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What We Face
E-Mail | Name Withheld By Eagle9

Posted on 09/18/2001 10:17:43 AM PDT by Eagle9

Dear friends and fellow Americans,

Like everyone else in this great country, I am reeling from last week’s attack on our sovereignty. But unlike some, I am not reeling from surprise. As a career soldier and a student and teacher of military history, I have a different perspective and I think you should hear it. This war will be won or lost by the American citizens, not diplomats, politicians or soldiers. Let me briefly explain.

In spite of what the media, and even our own government is telling us, this act was not committed by a group of mentally deranged fanatics. To dismiss them as such would be among the gravest of mistakes. This attack was committed by a ferocious, intelligent and dedicated adversary. Don’t take this the wrong way. I don’t admire these men and I deplore their tactics, but I respect their capabilities. The many parallels that have been made with the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor are apropos. Not only because it was a brilliant sneak attack against a complacent America, but also because we may well be pulling our new adversaries out of caves 30 years after we think this war is over, just like my father’s generation had to do with the formidable Japanese in the years following WW II.

These men hate the United States with all of their being, and we must not underestimate the power of their moral commitment. Napoleon, perhaps the world’s greatest combination of soldier and statesman, stated “the moral is to the physical as three is to one.” Patton thought the Frenchman underestimated its importance and said moral conviction was five times more important in battle than physical strength. Our enemies are willing - better said anxious -- to give their lives for their cause. How committed are we America? And for how long?

In addition to demonstrating great moral conviction, the recent attack demonstrated a mastery of some of the basic fundamentals of warfare taught to most military officers worldwide, namely simplicity, security and surprise. When I first heard rumors that some of these men may have been trained at our own Air War College, it made perfect sense to me. This was not a random act of violence, and we can expect the same sort of military competence to be displayed in the battle to come. This war will escalate, with a good portion of it happening right here in the good ol’ U.S. of A.

These men will not go easily into the night. They do not fear us. We must not fear them. In spite of our overwhelming conventional strength as the world’s only “superpower” (a truly silly term), we are the underdog in this fight. As you listen to the carefully scripted rhetoric designed to prepare us for the march for war, please realize that America is not equipped or seriously trained for the battle ahead. To be certain, our soldiers are much better than the enemy, and we have some excellent “counter-terrorist” organizations, but they are mostly trained for hostage rescues, airfield seizures, or the occasional “body snatch,” (which may come in handy). We will be fighting a war of annihilation, because if their early efforts are any indication, our enemy is ready and willing to die to the last man.

Eradicating the enemy will be costly and time consuming. They have already deployed their forces in as many as 20 countries, and are likely living the lives of everyday citizens. Simply put, our soldiers will be tasked with a search and destroy mission on multiple foreign landscapes, and the public must be patient and supportive until the strategy and tactics can be worked out.

For the most part, our military is still in the process of redefining itself and presided over by men and women who grew up with - and were promoted because they excelled in Cold War doctrine, strategy and tactics. This will not be linear warfare, there will be no clear “centers of gravity” to strike with high technology weapons. Our vast technological edge will certainly be helpful, but it will not be decisive. Perhaps the perfect metaphor for the coming battle was introduced by the terrorists themselves aboard the hijacked aircraft -- this will be a knife fight, and it will be won or lost by the ingenuity and will of citizens and soldiers, not by software or smart bombs. We must also be patient with our military leaders.

Unlike Americans who are eager to put this messy time behind us, our adversaries have time on their side, and they will use it. They plan to fight a battle of attrition, hoping to drag the battle out until the American public loses its will to fight. This might be difficult to believe in this euphoric time of flag waving and patriotism, but it is generally acknowledged that America lacks the stomach for a long fight. We need only look as far back as Vietnam, when North Vietnamese General Vo Nguyen Giap (also a military history teacher) defeated the United States of America without ever winning a major tactical battle. American soldiers who marched to war cheered on by flag waving Americans in 1965 were reviled and spat upon less than three years later when they returned. Although we hope that Usama Bin Laden is no Giap, he is certain to understand and employ the concept. We can expect not only large doses of pain like the recent attacks, but also less audacious “sand in the gears” tactics, ranging from livestock infestations to attacks at water supplies and power distribution facilities. These attacks are designed to hit us in our “comfort zone” forcing the average American to “pay more and play less” and eventually eroding our resolve. But it can only work if we let it.

