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» Ship of Fools   » Community discussion   » Purgatory   » 2001 September 11 - is it time to move on? (Page 1)

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Source: (consider it) Thread: 2001 September 11 - is it time to move on?
no prophet's flag is set so...

Proceed to see sea
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People who lost family members and close friends, no, you don't need to move on until you are ready, if ever. It's personal, it's grief. When it's personal and violent, you must not take any sort of direction from anyone. Grieve as you need to. This isn't about this. It's about what seems to be an endless retaliation, that's led us closer to hell on earth, and led many more around the world to experience the same.

What I'm posting about is using these attacks to justify ill-advised wars against Afghanistan and Iraq (the wrong countries), and whatever a global war on terror is. Is it time to stop thinking of these attacks as a demonstration of national victimhood, justification of attacks on others, and creation of far more deaths than these attacks? Better might be to allow individuals to grieve their loved ones, to recast Sept 11 as criminal acts, not acts of war, not justifications for many military actions and many more deaths than Sept 11 created. I'm thinking that there is no justification for terror, but equally there's also no justification for a 'war on terror'. But is it too late for this?

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Maybe I should stop to consider that I'm not worthy of an epiphany and just take what life has to offer
(formerly was just "no prophet") \_(ツ)_/

Posts: 11084 | From: Treaty 6 territory in the nonexistant Province of Buffalo, Canada ↄ⃝' | Registered: Mar 2010  |  IP: Logged
simontoad
Ship's Amphibian
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I maintain that Afghanistan was the right response on the basis that it was the base for Al Quaeda at that time.

Other than that, I agree with you. September 11 is no longer a justification for war. Small-scale terrorism continues around the world and in the West at least the appropriate response is policing.

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Human

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Ohher
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# 18607

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I'll give up Sept. 11 if t'other pond-edge will give up Princess Di's death . . .

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From the Land of the Native American Brave and the Home of the Buy-One-Get-One-Free

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Golden Key
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np--

{Looks at calendar.}

Timing, dude.
[Roll Eyes]

And about someone else's country. Yes, the US affects Canada, as you've said before. But you periodically bring up anti-US (gov't?) arguments; and--as I've said before--those recurring arguments become wearying.

I don't approve of much/most the US gov't has done about 9/11. But it's not like terrorists with a twisted practice of Islam have all repented and retired.

And, TBH, the things you mentioned have been said pretty much for the last 16 years. Heck, many of the after-effects of 9/11 were predicted right after it happened, by Hunter S. Thompson and others.

AFAIK, my gov't hasn't done any heinous new thing today, related to 9/11. So picking *this* day, when Americans (and Shipmates!!!) are also dealing with major disasters of earth, air, fire, and water, through much of the country, seems...unwise and opportunistic.

[Mad]

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Blessed Gator, pray for us!
--"Oh bat bladders, do you have to bring common sense into this?"--Dragon, "Jane & the Dragon"
--"I'm not giving up--and neither should you." --SNL

Posts: 17994 | From: Chilling out in an undisclosed, sincere pumpkin patch. | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
Dave W.
Shipmate
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quote:
Originally posted by no prophet's flag is set so...:
People who lost family members and close friends, no, you don't need to move on until you are ready, if ever. It's personal, it's grief. When it's personal and violent, you must not take any sort of direction from anyone. Grieve as you need to.

How gracious of you to grant permission!
quote:
Is it time to stop thinking of these attacks as a demonstration of national victimhood, justification of attacks on others, and creation of far more deaths than these attacks?
What a bizarre question. "Is it time to stop" - as if you thought it was appropriate before.
Posts: 2024 | From: the hub of the solar system | Registered: Nov 2004  |  IP: Logged
no prophet's flag is set so...

Proceed to see sea
# 15560

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That it's a war is a description which has continually won public opinion, and it is time that this rhetoric changes. It isn't a war on terror. I was persuaded it was a war when it wasn't also.

What other day is a good day to discuss Sept 11, when I hear the "fire and fury" president talk about it, compare it to an actual war (Pearl Harbour and WW2), and hear his claim that Muslims were cheering? We're hearing some 2-4 million people have died since.

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RuthW

liberal "peace first" hankie squeezer
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Some of us opposed the wars from their beginnings. Some of us think a war on a tactic was a fucking stupid idea from jump.

And some of us know better than to phrase our thoughts as disingenuous questions.

