Protecting Islam does not justify acts of terrorism...


September 22, 2001

Protecting Islam does not justify acts of terrorism

William Beeman writes from the apparent perspective of an Osama bin Laden disciple. His column was inflammatory and reveals anti-Semitic bias ("Bin Laden driven to protect Islam from U.S. control," Opinion

Commentary, Sept. 16).

He has the gall to state that bin Laden is not a terrorist, but an Islam patriot trying to "protect" Islam against U.S. influence. Can Mr. Beeman explain how a despicable act of terrorism "protects" Islam?

And by Mr. Beeman's definition there is no such thing as a terrorist, since all terrorists fervently believe their cause is just.

Mr. Beeman equates bin Laden's deliberate killing of innocent people with the U.S. "turning up the heat through embargoes, economic sanctions, or withdrawal of diplomatic representation."

What possessed The Sun to publish this trash?

R. Marshner


William Beeman portrays Osama Bin Laden as a hero for Islam, protecting it from "U.S. control."

But rather than perceiving Islam as needing protection, bin Laden and other Islamic fundamentalists seek to purge holy Islamic soil of western infidels, or non-believers, of which the United States is thought to be composed.

Islamic fundamentalists have demonstrated this intolerance toward non-Muslims, most recently, with the destruction of ancient Buddhist shrines in Afghanistan,, and the destruction of Jewish holy sites in the latest Palestinian violence.

Barry Levi


William O. Beeman's screed is reminiscent of the discredited tactics of the long-ago defense lawyer who would demand the rape victim explain what she had done to cause the serial-rapist defendant to have sex with her.

I pray his argument will be quickly condemned to the same trash bin.

Thomas F. Sullivan


It doesn't matter why some Muslims hate us

Many are asking why the fundamentalist Muslims hate America so much.

The answers may be interesting but they are irrelevant. They will never change their long held beliefs, just as America will never change its way of life.

I do not care what the Muslims think of America. I care what they do to America.

Sophia Montgomery

Perry Hall

Defenders of privacy rights only care about the criminals

I don't understand privacy advocates and civil rights groups ("Broad anti-terror measures sought," Sept. 18). Don't they understand that people such as the terrorists don't deserve privacy? But here they go again, jumping in to give these kind of people privacy rights.

It is really sad that the criminals (now terrorists) always seem to have so many rights, while the victims have none.

Kathy Riley


Address the failures of our security agencies

With all our hurried, harried efforts to revise whatever security measures we can, the old adage "We lock the barn door after the horse has been stolen" comes to mind.

We've had many intimations of terrorist attacks upon the United States. Where have the CIA, FBI, National Security Agency been and what did they learn from these disasters?

Before we begin reducing all of our freedoms, let's turn our attention to these agencies.

Dorrie Mednick


Response to terrorism shouldn't fuel the hatred ...

What happened on Sept. 11 was the murderous, vile slaughter of thousands of innocent men, women and children. The most important challenge for America right now is whether we can keep ourselves from doing the same thing in return.

This is a "war" of ideology, presumably -- of irrational, to us, hatred of America. How we respond will either tend to quell that hatred or fuel it.

Let's seek justice, not revenge, as our Judeo-Christian heritage importunes.

Mike Kane


... or make a martyr of Osama bin Laden

The president's "dead or alive" comment was terribly ill-advised. We appear to be well on our way to making a martyr of Osama bin Laden in the eyes of the Muslim world. This would have catastrophic consequences.

Along with attacking his financial base, a more productive approach might be to try to discredit him among his followers.

Right now, this would be very difficult, but if bin Laden could be made to appear ridiculous, untrustworthy or, better still, blasphemous, his cause would suffer more than from all our saber-rattling.

Thomas B. Cockey III


Falwell's `apology' only extends divisive message

Unable to fly to my destination, I found myself driving across south-central Virginia Sunday morning, surfing radio stations to hear local churches' response to the terrorists' attack.

I'd read of the Rev. Jerry A. Falwell's hateful diatribe against those he thinks caused God's protection to be withdrawn from America on Sept. 11 ("Robertson backs remarks by Falwell about attack," Sept. 16). I tuned in his church's service to hear his petulant apology, in which he stood by his comments but expressed regret at naming any specific groups.

This was no apology. It still suggested that people who were unlike him got what they deserved, by God.

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