Tuesday, September 11, 2007
September 11th, 2007
We'd just seen what a small number of evil men could do. And we had to decide how we would react.
We could demand justice - nothing more, but absolutely nothing less. We could have bent all our energies to the capture of Osama bin Ladin, and showed that if you hit us, you will be caught, publicly tried, and punished. And then, except for stepping up our fight against terrorism, we could have stopped. We could have shown the world that only the terrorists have cause to fear us. Osama bin Ladin would have won nothing; it's hard to whip up hatred against a nation who is only dangerous to terrorists.
Instead, America, under the leadership of President Bush, went to war, based upon lies and misinformation. We invaded another nation; we've caused immense amounts of human suffering. The best estimates say that over 600,000 people have died as a result of this war.
Osama bin Ladin is still free, showing that you can hurt us, and we might ignore you, if we want to pick on another bad guy like Saddam. Osama can say we hate Muslims, and that's why we invaded a Muslim nation on false pretenses. And Osama can claim gleefully that his provocation has cost us hundreds of billions of dollars, thousands of lives, tens of thousands of injuries, and the trust of the world.
Note that it doesn't matter how much of it's true... Osama can say that, and people might listen, because even the stuff that's wrong isn't going to look wrong to people who already dislike us.
America faced a choice. Isn't it obvious that the wrong choice was made? Isn't it time to demand that another choice be made?
Even if you think that we can't abandon Iraq - and I think there's a sound argument that we need to do what we can to help the Iraqis, after bringing the horrors of a botched war to their land - isn't it time to admit we were wrong? That we made the wrong choice, that we did the wrong things for the wrong reasons? Love Bush or hate him, he had a chance to capture Osama, and he didn't take it, and then turned his attention to Iraq, and caused untold damage. Isn't it time for a change?
President Clinton ordered at least one raid to try (unsuccessfully) to take attention away from the "Monica Lewinsky Scandal (sic)".
Obviously our "War on Terror" creates terrorists and helps keep some USians both afraid and unwilling to hear many important things and supporting people like Bush.
The "Drug War" hasn't helped end illicit drug use, however it has helped imprison countless numbers of poor minority youth, while rarely, if ever, hurting those one might want to imprison.
Our idiotic reaction to Castro and Cuba has ignored the good that Cuba has done - which should be an example for us, and helped hurt many Cubans who could be our allies.
Adding ideologues as Bush has had so many of to an "impressionable President (sic)" has of course created new doublespeak and probably millions of unnecessary deaths not only in Iraq and directly in the War against Bin Laden, but in many other places.
We can only hope - that in 2008 and 2009 - the Democrats and others will not simply react against Bush but will help to undo his legacy in positive, life affirming ways.
I'm not optimistic, but I do hope for the best!