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Bin Laden’s Death Heightens Tourist Experience

File Photo
“It’s important to the world that he’s out of the way,” said one tourist at the Capitol Monday.

Jaap Jong, a Dutch native who now lives in the United Kingdom, adjusted a camera around his neck, ready to capture images of the Capitol. He’s at the beginning of a two-month trip across the U.S. He and a friend are starting on the East Coast before flying to Chicago, where they plan to rent a camper and meander (“no GPS”) to San Francisco. 

Jong says he was excited to be in Washington to share the moment. “I was happy to hear it,” he said. “Not just for the American people, but for the whole world.”

He’s not naive enough to think that bin Laden’s death would hobble terrorist forces, he says, but the symbolism is clear. 

“He is an iconic figure and it’s a good thing he is out of the picture. And while it might have been a U.S.-led military operation that killed bin Laden, the victory benefits everyone. It’s important to the world that he’s out of the way.” 

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