Reactions to the attack on America
My grief is beyond words, and (so far) I don't know anyone who may have died as a result of this barbarous act. My wife may not be so lucky - 150 of her colleagues worked in the World Trade Center, 91 stories up. Ten are still missing. She was often in touch with them, and sometimes would even work there herself. I don't know what I would have done if she had been lost to me as so many others have lost their loved ones.
This is not a work of godly person, this is a work of an evil madman with no heart. I just hope when his judgment day comes, God can forgive him.
We should nuke Mecca. If they're so damned anxious to meet Allah, then we should oblige them.
I am a Canadian ESL teacher working in China. This is not just a terrorist attack, it is an act of war. This is not just politics, it is history.
U.S. President George W. Bush may well be right when he said that "we are facing a new kind of war" in the 21st century. The problem is that he will probably answer by unleashing an old-fashioned military response that will not solve anything, and certainly won't make U.S. cities any safer.
Many more people perish in the third world every year due to preventable medical problems and simple hunger, yet we do not have continuous around the clock coverage of these events. Is this perhaps not the ultimate in conceit? Do we think that our tragedies are so much more important than those of other peoples in the world?
Ray Martin, Sudbury, Ont.
Our deepest sympathy and prayers are with everyone, especially to fellow brothers and sisters of the emergency services.
K. Carignan, Firefighter, and Sue Carignan
What about Hiroshima (200,000 dead), Nagasaki (150,000 dead), Vietnam (1,500,000 dead) Cambodia (3,000,000 dead), Iraq (500,000 dead children), Palestine (3,000 dead), Lebanon (4,000 dead), Chile (3,000 dead), Argentina (3,000 dead), Guatemala (40,000 dead), Salvador (30,000 dead), Panama (1,000 dead)? Who speaks for these lost souls?
Will all of this indeed change anything? An unfortunate feature of human nature is the seeming requirement for a tragedy to spurn change. For a long time we have murmured about the inadequacies of how we deal with refugees, our immigration laws, and security on our borders. We've watched Canada become a harbour for terrorists through inadequate funding or our intelligence agencies and a lack of interest. We have watched as our military has slowly been picked apart and allowed to rust, losing its ability to fight a war to protect our interests and basic freedom if called upon. We have allowed this to happen, feeling safe in the belief that simply giving token support for humanitarian causes around the world would ensure peace. I can only hope that as Canadians try to restore a sense of normalcy in their lives that the most audacious, cowardly, and savage terrorist attack my generation has ever known spurns such change. As Canadians we have forgotten that there is a price to pay for the freedoms we enjoy. A new commitment and willingness to do so and not simply ride on the coattails of our allies might give some meaning to the sacrifice of those who perished in the attack on the freedoms we hold so dear.
We just watched three services: the one in Washington, in London and in Ottawa. The Americans and the British prayed and sought an anchor in God. Our Canadian leaders never even acknowledged that there is a God, let alone our need of Him. I mourn for our country.
This tragedy could have been avoided if the United States had taken more notice of the Arab world since the great disruption of the partition of Palestine in 1948. America's blind support of Israel, its blinkered hatred of communism, its xenophobia, its just plain ignorance of what happens in the rest of the world have led to this outrage.
CNN certaintly did a fine job covering the attacks, but they shield Americans from their own insolent acts of terrorism overseas.
I want to lie in the grass and watch the clouds pass overhead. I want to have a family, and grow old. But now I worry about the price of revenge, of taking innocent lives in the process, of hijackers who target nuclear power plants, of biological warfare.
I want to thank the media because as I sit in my living room watching all the dynamics of this tragedy I cannot help but be grateful to you for the sacrifices you make in the front lines. And I thank the medical people for their skills and I pray for their endurance. Sheree Thomson
Thank you, Canada.
Deanna M. Helie, Atlanta, GA
As a student in grade 11 I will be feeling the repercussions of this incident for years to come. We must show the world that we as free nations will punish those who are guilty, not those who are innocent. We must show civility in light of these barbaric events.
Though there is no excuse for these events, it must be recognized that many nations are angry with the United States not because of their "freedom" but rather because of a foreign policy that tends to behave like the bully in school yard.
There has to be a better way of resolving disputes, otherwise we have planted the seeds for our own destruction.
Hiro Vaswani, Philippines
Good must triumph over the forces of evil. The world must be made a safer place. The bully must be beaten.
Mark Bowes, Alberta
Former U.S. President Bill Clinton would lead the world through this tragedy in a way that no one else can be expected to. President George W. Bush is a caring and compassionate man. But there comes a time when the reality sets in - and the reality is that America needs their leader back. Bubba come back!
I am appalled by the viciousness of the attacks like everyone else but I am also ashamed of the harassment that good citizen Muslims have endured since Tuesday's attack. They came here for a better life and to get away from terrorism and extremism. If Canada and the United States stand for freedom, then let's show it by respecting people of a different culture who are as Canadian and American as you and I.
Why is America so hated? It is too easy to paint the culprits as religious fanatics. Despite the rhetoric, their attack was not on freedom and democracy, but on U.S. foreign policy. A policy that, for one example, has killed one million Iraqi civilians over the past 10 years in the form of economic sanctions. Imagine filling a WTC tower with Iraqi citizens, women, children and elderly included, and then blowing it up. Then repeat this process, every four months for 10 years. Where is the public outrage at this atrocity?
We are killing ourselves slowly but surely. Once America strikes back, their targets will want more revenge on America, and so the cycle will continue until too many people have been killed.
Will Canada observe a moment of silence and pray for the innocent victims that are about to be killed in Afghanistan?
The NATO members, Canada included, have voted to invoke Section 5 of the Charter. In activating for the first time the mutual defence provision, the NATO members have embarked on uncharted waters. NATO was created in response to a perceived threat from Eastern communism. Section 5 was intended to facilitate a prompt military response to Soviet aggression. What the framers had in mind was a huge mass of Soviet tanks pouring onto the Central German Plain.
Until Sept. 11, terrorism was considered a crime, not an act of war. Section 5 was never intended to deal with terrorism but what has been done by several, sovereign states has been done. These nations have pledged to support the United States in some as yet unspecified military, economic and political hostilities of some as yet unspecified duration and intensity in accordance with some as yet unspecified rules of engagement and conflict against some as yet unspecified nations, groups or individuals to achieve some as yet unspecified purposes and objectives and subject to preconditions or specified exit strategy.
Can you really believe that clear-headed people actually understood this commitment?
Bob Dresser, Parksville, B.C