Suddenly the Navy Seals burst through the two security gates and the twelve-foot fences. They open fire at 1:10AM local time on a compound 8 times larger than any other house in the neighborhood in the town of Abbottabad forty miles outside Islamabad in Pakistan. A man with a grizzly beard and a gun strapped to his side fights back in the midst of explosions and a firefight that goes on for half an hour. He finally gets shot and killed. The Seals carry his body away.
Osama bin Laden, the mastermind of the 9/11 attack, is now dead. But is this the end of the story? Hardly! In fact it is the one conflict from the Great War, World War I, that one hundred years later has never been resolved and is not likely to be resolved any time soon.
The story begins when Lawrence of Arabia, a Colonel in the British army, took up the Arab cause during the Arab Revolt, a small but important part of the Great War. He helped the Bedouins win their freedom from the Turks and helped make the Ottoman Turkish Empire collapse. What he couldn’t do was help the Arabs set up their own nation states. He attempted to represent them at the Paris Peace Conference. But the powers that be wouldn’t listen. Instead they partitioned the countries to be ruled by them.
Winston Churchill arrived in Cairo in 1921 with his “Forty Thieves”, including T.E. Lawrence, or Lawrence of Arabia. The future Prime Minister and his associates established the modern boundaries of Syria and Transjordan. But what they created had nothing to do with real nation states. They were merely lines on a map.
Meanwhile the Arabs grew more bitter as Britain smiled up on the Jewish attempt to set up the modern state of Israel at their expense, starting with the Balfour Declaration in 1919 right after the Great War. The Arabs got their revenge by siding with the Nazis during World War II. Men such as the Mufti of Jerusalem were minor allies of Adolf Hitler.
After World War II the Arab hate shifted from Britain to the United States, who inherited most of the Mother’s Country’s foreign entanglements. The Arabs started using anti-Jewish rhetoric. Really they just wanted to do anything they could to irritate the “powers of Satan”, meaning the U.S.and Britain.
That was where Osama entered the picture. He channeled this rage against the Anglo-American Powers into 9/11. The United States and Britain must hear the disenfranchised masses of the Middle East sooner or later. After all, the promise of nationhood stirred up by the Great War has here never been satisfied. The Twin Towers as well as the Arab Spring proves what a volcano is ready to erupt if we don’t hear their cries.