It is clear to me that the will of the American citizenry - you and I - is the center of gravity the enemy has targeted. It will be the fulcrum upon which victory or defeat will turn. He believes us to be soft, impatient, and self-centered. He may be right, but if so, we must change. The Prussian general Carl von Clausewitz, (the most often quoted and least read military theorist in history), says that there is a “remarkable trinity of war” that is composed of the (1) will of the people, (2) the political leadership of the government, and (3) the chance and probability that plays out on the field of battle, in that order. Every American citizen was in the crosshairs of last Tuesday’s attack, not just those that were unfortunate enough to be in the World Trade Center or Pentagon. The will of the American people will decide this war. If we are to win, it will be because we have what it takes to persevere through a few more hits, learn from our mistakes, improvise, and adapt. If we can do that, we will eventually prevail.

Everyone I’ve talked to In the past few days has shared a common frustration, saying in one form or another “I just wish I could do something!” You are already doing it. Just keep faith in America, and continue to support your President and military, and the outcome is certain. If we fail to do so, the outcome is equally certain.

God Bless America

Dr. Xxxx Xxxx, Lt Col, USAF (Ret)

Former Director of Military History, USAF Academy


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; Miscellaneous
KEYWORDS: jihadinamerica
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I withheld the author's name due to lack of consent.

I received this from a very close friend, of over twenty years, who is a former USAF pilot and is in contact with many other USAF pilots.

I think it is well worth reading and remembering this man's opinion. This war, that has been brought to our doorstep, will be a long war requiring patience and perseverance.

1 posted on 09/18/2001 10:17:43 AM PDT by Eagle9
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To: Jim Robinson, IronJack, Bigun, chesty puller, gatortmj
PING!
2 posted on 09/18/2001 10:24:23 AM PDT by Eagle9
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To: Eagle9
The traitors in the media would be both willing and able to help bring America down from the inside if it weren't for the remarkable power that the Internet has to checkmate them.

So, of course, they will do what they can to destroy it.

3 posted on 09/18/2001 10:30:01 AM PDT by DWSUWF
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To: usconservative, GrendelGrey, d.miles, dixie sass, freedox
PING!
4 posted on 09/18/2001 10:34:23 AM PDT by Eagle9
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To: Eagle9
will be a long war requiring patience and perseverance

Will Joe Sixpack have the patience and perseverance when the body bags start coming home?

5 posted on 09/18/2001 10:35:01 AM PDT by chesty_puller
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To: Eagle9
Everyone I’ve talked to In the past few days has shared a common frustration, saying in one form or another “I just wish I could do something!” You are already doing it. Just keep faith in America, and continue to support your President and military, and the outcome is certain. If we fail to do so, the outcome is equally certain.

This will not be your Fathers' war. His war was where, in short order, America went out and killed people and broke things. It may be quite a while where the only death and breakage (at least what we know about) are here at home.

The author has an excellent point.

6 posted on 09/18/2001 10:36:29 AM PDT by Mike Darancette
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To: Eagle9
I am an old man. Here is the way I look at it.

We have no choice. They will continue to try and kill us. The right of self defens is Biblical in nature.

Are young men going to spill their bood in foreign lands? Yes.

If they don't they are going to come to the United States and continue to kill. Those that remain in the United States are, as you read this, trying to figure out how the can kill us, or how to implement an existing plan which details how they will kill us.

The die has been cast! I am now willing to help dismember any foreign government that harbors or aids them in any, even if I have to feed my son and grandchildren into the mincing machine. My cousins and uncles did the same for me in WWII so that I could have a peaceful life without a German or Japanese bayonet being stuck up my rear.

It is not the way that I would have planned it, but apparently that is the way that it is.

Keep your pomder dry!

