When notorious murderous conquistador Cortez attacked Montazuma's citadel they destroyed the entire Aztec civilisation within a day. However the Spanish forces, despite overwhelming military superiority failed to destroy the Apaches in 300 years and eventually gave up trying.
The reason for that was the horizontal, cellular structure of the Apache civilisation which, in contrast to the hierarchical, centralised pyramidal structure of the Aztecs, permitted them to absorb attacks without their society being whiped out. If one leader was killed, another simply took his place. This is the model for Al-Qaeda's organisational structure. Of course symbolically Al-Qaeda will suffer, "those who laugh last laugh longest." Yet it will not be the end of Al-Qaeda. They may not respond straight away but this increases the likelihood of retaliatory attacks in the medium term. Doubtless another leader will spring up, and the ultra-conservative zealots who make up the bulk of Al-Qaeda's and the Taliban's membership will be just as fanatical, indeed in the short term they may even be motivated by his supposed "martyrdom".
Let us get this straight; Al-Qaeda is a fanatical right-wing organisation which is racist, homophobic, transphobic and misogynistic. Bin Laden was an old-fashioned bigot, whose ideology functioned to spread this kind of hatred and has been instrumental in the oppression and death of thousands, if not millions of people worldwide in Muslim countries and in other places. The death of the architect of this group, the main aim of which further the kind of extreme hate-crimes and violent crimes pepetrated by this organisation.
My main hope now is that President Obama can now move forward on Guantanamo, and rid America of this blight to its claim to be a free and just country.