A terrorism expert from the Quad Cities says the death of Osama bin Laden is encouraging, but it won’t likely snuff out other plans for attacks on the United States. Professor Art Pitz, who teaches history and politics at St. Ambrose University in Davenport, says his initial reaction was one of relief that the mastermind of the Nine Eleven attacks was dead.

Pitz says, “My first thought was, ‘Praise the Lord’ that this icon of evil has been finally tracked down.” He says President Obama gave the order for a special U.S. military team from the Navy Seals to kill bin Laden, so it will likely be Obama who gets the credit for it in the history books.

“While it is true, as former President Bush said, that America’s relentless, so is Obama,” Pitz says. “Neither he nor the government had given up on tracking this person down. It sends a message that the United States will never give in to evil.” Still, Pitz is not optimistic that this death of this terrorist leader will put an end to terrorism.

He makes a comparison between bin Laden’s death and the capture and hanging of Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein in 2006. “There were those who thought that would mean the end of the uprising in Iraq — it didn’t,” Pitz says. “The terrorists hated the United States anyway and they will continue to hate the United States.

They will see Osama as a martyr for the cause. Still, it may give some of them pause to think of what they’re up against.” Based on a course he teaches, Pitz spoke on “International Terrorism: A Brief History” at a Black Hawk College seminar held in March in Moline, Illinois.

Phil Roberts, Davenport