Posts: 24417 | From: La La Land | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
Golden Key
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# 1468

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And some of us have the sensitivity, compassion, and even good manners not to post a thread like this on a day when people are both recovering from and commemorating a horrible event that is still, in some ways, playing out.

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Blessed Gator, pray for us!
--"Oh bat bladders, do you have to bring common sense into this?"--Dragon, "Jane & the Dragon"
--"I'm not giving up--and neither should you." --SNL

Posts: 17994 | From: Chilling out in an undisclosed, sincere pumpkin patch. | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
mr cheesy
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I don't think one can really ever "move on" from an event of national/international significance whilst participants are still alive and the pain is still raw.

And I don't really accept the thesis that US foreign policy is still responding to 911. That seems to me to be overly simplistic given the many things that have happened in the intervening years.

I suppose if there is anything to reflect upon with respect to these horribly brutal and iconic dates is the nature of memory and how we - collectively, as a world community - remember some events with mass casualties but not others.

The trauma of 911 had ripples and impacts far beyond the USA and it is right that the nation remembers and helps those affected. But I'm not entirely clear why those of us from other countries should similarly remember it above all the other things that have happened.

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arse

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Martin60
Shipmate
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As I partake of the staggering wealth of Paris, robbed from the poor for a millennium in all that one sees in the shadow of Notre Dame, with black and Arab African peddlars and Albanian beggars and French derelicts, on my mountain of corpses ... no it's not over and yes it's time to move on to address universal social justice so I don't have to have my antennae out on the Champs Elysee.

[ 12. September 2017, 08:06: Message edited by: Martin60 ]

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Love wins

Posts: 16900 | From: Never Dobunni after all. Corieltauvi after all. Just moved to the capital. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
Barnabas62
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In the UK we have an 11/11/11 day; the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month. The anniversary of the time when World War 1 hostilities officially ended in the year 1918.

That time is observed by a two minute silence. As well as formal acts of remembrance, the silence is observed nowadays wherever people are; railway stations, supermarkets etc. Not everyone observes it, but many do. The day is called Remembrance Day and one of the phrases associated with it is "Lest we forget".

What is that we are remembering? As well as a tribute to those who lost their lives, we remember the human cost of conflict. Such acts of remembrance do not prevent people moving on. I think all such acts have a positive value, and not just for those for whom the dates have special significance. For those folks who lost their loved ones, the dates will always have poignant significance anyway. For those of us not involved, I think the reminders are salutory, a tribute to those who have gone, and a reminder, if needed, to continue to stand with and support those who have suffered.

Personally, I always remember 9/11 and reflect on its suffering and wider meaning. I've actually been at Ground Zero once on 9/11, was impressed by what I experienced, found it moving. It felt like a privilege.

[ 12. September 2017, 08:09: Message edited by: Barnabas62 ]

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Who is it that you seek? How then shall we live? How shall we sing the Lord's song in a strange land?

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Jane R
Shipmate
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Barnabas62:
quote:
What is that we are remembering? As well as a tribute to those who lost their lives, we remember the human cost of conflict.
True: that's what we *should* be remembering on Remembrance Day. To be fair, that's what (most if not all) churches do remember in their Remembrance Sunday services.

It's not what the media and the current crop of right-wing politicians would like us to remember though, judging by the number of TV presenters who are castigated for being 'disrespectful' and 'unpatriotic' if seen without a poppy after 1 November. What they seem to want us to remember is that We Won The War and The Germans Are The Enemy. Not a good frame of mind to be in when negotiating Brexit.

I don't remember there being this much hysteria about the celebration of Remembrance Day when I was a child in the 70s. Even the two-minute silence was only observed by TV and radio broadcasters.

Getting back to the subject at hand, it will be time to 'move on' from 9/11 when politicians have no more need to use it to justify committing atrocities in other parts of the world. Don't hold your breath. We have Brexiteers who honestly believe the rest of Europe 'owes' us special treatment because our grandfathers and great-grandfathers liberated Western Europe from Nazi occupation more than 70 years ago.

I found yesterday unexpectedly difficult, after coming across a picture of the Twin Towers under attack... flashed back to where I was and what I was doing that day.

[ 12. September 2017, 08:42: Message edited by: Jane R ]

Posts: 3934 | From: Jorvik | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Baptist Trainfan
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quote:
Originally posted by Jane R:
Barnabas62: I don't remember there being this much hysteria about the celebration of Remembrance Day when I was a child in the 70s. Even the two-minute silence was only observed by TV and radio broadcasters.

