Re: Anthrax addendum

From: Samantha Atkins (
Date: Tue Oct 16 2001 - 00:46:37 MDT

Brian D Williams wrote:
> >From: Samantha Atkins <>
> >Then tell me exactly why we are talking about an indeterminate
> >war against an unknown number of targets in an unknown number of
> >countries. Such a war should be shouted down immediately. But
> >it isn't. Why? As bad as 911 was such a response is overboard
> >and overly broad.
> Al Queda is a worldwide network of terrorist organizations,
> operating out of over 60 countries at last count. We will need to
> dismantle the entire network.

When dismantling anything, it is useful to look for contributing
causes of what one would like to see go away or at least be
rendered powerless. Yet I have seen almost no signs that the US
is willing to admit to the abusees that have led in part to the
atmosphere under which various forms of extremism flourish in
the Middle East.

Assuming for a moment that the above figures are true (which I
not seen the evidence for), is it the plan to pressure and if
necessary attack up to 60 countries looking for this network
that is supposedly (for the sake of argument) the source of all
ills? If so then this cure seems to me at least as dangerous
and costly in lives as the disease.

We could not even defeat the Vietcong and yet we plan to find
and remove such a supposed widespread and in places popular
network in 60 countries? This seems a highly dubious and
dangerous proposal. We want to dismantle all terror networks?
Good. Be sure to insure our own terror network, the CIA. Do
you think I have no justification for that statement? I suggest
you take a trip down memory lane of some of the publicized
things the CIA has done supposedly in our name.


> I think we are on completely the right track at the moment.

Do you think we are on the right track to give effectively carte
blanche to the government to rifle through all of our lives at
will and to fight an inderterminately long and hazardous ware
against an indeterminate number of targets regardless of any and
all costs?

I don't - not for a second.

I also think we are lying in that we are not admitting where we
contribute to terror directly and indirectly. As long as we
don't address the problems with our own foreign policy then
claims that we are doing everything necessary for the safety and
well-being of ourselves and reasonable people everywhere are
rather empty. I think we are being extremely two-faced when we
let Israel get away with literal murder and assasinations in
broad daylight, even using weapons we gave them, and say almost
nothing. Yet let any Palestinian hit back in any form and we
are all over the PLO. I think we are dishonest and/or heartless
when we say that the 600,000 children that have died in Iraq as
the result of our bombing and blockades are reasonable
collateral damage. If I was Arab, even a very secular Arab, I
would be extremely unhappy with the US on many counts. Yet we
often act as if only a bunch of crazed fanatics really are upset
with us and that no reasonable persons in the region have any
real complain. Our President has the nerve to claim as much on
national TV.

I love this country with all my heart. But it sickens me to
watch some of what we are doing now and some of the postures we
are assuming.

> >Laugh if you want to but it is a much more complicated world
> >than blase assumptions that we are the good guys and those are
> >the "evil ones" would lead you to believe.
> I agree completely that the world is much more complicated than any
> blase assumption. For example the terrorist organization known as
> Al Queda is much more sophisticated than you give them credit for.

And we or rather some of our agencies that have run amok and now
are being handed even greater powers over both ourselves and the
rest of the world with even less oversight, are much more in the
wrong ourselves than I see most people in the US admitting to.
I don't know all sophisticated Al Qaeda is or is not and I
suspect, neither does anyone here. But our know our own CIA has
been active for good and often ill all over the globe for many
decades and has sources of funding that are nearly untraceable.
And I know it is ultra-sophiticated.
> >We do not know there is any terrorism plot behind the anthrax
> >scare according to experts. Nor do we have evidence saying it
> >is done by any particular group that is more than extremely
> >flimsy. That the Taliban are nasty folks does not say they are
> >responsible for all ills nor that an endless campaign that goes
> >substantially beyond Afghanistan is in the least justified. Not
> >to mention the eviscerating of our own civil liberties.
> I agree that we do not know enough about the anthrax episode to
> draw any conclusions yet, at least publicly.

> I have already explained the need for worldwide anti-terrorist
> operations.
> I'm gratified to see that some of the new emergency laws being
> passed have sunset provisions.

I would be more gratified if we spent as long considering the
implications and dangerous of these new laws and the
cost-benefit ratio of them as we spent pouring over the sex life
of Clinton. Personally I think our civil liberties and
guarantees of freedom at home are worth at least that much. I
don't see that very much gain in detecting and stopping
terrorist actions will be acheived as against the very real and
deep eroding of our liberty and safety from tyranny.

I don't expect the sunset provisions to ever be agreed to by
Bush. If they are I don't expect him to be through with this
indeterminate holy war when the sunset clause is up.

- samantha

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