Reactions to the attack on America
I guess if you have a large enough military you can utilize state terrorism with self-righteous indignation. It was this kind of state terrorism that in fact caused the terrorist attack on New York City. Where is the worldwide condemnation when about 500,000 Iraqi women and children are killed in bombing raids or die from medical and food deprivation?
The Taliban are very desperate men, starving and shoeless perhaps, but with strong resolve for what they believe in. Retaliatory strikes are a thoroughly empty gesture staged for mass consumption; the real work begins when it becomes necessary to chase Taliban fighters on foot up and down steep valleys, only to be picked off like flies by those familiar with the rugged territory. The Americans (and British) have no stomach whatsoever for that kind of war. Once the techno-toys are spent, the Americans and British will find themselves in a very dirty war of attrition, just like their Russian predecessors, whose lessons they choose to ignore.
The U.S. administration must wake up to the fact that the United States is regarded as a bully in almost every country in the world, including Canada. There must be justice for the Palestinians before there can be a start of real Peace.
Luke Williams, Lynden, Ont.
I think it's great that the United States and Britain have begun the air strikes in Afghanistan. The world has been waiting with anticipation for action against terrorism. Although no one wants to see innocent civilians get hurt over there, we really need to get this cleaned up as soon as possible, otherwise there will be a lot more civilian casualties in the United States and in their allied countries.
Countries around the world that support the drive against terrorism should encourage or organize Muslims living in their countries to demonstrate against the leader of world terrorism, Osama bin Laden, so that non-Muslim people of the world would know Muslims are vehemently against terrorism. Otherwise, non-Muslims will always be suspicious of Muslims living in their own country.
An eye for an eye. If they kill two of our people, we should kill four of theirs. And with a nice progression like that, we'll destroy civilization as we know it. Perhaps it deserves to die.
There are alternatives to an eye-for-an-eye retaliation. Christ taught it, and any Western nation that claims to be Christian should be ashamed to participate in more wars. I hope that the growing number of voices I hear in Canada and the United States will prevail upon U.S. President George W. Bush to look at U.S. foreign policy with an eye to what has contributed to such hatred in the world.
Karen Rinehart-Pidcock, Kaslo, B.C.
The retaliatory attacks are not being done in an appropriate way. The perpetrators of the terrorist attacks on the United States are dead, and the instigators are not necessarily affected. It just looks as though U.S. President George W. Bush has to do something to assuage his ego, and his countrymen are being drawn into a battle that has an unknown ending.
I would just like to thank Canada for stepping into this conflict so that we, too, may possibly experience the feeling of terrorist attacks. After all, why shouldn't we have the joy of losing our loved ones to random attacks of violence, all because we feel obligated to get into the swing of bombing in Afghanistan?
The military actions, while probably necessary from various governments' point of view, will not solve the problem. The problem is that Muslims, Jews and many Christians do not understand the nature of the Kingdom of God. Jesus articulated it best: "My kingdom is not of this world." He supported the rights of a despised occupying regime, the Roman Empire, to exist and to collect taxes. He denied his own followers the use of force.
It is morally indefensible to deliberately subject a large body of people to the risks of attack by a military superpower in response to crimes committed by a relatively small number of people dispersed throughout the world. Since Afghanistan did not attack the United States, a case can be made to impeach U.S. President George W. Bush for abuse of power through the illegal and unconstitutional deployment of troops to Afghanistan.
Canada should serious contemplate sending a sizeable force to Afghanistan as well. It will require a large increase to the defence budget, but that has been long needed anyway. Canada can't sit at the G-8 table and go to the washroom when the bill arrives.
I feel that the attacks on Afghanistan were just. I have never felt prouder to be an American. If we stand back and continue to take punches like we did on Sept. 11, there will be no freedom of speech, or any freedom for that matter. These cowards would walk all over us if we do nothing. If we want the freedom that critics of the U.S. actions speak so highly about, we're going to have to fight for it.
In reply to the letter from TAZ of Kobe, Japan (Oct. 4): Japan today is the result of U.S. compassion for a country that brutally attacked it. Rather then bleed the country to death, the Americans breathed life back into it, and even allowed Japan to govern itslef. Try imagining what life would be like today in Kobe if the Russians got there first. Shame on you, TAZ.
One hundred per cent extinction of these terrorists and supporters and protesters in so-called friendly countries should be the goal.
Access to the cockpit of commercial airliners should be only from the outside of the aircraft and that at the first sign of a highjacking, a sleeping gas should be released in the passenger compartment. Then land the plane at the closest airport.
The U.S.-led strikes must go on until the regime in Afghanistan realizes it cannot win, will not win and must consequently give up and give in. For them, the war is over. The task now is to find the fugitive, Osama bin Laden. The Americans will not slaughter civilians en masse, as their opponents seem capable of wanting to do.
I hope that Afghanistan will soon be safe enough for conventional and SOF troops to take on the destruction of Osama bin Laden and his friends. Bombing is too crude a tool and too many innocent Afghan people may be killed.
Bravo! It's important to see Canada finally commit to the effort.
These attacks are premature. A thorough search for the people involved has not been done.
The United States has been provoked, foolishly, to provide the preconditions for a legitimate jihad by Islamic fundamentalists. Our freedom has already been compromised; severe economic damage has been inflicted. A few men with knives have changed our world forever, and we are even further from the sensitivity that is necessary to live peacefully beside non-secular cultures.
