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Re: More Questions than Answers


Your lengthy treatise on patriotism stimulated me to respond.  Although I have
been genuinely impressed by your historical musings and writings on this list
over the years, your most recent remarks strike me as nicely literate, but
stereotypically anti-American;  worse they seem based on a lack of
understanding of what America is all about, and what and why it has acted as it
has in this time of crisis.   Perhaps I can shed some light on some of the
issues you raised.

> a man should love his country....  You're not supposed to be
> so blind with patriotism that you can't face reality....

Let's talk about "facing reality"!

The reality is that Bin Laden and Al Quaeda are at war with the US, on our
soil, killing our sons and daughters, and if not stopped will continue their
"war" until America withdraws from the Middle East.

The reality is that they have been at war with America for nearly ten years,
and the "Clinton doctrine" of turning one's cheek and negotiating (that you
Europeans seem to love so much) has convinced Bin Laden that the US is a "paper

The reality is that Bin Laden's long term goal is the renaissance of militant
Islamic fundamentalism.

The reality is that he wants control of all of the oil in the Middle East.

The reality is that he wants to create yet another Islamic military

The reality is that the forces that he represents threaten not just the US, not
just the oil supplies of you Europeans, but civilization itself.   I presume
you remember what happened the last time a militant fundamentalist Islamic
force had the resources to challenge its neighbors??????

The reality is that those being detained  by the US Department of Justice have
all broken US law, are all charged with crimes, have adequate legal
representation, and in fact are being treated in a civilized manner.  You
should check out the facts before generalizing, my friend.  These are no

And OBTW, recent news reports suggest that the prompt action of the DOJ in
imprisoning those criminals has apparently prevented the "second wave" of
attacks promised by Bin Laden.

Since you seem to be unaware of all those "realities", I can perhaps understand
your remark.

> Americans seem to feel as if they have a corner on > patriotism.  They do

I don't understand this remark.  I fundamentally don't understand the basis for
your repeating it.   Patriotism is a universal impulse shared by every society
to some degree or another.   Civilized societies honor it wherever it is
found.  America is the inheritor of Western culture, including a rich legacy of
historical (and mythic) tales of courage and patriotism.  It's the same
cultural heritage.   Why do you think that we are somehow different?

> by "patriotism" I mean that attitude which puts the own
> nation above humanity, above the principles of truth and
> justice; not the loving interest in one's own nation,

If your use of this quotation is an implication that America's patriotism has
a  similar origin,  I am offended, and moreover stunned that a literate man
with more than a passing  interest in the truth could have such a view.

Believe me, if the US felt that way, our GNP would be far, far higher than it
is,  we would not be "wasting our resources" in humanitarian activities across
the globe, and few nations would have the temerity to even consider challenging
us militarily.

In particular, had Americans felt as you imply that we have, we would not have
been feeding Afghanistan (and many other countries that avidly wished us ill
fortune) for the past ten years.  Dead people don't pose much of a threat, do

Fundamentally, if you really want to improve the lot of mankind across the
globe, work with the US to remove trade barriers and encourage free trade.  The
consequent rising tide will raise all boats and will benefit world citizenry
far more than all of the posturing and meddling that Kofi Annan and the UN seem
to love.   I suspect that Europe's reluctance to really embrace free trade has
more to do with fear than anything else.  Be not afraid... it will benefit you
as well... in many ways.

> love for one's country which is not part of one's love for
> humanity is not love, but idolatrous worship."

I presume that you speak of Bin Laden's form of patriotism??

In conclusion, I would urge you to get your news from newspapers and news
networks less committed to anti-Americanism and mindless socialism.  You might
discover deeper truths than you have so far uncovered.

I recommend reading World Net Daily occasionally....


Joe Erkes

Sinclair wrote:

> "PATRIOTISM," Dictionary defines as love of country." "Patriotism," said Dr.

excess quotations omitted........