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  Daily Column, September 13th 
  Sep 13, 2001, 07:00am EDT 

Who’s to blame, really?

By: Sander Sassen

Every crime committed leaves a footprint of evidence, and even though this evidence might be hard to find it is there for those taking the time to look. Patience in this case is a virtue, you do not want to be jumping to conclusions, nor do you want to base your decision making on evidence that’s doubtful. Not making sense am I? I am referring to the US intelligence machine that’s currently running at full steam and spitting out all kinds of information, the FBI and police making arrests and raiding homes looking for suspects.

This is good thing for the public, seeing that the government is indeed quick to act on this and is supposedly able to hunt down the ones who did it. It strengthens their believe that the government will tackle this issue and bring the ones who did it to justice. But in reality aren’t they looking for a scapegoat? Someone to blame this on? If I look at the number of people already taking it out on the Islam community I only hope that those that run the military machine won’t be too quick to start pushing those buttons. Having a hunch or a ‘pretty good idea’ who did this isn’t going to cut it when you have to justify killing people.

And then there’s the fact that the evidence uncovered until now may have been left there by the actual terrorists or other people with an agenda to be able to point the finger at a specific individual or even a whole nation, who might have nothing to do with the attacks. Having the US deploy the full force of their military machine to eradicate them will surely help those who planted that evidence from doing away with their adversaries or eliminating their problem. We can all start pointing fingers, but I think that particularly in this case we should realize that someone is innocent until proven guilty without the shadow of a doubt.

I know we all would like to get instant gratification but it is not going to happen, and I do hope the President and its military leaders realize this also. The NATO actually does, as their decision to form an alliance to back the US is actually twofold, the want to show the world that all nations condemn this terrorist attack and will hunt down the ones that did it. But also to make sure the US doesn’t suddenly deploy a number of nuclear missiles bound for Afghanistan or Iraq because they have a ‘pretty good feeling’ who did this.

Now is not the time to be trigger happy, but to show the world that we have the self-control and intelligence to handle this in the best possible way. Anger and frustration are normal, but letting your emotions cloud your decisions and do away with logical reasoning is what starts wars and in this case, looking at the might of the US military, makes for a real dangerous situation with global implications. We want to make absolutely sure that those we will retaliate against are indeed guilty of these horrendous attacks against innocent American lives.

Remember that 50-years ago we were at war with Germany and the Japanese, it was clear who the enemy was as they simply declared war on us, no doubts, no guessing. This is a different game however, these terrorists go to great lengths to hide their operation and the identity of their members, suppliers and anyone or any nation supporting their cause. It is up to us to show them that we can beat them at their own game. That we have the intelligence and information collecting ability to hunt them down and eradicate them, by all means necessary. Good, old-fashioned spy work could prove to be just as efficient as the terrorists might not have used any of the modern communication means we rely so heavily on today.

We are faced with the task of finding out whoever did this, someone that apparently has gone to great lengths to hide its or their identity. This will not be an easy task, or one that will be as clear-cut as a declaration of war. We will need to prove, beyond the shadow of a doubt, that the people we do arrest or the nation we blame this on is indeed guilty as charged. I really do hope everyone keeps his self-control and doesn’t start jumping to conclusions or starts pushing buttons that would make us just as barbaric as the ones that committed these hideous crimes.

I’m confident we’ll get to the bottom of this, whole of the US and the Western World is counting on us to find the people who did it. But this will take time, maybe weeks, probably months, might even be years. If that is what it takes, I’d rather wait than see a retaliation strike launched against innocent people and many more young American soldiers die in the aftermath, just because we couldn’t wait. In this case patience and cold, hard reasoning is a virtue, not a burden.

Sander Sassen


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Re: Daily Column, September 13th h0stile 1 replies Sep 13, 2001, 10:57am EDT


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