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More From the Idaho Peace Coalition...

October 27, 2001 The Idaho Statesman published this "Reader's View" this morning.

Liz Paul is a volunteer with the Idaho Peace Coalition. They can be reached at peacenow@qwest.net. I urge you to express your opinion (politely) to the members of this group regarding their lack of support for our nation in this time of crisis.

Below is the message I e-mailed to them in response to Liz Paul.

Yes Ms. Paul, I agree we should  not be "self-righteous and blind to the truth”. The questions below are not rhetorical. I am curious how you came to your conclusions and would welcome your response.

How, for example, do you propose that we apprehend all of  “the accused” and “work to establish a judicial process to bring (them) to fair trial under international law?”   After the arrest warrants are issued, where do we send the SWAT team?   (Assuming of course that you don’t think the SWAT team is too radical an action against the poor, misunderstood “Freedom Fighters”.)
Can you see any benefit in the conviction and life sentences of the four murderous thugs who helped orchestrate and carry out the terrorist attacks on our embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998?  There they sat last month; a stone's throw from the rubble of the Twin Towers toppled by their buddies -- whom they reportedly cheered as they listened to radio news broadcasts of the  9-11 attacks from their jail cells. 

Do you honestly believe rounding up bin Laden and few of his henchmen and putting them on trial would solve anything?  Of course you don’t.  You stated as much. “But you know that capturing or killing Osama bin Laden won't stop terrorism.”

Do you understand the perversion of Islamic belief that drives these radicals?  Do you realize how many of them there are, how widespread their influence is, how unrealistic it is to think “international law” can prevail against them?

You state,  “The people who committed the crimes of Sept. 11 acted out of a deep hatred and anger that our violence incites.”   Have you studied the history of this brand of radical Islamism, do you have any idea how old it is and how utterly fanatic?  Their “deep hatred and anger” wasn’t “incited” by OUR violence, but by their own twisted, insatiable desire to establish a world ruled by their version of Islamic Law.   

Atrocities committed by these fanatics have been documented for over thirteen centuries.  Millions of human lives have been sacrificed by Jihad campaigns around the world.  Jihad, or Holy War, is a religiously sanctioned call for individual and collective violence made by radical Islamists against "infidels" worldwide.

Fatah, or military conquest, is the employment of Jihad for imperial expansion and colonization of non-Islamic lands. Radical Islamists believe that Fatah is as legitimate today as when the concept gave rise to a series of invasions of countries outside Islam's original birthplace in the Arabian Peninsula.

Historically, Fatah was employed repeatedly over the centuries and included the unprovoked invasions known as Ghazwas by Arab Muslims beginning in 636 AD.  These invasions aimed to capture and dominate the “Dar al-Harb”  In their belief system this is the “realm of war”, ruled by “infidels” and susceptible to Islamic subjugation.   They would then impose the religion, and in many areas the language and culture, of the Arab Muslims on their captive subjects.   Radical Islamists today wish to re-institutionalize the Ghazwas, thereby re-connecting themselves to a nostalgic, "heroic" past.  If successful, they will have reconstituted the world's longest ongoing campaign of imperialist aggression. 

By what authority does the United States “order the Afghan borders opened”?   And how would the President “provide safe corridors for delivery of aid” under the current regime?

The United States, “guided by the wisdom of human understanding and compassion” has done much work in the world attempting  “to resolve the hatred and violence”.  We do “understand the desperation of those who would harm us”.  It is not a “desperation” inspired by American foreign policy any more than the “desperation” of a rapist is inspired by his victim.

It is the very values you exhort the President to stand by;  “freedom from fear for all, freedom from want for all, justice for all, and equal opportunity and liberty for all” that our enemy will take from us if we allow it.    It was not our military response to the bombings of our embassies in Kenya, but our previous administration’s unwillingness to finish the job that allowed the terrorists to continue their campaign believing we are “too weak” to stop them.   If the President was to follow your advice, we would prove them right.