Minnesota watching for revenge terrorismST. PAUL -- Minnesota officials are on the lookout for revenge terrorist attacks following the American military’s killing of Osama bid Laden.
By: Don Davis, Worthington Daily Globe
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota officials are on the lookout for revenge terrorist attacks following the American military’s killing of Osama bid Laden.
“I have instructed Minnesota’s Commissioner of Public Safety Ramona Dohman to redouble our vigilance in the next weeks to assure Minnesotans are fully protected from any repercussions from this incident,” Gov. Mark Dayton said this morning.
There was no indication of any specific American targets in the wake of bin Laden’s death, but experts and Minnesota leaders warned they were possible.
U.S. Rep. Chip Cravaack, a Republican and a military veteran, applauded the American intelligence and military community, but said bid Laden’s death does not end the worry.
“This may not end the threat posed to us by global terrorism, but it is a clear victory for America and freedom loving people throughout the world,” Cravaack said.
Such warnings were mixed with praise for the killing of bin Laden, recalling the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks he organized.
The small group of Navy Seals who conducted the operation in Pakistan drew much praise, and President Barack Obama received thanks from both major political parties.
“I won't listen to people criticizing President Obama today,” Rep. John Kriesel said in a Tweet. The Cottage Grove Republican who lost both legs in the Iraqi war added: “He showed solid leadership in authorizing this mission. Well done Mr. President.”
U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann, a likely GOP presidential candidate, said the Seals’ killing of bin Laden does not end terrorist threats.
"I want to express my deepest gratitude to the men and women of the U.S. military and intelligence community,” Bachmann said. “Their persistence and dedicated service has yielded success in a mission that has gripped our nation since the terrible events of 9-11.”
Another likely Republican presidential candidate from Minnesota, former Gov. Tim Pawlenty, called the bid Laden death “terrific news,” and praised Obama “for a job well done.”
Like in other parts of the country, Minnesota’s on-line community was abuzz just after Obama’s Sunday night announcement, and it continued today.
Tweeted former state Rep. Laura Brod, R-New Prague: “This morning 14-year-old daughter wakes up, sees the news, and says..."Mom, we got him! I knew we would because America doesn't give up."
And Kriesel said: “Why are there Americans upset that other Americans are celebrating Bin Laden's death? Seriously?”
Rep. Pat Garofalo, R-Farmington, turned a Tweet into a plea: “Feel good about bin Laden liquidation? Here’s a way to feel better. Be an American. Donate to the USO.”
Members of Congress were of one mind in praising Obama and the American military.
“This is a great day,” proclaimed U.S. Sen. Al Franken, a Democrat.
“I think the president was wise to remind us of how unified we felt as a nation after 9-11 and how we can achieve anything we put our mind to if we work together," Franken said.
U.S. Rep. John Kline, a Republican with a long military history, warned that a war remains to be fought.
“While the world is now free from one truly evil man, we are still at war with Islamist extremists,” Kline said. “We must remain increasingly vigilant, and continue to support our brave sons and daughters in uniform as they courageously battle a determined enemy.”
Another military veteran, Democratic U.S. Rep. Tim Walz, joined in praising the American military.
“Their perseverance, sacrifice and courage is nothing short of remarkable,” Walz said. “We have them to thank for this moment of justice.”
U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar, a Democrat, recalled fellow Tom Burnett, who helped bring down Flight 93 before it reached its target. Burnett, whose family lives in Minnesota, died in the crash.
“Today we remember those who were killed, their families who continue to grieve, and the brave first responders who rushed to ground zero to save lives on that terrible day,” Klobuchar said. “I hope that this will offer some comfort to the families who lost loved ones on that September day.”
Don Davis reports for Forum Communications Co.