Saturday, 15 September 2001

Avoid the cycle of killing
By the time you get this issue the USA may have identified the people behind the 11 September atrocity. USA/ NATO may already have taken action.

Either way the long-term problems that terrorism feeds on will not have been tackled. That requires an internationalism, a reason, an understanding and a commitment to justice and humanity rather than merely national interest.

Whoever thought killing innocent people from across the world would take forward their cause was tragically deluded. They did not do it in our name or even in the name of millions who have cause to hate America but who also, in their suffering, have humanity.

But the same goes for Governments. Destroying innocent lives is wrong whether it is in America, Afghanistan or Palestine.

Atrocities have been and continue to be committed in our name. If our Government is going to purport to act in our name, it must not be part of the cycle of killing.

This is the time for real leadership - for considered, mature and statesman-like action. And never for an 'eye for an eye' jingoism.

Our voices need to be just as loud in condemning terrorism wherever it comes from.

And we need to start by looking at the Western world's record in the developing world. We also need to look on our own doorstep and reflect on the racism that poisons our culture.

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