And the observance of Armistice Day (unless it fell on a Sunday) hardly happened at all.
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Barnabas62
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Jane R

I agree with you that using them as an opportunity for jingoism is not a helpful sort of remembering.

I was trying, maybe not too clearly, to say something about pond war differences in the context of this thread. I don't think Remembrance Day is generally observed in the US but I don't recall any US Shipmate ever suggesting that our observances in the UK (however done) were in some way stopping us moving on.

It seems to me good to be respectful of the principle of "lest we forget" and of the different ways that gets worked out in other countries. I accept this general truth by the way.

quote:
Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it (Santayana)
Of course we can discuss the extent to which rememberings are morbid and unhelpful. I'm thinking Miss Havisham at this point. It is indeed possible to get stuck. But that is more about how acts of remembrance are carried out in practice.

Personally, I like the "stopping and reflecting" in public places in the UK. My last experience of this, last year, was in a London Railway station.

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Who is it that you seek? How then shall we live? How shall we sing the Lord's song in a strange land?

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Doc Tor
Deepest Red
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Since the weaponising of Remembrance Day, I don't wear a poppy any more.

9/11 will fade in the memory, eventually. But it might also become a myth, remembered as "the towers falling" and accreting meaning beyond the event's original significance.

People will remember, or not. Amnesia is sometimes healing.

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Forward the New Republic

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Barnabas62
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I guess I've missed the 'weaponising' or maybe just ignored it, Doc. It's not the way I experience the day, or Remembrance Sunday.

Amnesia on a personal level can be part of moving on. But Santayana had a good point, one which points to a value in marking certain days publicly. Of course it depends how it is done. But jingoistic remembrances seem to me to miss the point. If you talk to old soldiers, it's rare to meet ones who are into vainglory.

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Who is it that you seek? How then shall we live? How shall we sing the Lord's song in a strange land?

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wild haggis
Shipmate
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Remembering is one thing but having that remembering forced on you when you want to forget or it is of no relevance to you, can be a problem. I get so fed up with constant war memorial dates.

It always seems to be remembrance for acts of war or death. Where are the remembrances for the good things in life?

I'm getting fed up with remembering WW1. I don't remember it - except seeing my grandfather still picking shrapnel out of his leg when he was in his 80s. He asked for help from the Earl Hague Fund when he was invalided home from Egypt, after being badly injured for the second time, and was refused! He never knew why. He had served his country well as a Cameronian. Even with more than 7 children to support he got no extra help. His life was ruined. He never wore a poppy after that or went to a remembrance service.

When do you stop remembering things? Every date could be an anniversary for something and then it becomes ridiculous. Living ordinary life gets sublimated to remembering the past instead of living the present and looking to the future and making a better world.

Terrible things happen and if you are involved it can be traumatic - I was in the area of London for 7/7 and had to help get our kids from school to a safe place after lock down. But I don't want to remember it every year.

Re poppies and being ant-war. I wear a white one from the Peace Pledge Union to show that I'm not a war mongerer.

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wild haggis

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Jane R
Shipmate
# 331

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Barnabas62:
quote:
By Baptist Trainfan:
And the observance of Armistice Day (unless it fell on a Sunday) hardly happened at all.

[Roll Eyes] Well, if we're going to argue about what to *call* it...

For the record, I am aware that the ceremonies marking the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month were originally referred to as Armistice Day, as it remembered the signing of the Armistice at the end of the First World War. This century, these ceremonies/celebrations are commonly referred to as Remembrance Day.

Delaying the signing of the Armistice so that it could happen at a nicely symbolic time was a needless bit of posturing that cost soldiers' lives on both sides.

I assume that Doc Tor is referring to the jingoism and militarism associated with Remembrance Day when he talks about 'weaponising' it. I don't like these aspects of it either. I have very mixed feelings about Remembrance Day nowadays.

(edited to clarify the source of the quote)

[ 12. September 2017, 18:10: Message edited by: Barnabas62 ]

Posts: 3934 | From: Jorvik | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
mr cheesy
Shipmate
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Dates are interesting. I wonder how many Americans could state even the year of the Rwanda genocide, the Moscow theatre massacre, the Boxing Day tsunami etc.

Just fwiw, I could only remember the year of one of those without looking it up.

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arse

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Kitten
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quote:
Originally posted by Ohher:
I'll give up Sept. 11 if t'other pond-edge will give up Princess Di's death . . .

