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Originally posted on the 2nd anniversary of the September 11th terrorist attacks, this review of the discussion surrounding the war on terror seems worth revisiting at this time. Simple facts and quotes follow, without additional editorial comment.
"If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds, and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them. But the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being, and who is willing to destroy his own heart?"
-- Alexander Solzhenitsyn
September 5, 1972: Eight Palestinian "Black September" terrorists seized 11 Israeli athletes in the Olympic Village in Munich, West Germany. In a bungled rescue attempt by West German authorities, nine of the hostages and five terrorists were killed.
March 2, 1973: U.S. Ambassador to Sudan Cleo A. Noel and other diplomats were assassinated at the Saudi Arabian Embassy in Khartoum by members of the Black September organization.
"So long as there are men there will be wars."
-- Albert Einstein
"Only the dead have seen the last of war"
-- George Santayana
"It may be that at some time in the dim future of the race the need for war will vanish: but that time is yet ages distant. As yet no nation can hold its place in the world, or can do any work really worth doing, unless it stands ready to guard its right with an armed hand."
June 27, 1976: Members of the Baader-Meinhof Group and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine seized an Air France airliner and its 258 passengers. They forced the plane to land in Uganda,where on July 3 Israeli commandos successfully rescued the passengers.
"It is fatal to enter any war without the will to win it."
--General Douglas MacArthur
"Igitur qui desiderat pacem, praeparet bellum."
--"Epitoma Rei Militaris" by Vegetius.
(Therefore, whoever wishes for peace, let him prepare for war.)
November 4, 1979: After President Carter agreed to admit the Shah of Iran into the U.S., Iranian radicals seized the U.S. embassy in Tehran and took 66 American diplomats hostage. Thirteen hostages were soon released, but the remaining 53 were held until their release on January 20, 1981.
"States like these, and their terrorist allies, constitute an axis of evil, arming to threaten the peace of the world."
--George W. Bush on Iraq, Iran, and North Korea
"I think it will take years before we can repair the damage done by that statement."
-- Jimmy Carter on George Bush's use of the phrase "Axis of Evil"
October 6, 1981: Soldiers who were secretly members of the Takfir Wal-Hajira sect attacked and killed Egyptian President Anwar Sadat during a troop review.
September 14, 1982: Lebanese Prime Minister Bashir Gemayel was assassinated by a car bomb parked outside his party's Beirut headquarters.
April 18, 1983: Sixty-three people, including the CIA's Middle East director, were killed, and 120 were injured in a 400-pound suicide truck-bomb attack on the U.S. Embassy in Beirut, Lebanon. The Islamic Jihad claimed responsibility.
October 23, 1983: Simultaneous suicide truck-bomb attacks were made on American and French compounds in Beirut, Lebanon. A 12,000-pound bomb destroyed the U.S. compound, killing 242 Americans, while 58 French troops were killed when a 400-pound device destroyed a French base. Islamic Jihad claimed responsibility.
"Over the years, the United States has sent many of its fine young men and women into great peril to fight for freedom beyond our borders. The only amount of land we have ever asked for in return is enough to bury those that did not return."
-- Colin Powell
March 16, 1984: The Islamic Jihad kidnapped and later murdered Political Officer William Buckley in Beirut, Lebanon. Other U.S. citizens not connected to the U.S. Government were seized over a succeeding 2-year period.
June 14, 1985: A Trans-World Airlines flight was hijacked en route to Rome from Athens by two Lebanese Hizballah terrorists and forced to fly to Beirut. The eight crew members and 145 passengers were held for 17 days, during which one American hostage, a U.S. Navy sailor, was murdered. After being flown twice to Algiers, the aircraft was returned to Beirut after Israel released 435 Lebanese and Palestinian prisoners.
