FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

The Terror Comes Home

The images of trauma have taken me back to similar destruction and death that I witnessed first-hand in Central America in the eighties.

I am also reminded of the crash of Swissair Flight 111 three years ago that killed my parents. I know what it feels like to intellectually know that someone you love is dead, but experience the emotional torture of waiting for weeks for the first pieces of their pulverized bodies to be identified, then plunge into wrenching delayed grief. My heart goes out to all those poor souls who are waiting in horror for word of their missing loved ones.

Although I am saddened deeply by the events of September 11, I am not surprised.

The US government, and it’s corporate backers, have been the biggest perpetrators of terrorism causing death and suffering to hundreds of thousands of people all over the planet for several decades. These atrocities were funded with our tax dollars.

The media is also complicit. Why have we not seen images of bombed hospitals in Bagdad? Peasants tortured and killed in front of their families in Guatemala, Nicaragua, Chile, Haiti, El Salvador, Sudan? Mothers watching helplessly while their children die from lack of medicine in Cuba and Iraq due to US-backed embargoes? Why don’t we see interviews with those mothers so we can feel their anguish?

Let us vow not to allow our compassion for any of our brothers or sisters to be extinguished or reawakened at the whim of media manipulation.

We have to dig deeper, and ask ourselves harder questions.

Why would people feel such hatred toward our government and our economic institutions to carry out these suicidal acts of mass destruction?

How are the deaths of thousands of office workers any different from “collateral damage” in bombings of Iraq or Viet Nam?

How have we allowed ourselves to accept the sanitized versions of US-sponsored terrorism, both military and economic, portrayed in the media?

Why is it acceptable for the media to report how many Americans die in accidents abroad? Or for us to sigh in relief when no Americans are on the victim list in such accidents?

So much human suffering has been hidden from our consciousness for so long.

We have allowed our humanity to be blunted and selective.

Tragically, we are now getting a little taste of how our government has been treating certain peoples of the world for decades.

We are reaping what we have sown, knowingly or not. With or without our consent.

So what, aside from horror, will our response be?

Will we allow our neighbors and government to lash out blindly at ethnic groups who happen to share the same genetic pool or religious beliefs as the hijackers?

Will we feel justified declaring war and unleashing the full military power we possess on all suspected collaborators?

Will we feel indifference to the mangled bodies of the “collateral damage to non-military targets” when we move in that direction?

In other words: Will we participate in the perpetuation and amplification of the inhumanity, national supremacy, and racism which are at the source of these terrible acts?

Make no mistake about it: These were horrible acts which I deplore. I pray for the souls of those who have passed over, and I pray for their loved ones in mourning. But this is not the first time in modern history that massive terrorism has killed thousands of people. The majority of times, and the vast majority of casualties, have been caused by, or paid for by the US government.

The challenge before us is to rise above misguided jingoistic patriotism.

Instead, we must pray for and work for a major shift in American consciousness.

Please join me in praying that hatred, revenge, and war-mongering are replaced with compassion, understanding, forgiveness, and Peace. CP

Claire Mortimer lives in Kilauea, Hawaii

More articles by:
September 18, 2018
Conn Hallinan
Britain: the Anti-Semitism Debate
Tamara Pearson
Why Mexico’s Next President is No Friend of Migrants
Richard Moser
Both the Commune and Revolution
Nick Pemberton
Serena 15, Tennis Love
Binoy Kampmark
Inconvenient Realities: Climate Change and the South Pacific
Martin Billheimer
La Grand’Route: Waiting for the Bus
John Kendall Hawkins
Seymour Hersh: a Life of Adversarial Democracy at Work
Faisal Khan
Is Israel a Democracy?
John Feffer
The GOP Wants Trumpism…Without Trump
Kim Ives
The Roots of Haiti’s Movement for PetroCaribe Transparency
Dave Lindorff
We Already Have a Fake Billionaire President; Why Would We want a Real One Running in 2020?
Gerry Brown
Is China Springing Debt Traps or Throwing a Lifeline to Countries in Distress?
Pete Tucker
The Washington Post Really Wants to Stop Ben Jealous
Dean Baker
Getting It Wrong Again: Consumer Spending and the Great Recession
September 17, 2018
Melvin Goodman
What is to be Done?
Rob Urie
American Fascism
Patrick Cockburn
The Adults in the White House Trying to Save the US From Trump Are Just as Dangerous as He Is
Jeffrey St. Clair - Alexander Cockburn
The Long Fall of Bob Woodward: From Nixon’s Nemesis to Cheney’s Savoir
Mairead Maguire
Demonization of Russia in a New Cold War Era
Dean Baker
The Bank Bailout of 2008 was Unnecessary
Wim Laven
Hurricane Trump, Season 2
Yves Engler
Smearing Dimitri Lascaris
Ron Jacobs
From ROTC to Revolution and Beyond
Clark T. Scott
The Cannibals of Horsepower
Binoy Kampmark
A Traditional Right: Jimmie Åkesson and the Sweden Democrats
Laura Flanders
History Markers
Weekend Edition
September 14, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Carl Boggs
Obama’s Imperial Presidency
Joshua Frank
From CO2 to Methane, Trump’s Hurricane of Destruction
Jeffrey St. Clair
Maria’s Missing Dead
Andrew Levine
A Bulwark Against the Idiocy of Conservatives Like Brett Kavanaugh
T.J. Coles
Neil deGrasse Tyson: A Celebrity Salesman for the Military-Industrial-Complex
Jeff Ballinger
Nike and Colin Kaepernick: Fronting the Bigots’ Team
David Rosen
Why Stop at Roe? How “Settled Law” Can be Overturned
Gary Olson
Pope Francis and the Battle Over Cultural Terrain
Nick Pemberton
Donald The Victim: A Product of Post-9/11 America
Ramzy Baroud
The Veiled Danger of the ‘Dead’ Oslo Accords
Kevin Martin
U.S. Support for the Bombing of Yemen to Continue
Robert Fisk
A Murder in Aleppo
Robert Hunziker
The Elite World Order in Jitters
Ben Dangl
After 9/11: The Staggering Economic and Human Cost of the War on Terror
Charles Pierson
Invade The Hague! Bolton vs. the ICC
Robert Fantina
Trump and Palestine
Daniel Warner
Hubris on and Off the Court
John Kendall Hawkins
Boning Up on Eternal Recurrence, Kubrick-style: “2001,” Revisited
Haydar Khan
Set Theory of the Left
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail