U.S. foreign policy has too long appeased terrorists
The "Attack on America" has finally reversed our terrorist foreign policy. I, and I think many other people, were appalled at a letter of Sept. 16, not for the writer's blame of our government's pro Israel stance, because Osama bin Laden blamed this attack on the very same reason.
What I seriously question in the letter is that the writer came down in favor of continuing our softness on international terrorism.
If he would examine U.S. government diplomacy since 1941 and before, he would have found that appeasement is the "watch word" of our government's diplomacy. Here are eight examples:
1. We did not enter into World War II, although our government knew of the concentration camps and Hitler's conquest of Eastern and Western European countries, until Japan bombed Pearl Harbor.
2. The 1972 attack on the Jewish Olympic Team in Munich.
3. The 1983 bombing of the Marine headquarters in Beirut.
4. Saddam Hussein's attack on Kuwait and the subsequent Gulf War and our failure to completely finish the operation.
5. The bombing of several U.S. embassies in East Africa.
6. The continuous treatment of terrorism in Israel as something that could be negotiated.
7. The recent bombing of the USS Cole in Kuwait.
8. September 11, 2001 -- "Attack on America."
If you were a terrorist, would you believe that you could do anything without retaliation? Of course you would!
So after years of treating terrorism as something that would go away and because terrorism only happened somewhere else, we now have terrorism in the United States.
I think the letter writer should be reminded to reconsider these eight reasons and also the Japanese naval commander's statement in World War II, "I fear that we have awakened a sleeping giant."
The fact that the writer came down in favor of terrorism makes me believe that he, even after the heinous terrorist attack, still favors a movement as perverted as the terrorist movement that seeks revenge at any price.
JOHN P. MOYER
Old Glory should fly, even without a catastrophe
As I listen to local radio broadcasts, I am puzzled at the recent sell-out of American flags. Knowing that everyone has one or more television sets in their homes, I chuckle at the thought of not one American flag in their possession.
Patriotism is the love of and devotion to one's country. Considering myself a patriot, I have flown my flag daily since as long as I can remember. Just as I make sure there is bread and milk in my cupboard, I also make sure I have a flag in my home. Loving my country in no way means that I love my government or the way they handle many issues during peaceful times. My husband, a 20-year veteran of the armed forces, did not serve his government. He served his country to help us remain free and to keep the liberties we still possess.
My flag flies daily because I have respect for my country. It reminds me of all the men and women who fought and died for my freedom.
I truly thought that after the Gulf situation and all the hoopla that went on that people would continue to fly "Old Glory" after it was all over. I was surprised to see that most of the flags came down. You would think that everyone would be proud, more than ever, to continue to fly our Stars and Stripes daily, to remind us that the American dream is still alive. Flags should be flown everyday, but especially on New Year's, Inauguration Day, President's Day, Easter Sunday, Mother's Day, Armed Forces' Day, Memorial Day (half staff until noon), Flag Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Constitution Day, Columbus Day, Navy Day, Veterans' Day, Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day.
Make no mistake, I am very much moved by all those who are displaying flags every day recently during this time of disaster. I only hope and continue to pray that when this is finally over, that Americans will continue to fly those Stars and Stripes with pride, and keep a spare flag in their home for when their existing flag is in unsuitable condition to fly. God Bless America.
MARY K. BAIRD-ZITELLO-MOORE
Traficant oversteps the line, should resign
Just when you think that our indicted congressman, Jim Traficant, has finally put his last foot in his mouth, he swallows the entire shoe store and embarrasses us once again.
After the acts of war committed against our nation, Traficant overused his bully pulpit to attack the United States intelligence community and the state of Israel -- this after network television showed Palestinians dancing in the street after the attacks on America.
Has it ever occurred to Mr. Traficant and his cronies that their corruption has cost the taxpayers millions of dollars that could have gone to fight foreign enemies? That his and his cronies' corruption tied up FBI agents here in Mahoning County, who could have been fighting foreign enemies? Well, it has occurred to me. Enough is enough, Jim. I once again call on him to resign.
SAMUEL M. MOFFIE
America will rise again
I would like to express my gratitude to my family, friends and neighbors who sat outside with me in Friday evening's cold temperature to show their American pride and spirit and who stood up for this great nation and showed no fear, and also to the many people who were driving off the Indianola-Shirley Road exit and read our signs and honked, not only for the many innocent victims, their families and the rescuers still on the scene, but also for America and what it stands for: freedom, justice, strength and the confidence that we will again rise up and be an even stronger nation under God, indivisible with liberty and justice for all.
Nation must do better jobof tracking immigrants
When I first heard about what happened, I was shocked and angry. What these people did to our country was uncalled for. I believe, though, that what happened will make our country think twice about how things like this aren't supposed to happen.
These attacks did something that I thought needed to be done for years. Stop letting all of these immigrants into this country. We should make sure that they are here for a reason -- even if they are coming here for a vacation. I know that we are free country, but you have to do something about all these foreigners coming over here. I hope we find the people involved in these attacks and punish them heavily. I believe that these attacks will make this country stronger and more aware of what possibilities lie ahead.
Don't treat all people of Arab descent as enemies
Without a doubt, last week's events constitute a national tragedy.
However, I think that we as Americans need to focus on the effects of the acts. Of course, retaliation will be neccessary. But average citizens will feel effects in their personal lives as well. Loved ones have been lost, landmarks destroyed.
But what about the Arab community? I liken it to the Japanese during World War II. People of Arab descent will be viewed as the enemy, whether they support bin Laden or not. I urge the citizens of the Mahoning Valley not to fall into the trap of stereotyping.
Trust your fellow Americans, no matter what their ethnicity, until they give you a reason not to.
Recall America's valiant past, know we'll prevail
As I have watched the events of the past week unfold, I keep coming back to three points: Americans are not to blame for this tragedy, we must clearly define who the enemy is, and Americans need to reflect and look to our past for guidance and inspiration.
I have heard citizens of the United Stated blaming our foreign policy for this tragedy. To me, this logic is the same logic as defending rapists, citing that a woman deserved to be assaulted because she wore provocative clothes.
I have also heard the cries for immediate vengeance. I felt the need as well, but decided to observe how the rest of the world reacted instead. I have been overwhelmed by the displays from other nations and realized that to be successful, we will need their support. Let us make sure our vengeance is clearly targeted.
Finally, I have heard the cries of Americans to pray and worship. I agree that prayer will provide comfort, but I am reminded of our nation's great diversity. Prayer alone cannot be the answer. Look to the past: remember great Americans and their great deeds.Visit memorials dedicated to great sacrifice and monuments dedicated to great events. Read about heroic acts and take comfort in them, knowing that we shall prevail again.
X The writer is a teacher at Roosevelt Elementary School in Warren.