Wednesday, September 10, 2008

America's opportunity to rally the world was squandered on preemptive and misguided warring

INCREDIBLE AND BIZARRE. I still grieve over what happened on September 11, 2001. The terrorist attacks, devastation, loss of nearly 3,000 lives, and heroic responses by volunteers still seems incredible. Just as incredible has been the unfathomable manner in which our governmental leaders have ever since reacted to it. These past seven years have got to be the most bizarre chapter in U.S. history.

JUSTIFICATIONS AND RATIONALIZATIONS. Instead of thoughtfully considering the range of reasons for the attacks and weighing various plausibly effective responses to it, our President immediately declared war and insisted the attacks occurred because "they are evil" and "hate our freedom." From that point on, we've been on a wild ride. The attacks of September 11, 2001 have been used to:
(1) wage one of the most nebulous wars in world history,
(2) create a national and international environment of secrecy and suspicion,
(3) focus and solidify unprecedented power in the Presidency,
(4) justify the use of a "preemptive war" policy (unprecedented and ethically untenable),
(5) justify taking unilateral action in the face of international opposition to American assertions and reactions,
(6) justify war on Afghanistan,
(7) justify war on Iraq,
(8) justify renewal and extension of the Patriot Act with wholesale rollbacks of civil liberties,
(9) justify radical increases in defense and homeland security expenditures,
(10) justify the use of torture on detainees and suspects,
(11) justify an alarming and growing federal budget deficit,
(12) justify radical reduction in local safety-net and self-help initiatives for the poorest of poor Americans,
(13) re-elect a President who was perceived as winning the "war on terror" (overwhelming evidence to the contrary),
(14) justify the promotion of continued and increased levels violence as the way to end violence and bring about peace, or at least "security."

FALLACIOUS AND MISLEADING. Seven years later, the Bush Administration still uses the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 to to justify or rationalize much of its conduct and misconduct. But terrorism has increased during the past seven years; some would say that terrorist recruits have multiplied because of our leaders' chosen responses to terrorism. America and the world is not a safer place seven years later. The "evidence" the Administration used to connect 9/11 to Iraq and WMDs has proven fallacious and misleading. On it goes...

HONESTY CALLS FOR CHANGE. Does not honesty and integrity (so vocally asserted by the Bush Administration) call for a thorough reevaluation and refocusing of America's response to terrorism? Violence and war has had its "fair" chance. In honor of all who died on 9/11 and in the hope of ending the unnecessary loss of life in the terrorist wars, it is time and past time for change.

I welcome your comments and/or questions in the spirit of dialog. Share yours by clicking on "comments" just below. They're moderated only to reduce incivility. Shalom!

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous12:02 AM

    I read your comments most everyday. I have never been disappointed and quite often am so thankful for your careful analysis. ~mm


Your tasteful comments and/or questions are welcome. Posts are moderated only to reduce a few instances of incivility.