden’s assassination by U.S. Navy SEALS in 2011 on the Salafi

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