I'd happily give that up, I find it sickening

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Maius intra qua extra

Never accept a ride from a stranger, unless they are in a big blue box

Posts: 2309 | From: Carmarthenshire | Registered: Aug 2001  |  IP: Logged
Sioni Sais
Shipmate
# 5713

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To be honest I think Remembrance Day is right, mostly because my dad and my father-in-law served through WW2 and my brother's father died in it. What irritates me no end, and this may be because I work in the Government, is that since 2001 every terrorist act that results in fatalities is marked by a minutes silence. I am getting tired of this. As others have mentioned, these are acts in Britain, possibly Europe but mass shootings in America no, and car bombs in Baghdad never.

For what it's worth, I think this devalues 11/11.

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"He isn't Doctor Who, he's The Doctor"

(Paul Sinha, BBC)

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cliffdweller
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# 13338

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Given that we're still apparently fighting the Civil War after 150 years, I guess no, 16 years is too soon to move on.

Using 9/11 to subversively cloak the real motives for wars with countries with dubious connections to 9/11 but lots of nice oil? Wasn't OK then, sure as hell ain't now.

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"Here is the world. Beautiful and terrible things will happen. Don't be afraid." -Frederick Buechner

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Nicolemr
Shipmate
# 28

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There's two different issues here and they shouldn't be confounded.

First, should there still be yearly 9/11 memorials? Yes, dammit. Although things have gotten easier in recent years, we here in New York City are still feeling the effects of the events of that day, and it's our right and duty to remember.

Second, on the other hand, should 9/11 be used as a justification for foreign policy decisions at this point? And that's what's debatable. 9/11 should never have been used as a justification for attacking Iraq in the first place, we all knew it had nothing to do with it, and it was a slap in the face to the memories of those who died to so misuse their deaths.

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On pilgrimage in the endless realms of Cyberia, currently traveling by ship. Now with live journal!

Posts: 11663 | From: New York City "The City Carries On" | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Anglican_Brat
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Judith Butler in her book on violence and mourning (https://www.amazon.ca/Precarious-Life-Powers-Mourning-Violence/dp/1844675440) argues that the tragedy of 9/11 confronted the United States with its false idol of invincibility and superiority. Because America could not face the truth of its vulnerability, it had to "tell the lie" to itself again through expressions of bravado, such as tough restrictions on immigrants and military action. The wars in the Middle East were about defending and buttressing America's national ego and mythos, than about concretely defending its population.

Butler ponders whether America could have accepted its vulnerability and instead, of inflicting Iraq and Afghanistan with bearing the brunt of its inability to accept vulnerability, discovered a new empathy for other peoples who also suffer violence. The truth of the matter is that we can only be really safe if everyone is safe.

So, to the OP, it's not that America is stuck on victimhood, it's that America refuses to see herself as a victim because that would mean that she is vulnerable, mortal, and weak. America, like all empires, thinks its empire is eternal. And it may fall, like other empires for believing in the myth of her own superiority.

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It's Reformation Day! Do your part to promote Christian unity and brotherly love and hug a schismatic.

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Nicolemr
Shipmate
# 28

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I meant Iraq in my post above, of course, not Iran.

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On pilgrimage in the endless realms of Cyberia, currently traveling by ship. Now with live journal!

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lilBuddha
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# 14333

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quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:
Dates are interesting. I wonder how many Americans could state even the year of the Rwanda genocide, the Moscow theatre massacre, the Boxing Day tsunami etc.

Just fwiw, I could only remember the year of one of those without looking it up.

Americans are notoriously myopic as a whole, but I doubt most in the UK or Europe would know those dates either.
More significantly, I doubt most Americans could pin dates on the embassy bombings in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania and Nairobi, Kenya or The U.S.S Cole. And those were attacks on Americans.

quote:
Originally posted by Barnabas62:
If you talk to old soldiers, it's rare to meet ones who are into vainglory.

I have known a number of military from WWII to Iraq and the attitudes vary considerably. From not wishing to speak of their experiences to revelling in the nastiest, most horrific deeds. Vainglory is rather tame to some of what I've heard.

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So goodnight moon, I want the sun
If it's not here soon, I might be done
No it won't be too soon 'til I say goodnight moon

- A. N. Parsley, D. Mcvinni

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cliffdweller
Shipmate
# 13338

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quote:
Originally posted by Anglican_Brat:
Judith Butler in her book on violence and mourning (https://www.amazon.ca/Precarious-Life-Powers-Mourning-Violence/dp/1844675440) argues that the tragedy of 9/11 confronted the United States with its false idol of invincibility and superiority. Because America could not face the truth of its vulnerability, it had to "tell the lie" to itself again through expressions of bravado, such as tough restrictions on immigrants and military action. The wars in the Middle East were about defending and buttressing America's national ego and mythos, than about concretely defending its population.

