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Should we declare war on harboring nations?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by MacGyver, Sep 12, 2001.

  1. MacGyver

    MacGyver Banned
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    If, in fact Bin Laden is linked to this crime and Afghanistan refuses to turn him over to us, should we declare war on them?

    On one hand, it would be more effective than trying to simply seek the normal course of criminal justice. He is already guilty for the Cole attack and we didnt do anything to him for that. So we owe him for both that and the embassy bombings that he coordinated.

    On the other hand, in a war situation its inevitable that we are going to kill innocent civilians. I believe our military is the best in the world, and will try their very best to avoid civilian hits, but lets face it if we go to war there are definitely going to be some civilian casualties.

    Do we really want justice or do we also want revenge/retribution? The only language these terrorists know is violence, they wont respond to anything else. We cant stop them from attacking us, but we can try to disrupt their organization as much as possible. If all we want is justice, that means that we really cant do anything to the perpetrators unless we get very lucky and are able to catch them outside of a Middle Eastern nation.

    The best way to handle this is to make sure we are pretty confident that it is who we think it is, and them hit them with everything we got (except nukes). I think we need to look at this as a state of war, and not just a criminal investigation.

    I'm reminded of a quote that I saw scribed on one of the walls of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City a few days after the attack in 1995:

    "Justice...

    A nation expects it,
    The victims cry for it,
    and God DEMANDS IT!"
     
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  3. Resident Alien

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    So you mean that the justice for victims is to ceate more victims?
     
  4. MacGyver

    MacGyver Banned
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    In a state of war, victims cannot be avoided. Most will be perpetrators of violence, but some will be innocent.

    Nobody likes war, but sometimes it just cannot be avoided. Its clear that we can no longer sit back and tolerate this group's actions. They are already responsible for 3 large scale terrorist activiites in the last 3 years.

    Whats your course of action? Do nothing? What happens if the Taliban refuses to hand over Bin Laden? Should we just do nothing and hope that he doesnt have any more money for terrorist actions? We need to go after Bin Laden, he's a direct threat to our national security.

    The men responsible for this need to be imprisoned or destroyed, preferably imprisoned, but if thats not possible, then they need to be killed.
     
  5. praying4MD

    praying4MD 2K Member

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    If we want to declare war on nations harboring terorists it will make a difficult situation for us. Can you imagine declaring war on The Republic of Northern Ireland because it harbors the IRA? Betcha never thought of that one.
     
  6. Thebeyonder

    Thebeyonder Senior Member

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    Hi,
    prayingformd, betcha never thought that the IRA has never bombed an embassy, a war ship, the WTC twice, the Pentagon, Camp David, and innocent passengers on countless airliners leaving the United States. You see the IRA never did that to us. You make no direct correlation. Sure we know about the IRA, but the IRA is in no way a proper analogy to this situation, to even suggest that it is arouses intense anger in me at this moment. I say drop a nuclear device in Afghanistan, let's not put any more Americans in danger. It's that simple.
    Tim.
     
  7. actually, there is a civil war in Afghanistan

    there has been a civil war for 2 to 3 years now....I say we join the opposition and blow every possible region in afghanistan....

    yes are innocent civilians going to die? of course....but they have already died in afghanistan, and tortured and brutalized by the Taliban...but did we not have innocent civilians die in the United States...

    we have to stop "diplomatic policy"...if he is responsible...then the govenrment who harbors Ladin, should be destroyed...

    the question is not whether or not we want retribution, but to put an end to this satanic life so that he won't harm us, or the afghani people....

    if hitler was alive today, how many people would question the act of retribution....if he is at fault...then bomb all of afghanistan.....

    actually your assertion is false on the IRA...Shin Feng has bombed buses, as well as one near the school.....however, none were directed to USA citizens since they are fighting Britain...
     
  8. SocialistMD

    SocialistMD Resident Objectivist

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    Actually, it makes complete sense. Let's suppose this is some terrorist group that is located in Europe; the IRA is a perfect example. Would we bomb Ireland if this were the case? The point trying to be made is that would we bomb the country based solely on the location of the terrorists if the country were one with whom we are allied.

