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9/11: ONE YEAR ON: SUE CARROLL'S VERDICT: Saddam's a monstrous killer who MUST be stopped .. I'm behind Blair all the way.

Byline: SUE CARROLL

ANYONE who says the world didn't change one year ago today has never worked in a towering office block, lived under a flight path or queued at an airline check-in.

White-knuckle fear was for Westerners, until September 11, a manufactured emotion induced by apocalyptic Hollywood blockbusters.

So much so that even now the image of two American Airlines planes slicing through the World Trade Center forces you to stop and examine the all-too graphic evidence once again.

So sharply focused are the photographs they might easily be the product of a movie makers' fevered imagination. So macabre and evil was the intent of al-Qaeda terrorists - prepared to die for Islam - it defied belief.

September 11 was a tragedy of such epic proportions that one year on Western nations will stop to remember the dead. Memorial services are to be held and acres of newsprint have been given over to mark the event.

In Britain today armed forces are on red alert, with RAF fighters under orders to shoot down renegade aircraft. A ring of steel - first employed during IRA bombing campaigns - has been thrown around the City of London

Meanwhile, under our very noses, a conference of extremist Muslim clerics is taking place in North London to celebrate "A Towering Day in History'', the triumph of al-Qaeda's killing spree in New York.

At the same time Tony Blair stands alone, having faced a sea of opponents at the TUC conference - who seem to consider it their prerogative to debate international politics and condemn a war on Saddam Hussein, a man who's been bankrolling terrorists for years and is currently sponsoring families of Palestinian suicide bombers to the tune of pounds 25,000 an atrocity. They are, perhaps, marginally less worrying than the British peace activists calling themselves Voices In The Wilderness who are currently volunteering to go to Iraq, in the event of war, and act as human shields for Saddam. How thoughtful.

Poll after poll reveals the President of the United States and Tony Blair should "explain'' why war needs to be waged on Saddam.

Why? The question didn't seem to vex anyone ten years ago when, during the Gulf War, voices were raised because George Bush failed in his mission to keep on to Baghdad and finish him off for good.

To hear assorted appeasers, anti-American liberals and hand-wringers whinge about the immorality of attacking Iraq you'd be tempted to believe this is a different Saddam Hussein.

George Galloway even tried bravely to convince himself - and us - that all the tyrant keeps in his arms cupboard is chocolates for visiting politicians. In an effort to repudiate claims that Saddam is trying to build an atomic bomb, journalists visiting Iraq were this week dispelled of the notion when a nuclear plant was revealed to be a mushroom farm.

Yeah, kept in the dark and raised on bull***t.

A ssume that Saddam has undergone some metamorphosis at your peril. But get the facts straight first.

H ERE is a man whose ego is so monstrous he demands his portrait is hung on every street corner and rules a state where those who do not comply are murdered.

He used poison gas to kill thousands of Iraqis and Iranians and so desperate is his thirst for expansion he's fought one war with Iran, took over Kuwait and threatened Saudi Arabia.

As the Prime Minister pointed out yesterday, Saddam's also breached 23 UN obligations, mainly put in place to monitor his weapons programme - and we now know why. A report from the International Institute for Strategic Studies suggests that if Iraq acquires fissile material from another country - which is less implausible than has been reported - it could produce a nuclear weapon in a matter of months, an arsenal he would not think twice about using against Israel or the West.

Oh yes, and that's besides the thousands of litres of deadly anthrax he's stockpiling.

His people, unlike our own, don't wobble in the face of battle or find themselves stalled by politically correct arguments.

As Iraq's head of the Organisation for Friendship, Peace and Solidarity (a misnomer if ever there was one) says: "The Iraqi people will make sure that if they shoot an American soldier three times, a Brit will get killed five times over.''

So this is the legacy of September 11 - hate, fear, utter confusion, divided loyalties, uncertainty and bafflingly complex argument. But one fact remains. The clash of civilisations is far from over. Sheik Abu Hamza in his mosque in London's Finsbury Park, the al-Qaeda warlords hiding in their Pakistan lairs and Saddam in his underground palaces are miles apart, but they share the same sinister aim, to vanquish the West and its ideals.

Bin Laden's aides boast openly of the "success'' they achieved one year ago today, claiming to have a whole regiment of martyrs ready and prepared to take out, as Mohammed Atta did, the vast gleaming hub of a city and leave in its place a pit of rubble and bodies.

And what is it these people stand for? Not the freedom to live in a democracy but a repressive feudal state where a woman's right to wear what she wants is removed along with her independence, homosexuals are ostracised and only despots are allowed to prosper.

At the bottom line, it's them or us.

Even Tony Blair, a man who is said to consult a focus group before deciding which suit he'll wear, has had the balls to distance himself from lily-livered moderate Brits so numbed by liberal thinking they fail to distinguish good from evil, right from wrong.

I'm behind him all the way. September wasn't a wake up call, nor was it a warning. It was a brutal declaration of war.

As they say in the States: "Get real.''

CAPTION(S):

TYRANT: Saddam; ATROCITY: Kurds gassed on Saddam's orders
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Sep 11, 2002
Words:981
Previous Article:9/11: ONE YEAR ON SIMON REEVE ON BIN LADEN: WHERE IS HE?; 'If he were dead his followers would hail him as a martyr'.
Next Article:9/11: ONE YEAR ON: TONY PARSONS' VERDICT: Shame on you self-loathing, American-hating liberals who make me sick to my stomach.


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