Thursday, September 13, 2001

Post 9/11 Thoughts

Two days ago America and the World lost a little more of our already greatly diminished innocence. We've seen one more example of evil which humans seem to bring upon each other all too readily.

The attacks on the Twin Towers and the Pentagon were intended to send a message to Western countries. These attacks were not directed only at the United States. The Twin Towers, in particular, represented all of Western Civilization to the rest of the world.

The intent of whatever terrorist group is behind these actions is to bring to an end the Western democratic way of life. America, being the world's hegemon and the flagship of democracy is the natural target. Prior to September 11th, there were very few people in America who had ever considered the possibility of the destruction of the World Trade Center. Americans in general, as a result of extreme isolationism, have been naive in their world view. If it is possible for anything good to come out of the experience of these massively destructive attacks, I pray that Americans would make an extreme effort to understand the needs and beliefs of other countries.

These terrorist attacks are brought on by a skewed view of America which is held by extreme terrorist groups. This skewed view has been caused mostly by American isolationism. It's too late to change extremist views. All we can do is prepare ourselves mentally for what is to come. Don't be naive enough to think that what has happened in the past few days is the worst thing that can happen on American soil.

The atom contains massive amounts of energy. It's only a matter of time before terrorist groups gain the ability to utilize this energy. It's not so much a question of if, but a question of when. Once they attain nuclear means, the systematic destruction of several major American and/or World cities will be entirely feasible. This would be enough to plunge the world into chaos.

The NSA and the CIA, among other organizations, are very large, very complex security systems for our country. Unfortunately, the protection that they provide is based on luck.

Read all you can about happenings in other countries, because, contrary to traditional American belief, what happens on the other side of the ocean really does affect you. America is part of a world, and needs to wake up to that fact instead of acting as if it owns the world. In saying that, I'm not in any way condoning terrorist acts, I'm simply explaining why there are people who commit these acts. You must see the world from their viewpoint.

At any rate, here in the Czech Republic the people are very supportive of America. My students have expressed extreme sympathy and sorrow for our nation. They've said that they feel the pain along with us, which is very touching.

I, myself, am thankful to be in a safe place, and am thankful, along with the other teacher's here, to be among fellow Americans who can support each other. It's been a rather difficult couple of days, and I've found myself fighting tears on multiple occasions. Tears, not so much for New York, or even America, but tears for the world and the broken state that it's in. Regardless of your religious beliefs, you have to acknowledge the fact that the world is becoming a worse and worse place to live. Eventually we will hit a breaking point. I believe it is important to live in a state of readiness for when that time comes.