Q. Who gave up a life of luxury and turned his back on millions to fight in the mountains and caves of Afghanistan for what he believed in and, as a result, is revered by millions as a “hero”?
A. Osama bin Laden. (Alternate answer: Pat Tillman)
According to friends and family, Pat Tillman abandoned a lucrative NFL career to “chase Osama bin Laden around Afghanistan.”
President (sic) George W. Bush approved: “The most important thing is for us to find Osama bin Laden. It is our number one priority and we will not rest until we find him.” (September 13, 2001)
Six months later, President (sic) George W. Bush disapproved: “I don’t know where bin Laden is. I have no idea and really don’t care. It’s not that important. It’s not our priority.” (March 13, 2002)
When Rich Tillman showed up at the San Jose Municipal Rose Garden memorial for his big brother Pat, he “wore a rumpled white T-shirt, no jacket, no tie, no collar,” and “asked mourners to hold their spiritual bromides.”
Rich Tillman said: “Pat isn’t with God. He’s fucking dead. He wasn’t religious. So thank you for your thoughts, but he’s fucking dead.”
Conversely, Osama bin Laden says: “I’m fighting so I can die a martyr and go to heaven to meet God.”
Anagram for Pat Tillman:
An article I wrote about Tillman shortly after his death inspired some predictable, formulaic e-mails…like these:
“Pat Tillman was one of the reasons that inspired me, a 26 year old college graduate with a 100K+ job, to join the military in 2003. How dare you slander what he did and why he did it.”
“It takes little mother fuckers like you to make me wish your mother chose abortion. But then again we know that animals don’t make choices.”
“Thank God that our blessed nation doesn’t depend on whimps like you! May God bless and comfort Pat Tillman’s family and forgive you for your ignorance.”
However, roughly 2 out of 3 e-mails (and there were many) were supportive.
Anagram for Osama bin Laden:
MICKEY Z. is the author of “The Seven Deadly Spins: Exposing the Lies Behind War Propaganda” (Common Courage Press). For more information, please visit http://www.mickeyz.net.