Off the subject, but anyone have the time to read and sign this?

Robert Hartwell Fiske Vocabula at AOL.COM
Tue Sep 18 18:03:57 UTC 2001

Please read this -- then maybe you'll be interested in signing the petition

>>I've been hearing a lot of talk about "bombing Afghanistan back to the
>>Stone Age." Ronn Owens, on KGO Talk Radio today, allowed that this would
>>mean killing innocent people, people who had nothing to do with this
>>atrocity, but "we're at war, we have to accept collateral damage. What
>>else can we do?"  Minutes later I heard some TV pundit discussing
>>whether we "have the belly to do what must be done."
>>And I thought about the issues being raised especially hard because I am
>>from Afghanistan, and even though I've lived here for 35 years I've
>>never lost track of what's going on there. So I want to tell anyone who
>>will listen how it all looks from where I'm standing.
>>I speak as one who hates the Taliban and Osama Bin Laden. There is no
>>doubt in my mind that these people were responsible for the atrocity in
>>New York.
>>I agree that something must be done about those monsters.
>>But the Taliban and Ben Laden are not Afghanistan. They're not even the
>>government of Afghanistan. The Taliban are a cult of ignorant psychotics
>>who took over Afghanistan in 1997. Bin Laden is a political criminal with a
>>plan. When you think Taliban, think Nazis. When you think Bin Laden,
>>think Hitler. And when you think "the people of Afghanistan" think "the
>>Jews in the concentration camps." It's not only that the Afghan people
>>had nothing to do with this atrocity. They were the first victims of the
>>They would exult if someone would come in there, take out the Taliban
>>and clear out the rats nest of international thugs holed up in their
>>Some say, why don't the Afghans rise up and overthrow the Taliban? The
>>answer is, they're starved, exhausted, hurt, incapacitated, suffering. A
>>few years ago, the United Nations estimated that there are 500,000
>>disabled orphans in Afghanistan--a country with no economy, no food.
>>There are millions of widows. And the Taliban has been burying these
>>widows alive in mass graves. The soil is littered with land mines, the
>>farms were all destroyed by the Soviets. These are a few of the reasons
>>why the Afghan people have not overthrown the Taliban.
>>We come now to the question of bombing Afghanistan back to the Stone
>>Age. Trouble is, that's been done. The Soviets took care of it already.
>>Make the Afghans suffer? They're already suffering. Level their houses?
>>Done. Turn their schools into piles of rubble? Done. Eradicate their
>>hospitals?  Done.
>>Destroy their infrastructure? Cut them off from medicine and health
>>care?  Too late. Someone already did all that.
>>New bombs would only stir the rubble of earlier bombs. Would they at
>>least get the Taliban? Not likely. In today's Afghanistan, only the
>>Taliban eat,  only they have the means to move around. They'd slip away
>>and hide. Maybe the bombs would get some of those disabled orphans, they
>>don't move too fast, they don't even have wheelchairs. But flying over
>>Kabul and dropping bombs wouldn't really be a strike against the
>>criminals who did this horrific thing.
>>Actually it would only be making common cause with the Taliban--by
>>raping once again the people they've been raping all this time. So what
>>else is there? What can be done, then? Let me now speak with true fear
>>and trembling. The only way to get Bin Laden is to go in there with
>>ground troops. When people speak of "having the belly to do what needs
>>to be done"  They're thinking in terms of having the belly to kill as
>>many as needed.
>>Having the belly to overcome any moral qualms about killing innocent
>>people. Let's pull our heads out of the sand. What's actually on the
>>table is Americans dying. And not just because some Americans would die
>>fighting their way through Afghanistan to Bin Laden's hideout. It's much
>>bigger than that folks. Because to get any troops to Afghanistan, we'd
>>have to go through Pakistan. Would they let us? Not likely. The conquest
>>of Pakistan would have to be first. Will other Muslim nations just stand
>>You see where I'm going. We're flirting with a world war between Islam
>>and the West.
>>And guess what: that's Bin Laden's program. That's exactly what he
>>That's why he did this. Read his speeches and statements. It's all right
>>there. He really believes Islam would beat the West. It might seem
>>ridiculous, but he figures if he can polarize the world into Islam and
>>the West, he's got  a billion soldiers. If the West wreaks a holocaust
>>in those lands, that's a  billion people with nothing left to lose,
>>that's even better from Bin Laden's point of view. He's probably wrong,
>>in the end the West would win, whatever that would mean, but the war
>>would last for years and millions would die, not just theirs but ours.
>>Who has the belly for that?
>>Bin Laden does. Anyone else?
>>Tamim Ansary

President Bush,

We the undersigned encourage you to take responsible, peaceful action in
bringing the terrorists to justice. Please seriously consider the negative
ramifications of continued killing and perpetuating the cycle of violence.

Although many lives have already been lost, MANY MORE CAN STILL BE SAVED.

1.  Robert Hartwell Fiske, Lexington, MA

Petition note: To sign, copy this entire message into a new email and send to
all those in favor of a more peaceful world. If you sign as a multiple of 50,
please send the petition to President Bush at
president at along with the other addresses to continue the
petition. If you do not intend to continue this petition please at least
forward it to the President's email.

Thank you.

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