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The Times Square Bomber: Has American Security Gotten Any Better Since 9/11?: Left of Center View

September 11th, sucked and it felt good to strike back, at someone, anyone. We wrote country songs and watched CNN and heard the speeches of support from other nations and thought our darkest days were behind us. 9/11 sucked, but they had awoken the sleeping giant and now America was going to kick some major terrorist butt. And we did. I think the people planning the various attacks were right to immediately send out our forces and strike back at the invaders much like America did in the months following Pearl Harbor when we launched a mostly symbolic air raid on Tokyo. It was a symbolic raid because a lot of work and resources went into it, but there was very little to gain from the action tactically, but the psychological gains were worth the risk. Americans could feel that the country had responded and the Japanese realized that we were capable of striking at the very heart of their nation. It was a huge moral victory and one that the United States would use to keep morale high in the far less glamour months to come.

However, unlike our response to the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor, there was no nation to focus our aggression against. Not at first. The terrorists may have been hiding in Afghanistan but there had to be another government behind it. It had to be decided that Iraq was behind the attack. The propaganda machine went into full effect and Saddam, the very man we put into power was compared to Hitler and Mussolini in news papers across the world. We made demands and set rules and schedules, but the whole time everyone knew that this was just the pre-cursor to the war that was coming. We needed a victory, and I think many of the people involved knew that to actually attempt to defeat the people responsible for the attack on 9/11 would be met with waning public support after months with very little action to fill the evening news.

Instead of launching a war against the terrorists the U.S. government used the events of September 11, 2001 to launch its War on Terror or as we now call it the “Overseas Contingency Operation". It became every bit as much a political campaign as it was a military campaign. Somehow in the midst of all this Americans agreed to the “Patriot Act” effectively giving back many of the freedoms our fathers and forefathers fought and died to gain and protect. The threat is real. The problem is that now that we know the threat is there it can be used to justify doing things that they wouldn’t dare think about before.

We’ve lost freedoms, we’ve lost rights and we’ve lost privileges, but more importantly we’ve lost our own sons and daughters. We now find ourselves at war, and pouring money into a country that had very little to do with 9/11, which was the justification for it all. The terrorist cells that attacked us had more ties to Germany than they did to Iraq, but invading Germany just wasn’t all that practical at the time.

We didn’t need to go to war. We needed to go to work. We needed to do more to fix the situation than just the things that looked good on television. But we didn’t. So now almost 10 years later, are we safer? No amount of technology, no amount of government spying or planning will ever make us truly safe. The 9/11 attackers were armed with box cutters. Just this past week a would-be terrorist was able to drive a bomb laden SUV into the heart of Times Square. A poorly made, malfunctioning device thank goodness, but the fact remains that the device was delivered to the drop zone successfully.

If all our security and weapons and intelligence gathering and all of the other heavy handed and threatening tactics haven’t worked thus far why do we assume amplifying our unsuccessful actions will produce better results? There was a time when we were the good guys, and we didn’t have to keep telling the rest of the world that or paying them to be on our side. America did the right thing. America was honesty, integrity, freedom and charity personified. America is still all of those things, but now our dark side is exposed. And it is that dark side that people half way across the world are willing to give their lives to combat. As Sun Tzu writes in the Art of War: “If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle…“ Perhaps it is time we got to know these “terrorists” a little better.


Kyle Pesonen - Staff Writer | E-mail Comments on this column. | Click icon to Digg this article

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The Times Square Bomber: Has American Security Gotten Any Better Since 9/11?: Right of Center View

The Times Square Bomber has demonstrated that while we are safer in many ways than we were in the past there is much more to be done. While liberals work to tie the hands of law enforcement and decry states like Arizona that take a real stand to make America safer and more secure they never mention that since September 11, 2001 there has not been one successful terrorist attack on America in large part because of the efforts of the Bush administration to make our nation safer. There have admittedly been some close calls and that is why we need to not let down our guard.

With all of the good that the USA PATRIOT Act has done for America there are still people that say it never should have passed. I suppose they would like it better if Osama bin Laden could just hop on a jet, drop off a nuclear suitcase bomb in the middle of Manhattan and take out a few million people. The bleeding heart liberals screaming about personal freedoms being taken away don’t ever mention that the people that they want to free from Guantanamo would just as soon turn around and kill a school full of children the next day because they hate us so much. They want to talk about understanding our enemies and trying to live in peace with them when the truth is we need to wipe out the terrorists and make sure they don’t come back.