October 7, 1985: Four Palestinian Liberation Front terrorists seized the Italian cruise liner Achille Lauro in the eastern Mediterranean Sea, taking more than 700 hostages. One U.S. passenger was murdered before the Egyptian Government offered the terrorists safe haven in return for the hostages' freedom. Years later the leader of the hijackers would be discovered in Baghdad following the liberation of Iraq.
November 23, 1985: An EgyptAir airplane bound from Athens to Malta and carrying several U.S. citizens was hijacked by the Abu Nidal Group.
March 30, 1986: A Palestinian splinter group detonated a bomb as TWA Flight 840 approached Athens Airport, killing four U.S. citizens.
"The liberties of our country, the freedom of our civil Constitution, are worth defending at all hazards; and it is our duty to defend them against all attacks. We have received them as a fair inheritance from our worthy ancestors: they purchased them for us with toil and danger and expense of treasure and blood, and transmitted them to us with care and diligence. It will bring an everlasting mark of infamy on the present generation, enlightened as it is, if we should suffer them to be wrested from us by violence without a struggle, or to be cheated out of them by the artifices of false and designing men."
-- Samuel Adams
April 5, 1986: Two U.S. soldiers were killed, and 79 American servicemen were injured in a Libyan bomb attack on a nightclub in West Berlin, Germany. In retaliation, U.S. military jets bombed targets in and around Tripoli and Benghazi.
February 17, 1988: U.S. Marine Corps Lt. Col. W. Higgins was kidnapped and murdered by the Iranian-backed Hizballah group while serving with the United Nations Truce Supervisory Organization in southern Lebanon.
"War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature, and has no chance of being free unless made or kept so by the exertions of better men than himself."
--John Stuart Mill
"The Bush doctrine of preemptive war is wrong for America, and sets a dangerous precedent. So many who supported the war now say that they are opposed to the doctrine of preemption. Then why did they vote for this preemptive war? I opposed the President's war on Iraq, I continue to stand against his policy of preemption, and on my first day in office I will tear up the Bush doctrine and rebuild a foreign policy consistent with American values."
December 21, 1988: Pan American Airlines Flight 103 was blown up over Lockerbie, Scotland, by a bomb believed to have been placed on the aircraft in Frankfurt, West Germany, by Libyan terrorists. All 259 people on board were killed.
"It is in vain, sir, to extenuate the matter. Gentlemen may cry, Peace, Peace--but there is no peace. The war is actually begun! The next gale that sweeps from the north will bring to our ears the clash of resounding arms! Our brethren are already in the field! Why stand we here idle? What is it that gentlemen wish? What would they have? Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!"
--Patrick Henry March 23,1775
"Stop this war before it starts! Bring home our troops..." (said to chants of "Stop this war! Stop this war!")
--Rep Dennis Kucinich (D-Oh)
January 18-19, 1991: Iraqi agents planted bombs at the U.S. Ambassador to Indonesia's home residence and at the USIS library in Manila.
February 26, 1993: The World Trade Center in New York City was badly damaged when a car bomb planted by Islamic terrorists explodes in an underground garage. The bomb left six people dead and 1,000 injured. The men carrying out the attack were followers of Umar Abd al-Rahman, an Egyptian cleric who preached in the New York City area.
April 14, 1993: The Iraqi intelligence service attempted to assassinate former U.S. President George Bush during a visit to Kuwait. In retaliation, the U.S. launched a cruise missile attack 2 months later on the Iraqi capital Baghdad.
March 8, 1995: Two unidentified gunmen killed two U.S. diplomats and wounded a third in Karachi, Pakistan.
November 13, 1995: The Islamic Movement of Change planted a bomb in a Riyadh military compound that killed one U.S. citizen, several foreign national employees of the U.S. Government, and more than 40 others.
"My friends, this rush to war does not benefit the American people..."
--Ambassador Carol Moseley Braun
"It's looking more and more like a case of mass deception... There was no imminent danger, and we should never have gone to war."
