Monday, September 11, 2006

My 9/11 Post

Pondering Surrender by Anthony Gregory

Five years ago, Americans, all horrified by the terrorist attacks, tended to have two different ideas about the underlying cause and the appropriate response.

One was to blame the attacks on terrorists who simply hated our freedom. "Freedom itself was attacked," said President George W. Bush. "And freedom will be defended." The president soon led the country into war and pushed through a series of new measures to consolidate the national government’s police powers at home. The answer to 9/11 was more militarism and more government. As time went on, the pro-war crowd became more adamant that it was American liberty that drew the terrorists’ ire, and that, indeed, the U.S. had not been active enough in its foreign policy before 9/11. Bush said upon his re-inauguration that the attacks came after "years of relative quiet, years of repose, years of sabbatical."

The other reaction on 9/11, the minority one, was to regard the attacks primarily as a response to years of belligerent U.S. foreign policy. The main target was not America’s freedom, its commerce, its tolerant culture, but rather its arrogant imperialism in the Middle East, its coziness with secular dictators, its cavalier bombing campaigns, its troops stationed in the midst of other countries, its sanctions through the UN that killed hundreds of thousands of Iraqis. Only those who had some idea of what the U.S. government had been doing abroad – sadly, a small percentage of Americans – tended to think that this was the root problem that should or even could be addressed by the U.S. government...


Post a Comment

<< Home