There will be justice

Posted: Sunday, September 30, 2001

As surely as there is life, liberty and opportunity in America and the will of Americans to protect these rights there will be justice.

The same terrorists who revile America mistakenly view our strengths as our weaknesses. Our open society, represented by the Statue of Liberty, invited these enemies to enter as friends. They lived among us unmolested under protection of our civil rights. Our land of opportunity provided the education and technology used to attack us and our legal system will provide more fairness than was afforded us even as their supporters disregard the laws of nations they demand we now abide in seeking redress.

This cowardly attack cannot even be equated with Pearl Harbor. Imperial Japan stood ready to face our nation at sea, in the air and on land but a surprise attack was enough to unleash a national war effort unprecedented in history. Who would want this fury beset upon them?

Taliban leaders of Afghanistan insist cultural law will not permit them to hand over invited terrorists within their borders. We ask them this: How can you be so sure these same terrorists are not using you just as they are our "cultural laws" against us? No. We do not believe you. Nothing of this magnitude occurs within a vacuum. Granted, you may have studied our nation much more than we have studied yours but you have made the same mistakes repeated over history. Your parochial view of America has been through rose-colored glasses. Everything is softened.

American resolve is tougher than steel. Terrorists have blown up embassies, ransomed our diplomatic representatives, killed fine marines and sailors and brought down passenger airliners with insufficient repercussions. We have witnessed their supporters drag wounded and helpless soldiers down cobbled streets amidst kicking and spitting women and children. Still Americans debated over the proper course of action. Lucky them.

Unlike their system of government our political leaders' actions are tempered by the will of the people. Would-be world conquerors have been beaten back when the people's will was unified to that end.

We are now sending some of the people's representatives to them and though we will regret the carnage and loss of life undoubtedly telecast into our living rooms, recent memory of the same on American soil is not that short. Just as the citizens of their country had relied on their leaders to prevent such carnage we had relied on ours. But our government was fighting with one hand behind its back. Terrorists have one hand out in reconciliation and a knife in the other. We do not expect to see any Taliban or Akida leaders on the tarmac to meet the planes. They will have left the country long before with the treasury. But the world is a lot smaller today.

There will be justice. But it will not come easy.

Ken Dunker

Juneau



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