Osama Bin Laden and Pablo Escobar are in the public limelight for the wrong reasons. While Osama engaged in a campaign of terrorist acts against the United States, Escobar, on the other hand, used all means, and including acts of violence to ensure his illicit drugs penetrated United States streets. While Escobar saw the United States as the key market destination for illicit drugs, Osama, on the other hand, considered the United States as the key target for his global terrorism agenda. While their agenda of targeting the United States were dissimilar, these two men made public headline as the most wanted by the American Authority (Sutcliffe 449). As such, this paper examines the similarities and differences between Osama Bin Laden and Pablo Escobar.
Both Osama and Escobar became the most wanted men globally due to their involvement in narco-terrorism. Further, both Osama and Escobar were considered to be a threat to the United States interest. Both men also controlled a network that stretched around the world. For example, Osama established terror cells in different parts around the world. Similarly, Escobar also established a drug smuggling network in different parts around the world. Both Osama and Escobar were also ruthless and showed no mercy to those considered as enemies to their cause. The similarity between Osama and Escobar is also evident on how they attracted a huge following, and particularly those who considered them to be philanthropic or helping the poor in the society (Levistsky 498).
In addition, both men also used the money they received from selling illicit drugs to arm themselves with the intention of waging war against those they considered their enemies. Innocent civilians have also died because of the actions of both men. However, at some point, the United States also benefited from both men. For example, the U.S worked together with Osama, who operated as a liaison between the CIA and the Mujahideen during the 9-year occupation of Afghanistan by the USSR army (Balderson).
Balderson, Keelan. Soviet Afghan War, Al Qaeda and the Muslim Rebel Formula. Wide Shut, 30
Sept. 2013. Web. 17 Sept. 2015. <http://wideshut.co.uk/soviet-afghan-war-cia-muslim-rebels/>.
Chiesa, Luis and Greenawalt, Alexander.Beyond War: Bin Laden, Escobar, and the Justification
of Targeted Killing. Washington & Lee Law Review 69.3 (2012): 1371-1470. Print.
Levitsky, Melvyn.Behind the Curve: Governments versus Criminal Networks. International
Studies Review 9.3 (2007): 498-500.Print.
Sutcliffe, Kathleen. A Review of: "From Pablo to Osama: Trafficking and Terrorist Networks,
Government Bureaucracies, and Competitive Advantage by Michael Kenney". International Public Management Journal 10.4 (2007): 447-451. Print.
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