We need to take a hard line and make sure that there is no doubt that we will deal with terrorists the way that they should be dealt with. We will hunt them down and kill them where they live. In the war on terror there should be nothing off the table. If we need to nuke some third world terrorist factory off the face of the earth we should be prepared to do it. We are safer as a nation when the terrorists are rotting in the ground. If the cowards in Congress don’t have the guts to do what it takes to protect America then they should pack up their bags and get the hell out of Washington. They are the ones who make us less safe with their whining about due process and constitutional rights for people that would just as soon kill them as look at them.

We are safer when people with the strength to make the hard decisions are allowed to do what it takes to keep the bad people out of our nation. We are safer when the terrorists are dead. We are safer when the extremists are deprived of the means to promote their agendas around the world. Since 9/11 we have taken a lot of the right steps to make America safer but there is more to do. Things like the ECHELON system need to be utilized to their fullest capacity. We need to be listening for terrorists using cell phones and e-mail to run their operations. Some liberals want to attack AT&T and Yahoo for helping the government to catch enemies of the country. We should be praising them for having the guts to stand up to the liberal media and do what’s right instead of what’s politically correct.

Where we have got to improve is in our resolve. The people of this country need to remember 9/11 and not try to paint the monsters as somehow understandably angry. Who gives a damn about why they attack us? They attack us and that’s all that matters. We need to think of them as the monsters that they are and wipe them off the face of the earth. This is not hard to understand. They want to kill us so we need to kill them first. We don’t need to hug them or just try to understand them. We need to kill them. America will be safer when we stop trying to humanize the monsters and start taking them out. If they are hiding in Pakistan then we need to bomb Pakistan. It’s not hard to understand.

On the home front we need to secure our country. The borders need to be secure. The airports need to be secure. The ports need to be secure. We don’t need sanctuary cities, we don’t need open borders. We need security. If nothing else the Times Square Bomber showed that there is more to do. This guy came and went to Pakistan to train with terrorists while nobody challenged him because he was a legal immigrant. Clearly we need to not only keep the illegal immigrants out but also keep a better eye on the legal immigrants to make sure they aren’t trying to blow something up. We are safer since 9/11 but not safe enough. If we relax for even a little while the terrorists will take advantage of it.

Tony M. - California | E-mail Comments on this column. | Click icon to Digg this article

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A Legal Immigrant’s Perspective

If you are not a Native American, you are an immigrant, so am I. I came legally to this country at the age of five with my parents who worked hard, paid taxes (even Jesus paid taxes), lived by the rules of this great nation and never took or accepted a penny from the government. We came seeking FREEDOM from a communist country. It was months before we were able to enter the US legally. I remember us getting medical exams, shots (small pox), background check, references, and going through numerous interviews once we arrived. I also remembered people coming to the US from all over the world who waited years since it was based on "Quotas". Read more...

Solving Our Immigration Problem

The major problem our country is facing with illegal immigrants today is because of the exploitation of these immigrants. We believe the solution to this problem is two-fold. First, we should allow more immigrants in this country to cut down on the number of illegal ones. Second, all immigrants should be educated about their rights at the expense of the government. Below, you will find an in-depth look at our suggested reforms.

Reforms for immigration limitations:

-New immigrants can't equal more than 1% of the US population in a given year (the population being from the last recorded census). That 1% will be further divided up to allow only a certain number of immigrants each month.
-Each country of origin for immigrants will be allowed a certain percentage of that 1%. No country could receive more than 10% of the total amount and no country can receive less than .1% of it. The left over percentage will be divided up between all countries as follows: Read more...

Do Elements Within the La Raza Movement Pose a Threat to America?

La Raza means literally “The Race” in Spanish. The movement was formed in 1968 to promote the interests of the Mexican-American community. Like the NAACP and other affirmative-action minded organizations, La Raza has many members that are interested in being part of America and promoting equality for all Americans. The fundamental goals as stated by the movement are benign and represent the ideals of American diversity and cultural pride.

There is another movement affiliated with La Raza that has historically been more militant and still maintains documents within their organization that point to isolationistic views Read More

A Plan

The one major thing that seems to be lacking in the immigration debate is a real plan that addresses the legitimate concerns with illegal immigration. There are strong opinions on both sides and a lot of rhetoric but there isn’t really any solid plan being promoted to address the illegal immigration issue in a way that is both fair and logical.

So, that being said here is my idea:Read More

Trucking Cross Borders

This is mainly a concern for the trucking business. If we allow these people to come into our country, bringing cargo that we in America have, and can supply, then we are saying that the American working people are not needed, and have lost all say to legally enforced DOT (Department of Transportation) laws.Read More



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