    If a definite connection is made between Bin Laden and the terrorist attacks of yesterday, does Afghanastan not have the right to first surrender him to us before we launch an attack? Many of you may have this implied in your statements, but many of you may not have even thought about it. Many of you may also say they had ample time to quit harboring him before and this is the straw that broke the camel's back. I ask you, then, why have we not attacked before? Because the tragedies overseas were not as bad as this is now; those lives were of less importance or we are willing to let small numbers of people die in isolated groups? Try telling that to the families of the soldiers who died in the Cole bombing or the embassy bombings. We let those attacks go relatively unpunished, yet they were just as much attacks on American people as were the attacks yesterday. American property was destroyed on American soil (yes, overseas embassies are considered American soil) and Americans lost their lives. I seriously love how people can justify whatever the hell they want when emotions take over.
     
  9. Sammmeyeam

    Sammmeyeam Senior Member

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    I don't agree with you guys.

    What do you mean "bomb every region of Afghanistan"... what kind of a thing is that to say? Everyone knows that innocent lives will be lost during the retaliation, but isn't it a law of humanity to preserve as many lives as possible?

    What's the difference between your ideas and that of bin Laden? "Bomb every region of Afghanistan" That's exactly what crazy bin Laden was thinking... "lets bomb the WTC, Pentagon, Camp David..blah blah.." "lets bomb as many regions we can so that we can get as many top US authorities as possible.. who cares how many Americans we kill..."

    I definately agree that bin Laden should be assassinated. I think that the way to do so is to find where HE is, and target ONLY that region... yes, civilians will be lost...

    But, it's not right to just blindly bomb a nation hoping that we get him... that's just stupid.
     
  10. Homer J. Simpson

    Homer J. Simpson 1st and goal from the 1 yard line.

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    No, we would work with Ireland to hunt the perpetrators and bring them to justice. The Taliban has refused to cooperate in extraditing Bin Laden. To say that the comparison "makes perfect sense" is asinine.

    This is part of the reason why there is so much outrage. Because we haven't punished any of these countries yet. Because we've lost American lives and no one has been brought to justice. And unfortuately, yes, there are degrees of outrage to be crossed before a country acts. I'm not saying it's right, but it's reality. Ted Kazinski (sp?) killed people with bombs just as McVeigh did, but he got life imprisonment. I know that there were many differences in the cases but you'll have to admit the vocal outcry to have him put to death just was not there. We don't value his victims any less, but as a community we just weren't as horrified.

    We have given Afghanistan the opportunity to turn over Bin Laden. We asked them to in both the Cole and embassy bombings. I'm sure it's not the way you mean it, but it looks like you're chastising some people here for wanting to go right after Afghanistan, but on the other hand saying that we should've done something earlier when our interests/property were attacked.

    I agree to a point. But try to keep in mind that the wounds here are still very raw and that running one's mouth on emotional energy is sometimes just a natural reaction. Many people feel helpless and violated, lashing out is a release (I'm not condoning nor denouncing it right now, just trying to explain it as I see it).

    It's going to be extremely frustrating over the next few days as information trickles in, and it will seem as though the US is sitting on it's hands. Most of us on SDN will write from the heart, yet be able to keep our composure. You've been around this board long enough to know that people tend to spout off even on issues that are not nearly as important/complex/emotional as this. Try not to let the "radical" minority get to you too much.
     
  11. SocialistMD

    SocialistMD Resident Objectivist

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    Let me start by stating that I am glad you selectively deleted part of my post that would have made my statement much more consistent. Assuming it is Bin Laden, I think the US should again ask the cooperation of Afghanistan in bringing in Bin Laden before we attack. If they refuse, we do what we do. I just do not think we should attack Afghanistan before asking for their help in bringing in Bin Laden.

    I am not saying whether or not we should have attacked long ago nor am I saying we should not attack Afghanastan, I am trying to make a point about consistency. I cannot see how people (particularly Tim in this case) can justify a return attack on Bin Laden based his previous attacks at well as the current one. Think about the example of disciplining your child. Say your son draws on the table. If you were the US government, here is how you would deal with it. You say "don't do that" and pretty much let it go because the table isn't really hurt. It continues like that for a while until one day you come home and the entire wall is completely colored. Now you spank your child visciously, not only for the wall, but also for every time he colored on the table.
    I am not saying we should not attack, I am just saying we cannot use as part of the justification the previous acts taken against us because we should have done something about them then.
     
