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U.S. Will Reap the Whirlwind

Barrington M. Salmon | 5/4/2011, 4:54 p.m.
President Barack Obama. / Courtesy photo

In the coming days, America would do well to remember what reggae superstar Bob Marley once told us, she said.

'"When you think it's peace and safety, it's sudden destruction ..."' she explained.

"Al Qaida is going to catch world leaders off-guard. The way they think Al Qaida will come, they won't; they'll come another way."

In Malandela Zulu's estimation, the U.S. will reap the whirlwind.

"I always tell my students that the U.S. is a young nation," the artist and teacher said.

"It has been messing with people all over the world, but everywhere else, over time in Europe, Asia, powerful countries have had their downfall. Empires fade and die. It will happen to America too."

Zulu, 32, said he isn't sure if Bin Laden is really dead.

"They could be just saying it for effect, to deceive," he said.

"As for 9/11, that was all the U.S. I think they did it to make money, start wars, cause widespread panic and chaos. They have done this many times in the past."

Zulu said the U.S. can count on retaliation.

"There will be consequences; it soon come."

Horace Staton, a 32-year-old employee of Whole Foods in Bethesda, Md., said it didn't matter to him that Bin Laden was dead.

"They could have had a trial for him as they did Saddam Hussein," Staton said.

"He was responsible for a lot of things. They did the right thing to go and get him, but he should have had justice."

But even as he explained his rationale, Staton reconsidered his response.

"Although, there might have been more problems if he was being held by the U.S. somewhere," he added.

Jonnie Turner said that she felt relief knowing Bin Laden is dead.

"I'm happy. I didn't know anyone hurt or killed in 9/11 but I feel a lot of people will find closure, but his killing won't bring back all those people," she said.

Turner, 53, said that Bin Laden's followers are upset and she is acutely aware of the possibility that the U.S. may be attacked but "you just can't change your whole world around this."

The executive assistant said death was the easy way out for Bin Laden.

"Being in prison for the rest of your life would have been rough," she said.

"Being imprisoned is definitely a lot worse [than death]. Under the circumstances, I wouldn't have wanted to be imprisoned, either."

Matthews said she is philosophical about the level of her personal safety.

"I don't feel safer, not really, but I have faith," she said. "There are wars and rumors of wars, so this will go on."

The unidentified woman lamented how quickly people forget.

"People have short-term memories," she said.

"How many people remember the devastating earthquake in Haiti or the earthquake and tsunami in Japan? Old news gets lost in new news. So much is going on that all this will soon be a memory."

She reflected the skepticism expressed by others.

"I'm the doubting Thomas," the District resident said.

"I have to see [it] to believe this one. Until I can put my finger in that wound, I won't believe [that Bin Laden is dead]."