Local Pakistanis React to bin Laden's Death

May 2, 2011

Local Pakistanis are relieved to hear that Osama bin Laden has been killed by U.S. Special Forces.  Dr Saud Anwar, former President of the Pakistani American Association of Connecticut says it's "a high five moment" for  the United States and Pakistan. He spoke on WNPR's Where We Live.

"There are two nations who have been attacked by Osama bin Laden openly and has caused a lot of military deaths, civilian deaths. The United States being one and Pakistan being the other. So these two countries have been impacted by this terrorist mastermind."

Anwar says reaction from Pakistanis overseas is a mixture of happiness and also fear because they worry about a backlash from al Qaeda. He also says bin Laden's death could impact U.S Pakistani relations.

"And there has been a big problem with anti-US sentiment increasing with drone attacks. The strategy in the long run is counterproductive from American perspective because anti- American sentiment is what we have to fight. Now that we have the number one target that we've been able to achieve, I think some of the unilateral efforts would have to decrease and become more cooperative."

Anwar says extremists mischaracterize Islam and this has negatively impacted Muslims all over the world. He says many Muslims hope that as the U.S continues battling terrorism, Americans can dismiss the stereotyping of Muslims based on the actions of some.