My Response to Terrorism
Like many people, I found the recent terrorist attacks to be
senseless and heartless, and cry with mourners that have lost
loved ones. However, my sadness gets worse with every editorial
and response I read.
One woman, Ann Coulter from the "Jewish World Review,"
(read the cached version) said:
This is no time to be precious about locating the exact
individuals directly involved in this particular terrorist
attack. Those responsible include anyone anywhere in the world
who smiled in response to the annihilation of patriots… We
should invade their countries, kill their leaders and convert
them to Christianity. We weren't punctilious about locating and
punishing only Hitler and his top officers. We carpet-bombed
German cities; we killed civilians. That's war. And this is war.
People all over America are screaming for blood and for justice…
for war. However, good American citizens are being threatened and
harassed because they simply look Arabic. What justice is this?
I shudder when I see that CNN has now changed their headline to
read, "America's New War" and President Bush is now talking
about a long and protracted engagement.
President Bush has asked that today (September 14th) be a
national day of prayer. Wouldn't it be nice, if Americans
actually got a response. However, I don't think they would
like what they heard.
Adages like "love your neighbor as yourself" and
"do unto others as you would have them do unto you" seem to
be philosophical codes, but never seem to apply when
a nation is in a state of "mob rule."
Every religion in our world speaks similarly, but we just don't
seem to have the ears to hear. Rumi, a Muslim poet, said:
"This moment this love comes to rest in me, many beings in one being."
I also like this poem, in talking to pilgrims who go in search
of God and Love, he says:
Here, here is the Beloved!
Oh come now, come, oh come!
Your friend, he is your neighbor,
he is next to your wall.
While I would like everyone in the world to work towards a
higher moral character, I realize that Americans need action
in order to gain closure on this terrible tragedy.
But what I am advocating is that we slow down, take a deep
breath, and consciously choose our next actions, for our next
action may cause the deaths of many more people. Including many
of our own.
A long war against a nebulous force brings to my mind our war in Vietnam.
One simply can not fight against fanatical ideals and
sensational emotions that span borders with guns and bombs.
Look carefully at these people, these terrorists were willing to
die for their cause. Their emotions must run deep, and threatening
their lives may not have the impact we assume it will.
We all want the world to be a better place… A place to love
and to live … a life without fear.
We already have the fear of terrorism, let's not add the fear of war.
I believe that a better, more practical response would be to be
more defensive and to re-evaluate our actions in the Middle-east
that may trigger such deep emotions in other human beings.
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