7 posted on 09/18/2001 10:36:58 AM PDT by Citizen Tom Paine
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To: Eagle9
Interesting and on the mark. I think the biggest weapon of our enemy is the strong knowledge that the American People will tire of this campaign and walk away without finishing.

I can only imagine the 2004 elections when we are still engaged in this battle. Public opinion will have begun to turn and whomever opposes GWB will embark on a campaign of "it's time to end this war and move on with the business of the people..."

8 posted on 09/18/2001 10:38:52 AM PDT by Solson
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To: Neenah, BBTaylor, JDoutrider, Ms. AntiFeminazi, airforce
PING!
9 posted on 09/18/2001 10:49:12 AM PDT by Eagle9
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To: chesty_puller
"Will Joe Sixpack have the patience and perseverance when the body bags start coming home?"

I worry less about Joe Sixpack and more about the "intelligentsia". It's not Joe Sixpack who is on the TV yacking about the need for moderation and how the US may have had it coming. . .

10 posted on 09/18/2001 10:51:01 AM PDT by Think free or die
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To: Eagle9
Bump. This is a must read for everyone in this country.
11 posted on 09/18/2001 11:08:33 AM PDT by Darnright
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To: Eagle9
BTTT
12 posted on 09/18/2001 11:16:16 AM PDT by A Simple Soldier
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To: FITZ, NTegraT, Smartaleck, antivenom, carenot
PING!
13 posted on 09/18/2001 11:37:28 AM PDT by Eagle9
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To: A Simple Soldier
BTTT
14 posted on 09/18/2001 11:37:43 AM PDT by chesty_puller
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To: im4eagles, Cacique, Dan from Michigan, AnnaSASsyFR, Syncro, LurkerNoMore!
PING!
15 posted on 09/18/2001 11:58:01 AM PDT by Eagle9
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To: Pete53, RightWinger, Japedo, BillDavis, MadIvan
PING!
16 posted on 09/18/2001 12:27:48 PM PDT by Eagle9
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To: DWSUWF

My dear brother and sister FReepers,

At this, of all times in my lifetime, I would like nothing more than to be able to read these threads and reply to them.  I have much I would like to say.

BUT, I cannot!

Why?

Because I am trying hard to raise the finances needed to keep FreeRepublic up and running so that we can continue to share valuable information and respond to it.

I beg you, if you have not yet donated to FreeRepublic this quarter,  do so now!

I realize you are giving to lots of Relief efforts and I encourage you to do so.  But we need to help FR too.  Where would we be right now without it?

If you have no money, please come and bump the Fundraiser Thread.

I would really like to reach our goal quickly so that I and the rest of the dedicated FReepers who are working the Fundraiser Threads can participate in what is undeniably the most important time in FreeRepublic's history.

FreeRepublic Fundraiser --WE WILL STAND UNITED!!!-- We NEED YOUR HELP AND PATRIOTIC POSTS! <--click here

Support FreeRepublic! Support the U.S.A. <--click here

17 posted on 09/18/2001 12:40:07 PM PDT by 2ndMostConservativeBrdMember
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To: Eagle9, JohnHuang2, Hugh Akston
Thank you so much for bumping me to this Eagle9. Thank you for posting it.
18 posted on 09/18/2001 1:52:07 PM PDT by Ms. AntiFeminazi
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To: Eagle9
Thank you, Eagle. These may not be the words we WANT to hear right now, but they are the words we NEED to hear.......today and in the long days to come.
19 posted on 09/18/2001 2:48:00 PM PDT by freedox
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To: freedox, ResistorSister
How committed are we America? And for how long?

Eagle, this is by far, for me, the most straight forward talk yet. Thank you for posting it. Everyone needs to read it...and then...READ IT. Thanks, Eagle.

20 posted on 09/18/2001 2:55:19 PM PDT by Neenah
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To: Eagle9
Outstanding.
21 posted on 09/18/2001 3:21:06 PM PDT by Hugh Akston
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To: Eagle9
Thank you for the ping.

This is a wonderful post.

