ARCHIV - Al-Kaida-Chef Osama bin Laden und sein Stellvertreter Eiman el Sawahiri, aufgenommen am 08.11.2001 an einem unbekannten Ort in Afghanistan. Osama Bin Laden, der meistgesuchte Terrorist der Welt, ist tot. Das sagte US-Präsident Barack Obama in einer Fernsehansprache am Sonntag (01.05.2011, Ortszeit) in Washington. EPA/AUSAF Newspaper dpa (zu dpa 0116 vom 02.05.2011) +++(c) dpa - Bildfunk+++

Is this what a triumph of justice looks like? Had America managed to deal a hard blow to international terrorism? Joe Biden is 79 years old. Many party friends want him not to run for president again.

He speaks from the balcony of the White House because he has contracted Corona for the second time. He says sentences that have often been said in this context. “Justice has been served.” – “We will not give up.” – “We will never forget.”

On Sunday, an American drone killed the head of the Al Qaeda terrorist network, Aiman ​​al Zawahiri. After US troops withdrew from Afghanistan, the 71-year-old Egyptian doctor moved to a so-called “safe house” in Kabul. He is said to have had a heart condition for a long time.

First and foremost, he is charged with joint responsibility for attacks that took place around two decades ago: on the US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998, on the Navy destroyer “USS Cole” in 2000, on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon on September 11, 2001. With Al Zawahiri’s death, memories returned.

But nothing more. When the US Army’s top secret unit, the Navy Seals, stormed Osama bin Laden’s estate in Abbottabad, Pakistan, killing him on May 2, 2011, the US President’s popularity ratings skyrocketed. He had achieved what his predecessor, George W. Bush, had struggled to achieve for almost eight years. The events were meticulously reconstructed and immortalized in books and films.

Biden’s coup, on the other hand, will at best bring some satisfaction. It is unlikely that he will be able to make political capital out of it. Al Qaeda has long been operating decentrally, whether from Yemen, Somalia, Mali, Nigeria or Indonesia. The cells act mostly autonomously.

There are ideological overlaps, but also bitter rivalries with other radical Islamic organizations. Compared to the “Islamic State”, for example, whose fighters can handle heavy equipment and carry out large-scale operations, the dangers posed by Al Qaeda are limited to selectively planned attacks. Of course, these dangers are not banned.

Still, America has lost interest in both the Middle East and terrorism. The troops have been withdrawn, the Afghanistan debacle a year ago is still present in all its bitterness. To counter terrorism, the CIA and security agencies rely more on drones and cyber attacks than on occupation, “nation building” and the export of democracy. You’ve had other worries for a long time. The focus is on China and Russia, on fighting inflation and managing migration.

Aiman ​​al Sawahiri, as it is called in English, was “a blast from the past”, a brief encounter with the past.