Osama bin laden’s death
The first paragraph sheds light directly on its core objective ” Osama bin laden’s death” instantaneously shouldering him with the culpability of killing thousands of innocent men women and children thereby quite aptly calling him a terrorist.
Obama then uses pathos to delineate the events that the nation suffered on Sept 11, 2001 thereby establishing strong consequences that led to kill the Al Qaeda leader Osama bin laden. His usage of phrases like ” hijacked planes cutting through a cloudless September sky” ” the twin tower collapsing into the ground” “wreckage of flight 93″ imprint a vivid picture in people’s mind of the unforgettable day.
He further connects with his people on a more personal level in the third paragraph by use of emotive phrasing such as ” the empty seat at the dinner table” , ” children who were forced to grow up without their mother or father”, ” parents who would never know the feeling of their child’s embrace ” . He creates a persuasive appeal of pathos thereby appealing directly to the people’s sense of identity , their self interest and emotions.
Obama’s “one American family ” aims to rule out any claims of prejudice attributed to the nation during Osama’s capture. He establishes an appeal derived from credibility of the facts stated below such as ” offered our neighbors a hand” ” offered the wounded our blood “. Thereby making a strong ethos statement by bringing the people together irrespective of their race and ethnicity and thus merging themselves into one American family.
A detailed description is given in the following paragraphs stating why efforts were made to track down AL Qaeda in the first place, the past consequences that led to its present state of capture, the operations carried out by the tireless and heroic military , the Intel associated towards their trace and captivity , the reason for the demolition of the Taliban government and finally the nations unwavering support to its friends and allies to settle their scores with the Al Qaeda terrorists.
The speech was brilliantly woven with logic at every juncture yet maintained the sensitivity of the issue in hand. For example Obama’s firm dictum ” I determined that we had enough intelligence to take action and authorized an operation to get Osama bin laden and bring him to justice”, is an ethos statement which exemplifies his continuous diligent efforts in tracking him down with sobriety following utmost certainty and battling for the agony faced by the people of the United States of America.
He further showcases how the process of capturing Osama was set forth such as his directive to Leon Panetta, CIA director in prioritizing his capture , the possible lead , the uncertainty involved , their painstaking efforts to zero in on the lead and finally giving the operation a go to serve justice to the nation.
While delivering the death of Osama bin laden , Obama did use phrases such as “No Americans were harmed” ” they took care to avoid civilian casualties” reflecting the compassionate approach adopted by the military for a mission that accentuated the capture of a cruel and barbaric leader.
He uses ethos to appeal to the people while reinforcing the fact that death of Osama bin laden by far is the most significant achievement in the face of terrorism. Regardless of their triumph , he reaffirms the people of the nation in their diligent efforts in keeping the terrorists at bay by being vigilant at home and abroad.
“As we do, we must also reaffirm that the United States is not — and never will be — at war with Islam. I’ve made clear, just as President [George W.] Bush did shortly after Sept. 11, that our war is not against Islam. Bin Laden was not a Muslim leader; he was a mass murderer of Muslims. ”
It is being stated by Calvin Coolidge ( 1872-1933 ) that ‘ character is the only secure foundation of the state’.
President Obama with his personal warmth, consideration of others, good mind and solid learning puts United States of America on a pedestal by stating the above in terms of its character. A nation with such sense of conviction , high standards of morality that regardless of the atrocities faced by its people still values humanity to its highest order. This is by far the strongest ethos statement made by Obama in his entire speech. A statement as such instantly Instills great regard and a strong sense of pride among its people with respect to the values and ideologies encapsulating United States of America.
Obama attempts to clear the air by soliciting the general public at large to shed their inhibitions about Pakistan’s involvement with the al Qaeda by clarifying that Pakistan itself had become a target for the al Qaeda . He sincerely attempts to strengthen Pakistan’s image by entrusting them credit in the event of unearthing Osama bin laden’s hide out in Pakistan. He shares his moment of triumph with president Zardari and strongly opines in jointly pursuing the fight against Al Qaeda and its affiliates.