  12. MacGyver

    MacGyver Banned
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    I'm not saying we should attack Afghanistan IMMEDIATELY, but we should do so if they dont turn over Bin Laden, ASSUMING that we have credible evidence he is involved.

    I dont think we should lay waste to the entire country, but we should hit their leadership and military with everything we got. Unfortunately, with such an attack there will inevitably be a few innocents who are killed. We should make it clear to Afghanistan before we attack (if we in fact do decide to attack) that an attack is coming. Not giving out the details, it would let the populace know that they need to take cover and limit the numbers of civilians killed.

    Ireland is a different situation because they do not support the IRAs activities. Afghanistan is very different. They actively support Bin Laden.

    Its time to take this guy and as much of his organization as possible out of the picture. We also need to get cooperation with European banks so we can seize his assets, particulary Swiss accounts. Perhaps now with this tragedy they will be lax in their privacy regulations for such an evil person.

    I dont expect his fringe group to disappear forever, but if we can capture/kill Bin Laden and seize his millions in assets, it will hurt their operation. There will always be people willing to take over the operation no matter how many of their operatives we kill, but we can still greatly hinder their operations.

    Socialist, I see the argument you are making and you do have a point. In an ideal world, we would dole out consequences immeidately after the transgression occurred. However, we arent living in an ideal world. We cant go back in a time machine and redo anything. GIVEN what has already happened, without trying to keep looking back in the past, the best way to handle it is to give Afghanistan some time to respond to our request for Bin Laden. After that time, we hit them and hit them hard.

    Yes, some innocents will be killed. But at least they will know that an attack is coming and get out of the way as much as possible.
     
  13. SaucyAZN

    SaucyAZN Member

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    How messy can this really get?

    Let's say that it has been proven beyond a reasonable doubt that Osama Bin Laden was affiliated with these attacks.

    America will demand that Afganistan hand him over. If Afganistan sticks with form and refuses, America could declare war against Afganistan (could be the first time since WWII that the U.S. has officially declared war against anyone).

    But Afganistan has an ally in Pakistan...they're one of the very few countries in this world that recognize the Taliban as the ruling party in Afganistan.

    If Pakistan joins, America may seek the aid of Pakistan's bitter enemy, India. By the way, Pakistan and India both possess nuclear weapons...I don't believe that have an advanced delivery system (i.e. - ICBMs)...but just the thought of nukes gives me goosebumps.

    And you know Saddam would want to get in on the action.

    Of course, America would have NATO on it's side...Israel for sure, perhaps Russia. A successful American-led coalition would also require a handful of so-called "moderate" Arab countries (just like the Gulf War)...Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and, of course, little Kuwait. I doubt if Libya or Iran will come to our aid...only time will tell.

    Question: Where does China stand? I know that Bush gave a call to Beijing (sp?) earlier today...I wonder what their response was?

    If a war does arise, I get the feeling that America will not be as focused on limiting the collatoral(sp?) damage (i.e. - civilians) as in past wars. Although we focus on Osama Bin Laden, we have to remember that this is an entire network of terrorists (spread not only throughout the Middle East but world wide...and, of course, here at home), and as some have stated, it will require America to try things that it wouldn't have done in the past.

    And it obviously won't be that easy. There is no silver bullet...don't we all wish there was. This has the potential to be a very extended conflict. Heck, in WWII, we knew from the very beginning who the enemy was, and it still took us ~3 years to get the job done.

    It really is a scary time, isn't it? All things considered, I prefer the news about Condit's affair and our faltering economy over this nightmare.

    -Sauce

    "I speak softly, but I carry a big stick!"
    -Bugs Bunny dressed as Teddy Roosevelt
     
  14. Aniulka

    Aniulka Member

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    I know we have to punish Bin Laden, but I'm going to be scared if we have to. He has so many supporters and they are crazy. Who knows what they would do, even if we just imprisoned Bin Laden. They'd kill more
    innocent people in the US in retaliation. I think it's a very complicated situation. Justice should prevail, but at what cost?
     
