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Re: Digest Number 1699

  • Subject: Re: [iris-talk] Digest Number 1699
  • From: majorcanis@aol.com
  • Date: Sun, 23 Sep 2001 00:07:49 EDT

       Since 9/15 and for one more week,  I will be working as a Red Cross 
volunteer, using my clinical psychology skills to assist with the human 
devastation resulting from the attacks on the Pentagon. For the first four 
days I worked with AA personnel at Dulles--it was their flight 77 with their 
staff friends who met their end at the Pentagon. Now I am on the grounds of 
the pentagon working with the multifaceted clean up staff.
       I have not been able to get on line every day, but let's get back to 
IRIS. This is not a political forum.
       But since it has become so, let me suggest that we remind ourselves 
that we cannot make anyone do anything, and if we delude ourselves into 
thinking we can we will discover we reap the consequences of anger an 
resentment. Are we strong enough to recoginize that we have contributed to 
some of the frustration in that part of the world. Who sent the Taliban the 
weapons they are using to oppross their own people?
       My proposal is that we bomb Afganistan with bread and butter, with 
audio and video tape recorders, and historical documentaries; with pens and 
paper, with books in their language -- not bibles to manipulate them, but 
classics in their own cultural tradition. Is my memory wrong that Islam has 
been more tolerant of difference over the last 14 C than the European 
religious tradition. If we really believed in our Western tradition we would 
not send a shirt, a cloak, and bread. Whatever we do, let's not cloak it in 
self righteousness  and pretend that we are holier than they.
       Of couse what has happened is dreadful. I am happy to say that many of 
our military personnel are grieving for their lost friends at the Pentagon 
but are wise enough to know that raw re-talion-ation is not a solution.
       Can we as a culture set an example?
       Some of my year 2000 SIgna seedlings very much need transplanting so 
they can get well established before winter, but they will have to wait till 
I get back to Asheville. Nay your gardens grow well, and may we all work for 
peace and international and intercultural understandings.

James Harrison
Arlington, Virginia

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

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