Bin laden is dead but the narrative...
I was seventeen years old when terrorists attacked America; it was an attack of some distinction. For no one had attacked American soil after the attack of Pearl Harbor, during Second World War. Those were my amateur, teenage days, but even I knew back then from the reactions of my elderly that U.S would certainly, without a doubt hunt down the perpetrators. The immediate statement that came out from Bush’s mouth, the then president of America: U.S would hunt down those who are responsible for this attack.
Bin Ladin was already a hero for some of the radical sections of Muslim societies, so no wonder the attacks were celebrated from those sections of societies. Nobody knew at the time that it was Osama who has done this as would some terrorists call: bringing America to justice. One is baffled at the level of stupidity and at how narrow, chauvinistic and bigoted mindset these radical sections possess.
To begin with even they did not know for certain that it is Osama who has done this; by the same token Osama himself went on to deny his involvement in the attacks of 9/11. However, he was supportive of attacks like those, and reiterated that such attacks should be carried out against America daunt its spirit and economy.
But why did Bin Laden become an overnight hero for millions of people with in Muslim world. Perhaps, they saw in him, someone who has dared to attack their enemy. There are lots of reasons for such form of thinking; one being on top of all is the lack credible governments within Muslim world. Radical sections all of sudden realized to have gotten their much awaited leader - the one who would fight to the western nations, so as to stop their patronization of corrupt kings and military dictators.
Defeating the extremist narrative - Maajid Nawaz, Quilliam
Hence a narrative: “west is enemy to Islam”, has been reinforced over and again by Muslim extremists. That has been exploited by militant organizations to further their perverted ideology. But it should be mentioned here, that there are some genuine reasons as to why such a narrative has been formulated successfully; and why do people buy it? This is not the discussion here; rather, the issue is to defeat such an in human, heinous narrative.
Radicals reveal half truth to the potential recruits, thus matters are made worse, when extremists’ agenda is solidified by western nations’ blatant support to the state of Israel. Muslims feel that crimes committed by state of Israel are always going unpunished. Furthermore, they believe that their natural resources are taken away by powerful western states.
Heinous acts of Bin laden paved the way for catharsis of extremist mindset, further more it saw the ray of hope in the grim hopelessness. What it failed to realize is the dangerous long term effect that this narrative would have on the various stratum of Muslim masses. Now that Bin laden is dead, but one wonders if the narrative lives on- which is “The west is enemy to Islam”.