  15. none

    none 1K Member

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    China expressed condolensces and offered to help in any way they could.
     
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  17. praying4MD

    praying4MD 2K Member

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    The problem with bombing Afganistan is that it's in a civil war as it is. We would end up killing people that are in agreement with the US. I find it interesting that many people took pleasure in the bombs that were dropped on Afghanistan yesterday. The funny part is that they were dropped on a city that houses the largest percentage of REBELS TRYING TO GET THE TALIBAN OUT OF POWER and those that are trying like mad to GET RID of Bin Laden. What genius thought up that idea? Just kill off the one faction that is actually AGAINST Bin Laden. :rolleyes:
     
  18. praying4MD

    praying4MD 2K Member

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    Actually, the IRA has done these things to many English facets of government and to the English people. And according to Article 5 of UN Resolutions between Western Europe, NATO and US, whatever happens to our allies, theoretically happens to us. Of course you know that England is our sidekick right? So in effect, it HAS happened to us. In fact, this Article 5 is the very reason that Western Europe today stands behind the US and ready to fight with us against the perpetrators of the recent events.
     
  19. Homer J. Simpson

    Homer J. Simpson 1st and goal from the 1 yard line.

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    Well then I respectfully disagree.

    First of all, this is not a child who doesn't know better. It is a terrorist.

    Second, people are punished for past transgressions all the time. If you get caught drunk driving you'll get a slap on the wrist. The second time, the penalty is stiffer. Let's say you get caught the 3rd time. Your license is revoked, even though you've merely committed the same act of drunk driving which, in the first instance was barely punished. By your line of reasoning, the courts should not hold your previous actions against you.

    Or, to stay with your metaphor, what would you do to the child? Continue to say "don't do that"? No, you would increase the severity of the punishment, such as taking the crayons away, etc... until the child stopped drawing on the table.

    We did do something after the previous attacks. We drew up resolutions condeming the attacks, we indicted Bin Laden, we asked the Afghan rulers to help us apprehend him. And you know what that got us? About 10,000 dead civlians, frozen financial markets, a country on it's highest alert status, a horrified population, and a forever changed way of life, just to name a few. And what have the Afghans gained by protecting this monster? Oil? Nope. Money? Nope. Gold? Nope. Land? Nope. Just the sheer enjoyment of watching Americans die.

    And for this we owe them another chance?

    Diplomatic tip-toeing is what brought us to where we are today. Pure consistency would be nice, but it's unrealistic. The terrorists and the countries that support them are the ones who've raised the bar. Not us. We're now in unchartered waters thanks to them. Personally, I'd rather err on the side of saving more American lives, rather than waiting for the other shoe to drop.
     
  20. praying4MD

    praying4MD 2K Member

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    Consider these facts:

    "There were 423 claimed terrorist attacks worldwide last year, according to a State Department report "Patterns of Global Terrorism." This was a marginal increase from the number of attacks in 1999. The majority of the terror attacks were NOT in the Middle East but in LATIN AMERICA. The most frequent target was a multinational oil pipeline in Columbia that Marxist guerrillas blew-up 152 times.

    The next highest number of attacks occurred in Europe, mainly in Germany, Greece, and Italy, and Turkey. This was not an departure from the terrorist norm. Most of the attacks in recent years have been in Europe and Latin America, and few of the attacks were directly linked to the middle East or Islam.

    The State Department has fingered free-wheeling anti-government, groups such as the Tamil Tigers of Ceylon, Shining Path in Peru, Basque separatists in Spain, the Red Army in Germany as major terror attackers."

    What do you plan on doing now? Bombing Columbia, Germany, Greece, Italy & Turkey?
     
  21. Legend

    Legend Super Senior Member

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    I don't think we know for sure that it was Bin Laden. But, what if it is someone else?
    What if those terrorists used Bin Laden as a mere trap so that they can get away easily?
    Obviously, Bin Laden is the first and maybe only suspect we can think of. To me, all the evidence FBI discovered could be just a setup bull $hiting the Americans.
    Yesterday's tragedy was very sophisticated and almost perfect. This makes me think that whoever the real terrorist was didn't leave any real evidence (at least we don't know). For example, finding a rental car in which there was a flight training manual seems to be very lame. A real professional terrorist wouldn't make that kind of silly mistakes.

