Just before the first night the US and Britain bombed Afghanistan, Osama bin Laden made a videotaped statement declaring that the US “will never dream of security” until its armies leave “the land of Muhammad.” This claim is not only false, but precisely opposite the truth.The attack on Black Tuesday was different from any previous terrorist act in history for many reasons, but perhaps most noteworthy was the fact that no organization claimed responsibility. Obviously, the terrorist organization behind the attack was not willing to bear the full brunt of the U.S. military. But since these organizations commit their horrendous acts to promote their mission, why did they bother if they were going to be anonymous?
The answer to this question lies in the history of the U.S. reactions (and lack thereof) to terrorism and Middle Eastern aggression over the past fifty years. Although I will not go into the long, sordid story of U.S. appeasement, you can read about it in an article entitled, “End States Who Sponsor Terrorism,” by Dr. Leonard Peikoff, at www.aynrand.org.
Black Tuesday was essentially a test. Terrorist organizations wanted to know how far they could push the U.S. before we would finally fight back. Thankfully, our government is showing some sign of life (however meager) by attacking a government dedicated to supporting terrorism and suppressing freedom.
Unfortunately, the most dangerous enemies of American ideals live within our borders, and they are calling for our military to stand down, give peace a chance, and end “the cycle of violence.”
The terrorists have begun a cycle of violence that cannot and will not end until either they are wiped out, or we are. If we wage a war on terrorist countries, we will most likely harm and even kill innocent civilians. If we hold back, terrorists will know that they can operate freely in the U.S. without fear of retribution, guaranteeing the killing of even more innocent American civilians.
Civilians will be killed in the near future; the terrorists made sure of that. Our government must now decide whether the victims will be from America or from the Middle East. Those who oppose the war are lobbying for the victims to be American.
Thus, the fact of the matter is that the U.S. will never dream of security if our armies leave the land of Muhammad, for even the slightest compromise on our part will be like ringing the dinner bell to every terrorist in the world.
—Dominique Yarnell ‘01