A wishful prayer for Afghanistan: It is my humble request to the Taliban regime in Afghanistan to give up harboring and training terrorists. You are on the misguided course to true Islam. You will fail in your attempt if you continue on this path. Alas, you did not follow the steps of your own great leaders, such as Gandhi, Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan and many more. And now all this is going to lay waste. More dust is going to fall on an already dusty part of the eastern world.
With the bombing in Afghanistan, any mention of "U.S. attacks" so much sounds more ominous.
I can't understand how Britain wants Muslims to believe that these strikes are not against Islam. Britain has been bombed by IRA terrorists for decades. Yet Britain has never attacked Ireland for harboring terrorists. In fact, I don't remember seeing Britain or the United States even suggesting the inclusion of terrorist organizations in Ireland, Greece, Spain, South America, Japan and Israel, which are operated by non-Muslims, in the war against global terrorism.
Despite Prime Minister Jean Chrétien's undivided support for "America's New War," I assure you not all Canadians share his sentiment. I am strongly opposed to the violence being inflicted on the people and land of Afghanistan. I strongly question the motives of U.S. President George W. Bush and the efficacy of his tactics in this purported war against terrorism.
S. Lane, Hamilton, Ont.
So Prime Minister Jean Chrétien wants to send Canadian troops marching off to war with Afghanistan. Don't get me wrong - I firmly believe that the only way to end this kind of terrorism is to aim for the annihilation of the perpetrators. But for the man who has been the gravedigger of Canada's armed forces to risk the lives of Canadian troops in what will probably be a protracted and bloody struggle is nothing short of hypocritical and irresponsible.
You cannot just sit with your head in the sand. There comes a time when you have to stand up and fight. Now is the time to fight.
It is truly amazing that people would allow lunatics such as Osama bin Laden and many others just like him roaming our planet. These people do not wish to negotiate peaceful solutions - we have clearly seen this by the many terrorist attacks that have taken place. It is a sad but true fact that we must speak their language, one of violence, to get our message across.
I hope that Prime Minister Jean Chrétien will show that he has enough backbone to satisfy the U.S. President and the American fight for justice. I have to wonder how much help he can offer with his out-dated and under-funded military defence.
I am not sure what to think about this. All I know is that sometimes violence against violence is not always the answer. However how do we stop people who think that they can kill innocent people and not have a reaction to that? Where do we begin?
Give 'em hell, George.
I don't believe in the death penalty, but when you are dealing with evil such as Adolph Hitler or Osama bin Laden, justice must be swift and severe.
I am reminded of former president George Bush, father of the current president, when he said, on the eve of attacking Baghdad, that this is not a quarrel with the Iraqi people. We know now that no fewer than 500,000 Iraqis have died since that war ended. I have no reason to believe this is going to be any different.
Two wrongs don't make a right.
Meagan Bennett, age 15
What I don't understand is the people who want to talk and do nothing else. Do these folks believe that the radicals will really stop their terror? How come the pacifists just say no to any kind of violence and never have any alternative to offer?
James D. Abbott
The Romans sowed the soil of Carthage with salt. The United States is destroying the earth with so-called depleted uranium, which will be carried by wind to the four corners of the earth. The U.S. and British Tomahawk missiles have DU ballast. Is the poisoning of all the earth worth it to get one big-mouth?
Regarding the National News at 11 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 8: How could you embarrass newsreader Sandie Rinaldo in such a manner? You had her interview a Canadian (who was knowledgeable) and a so-called U.S. security expert whose sole lament was to say that Canadians have to stop allowing terrorists into the United States. As a security expert, does he not know that it is U.S. Customs agents who let any person, terrorist or not, into their country?
I saw the news reports that something like 52 per cent of Canadians would accept mandatory finger-printing and that more than 50 per cent would be willing to give up civil rights for higher anti-terrorist defence. I was quite upset. If we have to give up even one right, we are no better off than Afghanistan.
The terrorist attack was a selfish, inconsiderate, immature and selfish act. This is not necessary in our world. I've learned many lessons in my life, and one was never to do something bad to one another no matter who it is. I follow that. I'm only 13, but it hurt me a lot that so many people had to lose their lives because a few people decided to get revenge.
The situation we are in is very complex. I am impressed that the United States hasn't just gone in and blown up Afghanistan. I am impressed that they care about the average Afghani who has already been traumatized by war and the takeover by the Taliban. Patriotism seems to be at more of a world community level.
I guess there will be no need for police to say please and thank you in the new Nazi-Communist Canada if identity cards are mandatory. But why bother with cards when an implanted computer chip will allow people to be scanned from a distance with wireless technology? As if terrorists aren't smart and educated enough to get around a any system whatsoever.
The trend in fear by most Canadians to subvert their civil liberties in the face of terrorism is most disturbing. First, it grants the terrorists a kind of victory by forcing drastic changes in a free society so that it more closely resembles the Taliban-run society of Afghanistan. Second, it sounds good until you're falsely accused and spend days or weeks summarily arrested without trial or evidence. Ill-considered, knee-jerk reactions are the last course of action a society should take in the face of the new realities we face.
On Sept. 12 I went to work early and noticed that the moon was a crescent shape with a bright star very close to it. Doesn't this type of moon have some religious significance for Muslims?
The attacks seem too convenient. They have reinforced the government, as well as the style of government of U.S. President George W. Bush. They have been handed a virtual carte blanche to spend as much as they like on the military, at the expense of other important programs, such as health and education, to create legislation that hands them more power than they deserve and to gain the blind following of many other countries.