Oct. 26, 2001
Editor’s Note: this article was written and submitted on Sep. 15, 2001, just days after the Sep. 11 terror attacks on New York and Washington. Due to an email foul-up resulting from our relocation to Washington, the article was not received by The Podium until late October.
Terrorist attacks– killing and maiming were something I grew up with in Belfast, Northern Ireland. I became numb to it after a while, especially as a reporter. The magnitude of the incident in America is incomparable. Yet spare a thought for US action before joing the band of followers.
Firstly, the US has been involved, I claim interfered, in overseas terrorism, in Northern Ireland for years, appointing the American George Mitchell as the independent negotiator. The Clinton, Bush and Reagan administrations were also happy to get involved without invitation. When a Catholic was bombed by a Protestant, or vice versa, he appealed for discussion, encouraging talks rather than retribution or retaliation.
Yet now Bush declares retaliation will be taken on the perpetrators. How many people need to be killed in a terrorist attack for action to be taken? Two or two thousand?
Secondly, when Bush declared that terrorism would not be tolerated, did he really mean countries where votes would not be affected or the US Senate would not be irritated? How many Arab-Americans sit there compared to Irish-Americans? What about the Republican and Loyalist terrorist groups who are responsible for the deaths of men, women and children?
Will Bush help annihilate all terrorists or just those that bomb America? What about other democratic, peace loving countries? Also, remember yesterdays terrorist, todays president just look to South Africa.
State funded terrorism? How many fund raising trips in America does Sinn Fein go on before people wake up? Americans are not used to terrorism on their own doorstep. America is a modern Roman Empire.
My heart is heavy, my mind is numb. For others who also lost a friend or family member in the attack, my heart goes out to you. Terrorism is not new. Many people have felt the toll of the terrorist bullet and bomb before. I have heard empty rhetoric many times and seen votes; money and power get in the way.
What are you prepared to do?