22 posted on 09/18/2001 3:33:18 PM PDT by carenot
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To: Eagle9
Bump.
23 posted on 09/18/2001 3:40:28 PM PDT by Rocko
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To: Eagle9
It's always a good idea to go into a war with a firm resolve to see it through. The middle of the conflict is not the place to waver in your determination. Thanks for the heads up.
24 posted on 09/18/2001 4:26:09 PM PDT by IronJack
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To: Eagle9 DWSUWF chesty_puller Citizen Tom Paine Darnright Ms. AntiFeminazi Hugh Akston carenot
Patton thought the Frenchman [Napoleon] underestimated its importance and said moral conviction was five times more important in battle than physical strength.

To many, it's long been clear that moral degradation and ideological resolve are precisely our greatest frailties, and precisely why this war will either completely make or break not only the United states as a nation, but the entire world experiment in people-oriented representative governmental systems.

It no longer really matters whether the US government or any of the global corporations associated with it have played patsy with dictatorships and authoritarian systems in an attempt to shift resorces and opportunity back to themselves. For the very people who have benefited most from this are average people who've been living softly in the world of cheap fuel, leisure time, and lifestyle unprecidented in all history. It probably includes you and me. And it also largely includes the many hypocrites who decry our situation by pointing out the raw history of US foreign policy, but really don't want to live under the horribly ugly alternative world views they defend by association with an imaginative utopia. They have to be among the most spoiled, naieve, myopic group ever to have lived on planet Earth.

While the enemy looks to be coming from a 1500 year old Middle Eastern mindset, they move on us at a time when our long term ideological enemies, mostly right in the middle of the American Cultural Elite, have spent at least five decades undermining our own "Western Cultural" heritage, and our moral resolve. And we've let them, by yielding to the politically correct view (the same view Hitler called "socially correct").

It is my opinion that if we fail in our resolve, EVEN if we find ourselves locked into an ugly war brought on by deceitful corporations, politicians, or misguided foreign advisors, we will not only CEASE to exist as a nation, but cease to exist as a people. I really think there's no longer any room to tool about in our Volvos, teaching our kids about a daydream of peacefully coexisting with all the multicultured peoples of the world and living side by side in competition with wild animals that nature has designed to literally eat us. The wake up call is here, but it truly looks to be a long day at work before we have any possibility of retiring to the comfort of a safe bed, if EVER again.

Now some have been trying to warn us for some time now about the importance of the trend to dilute or destroy not only our national morale, but the strength of the ideologies that provided the foundation of our heritage in liberty. And the relevance of that arugment itself is mute, because NOW it's evident beyond the pale. And if there are lay people here who haven't been exposed to this view of revent American History, I urge you to read THIS brief secular piece and see what I mean about either intentionsionally or unwittingly setting up our vulnerability. Although dated by a few years, it explains one significant element of the idological offensive that was launched to weaken our resolve, long before the current enemy realized that it was an opportunity for him to act. And it explains one of the most important fronts that this upcoming age of war will be fought here at home.


25 posted on 09/18/2001 4:30:51 PM PDT by Coyote
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To: Eagle9
Thank you for sharing this, Eagle9er.
26 posted on 09/18/2001 4:36:58 PM PDT by LurkerNoMore!
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To: Eagle9
Grate article Eagle...thanks.
27 posted on 09/18/2001 4:39:07 PM PDT by Syncro
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To: Eagle9
This writer is SPOT ON TARGET my friend! This piece should be required reading for EVERY American!

Thank you for posting it and for calling my attention to it!

28 posted on 09/18/2001 5:26:30 PM PDT by Bigun
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To: Eagle9
Thank you...great read! The truth is plain to see.
29 posted on 09/18/2001 5:37:08 PM PDT by antivenom
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To: bender01 ,87FXRC ,Bikers4Bush ,Bekki4Bush,Cap'n Crunch ,CincinnatiKid ,DittoJed2 ,jd792 ,HumbleIrish
BTTT
30 posted on 09/18/2001 5:56:31 PM PDT by ATOMIC_PUNK
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To: Grrrrr 75 Grendlegrey,Memother,Pocat,AntiVenom ,USConservative,Antifemanazi ,Bigun
BTTT
31 posted on 09/18/2001 5:57:15 PM PDT by ATOMIC_PUNK
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To: Eagle9
This is a most wonderful post Eagle9. Thank you so much because I think many are already getting complacent and believe there are no more bad guys out there. This sizes up what we're up against very well, this thing is far from over and they do intend to win and they have many more surprises in store for us, and they will use our openness and gullible natures, they already knew how they could turn political correctness and guilt to their advantage.
32 posted on 09/18/2001 5:57:37 PM PDT by FITZ
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To: Eagle9
BTTT

THANX NINER GREAT POST !

