The only "war" I can think of in U.S. history anything like the present situation is the U.S. Navy's war on Caribbean piracy
(1814-1825). Stateless, decentralized foe, no defined fields of battle, no "high-value targets"...Again, 1814-1825: eleven years.
Any U.S. history majors out there?
The Washington Post calls it "An Attack on the World."
In addition, the London Times has a graphic
of a world map that shows the number of people killed in last week's attacks from other countries.
Were more planes ready to be taken over?
This doesn't appear to have been posted yet, so here it is. "The [Chicago] Tribune reported that one source said the FBI was "very interested" in passengers whose names appeared on the manifests of several other flights that were already in the air when the first attacks occurred. None of the passengers in which investigators have expressed interest reappeared when flights resumed late last week, the Tribune reported."
WWJD: What Would Jello (Biafra) Do?
Well, he's not sure, but the former Dead Kennedy's front man and all-round cool guy has a little blurb with his take on the terrorist attacks and what the repercussions might be.
The positive impact of America
can be overlooked in the chatter of how bin Laden is the bastard offspring of our malicious foreign policy, so the flip side should be highlighted. How about a Nobel peace prize winner who has saved literally millions of lives worldwide, but even 99% of Americans would fail to recognize? What will we reap from his sowing?
Robert Fisk about his meetings with Bin Laden in the French newspaper Le Monde.
Two interesting quotes (in a poor translation by me):
"A few years later [after 1994] I met in Moscow an old Soviet intelligence officer, who had been a few months in Afghanistan to try to organize the liquidation of Bin Laden, just like the Americans try to do today. According to him, he didn't succeed because the men of Bin Laden couldn't be bribed. Nobody wanted to betray him."
"The Arabs are so mad about the injustices that have come to them from the Americans, that they don't need orders from Afghanistan. Inspiration could be enough. I have asked myself, when I saw last week the images from New York, if Bin Laden wasn't as amazed to see them as I was. If he has television, that is..."
"I don't support military action: 12%"
poll asks, "For how long would you be willing to support U.S. military action against terrorism?" There are a lot more pacifists then I would have expected, given the circumstances. Of course, "As long as it takes" sits at 76%, which is also not surprising. We'll see what that number is in six months...
Martin Amis writes:
'Our best destiny, as planetary cohabitants, is the development of what has been called "species consciousness" - something over and above nationalisms, blocs, religions, ethnicities.' Naively idealistic or something to hope for?
Erward Said article about the attack, in the Observer.
Reposted on Znet:
No cause, no God, no abstract idea can justify the mass slaughter of innocents, most particularly when only a small group of people are in charge of such actions and feel themselves to represent the cause without having a real mandate to do so.
Not trying to be alarmist or anything
but this article frightens me. It was from July and they explicitly name Bin Laden as trying to aquire nuclear materials.
It is possibly nothing, but made me wonder.
Okay, so I am a little biased against the Democratic Underground.
Occasionally I may even laugh at some of their insults of dubya. I am sure this page was placed on their website early in the day of the attack without thinking. Maybe I am being just a little too sensitive about the tragedy, but I really think they should at LEAST change the date of this letter to santa.
'Suicide hijacker' is an airline pilot alive and well in Jedda
- "A man named by the US Department of Justice as a suicide hijacker of American Airlines flight 11 - the first airliner to smash into the World Trade Centre - is very much alive and living in Jeddah."
Amateurs or spin doctors at work?
"Bioterrorism: An Even More Devastating Threat"
Here's a link to an article that appears in today's Washington Post. It details an "easier" way to eliminate "80 percent of people infected by inhaled spores". The print version includes a map with the best flight plan and release point to effect the best results. Is this Responsible Journalism? Is it necessary to publish this sort of weakness in America's country's defenses? I don't disagree that Bioterrorism is a threat to be concerned about, just the presentation & the flip attitude of how easy it will be to pull this off. Or do we need this kind of "the-sky-is-going-to-fall" reporting to shock us into action?
is the first night of Rosh Hashanah
, the Jewish New Year, and tomorrow the one-week anniversary of the attack. Am I the only one nervous about a knockout punch tomorrow morning?
Well, here we go.
Macau authorities have arrested five Pakistanis of (officially) overstaying their visas. They also may be (again, speaking officially here) robbery suspects. But about halfway down the page, we find this little three-liner:
''According to preliminary investigations, the documents seized [in the arrest] appear to contain instructions to attack American targets in the SAR and Macau in the case of an American attack on Afghanistan,'' the [government] source said.
