Friday, September 14, 2001
I join with everyone who is deeply shocked and saddened by the events of last Tuesday morning. As much as I am pained by the senseless destruction and loss of untold lives, I am also horrified by the vengeful voices that already fill the airwaves before we even know who is responsible. And that is the question that haunts me. Who is responsible? Where did this violence begin? How far back in history must we reach to find its source? Will our response help bring peace to the world or will it bring still more violence?
Right now they are saying we're 95 percent certain this was masterminded by Osama Bin Ladin. He would be capable of it all right. After all he was trained in terrorist tactics by our very own CIA during the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan. Who is responsible for this violence?
Our country has trained and supported terrorists in Chile, El Salvador, Vietnam, Nicaragua, Gaza . . . the list goes on and on. And this is just a sampling from recent memory. We backed death squads in the Congo when Eisenhower was president. Who is responsible for this violence? History has taught us that retaliation will not bring us security. It will only create more violence. Any school child knows this. Don't we tell them that Jesus said to turn the other cheek?
Please join me in calling on our leaders to act with wisdom. As the most powerful country on the planet, we can use our might to respond to this act of hatred in a way that soothes the pain, not only here at home but throughout the world. We have the power to end violence and begin creating peace on earth.