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Bin Laden's Death Brings Comfort, but Not an End to Anxieties
Date:5/2/2011

By Amanda Gardner
HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, May 2 (HealthDay News) -- The long-awaited demise of the world's most wanted man, 9/11 terror mastermind Osama bin Laden, comes as a welcome relief to most Americans.

But the pain, the sense of loss, the burden of sorrow, and nagging anxieties will remain, mental-health experts said Monday.

Diane Massaroli, who lost her husband, Michael Massaroli, in the World Trade Center attacks almost 10 years ago, told CNN she feels "that justice has been done. I feel some overall calm that I haven't felt in 10 years. I never thought it would happen... never thought it would give me a feeling of closure." Now, she added, "I feel better ... like I can start a new chapter in my life."

For the broader American public, there is also a "partial sense of closure, in the sense that we recognize Osama [bin Laden] led us to war. This allows us to put an end to capturing the world's most wanted man," said Alan Hilfer, director of psychology at Maimonides Medical Center in New York City.

But, Hilfer stressed, people also realize that terrorist leaders can be replaced, that Al Qaeda still poses a very real threat, "and Americans are aware they can't sit back and relax. No one is saying that the head of the beast is cut off so the beast can't live."

"We're waiting and anticipating, just like we have for the last 10 years," he added.

That lingering sense of anxiety was underscored Monday morning when the U.S. State Department issued a warning to Americans traveling or living abroad to be vigilant, even going so far as to tell Americans who are overseas to stay home or in their hotels and not to gather in groups, CNN reported.

All this came as today's headlines blared with the news that bin Laden had been killed Sunday in a compound in Pakistan by a U.S. special forces unit, and his body then buried at sea.

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