REGARDS PUNK

33 posted on 09/18/2001 5:59:31 PM PDT by ATOMIC_PUNK
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To: Eagle9
Thanks for including me Eagle. As Lucianne Goldburg stated many years ago on this site

Eagles Up!

34 posted on 09/18/2001 6:32:27 PM PDT by im4eagles
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To: Eagle9
Eagle, this country, at this time in history, had come to the melting point, not a place of destruction, but a cohesive strengthening of our Spirit. Thank you for this.
35 posted on 09/18/2001 7:51:26 PM PDT by 47carollann
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To: Eagle9
Osama bin Laden stepped over a line. The line was made sharper by having the good fortune to have an extra ordinary President. If I had a relative who was injured or killed by this monster I would take comfort in the fact that for the first time since WWII the US of A is showing leadership and backbone.

This is a most wonderful change since the last creep was in office. I think the reverse to the thinking of some has happened. We have been sparred this test until we had someone in office who is up to the task.

If God is just than he is for a just cause and rooting out terror may be the most important thing that President Bush takes on in his lifetime.

36 posted on 09/18/2001 8:03:20 PM PDT by Pete53
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To: Eagle9
Thank you, it is so good to hear a military man's perspective. Another war may start in this country between those with the resolve and those without it. There are so many ways this thing can go that it's mind boggling.
37 posted on 09/18/2001 8:08:06 PM PDT by MissAmericanPie
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To: chesty_puller
Will Joe Sixpack have the patience and perseverance when the body bags start coming home?

That's an interesting point, for you are assuming that the body bags are "coming home." What if the body bags are right here? What if every two weeks another building full of people blows up, or another airliner drops out of the sky, right into a nuclear power plant?

Does Joe Sixpack sue for peace, or he does demand the nuclear annihilation of however many it takes to make it stop?

I think you know the answer. I suspect our foes do not. I suspect they are stupid enough to stage another attack, perhaps before we even begin ours on them. God help them if they do.


38 posted on 09/18/2001 8:19:48 PM PDT by Nick Danger
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To: Eagle9
Bookmarked!
39 posted on 09/18/2001 8:43:55 PM PDT by Mr_Magoo
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To: Eagle9
... I think we can expect a few modern touches in the way our new enemy will attack. There will be Cyber attacks on Business ,Banking and all manner of services that use the Internet. In this day there are few Americans that do not. I Think we will see Serious and well executed Counterfeit Money attempts. I do fear many rumored and implied Chemical and Biological attacks.Even if they never follow through on these the Threat of them will be paralizing. It will be the American People's "Comfort Zone " that will be targeted by the States behind the Thugs. We can destroy them on the field of combat. Many young men and women will be killed or wounded, they will lose many more troops than we will.They know this and instead will go after our way of life, disrupting as much of it as possible.

In the end we are not fighting to occupy terrain,so much as we are fighting to make an enemy stop its actions.

We can make every Aircraft impossible to take over to be sure , but then they can come after Busses ,Trains ,Bridges ....you get the Idea. This will be as much a war of taking and seizing terrain as it will be of taking and seizing a mind set. The Backers of these Fanatics may not want to lose their "Comfort Zone " either. The U.S. can and should target the backers, making it Manifestly clear "WE WILL REMOVE YOU AND YOUR POWER BASE AND REPLACE IT WITH ONE OF OUR CHOOSING"... God save us if polititions begin fighting this war as they did with Viet Nam....