“The American people did not choose this fight. It came to our shores, and started with the senseless slaughter of our citizens. After nearly 10 years of service, struggle and sacrifice, we know well the costs of war. These efforts weigh on me every time I, as commander in chief, have to sign a letter to a family that has lost a loved one, or look into the eyes of a service member who’s been gravely wounded.”
The above stated paragraph establishes an intrinsic ethos value . Obama conveys the message loud and clear . United States of America ,its beliefs, values and ideologies would never allow them to commence a war however when forced upon , the nation can and will fight back to any extent and to any period to protect what it values the most its “PEOPLE”. He deeply expresses his remorse that his nation had to go through the agony in the first place . His opinion that no victory can ever replace a loss of a loved one or a look in the eye of a gravely wounded service men connects him to the people’s s emotion thereby establishing underlying pathos to his statement.
His tone and style of delivering the intentions of the nation grow stronger and firmer while stating that ” So Americans understand the costs of war. Yet as a country, we will never tolerate our security being threatened, nor stand idly by when our people have been killed. ” With strong sense of conviction he assures his people that no matter what , the nation will be relentless in its efforts to defend its people ,friends and allies and yet be true to their values.
” Justice has been done”, Obama attempts to pacify the anguish his people have suffered by providing them a closure they have been waiting for since long. With the above said words he relates to the people in such a powerful way that he himself assumes the identity of the grief stricken people he is addressing to. This by far is the strongest pathos used by him in the entire speech.
Obama congratulates his people whose tireless efforts and absolute dedication has made this day possible . He mainly focuses his appreciation to those who though remain unknown have exemplified their professionalism , patriotism and unparalleled courage to serve the country. He showcases his everlasting gratitude to countless intelligence and counter terrorism professionals . He is of the opinion that the people who have fought for the Nation have today achieved a sense of satisfaction and the result of their pursuit of justice.
Though the nation continues to face a complex and evolving terrorist threat , Obama assures the families they will remain vigilant in their efforts to confront and defeat the terrorist enemy and protect the American people at large. He also addresses the Families who have lost their loved ones in 9/11 enunciating that he still bemoans their loss and reassures his unwavering commitment to prevent another attack as 9/11.
Obama’s speech at no point displays a tone filled with happiness, elatedness or gloats with pride . On the contrary his choice of words his statement of pathos, his dictum at every juncture are filled with regret for the circumstances that lead to the present predicament and compassion towards people who have experienced the anguish.
Obama concludes the speech by giving his version of the American greatness. He feels that securing the nation is an ongoing process and they will be tested at times too. But his firm belief stands strong amidst the storms raised by others that together America can achieve whatever it sets its mind on to. Different goals different aspirations like pursuit of prosperity, equality for the people, securing the nation or protecting their values whatever be it America can achieve its glorious heights not because of wealth or power but because of who they are ,” one nation , under God , indivisible , with liberty and justice for all”.
This speech achieves its aim, it enunciates the past events , the reason behind their occurrence and establishes a good use of ethos and pathos with sound logic and brilliantly enforces sections of the speech into the hearts of its audience. It showcases vividly the emotion associated behind it all, the character of the country and reason how and why it happened. The ideas of patriotism, unity in diversity , righteousness , morality , courage and solidarity shine brightly throughout his speech with respect to United States of America at large.
Catherine ePortfolio, “Obama’s Speech on bin Laden’s death”.
Richard Adam’s Blog,” Osama bin Laden is dead – reaction“, May 01,2011.
Steven’s Blog,” American politics is pretty cool.”
Taylor Alan,” Osama Bin Laden Killed: Worldwide Reactions“, May 02,2011. http://www.theatlantic.com/photo/2011/05/osama-bin-laden-killed-worldwide-reactions/100058/