--Sen. Edward Kennedy (D-MA)
June 25, 1996: A fuel truck carrying a bomb exploded outside the U.S. military's Khobar Towers housing facility in Dhahran, killing 19 U.S. military personnel and wounding 515 persons, including 240 U.S. personnel. Several groups claimed responsibility for the attack.
February 23, 1997: A Palestinian gunman opened fire on tourists at an observation deck atop the Empire State Building in New York City, killing a Danish national and wounding visitors from the United States, Argentina, Switzerland, and France before turning the gun on himself. A handwritten note carried by the gunman claimed this was a punishment attack against the "enemies of Palestine."
August 7, 1998: A bomb exploded at the rear entrance of the U.S. embassy in Nairobi, Kenya, killing 12 U.S. citizens, 32 Foreign Service Nationals (FSNs), and 247 Kenyan citizens. About 5,000 Kenyans, six U.S. citizens, and 13 FSNs were injured. The U.S. embassy building sustained extensive structural damage. Almost simultaneously, a bomb detonated outside the U.S. embassy in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, killing seven FSNs and three Tanzanian citizens, and injuring one U.S. citizen and 76 Tanzanians. The explosion caused major structural damage to the U.S. embassy facility. The U.S. Government held Usama Bin Ladin responsible.
"Mr. bin Laden used to live in Sudan. He was expelled from Saudi Arabia in 1991, then he went to Sudan. And we'd been hearing that the Sudanese wanted America to start meeting with them again. They released him. At the time, 1996, he had committed no crime against America so I did not bring him here because we had no basis on which to hold him, though we knew he wanted to commit crimes against America."
-- Bill Clinton explains to a Long Island, N.Y., business group why he turned down Sudan's offer to extradite Osama Bin Laden to America in 1996.
"The only thing needed for evil to prosper is for good men to do nothing."
-- Edmund Burke
October 12, 2000: In Aden, Yemen, a small dingy carrying explosives rammed the destroyer U.S.S. Cole, killing 17 sailors and injuring 39 others. Supporters of Usama Bin Ladin were suspected.
"The enemy of America is not our many Muslim friends. It is not our many Arab friends. Our enemy is a radical network of terrorists and every government that supports them."
-- George W. Bush
"The architects of this wickedness will find no safe harbor in this world. We will chase our enemies to the furthest corners of this Earth. It must be war without quarter, pursuit without rest, victory without qualification."
-- Rep. Tom Delay (R-Tx)
"I say to our enemies: We are coming. God may have mercy on you, but we won't."
-- Sen. John Mccain (R-Az)
?I am saddened, saddened that this president failed so miserably at diplomacy that we?re now forced to war?
--Tom Daschle (D-SD)
"I have absolutely no regret about my vote on this war. The cost in human lives. The cost to our budget, probably $100 billion. We could have probably brought down that statue for a lot less."
--Nancy Pelosi (D-Ca)
"I think there has been an exaggeration. They are misleading all Americans in a profound way."
--Sen. John Kerry (D-MA)
"Today's Western society has revealed the inequality between the freedom for good deeds and the freedom for evil deeds. A statesman who wants to achieve something highly constructive for his country has to move cautiously and even timidly; thousands of hasty (and irresponsible) critics cling to him at all times; he is constantly rebuffed by parliament and the press. He has to prove his every step is well founded and absolutely flawless. Indeed, an outstanding, truly great person who has unusual and unexpected initiatives in mind does not get any chance to assert himself; dozens of traps will be set for him from the beginning. Thus mediocrity triumphs under the guise of democratic restraints."
-- Alexander Solzhenitsyn
"What we need now is not just regime change in Saddam Hussein and Iraq, but we need regime change in the United States...I don't think [world leaders] are going to trust this president, no matter what. I believe it deeply, that it will take a new president of the United States, declaring a new day for our relationship with the world, to clear the air and turn a new page on American history."