It's not just Islamic fundamentalist terrorists that are scared.
Sinn Fein publishes an attack on US antiterrorism policy. Perhaps they fear they might be up against the wall eventually themselves, especially since they have steadfastly refused to even pretend to start decommissioning as per the peace agreement?
Bioterror? Nukes? Don't bet on it. Buried in this Washington Post article
about the possibility of further terrorist attacks is a piece of information that I had been thinking was probably true myself: The fact that they went to all this trouble to hijack planes and use them as giant bombs is "enormously illustrative" that they probably do not have anything worse to use on us, like biological, chemical or nuclear weapons.
A Sky Filled With Chaos, Uncertainty and True Heroism
There's lots of fresh detail in this Washington Post story on flight 93, the only plane not to hit a target. "It was the hijackers' bad luck that they chose a plane with a number of large men on board. Beamer stood 6-foot-1 and weighed 200 pounds. Jeremy Glick, 31, another passenger involved in the apparent revolt, was a college rugby player and judo champion. Mark Bingham, 31, of San Francisco was a 6-foot-4 rugby player."
Realism Urgently Needed - Or Not?
David Ignatius's column today in The Washington Post addresses the question of effectiveness in the war against terrorism. He tells the sobering story of the CIA's collaboration with the terrorist Ali Hassan Salameh.
The downside: "The most obvious (lesson) is that collecting intelligence about terrorists is a truly dirty business. This world cannot be penetrated without help from members or friends of the terrorist network".
The upside: "Paradoxically, these tragic days have probably been an ideal time for the CIA to be recruiting new sources of intelligence about terrorism. The barbaric attacks Tuesday aroused disgust around the world --- not least among civilized Muslims. Some of these disgusted Muslims will surely want to help the United States and its allies put the terrorists out of business."
The crucial moral question: It's really a classic means/ends debate. Is it right - or just acceptably expedient - to collaborate with known terrorists in order to strike out at those we don't yet(or otherwise will never) know about?
Bin Laden Denies attack was his.
"I stress that I have not carried out this act, which appears to have been carried out by individuals with their own motivation." Maybe it was the guy on the grassy knoll again?
the map of terrorism
An Israeli commentator shows that there are many Arab states and not all are terrorist or so inclined. Regarding all is over simplification.
For All Those of Us Asking Why
A Muslim activist presents "My explanation to the 'Attack' on the US from the Islamic perspective."
Note the inverted commas around "Attack" and proceed to his contention that "It is not who did it! It is why it was done that really matters."
Then take an industrial dose of anti-emetics and explore the "Jihad" section - including interviews with Osama Bin Laden under the "Heroes of Islam" menu - of the whole "IamMuslim.net" site.
This is what we're all up against. Well, almost all of us, anyway.
So tragically wrong...
Proof that the FBI didn't have a clue. From a year ago: "Even the American cells of violent Middle East political movements as Hamas and Hezbollah, [then FBI Director Louis] Freeh declared, are devoted exclusively to "fundraising and low-level intelligence gathering." Salon writer Bruce Shapiro even goes so far as to call the National Commission on Terrorism's finding that "The threat from terrorists is so high, the potential for massive casualties is so real, that an independent panel is pushing the government to take immediate, drastic action" as a con job.
Tough Times For Pakistan
Please read all the articles. These articles explain in detail what has been going on in Pakistan since the attacks on Tuesday.
Once again my country is facing a tough time to make a decision. To succumb to international pressure and help the BIGGEST bully (US) and in return face the wrath of internal bullies.
Last time Pakistan helped a US cause, we were left alienated to face the problems of Post-Afghan War era.
God Bless Pakistan.
A thoughtful and fascinating analysis
of the historical backdrop to the current situation. Why did this happen, what circumstances got us into a de facto state of undeclared war with the Islamic world, and what can we realistically do to prevent those circumstances from ever recurring?
Missles hit Gaza.
Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat called it here.
"If Sharon goes ahead and cancels [the cease-fire talks], that means he has other plans and we know those other plans -- they involve tanks, shelling and assasinations."
Carnivore and other forms of snooping approved by congress
there has been some references to what this articles deals with but this gives a slightly broader perspectve.
First Amendment advocates fear erosion of rights in aftermath of attacks.
In the aftermath of the worst terrorist attack in America, First Amendment proponents expect and fear that the nation's heightened national security concerns will soon overpower some of its basic freedoms.