    I am not an American, but I feel very strong about this incident. I think if the US wants to declare war on harboring nations, there should be a clear, accurate evidence that Laden is the villain.
    My condelences for all innocents...
     
  22. Homer J. Simpson

    Homer J. Simpson 1st and goal from the 1 yard line.

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    I'm confused by your question. Did someone here propose bombing any country that has a terrorist cell in it? Without hesitation? I mean, if you want to be unreasonable about it, then you could argue that we'd have to bomb ourselves.


    Let's keep things in perspective with our discussions. It depends on how the state department defines "terrorist act". You'd have to concede that bombing an oil pipeline is not quite on par with flying a plane (or 2) full of people into a building full of people (or 2). Also, some of these terrorist attacks are revolutionaries attacking their own country, a la McVeigh.


    Again, I'm confused as to what you're point is. There are differing levels of terrorist activity and we react accordingly.
     
  23. Homer J. Simpson

    Homer J. Simpson 1st and goal from the 1 yard line.

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  24. SocialistMD

    SocialistMD Resident Objectivist

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    I, too, have found this interesting to say the least.


    Homer J. Simpson-

    In the case of the child, I am saying you increase the punishment. You do remove all options. You do take away the crayons. Did we ever really do that before? No. Afghanistan did not agree to cooperate, so we shrugged our shoulders and turned away. It was never a case of increasing levels of retaliation because it never really existed. In elementary school, you were given a verbal warning for your first offense. You were given detention for your second offense. You were sent to the principal for your third offense. Progressive levels. Same as in your drunk driving example. I have nothing against that, but it was just never used in this situation before. What progressive levels did we use? None, but now, all of a sudden, we say we are going to attack. It comes back to consistency. Nothing... nothing...nothing...BAM!!!

    Speaking of consistency, why is it such an impossibility? One of the primary functions of our government is to protect its citizens. Our citizens died. We did little to prevent its happening again, so it happened again...and again and again. We never upped the "punishment." We allowed it to continue. We never "forced" Afghanistan to cooperate or suffer the consequences. We basically said that those lives lost in previous attacks were not worth our pushing our point, but the current losses are.

    Somehow people say the attacks in NYC and DC were attacks on all Americans, and that is how our retaliation is justified. How was this any more an attack on all Americans than the previous attacks? Because the sheer numbers didn't make it equal to us all? Human life should not be a matter of degree.
     
  25. trouserz

    trouserz Member

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    silly question therefore silly answer: it depends on the size and strength of the harboring nation. If bin laden decided he liked tea and chinese women i don't think we would declare war on china.. more like get down on our hands and knees and beg. so my answer is DEPENDS
     
  26. praying4MD

    praying4MD 2K Member

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    Alright. Agreed. But who decides what and when to attack? We will inevitably make mistakes. We already have.

    When two Americans were killed in a German nightclub bombing, we automatically bombed Libya, killing innocent civilians, because we suspected they were involved in the planning of it and harbored terrorists. Actually, we rejoiced about killing them too, but that's a different topic.
    It turns out that it was actually a Syrian rebel group that aided the bombers that were responsible for the nightclub bombing.

    What now? Just say, "oops. sorry about murdering your citizens. Not to mention being ecstatic about it. it was an accident." and then just move on?

    The whole scenario presents a very difficult dilemma to deal with. On a sidenote, the oil pipeline bombings have casualties too, some even Americans working as expatriots, but I see your point. At the same time, numbers of people shouldn't really matter. A life is just as important as a hundred lives. They are all valuable.

    One more thing, if that's the case, why is the IRA any different? They have committed terrorist acts too.
    Reposting what I've said earlier:

    Actually, the IRA has done these things to many English facets of government and to the English people. And according to Article 5 of UN Resolutions between Western Europe, NATO and US, whatever happens to our allies, theoretically happens to us. Of course you know that England is our sidekick right? So in effect, it HAS happened to us. In fact, this Article 5 is the very reason that Western Europe today stands behind the US and ready to fight with us against the perpetrators of the recent events.
     
