More letters in the Eastern Daily Press, Wednesday, Septemer 19, 2001:
Calm and reasoned coverage by EDP
C J BUTLLE,
Foundry Close, Foulsham.
Firstly, I must express my regard for the reasoned and calm coverage that your newspaper has adopted in the aftermath of the horrendous attack by a few fanatics on the free world. It dos take courage to resist an easy temptation to follow the crowd, and [to] urge restrain as opposed to revenge
Your correspondents have handled the discussion of the many problems which face us individually and as a nation with great sensitivity and understanding.
There is total justification for the anger which all of us, in what is euphemistically described as the civilised world, must feel and also for the heartfelt sorrow we feel for the bereaved.
We must not, however, let these emotions blind us into a sense of pure vengeance againstt he poor and deprived who live namelessly in a part of the same world, andof whom we would prefer ignorance.
Your front page shows a picture of our Prime Minister om his casual, and dare I say, laddish dress, who is using the term "war" to describe our situation.
Now, as never before, we so dearly need a leader with dignity and calm. A leader who will steer us in the direction of jstice as sopposed to revenge. I fear that we have a young man who is following the gutter Press and the worst of the headline-grabbing television presenters.
Violence is not the way ahead
Reepham Road, Foulsham
Let me commence by saying that I am all against violence, whether terrorism or war. Out of violence comes more violence, so violence does nto achieve anything.
Before we start shouting we should get things into perspective, because none of us is whiter than white, Out own so-called deocracies are not above terrorism, in one form or another. The secret service are meddling all over the world, and no doubt supporting and creating terrorism, when our governments feel it suits their interests.
Economic and social terrorism is practised everywhere, especially against the weaker members of societies.
Therefore, before we shout too loud about others, let us search our own hearts and actions. Let us make sure that we clean up our own policies and actions, so we are setting the right examples and showing the right way. Let us listen to, and hear, the needs and aspirations of others, and respect them, although different from ours.
Mass killing will not achieve anythingm, except retaliations. Terrorism cannot be defeated by war, only by peace. Terrorism is practised by sick minds. These people need to be apprhended and detained for teratment.
And this can only come about if we resurrect the United Nations to its right place of an international, democratic, directly elected body with the power to make and enforce international laws both against individuals and states.
The near concensus that now exists across the world's nations should be built on and not destroyed by a useless show of force and killing.
Worst may be yet to come from terrorists
The desire for a violent, vengeful response to the outrages in New York and Washington is entirely understadable - but might is not be entirely counter-productive?
Quite apart from the argument that violence can only beget violence in a never-ending spiral, and can never quarantee the extinction of, or even the reduction in, terrorism, the crucial point is surely this: what happened in New York shows beyond doubt that these men are capable of doing absolutelky anything - and how can we know with any confidence that they don't, right now, have operational access to nuclear and biological weapons?
If Bush and blair are foolhardy enough to take the military option, before long these people will unless such wanton and indescriminate destruction worldwide, the natrue of which could dwarf the horrow of what happened in New York and Washington.
Are our politcla leaders remotely aware of this scenario? From all the publoic prnouncements, they may well not be. And that is truly terrifying.
Track down these fanatics
Canon HEREWARD COOKE,
Norfolk and Waveney Industrial Mission,
I shudder at the prospect of armed retaliation to last week's disaster. That would be just the response that Osama bin Laden and his organisation al-Qaida wished to provoke and would lead to the destruction of our hopes for a world at peace with itself.
A better way forward must be for the United States ot use its undoubted powers of Intelligence to track down the 3000 or so members of this fanatical ody in 30 or 40 countries.
Together with the real support of practically all the nations in the world and the combined effors of their police, secreta service and espionage, there would be literally no hiding place for the revolutionaries nay longer.
That process may take a year or two, but surely it would be preferable to escalating hositilies?