Even after Osama Bin Laden was shot to death by US Navy Seals, he still poses a threat to US national security, in particular through a ‘martyr’ video that may be released.
The immediate threat after Bin Laden’s death is the expected retaliation from Islamic extremists who want to “avenge” the death of their “martyr.” The US Department of State already issued an alert, advising Americans to “to limit their travel outside of their homes and hotels and avoid mass gatherings and demonstrations” for fear of anti-American outbursts.
A more serious threat is an organized retaliatory terrorist attack. Moreover, Al-Qaeda members may now be even more motivated to carry out whatever terrorist plot Bin Laden had been planning right before his death last night.
Second, there is the threat of any materials made by him that may be published posthumously.
Bin Laden is undoubtedly labeled and celebrated by Islamic extremists as a martyr of the Muslim faith. These people will now hold whatever unreleased tapes and videos of his with great reverence.
The biggest fear, however, may be his ‘martyr video.’
Bin Laden has been hunted for almost ten year and he likely made preparations in the event of his death at the hands of US forces. One of these preparations may have been a video declaring his death, restating the vision of Al-Qaeda, and perhaps urging his followers to carry out more terrorist attacks.
In this way, Bin Laden will hurt the US even from his seabed grave.