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Ruminations of a Curmudgeon

By broker ·
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Freedom amidst terror

by broker In reply to Ruminations of a Curmudge ...

<p>This ?terrorist? thing is so frustrating.  People should be able to live on the same planet without having to fight each other.  Terrorists are resorting to ?sucker punches?.  But then I have little moral ground over them as my government goes in and takes over Iraq with poor justification and (evidently) poor planning.  When we started there was no overt aggression or support of terrorism in Iraq (Despite the fact that the US was one of the supporters of a decade long embargo.  Of course they had misgivings about us!).  Now Iraq is the flagship for terrorists looking for a cause.  We gave it to them?</p> 

<p>Three days ago London was bombed   From all appearances it was an Al-Qaeda event.  The mayor of London, Ken Livingston, has admirably reacted with determined restraint.  I hope that the world is able to embody his vision.</p>
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<p>I am uncertain if I need authorization to quote from another source but here is a shamelessly plagiarized quote from <a href=""></a>:</p>
<p><strong>?I want to say one thing specifically to the world today. This was not a terrorist attack against the mighty and the powerful. It was not aimed at Presidents or Prime Ministers. It was aimed at ordinary, working-class Londoners, black and white, Muslim and Christian, Hindu and Jew, young and old. It was an indiscriminate attempt to slaughter, irrespective of any considerations for age, for class, for religion, or whatever.</strong></p>
<p><strong>That isn't an ideology, it isn't even a perverted faith - it is just an indiscriminate attempt at mass murder and we know what the objective is. They seek to divide Londoners. They seek to turn Londoners against each other. I said yesterday to the International Olympic Committee, that the city of London is the greatest in the world, because everybody lives side by side in harmony. Londoners will not be divided by this cowardly attack. They will stand together in solidarity alongside those who have been injured and those who have been bereaved and that is why I'm proud to be the mayor of that city.</strong></p>
<p><strong>Finally, I wish to speak directly to those who came to London today to take life.</strong></p>
<p><strong>I know that you personally do not fear giving up your own life in order to take others - that is why you are so dangerous. But I know you fear that you may fail in your long-term objective to destroy our free society and I can show you why you will fail.</strong></p>
<p><strong>In the days that follow look at our airports, look at our sea ports and look at our railway stations and, even after your cowardly attack, you will see that people from the rest of Britain, people from around the world will arrive in London to become Londoners and to fulfil their dreams and achieve their potential.</strong></p>
<p><strong>They choose to come to London, as so many have come before because they come to be free, they come to live the life they choose, they come to be able to be themselves. They flee you because you tell them how they should live. They don't want that and nothing you do, however many of us you kill, will stop that flight to our city where freedom is strong and where people can live in harmony with one another. Whatever you do, however many you kill, you will fail.?</strong></p>
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<p>Previously, Ken Livingston had said:</p>
<p><a href=""></a></p>
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<p><strong>?Then we had the tragedy of this attack, as I said in Singapore an attack that sought not the powerful and the famous but just indiscriminately slaughtered Londoners irrespective of race, culture, religion or age. There can be no way that anyone can say that there can be a ideology or faith that underpins this act, it is simply a criminal attempt at mass murder?.</strong></p>
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<p><strong>?I want finally to thank Londoners for their solidarity. There are some places in the world where such an incident would have unleashed internal strife and physical violence. London has stood together, we haven?t had any problems of the sort you might see in other parts of the world and I think it says everything about what is right about this city. It is everything about what led the IOC I think to select us because as I said this city is the future.</strong></p>
<p><strong>If you go back a couple of hundred years to when the European cities really started to grow and peasants left the land to seek their future in the cities there was a saying that ?city air makes you free? and the people who have come to London all races, creeds and colours have come for that. This is a city that you can be yourself as long as you don?t harm anyone else. You can live your life as you chose to do rather than as somebody else tells you to do. It is a city in which you can achieve your potential. It is our strength and that is what the bombers seek to destroy. They fear they freedom, they fear a world in which the individual makes their own life choices and their own moral value judgements and that is what they seek to snuff out. But they will fail. </strong></p>
<p><strong>This year for the first time in human history a majority of people live in cities. London continues to grow and I say to those who planned this dreadful attack whether they are still here in hiding or somewhere abroad, watch next week as we bury our dead and mourn them, but see also in those same days new people coming to this city to make it their home to call themselves Londoners and doing it because of that freedom to be themselves, thank you.?</strong></p>
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<p>I don?t know who writes Mr. Livingston?s speeches but I sure wish they?d help out Mr. Bush?s writers.  I feel in my gut that this ?war on terrorism? will be fought out on the page, not the ground.  Short of ?ethnic cleansing? and genocide (which I fervently hope that we do not have the stomach for) you cannot change a peoples? mind by fighting them.  You must present alternatives acceptable to all sides.  Trying to force women to have babies or to force women to cover themselves completely in public is unacceptable.  An adult woman should be allowed to behave as she sees fit.  Same for sexual preference, religion, and politics.  All these things are personally repugnant to one person or the other but none of these things needs to affect people outside of the belief.  Behavior only becomes reprehensible when one person imposes his will upon another.</p>
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<p>Thank you Mr. Livingston for putting forth these concepts so succinctly.  </p>

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Freedom amidst terror

by bob.durko In reply to Freedom amidst terror

<p>Mr. Livingston, your comments and questions about why we are in Iraq just struck a cord with me. I can start by saying that fighting terrorism is, and always should be, an away game. You want to fight these cowards on their own soil. Just compare the number of car bombs exploding in Iraq with the number that we are experiencing here at home. It seems reasonable to me that if the terrorist are busy killing their own people then it is less likely that they would attack here. Iraq and Afghanistan are havens for terrorists and they have been for decades. The idea that there is a causal link between the US fighting in Iraq and the fact that there are terrorists in those countries is a juvenile and completely wrong assertation. </p>
<p>You can not just ignore these animals and hope that they will go away-they hate us with a completely perverted religious belief that it is what Allah wants them to do. Most of the people who **** themselves up have virtually no educated so they believe what they are told or what they see in person. If you do not fight and yes, kill them, these terrorists will come to the countries that enjoy freedom and run planes or cars into our buildings and monuments while bringing death and destruction anyway that they can. </p>
<p>Please understand we lost more friends and neighbors in one day, when these zealots ran planes into the Twin Towers and the Pentagon not to mention that field in Pennsylvania, than we have lost in combat since we went into Iraq. Americans have become like the Romans were just prior to their collapse-do a bunch of public speaking but only deal with a problem when it gets to your front door step. People like you have no vested interest in putting their lives on the line in support of this nation and our beliefs like my son and I have done. So please keep these extremely uneducated views to yourself or to your country clubs and elite circles were the members have no intention of putting their daughters or sons lives on the line to protect the freedom that we enjoy. </p>
<p>I would ask that you consider thanking men and women, like my son, who volunteer to fight these savages on their turf for very little pay or appreciation and from your comments, little understanding. My family and I have paid for your ability to say what you wish with no one coming to your front door and shooting you because they disagree. Then again, I don't have to just listen to these views without comment because my father, who was wounded three times, and my grandfather who died defending freedom, and I have certainly earned that right. </p>
<p>Fondest disregards,</p>
<p>Captain D</p>
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