[unrev-II] [Fwd: FW: [issues] Petition for a Thoughtful U.S. Response]

From: Jack Park (jackpark@thinkalong.com)
Date: Tue Sep 18 2001 - 10:16:22 PDT

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    The discussion continues...

    >From: "John J. Kineman" <jkineman@ngdc.noaa.gov>
    >Organization: NOAA National Environmental Satellite Data and Information
    >I agree with the basic intent of your petition to prevent war, but I
    >don't think this petition is focused correctly, nor would it be
    >effective in this form. Let me explain my views for discussion.
    >While we must be careful to avoid overreaction and the application of
    >inappropriate military instruments, which I fear the Bush administration
    >will be prone to, I basically believe they are correct in holding
    >countries responsible for terrorism launched from within their
    >jurisdiction. This responsibility does not translate into guilt or blame
    >or military reprisal, but responsibility to cooperate in the effort to
    >root it out. That places tremendous pressure on any government that
    >secretely condones such acts but attempts to remain politically
    >insulated from their consequences by denying them. If the Taliban
    >government chooses not to cooperate in investigating Bin Laden's
    >organization, they are making a choice that places them in his defense.
    >This is, of course, expected because Bin Laden has pledged his
    >allegience to the Taleban and Omar. If Omar does not renounce him and
    >these acts (assuming we sufficient evidence that Bin Laden is directly
    >responsible) then he is clearly supporting him, if not leading the
    >effort as many suspect. We cannot conduct a campaign to root out the
    >cause of the problem by allowing vague platitudes to stand on their own.
    >There must now be substantive action behind the words. It is important
    >to move against the purpetrators and that forces all involved to make a
    >I think there is a greater problem with neighboring countries, like
    >Pakistan, however. Forcing a choice there has collateral effects. Their
    >government is already under threat from extremists within their own
    >borders and assistance to the US could trigger a coup. Yet we need help
    >to access Afghanestan's borders. By raising the stakes clearly and
    >obviously, perhaps the Pakistan government will be excused by their more
    >moderate populace for allowing passage under the circumstances.
    >Pakistanis are capable of understanding that they are in a critical
    >position because of this international problem, and temporary
    >accommodation for an internationally sanctioned campaign might be
    >possible without internal consequences. Dislike for the US culture and
    >politics can be separated under these circumstances, from extremist acts
    >that reasonable people will condemn. The agreement should include that
    >we ourselves will not commit unreasonable or extreme acts of violence
    >aside from what is necessary to apprehend and incapacitate the guilty.
    >Perhaps we should make neutrality an option. Pakistan could choose to
    >remain politically neutral, while allowing US access to the Afghan
    >border. That might not be much help to them with respect to the Taleban,
    >which has already declared war on any country that merely allows US
    >passage (not just any country that materially assists); but it could
    >help internally. I think the danger to be cognizant of and avoide might
    >be that Pakistan will want a promise from the US to help keep their
    >government in power if they assist us in any way. That gets us involved
    >in their politics in order to gain passage, and that's a very dangerous
    >step, as we should have learned many times in the past.
    >So, I don't claim to have the answers. It is a very complex situation.
    >But disconnecting the effort to root out the source of these attacks,
    >from where it finds safe residence would weaken the effort too much to
    >be at all effective. Somehow we have to balance the linkages in a
    >creative and reasonable way, and that's going to take some real
    >research, diplomacy, and creative thinking. I worry that we don't have
    >creative thinkers in charge. What I think we should argue for with Bush
    >is to clearly state good, sound principles and values that we, as
    >Americans, will preserve during whatever campaign ensues. That might be
    >achievable and it would serve to keep the effort honest. The real
    >problem is when we abandon our own principles in the interest of
    >expediency and are able to hide our own atrocities in the interest of
    >For example, I don't agree with the newly approved policy supporting
    >assasination. That IS terrorism, and it is unconscionable that we, as a
    >free nation, would even contemplate it. We are condemning that sort of
    >thing elsewhere and therefore cannot participate in it ourselves as a
    >matter of principle. But going after a military or terrorist leader
    >openly and with the objective of incapacitating him and his organization
    >is legetimate. The goal itself should NEVER be to kill. Killing is the
    >undesirable and unfortunate consequence of less than perfect methods for
    >achieving the goal of preventing others from killing. I would support a
    >very strong petition against any US policy supporting assasinations and
    >unprincipled covert operations. What we do must be principled and
    >visible, not evil and hidden.
    >-------- Original Message --------
    >Subject: FW: [issues] Petition for a Thoughtful U.S. Response
    >Date: Tue, 18 Sep 2001 08:22:53 -0700
    >From: "Arek Fressadi" <arek@fressadi.com>
    >Reply-To: "Arek Fressadi" <arek@fressadi.com>
    >To: <arek@fressadi.com>
    > ************************************************
    > Petition for a Thoughtful U.S. Response.
    > *************************************************
    > Please sign The Petition at
    > http://home.uchicago.edu/~dhpicker/petition
    > which appeals to world leaders to be level-headed and, wherever
    >possible, peaceful in their response to the recent attack against the
    > United States.
    >QUICKLY AS POSSIBLE. The signatures logged by the website above will be
    > forwarded to leaders around the world.
    > It is imperative that we act quickly to prevent war!!!
    > Thank you.
    >David Kaiser dikaiser@mit.edu
    >Assistant Professor
    >Program in Science, Technology, & Society
    >and Lecturer, Department of Physics
    >Building E51-185
    >Massachusetts Institute of Technology
    >77 Massachusetts Avenue
    >Cambridge, MA 02139 USA
    >Phone: 617 452-3173 Fax: 617 258-8118

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