When I heard the news of bin Laden's death, hmmm America went into another country without that country's knowledge or approval and summarily executed a man. How awfully democratic.
I also wondered how different that was from people flying planes into buildings.
Then I saw the reports of the jubiliation at his death and that reminded me of something else entirely.
Wikipedia defines lynching as an extrajudicial execution carried out by a mob, often by hanging, but also by burning at the stake or shooting, in order to punish an alleged transgressor, or to intimidate, control, or otherwise manipulate a population of people, however large or small. It is related to other means of social control that arise in communities, such as charivari, riding the rail, and tarring and feathering. Lynchings were more frequent in times of social and economic tension, and often were means by the politically dominant population to oppress social challengers.
Between 1882 and 1968 (yes, 1968), 3,500 black people were lynched. I can't exactly say such acts of violence were "extrajudicial" because often the "mob" was sanctioned by the presence of law enforcement. As a result Africans had no recourse to the "judicial" system in the same way bin Laden had no recourse to the world court and being tried for his alleged crimes.
(Of course, it could be said that the powers that be didn't want a trial because then the depth of his connection to the CIA would've come out and exposed the hypocrisy of the US gov't much more than summarily executing him would.)
How many in the Middle East have been killed as a result of the US "war on terror"?
Iraq? 62,570 to 1,124,000
Afghanistan? between 10,960 and 49,600
Pakistan? between 1467 and 2334 killed in U.S. drone attacks as of May 6, 2011
If numbers of people murdered is the criteria for more murder, as american foreign policy seems to indicate, then Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan are more than justified in having their military fly a stealth helicopter (or two) into US airspace in the dead of night, have soldiers drop down while yelling at civilians to stay in their houses and twitter the attack, enter a building, kill who doesn't surrender and then let the US gov't "question" the women and children not killed.
They would just be following the lead of the "leader of the free world".