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The State of War And Domestic Terrorism.

John Mueller says his views on the risks posed by terrorists have provoked less disagreement than he expected ("The State of War and Domestic Terrorism," October). Allow me to add my small voice to that disagreement.

Mueller argues that we should save our money and just treat terrorists as common criminals, in effect daring them to do their worst and then prosecuting those we can catch according to the laws of whatever country has jurisdiction. He fails to mention that's exactly what we did throughout the 1980s and '90s, and it didn't work. There's a straight line connecting all the dots between the Marine barracks bombing in Lebanon in the '80s and the attack on the World Trade Center on 9/11. If we hadn't responded to that one, what would they have tried next?

The trouble with Mueller's approach is that there's nowhere to draw the line. If it's OK to kill 3,000 of us--only 0.001 percent of our population, after all--how about 30,000?

Once upon a time, our flag showed a rattlesnake with the motto "Don't tread on me!" Maybe it's time to haul it out and remind our detractors that it's not safe to fool around with us just because we prefer peace and harmony to war.

Richard B. Crawford

Roy, WA
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Title Annotation:Letters
Author:Crawford, Richard B.
Publication:Reason
Article Type:Letter to the editor
Date:Jan 1, 2007
Words:218
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