--Sen. John Kerry (D-MA)
September 11, 2001: Two hijacked airliners crashed into the twin towers of the World Trade Center. Soon thereafter, the Pentagon was struck by a third hijacked plane. A fourth hijacked plane, suspected to be bound for a high-profile target in Washington, crashed into a field in southern Pennsylvania. More than 3,000 U.S. citizens and other nationals were killed as a result of these acts.
"Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, to assure the survival and success of liberty."
--John F. Kennedy
"These are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman."
"In war there is no prize for the runner-up."
-- General Omar Bradley
"These terrorists...we have seen their kind before. They're the heirs of all the murderous ideologies of the 20th century. By sacrificing human life to serve their radical visions, by abandoning every value except the will to power, they follow in the path of fascism, Nazism and totalitarianism. And they will follow that path all the way to where it ends in history's unmarked grave of discarded lies."
-- George W. Bush
Sirhan Sirhan, a Palestinian, Robert Kennedy's assassin, murdered him because of Kennedy's pro-Israel views.
Bali night-club bombing . . .Posted by Michael DeZelar at September 26, 2003 04:06 PM
Were 5,000 U.S. citizens and other nationals killed on 9/11?Posted by Jeff at September 26, 2003 04:29 PM
The fallacy of Bush's road map on this third anniversary of the Intifada
published on the jewish new year
Posted by who at September 27, 2003 07:53 AM
1993: Mir Aimal Kasi shot two CIA employees to death in VirginaPosted by Mark at September 27, 2003 04:15 PM
Patrick Henry, who is called the firebrand of the American Revolution, is
still remembered for his words, "Give me liberty or give me death"; but in
current textbooks, the context of these words is omitted. Here is what he
"An appeal to arms and the God of hosts is all that is left us. But we
shall not fight our battle alone. There is a just God that presides over
the destinies of nations. The battle, sir, is not to the strong alone. Is
life so dear or peace so sweet as to be purchased at the price of chains and
slavery? Forbid it Almighty God. I know not what course others may take,
but as for me, give me liberty, or give me death."
Great post!! One of the best I've seen yet. You have a good grasp of what this war against terrorism is all about. Keep up the good work. I'll link you.Posted by SunKing278 at October 4, 2003 06:04 AM
Even though the delivery leaves a lot to be desired, I'll say this for George: he has excellent speech writers.Posted by Max M at February 11, 2004 06:24 PM
Yes, he has excellent speech writers. But what I worry about is what country is he going to attack next? As you can see by the list of countries with citizens involved in terrorism, we've got an awfully lot to choose from.Posted by old gal at September 9, 2004 08:43 PM
You forgot Al Said Nosair shooting Meyer Kahane (granted Kahane was a dangerous ass, but still) in NY. Also the Egyptian who shot up LAX and the Beltway Snipers (though those are post 9/11. Just because these weren't "organized" doesn't mean that they weren't Islamofacism in action.Posted by holdfast at September 10, 2004 04:52 AM
Good list, old man. You link the grey areas in everyone's heart with the action or inaction which led to or answered the evil perpetrated on Americans. I find no fault with your list. I mourn the people lost in the extended length of time it took us to wake to the evil perpetrated on us because we are slow to anger and generous to all. But now, we must press on, "as conquer we must, as conquer we shall."
SubsunkPosted by Subsunk at April 13, 2005 03:56 AM
I posted a timeline quite a while ago, too, after one of Ted Kennedy's lovely little comments:Pam at July 12, 2005 05:26 PM
This is a great post. Wish every teacher in America could present this to their classes. You have spent a lot of time and hard work putting this together. Wish we could thank you in person and let you know how much you are appreciated. But then you might have to quit posting. Hope you never have to quit. Thank you for all your hard work.Posted by Lucifer at July 12, 2005 11:48 PM Hide Comments | Show/Add Comments in Popup Window(13) | (Note: You must refresh main page to view newly posted comments here)