  27. actually praying4md, the United States hasn't dropped any bombs YET! the bombs you saw are the result of the civil war going on in afghanistan...
     

  28. a flight manual? that is the silliest thing I have ever heard...a plan of this sophistication, would have a pilot still bringing his flight manual with him?
    :rolleyes:

    what was that for? last minute control command checks? this doesn't make any sense....why would a professional pilot bring a manual with him? and then in turn keep it in his car, and not take it with him, in case he wanted to "refer" to the flight manual in times of emergencies?.... :confused:
     
  29. praying4MD

    praying4MD 2K Member

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    I know, that's why I PURPOSELY DID NOT say that the bombs were in any way related to the US. In fact, that was part of my point, but rereading my original post, I can see how you may have gotten that message.
     
  30. Thebeyonder

    Thebeyonder Senior Member

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    Hi,
    I will get to the ridiculous point first then discuss the serious debate in a moment. Trouserz remember Korea, if not research it.
    Socialist Md our response to bin Laden was tapered for a reason, President Clinton was in office. Now that President Bush is in office the response will be different. To compare the previous incidents without looking at the political context would lead you to believe that there were no other reasons. I wanted bin Laden dead in 97. I thought he would be dead. I was wrong. Now that bin Laden has escalated the conflict and we are now at war, I believe we should send the message we should have sent a long time ago. So in reality Socialist Md your argument falls on deaf ears, because I am in total agreement with you, we should have responded earlier.
    Tim.
     
  31. Thebeyonder

    Thebeyonder Senior Member

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    Hi,
    Watchmacallit could it be possible the terrorists left evidence because they wanted to be found out, or they knew they would be found out? If they are that sophisticated they surely have to know that the United States will figure out who it is, perhaps they wanted to make sure we did find out.
    Tim.
     

  32. ooops ok sorry.....
     

  33. That still doesn't make sense...I am not saying othama bin ladin, is or is not responsible...however, AFTER the oklahoma bombing, for a period of 2 weeks, "eyewitness accounts had cited middle easterners as the culprit"....

    why would Ladin, who usually confesses up to terrorist attacks, like hamas not say they did it, if they really DID?

    this seems more like something doing it and placing blame on another terrorist group...of course..I could be very wrong, but certain things don't make sense...
     
  34. Aniulka

    Aniulka Member

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    I just heard an expert on the Middle East say that she thinks Iraq was involved in this terrorist act - either helping Bin Laden or independently as a country. Like I said in my earlier post, this is a complicated matter. That is why the gov't is taking their time in order to be sure of who committed this act.
     
  35. lilycat

    Moderator Emeritus

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    Originally posted by Legi:
    finding a rental car in which there was a flight training manual seems to be very lame.

    You're right -- suicide bombers with delusions of meeting Allah and hot virgins with palm fronds wouldn't be that stupid. :rolleyes:

    Let's keep in mind that the bombers were most likely not the masterminds but rather foot soldiers, so to speak. It reminds of mob movies -- the dumb-ass guy driving the get-away car always blows the plan.
     
  36. kutastha

    kutastha 2K Member
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    I agree with lilycat on the footsoldier thought. In addition, I highly doubt these people care if they're found out. To them, they're serving a higher purpose and getting 'caught' doesn't play a factor. I would think they would want to be as it gives their 'cause' publicity.

    Andrew

    addendum: After posting this... I started thinking.. why did these people have manuals if they were already professionally trained? Why did they have a videotape as well? In the car? At the airport??
     
  37. You know I think people really lose it and become hysterical when they cite Nostradamus as a piece of historical fact....

    I got that same email about the two brothers splitting apart and city of God during the Oklahoma bombing, where one brother survived and the other didn't...in the city of God aka oklahoma because of people's religious devotion...makes you wonder huh?
     
  38. Milhouse Van Houten

    Milhouse Van Houten Senior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2000
    Messages:
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    i quote senator john McCain (this stuff gives me goose bumps):

    "I say to our adversaries: 'WE ARE COMING! God may save you, BUT WE WILL NOT!'"

    holy crap. more goose bumps.
     

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