The only way we were ever going to win the War on Terror was to win a long, slow, political battle, in which we proved bin Laden wrong, where we allowed people in the Middle East to assess us as a nation and decide we didn't deserve to be mass-murdered. To use another cliché, we needed to win hearts and minds. We had to make lunatics like bin Laden pariahs among their own people, which in turn would make genuine terrorists easier to catch with the aid of genuinely sympathetic local populations.
I think this is an interesting perspective, and one that I'm initially inclined to agree with. But then I get to thinking: what if it's simply wrong? It's an optimistic perspective, where if we simply act rationally and correctly enough, eventually people "come around" and decide that the West is OK. What if they would have hated us either way? What if they never "came around"?