A German newspaper, FAZ
is reporting that the U.S. and Israeli intelligence agencies received warnings at least three months ago that Middle Eastern terrorists were planning to hijack commercial aircraft
to use as weapons to destroy important symbols of American and Israeli culture.
NPR Commentator Jim Sleeper on recent events
Links to Real Audio file.
I spent some time today looking for a transcript but this is the best I could find. I heard this yesterday and it's the one of the most reasoned piece of commentary I've heard and places this incident in an appropriate historical context.
"We'll have to be tougher and smarter than ever before but also wiser and, if possible, more noble."
What Does Osama Bin Laden Want?
Slate's David Plotz says "Nothing we have." Read. Discuss.
Is it bin Laden or?
I was watching CNN and they had a little bit on this other terrorist and how the intelligence community is more scared of him than Osama bin Laden. The last picture of him was from 20 years ago. He's responsible for a number of attacks, and is attributed as being responsible for killing more Americians. Anyone catch this guy's name? Got any info on him?
Serj Tankian's (System of a Down) comments
on the terrorist attacks. Aside from making a whole lot of sense, in this well formulated article, Serj also offers up the point-of-view of a middle-eastern living in America. It's a good read, and I would like to thank Qambient for tracking down this article.
University campus communities are a logical place to give and receive support. Blood drives, counseling, vigils are occurring almost universally. Many university departments are sponsoring programs and panel discussions for the public on terrorism: a sort of rough draft of history. (See
, and some with whom I have personal connection:
UCSD (no annoucement online yet)
Is it too soon to see the brighter side?
I'm torn. The words of the tragedy have turned from "The horror" to "let's kill the gays" in less than three days. But at the same time, I know there's a brighter side. Crisis brings (generally) the best out of Americans (if not the world). We will rebuild, re-design, re-shape our world. After WWII, America had a huge upsing economically and socially. People remembered to be happy to be alive, had kids, made families, partied like Hugh Hefner, and created one of the most amazing periods in our history. The same will happen again: unimaginable horror, work, then prosperity. But this only happens is these idiots
don't screw it up. Your thoughts?
Does anyone know how to circulate an online petition? That is, to get one rolling? I think we need to urge President Bush to address the nation directly and as soon as possible, beseeching the American public to end the outbreak of violence against their fellow citizens of Arab (or perceived as such) extraction. The worst irony of the WTC terrorism is that angry Americans are now committing acts of terror against other Americans. Yes, Americans.
Maybe it would fall on deaf ears, but it never hurts to try, right? We have to do something.
Clinton was here
And then, as if by magic he got here
How did he do it?
Pentagon warns of sustained retaliation
Sounds to me like a declaration of war.
Recently I was made aware of a response to the terrorist attacks of Tuesday, by Serj Tankian, vocalist for the politically-themed band, System of a Down
. The response was well written, highly articulated and, yet, it is now MISSING from the band's official website.
I have been unable to find a cached copy of the post, and I am wondering if this article was removed due to it's less-than 100% agreement with the current mindset of the media propaganda machine, or whether it is related to something else.
If anyone can dig up a cached copy, or shed some light on this matter, it would be much appreciated.
Ananova reports bodies of hijacker and stewardess found
in the WTC wreckage. Does it seem that foreign news outlets are reporting stuff earlier than domestic ones to anyone else? And how could there be bodies still intact, so close to the point of impact?
Cancer, and Carcinogens
"This event is not an isolated instance of violence.
This is not an 'act of war.' It is one symptom of a
cancer that threatens to metastasize."
"We're in an age where we don't want to deal with serious issues, we want to deal with little boys pitching baseballs who might be 14 instead of 12."
Hart says he just shook his head when he saw a former Clinton administration Cabinet official on TV Tuesday calling for the formation of a commission to study the best way to combat terrorism. "If a former Cabinet officer didn't know, how could the average man on the street? I do hope the American people understand that somebody was paying attention."
Guns selling briskly. (NYTimes link, registration required -- scroll down to last subheading.)
"They sold me out of ammo by 10 in the morning," said the owner of one Colorado gun store. Apparently some people want personal protection, and others want to "vent" on the firing range. "I had people who said, yeah, they would like to put up a picture of Osama bin Laden and go to work."
World wide "lock-down" of major parts of major cities.
The Malaysian government has detained without trial several Islamic extremists, checkpoints were set up outside the Citibank Tower and Asian-Pacific Financial Tower in Hong Kong, the CN Tower in Toronto was shut, Downing Street was evacuated because a suspect package had been found inside No 10. (The alert was called off within minutes.) Etc, etc, etc.