40 posted on 09/18/2001 8:46:36 PM PDT by Grendelgrey
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To: Grendelgrey
...I need to learn how to spell.."polititions"....sheesh..
41 posted on 09/18/2001 8:51:39 PM PDT by Grendelgrey
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To: Coyote
Excellent post.
42 posted on 09/18/2001 9:02:17 PM PDT by Semaphore Heathcliffe
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To: Eagle9
Thanks for posting this. One of the best articles yet, for perspective and clarity.
43 posted on 09/18/2001 9:08:15 PM PDT by Semaphore Heathcliffe
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To: Eagle9
I respect your well thought out, informed opinion but I disagree with you on two points.

1. First this was an attempt to throw America into marshal law. The attacks on Washington were botched. I'd bet my bottom dollar that the two real targets were the White House and the Capital Building. If they had succeeded, things would have been much worse. Without a congress(assumeing they were inside), the President(Bush or a new President in succession) would have had to declaire mashal law because one entire branch of government would have been missing. Makes it kind of hard for the President to get anything done legally without a congress. Add to that all of the market drops and the major hit to our infrastructure in the World Trade Center... I think you see my point. In that respect, this was a major failure for them. In fact it's backfired. The government is very much in tact and the population is pretty much POed.

2. I beleive that if the attack continues on our soil, the will of the population to get these monsters will still be there. IMHO.
44 posted on 09/18/2001 9:26:00 PM PDT by Honcho
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To: All...
Every generation of Americans has, at some point, been called upon to stand in the gap. Our hour has come. May all of us draw upon the resolve and strength shown by those passengers of that flight over Pennsylvania, who, even as they faced certain death, took that stand for freedom and liberty and sacrificed their own lives so that others might live. To do less would soil their sacrifice.

Let us not forget; we are not at war with Islam. We are at war with barbarians who pervert the sacred teachings of that great religion for their own putrid goals. Their only resemblance to civilized humanity is the fact that they walk upright.

Let us be firm in our resolve to do what must be done. No trials, no courts, no Miranda readings. No, they must be hunted down and disposed of like the rabid vermin they are.

To do less would be to stand aside and let barbarism triumph over freedom. To those to harbor, welcome or attempt to apologise for this tyranny, I say to you; OVER MY DEAD BODY.

To those who, even now, are moving to stand in the gap; welcome aboard...let's send 'em to hell!

45 posted on 09/18/2001 9:34:11 PM PDT by seadevil
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To: Eagle9, Coyote
Without a doubt, one of the best threads (and links! ;-) I think I've ever read! Thank you both. Do I need to say bookmarked? Nahhhh.
46 posted on 09/18/2001 10:33:54 PM PDT by Humidston
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To: FITZ
.... I think many are already getting complacent and believe there are no more bad guys out there.

Very late Monday night (or very early Tuesday morning) I saw the news crawler at the bottom of Fox News mention that this past weekend $54 million was the movie box office receipts. This was way up when compared to the same weekend last year (I don't recall the % increase) and was attributed to Americans wanting to get away from all the bad news. This was only four days after the attack. While escapism is natural and breaks are needed, this is going to be a long war.

47 posted on 09/19/2001 4:37:47 AM PDT by Eagle9
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To: Coyote
The wake up call is here, but it truly looks to be a long day at work before we have any possibility of retiring to the comfort of a safe bed, if EVER again.

I agree.
I read the article "Original Sin" that you linked, and found it both fascinating and thought provoking. It's bookmarked.

48 posted on 09/19/2001 4:52:40 AM PDT by Eagle9
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To: Grendelgrey
In the end we are not fighting to occupy terrain,so much as we are fighting to make an enemy stop its actions.

You summed it up very well.

God save us if politicians begin fighting this war as they did with Viet Nam....

SURELY we've learned. If not ...........

49 posted on 09/19/2001 5:15:28 AM PDT by Eagle9
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To: ALL
Thanks to all of those I flagged for responding. That's the only way this, IMHO, important post would have been in the 50 thread rotation of the forum. There were many names I either forgot to flag, like AP and others, or didn't know their FR name. We are experiencing yet another Outbreak of the Vanities and Jim Robinson certainly has his hands full, but is handling it, as always, exceptionally.
50 posted on 09/19/2001 5:44:45 AM PDT by Eagle9
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