Butler ponders whether America could have accepted its vulnerability and instead, of inflicting Iraq and Afghanistan with bearing the brunt of its inability to accept vulnerability, discovered a new empathy for other peoples who also suffer violence. The truth of the matter is that we can only be really safe if everyone is safe.

So, to the OP, it's not that America is stuck on victimhood, it's that America refuses to see herself as a victim because that would mean that she is vulnerable, mortal, and weak. America, like all empires, thinks its empire is eternal. And it may fall, like other empires for believing in the myth of her own superiority.

Agh. That strikes me as so ridiculously, absurdly true. Bleh.

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"Here is the world. Beautiful and terrible things will happen. Don't be afraid." -Frederick Buechner

Posts: 11087 | From: a small canyon overlooking the city | Registered: Jan 2008  |  IP: Logged
Baptist Trainfan
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# 15128

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quote:
Originally posted by cliffdweller:
Given that we're still apparently fighting the Civil War after 150 years, I guess no, 16 years is too soon to move on.

There are villages in East Anglia which still have a corporate memory of which side they fought on in the English Civil War. 150 years is nothing!

More seriously, to what extent do we need to consider Isaiah's words: "Do not remember the former things, or consider the things of old. I am about to do a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?" I know that we are the products of our history, and also that we don't want to repeat the mistakes of the past. But is it not ultimately better to look forward rather than be endlessly reliving the past?

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quetzalcoatl
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# 16740

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quote:
Originally posted by Anglican_Brat:
Judith Butler in her book on violence and mourning (https://www.amazon.ca/Precarious-Life-Powers-Mourning-Violence/dp/1844675440) argues that the tragedy of 9/11 confronted the United States with its false idol of invincibility and superiority. Because America could not face the truth of its vulnerability, it had to "tell the lie" to itself again through expressions of bravado, such as tough restrictions on immigrants and military action. The wars in the Middle East were about defending and buttressing America's national ego and mythos, than about concretely defending its population.

Butler ponders whether America could have accepted its vulnerability and instead, of inflicting Iraq and Afghanistan with bearing the brunt of its inability to accept vulnerability, discovered a new empathy for other peoples who also suffer violence. The truth of the matter is that we can only be really safe if everyone is safe.

So, to the OP, it's not that America is stuck on victimhood, it's that America refuses to see herself as a victim because that would mean that she is vulnerable, mortal, and weak. America, like all empires, thinks its empire is eternal. And it may fall, like other empires for believing in the myth of her own superiority.

Terrific quote from the honourable Butler. It's quite reminiscent of psychological analysis of bullying, in that the bully simultaneously blocks his own vulnerability, but then projects it into someone else (the victim), so that the bully, paradoxically gets to see his own suffering enacted, but also is able to cut off from it, and even get a sadistic pleasure from it.

This can spiral off into various sadistic and masochistic relationships, of course, rather complex.

You also meet victims who then became bullies, and they are scary often. Its role in political relations is quite fascinating.

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Schroedinger's cat

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quote:
Originally posted by Ohher:
I'll give up Sept. 11 if t'other pond-edge will give up Princess Di's death . . .

Please can we.

I think it is time to move on from using 9/11 as a justification for anything. But then, I am not sure most of the things it has been used as a justification for were justified anyway. Especially not the war.

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Barnabas62
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quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:

quote:
Originally posted by Barnabas62:
If you talk to old soldiers, it's rare to meet ones who are into vainglory.

I have known a number of military from WWII to Iraq and the attitudes vary considerably. From not wishing to speak of their experiences to revelling in the nastiest, most horrific deeds. Vainglory is rather tame to some of what I've heard.
Must have been lucky in my sample. Anyway, here is Harry Patch, quoted telling it like it was for him.

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lilBuddha
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quote:
Originally posted by Barnabas62:
Anyway, here is Harry Patch, quoted telling it like it was for him.

And this is an issue. Stories like those of Harry Patch are what we are called to think on when we remember.
Not all soldiers are Harry Patch. They are good, they are bad, they are indifferent. They are heroes and they are villains, but mostly they are just there.

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simontoad
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Has anyone pointed out that remembering things is not the same as using them to justify present actions?

Also, do they hold memorial services in Oklahoma City to remember those killed by the white supremacist terrorist attack on the Federal building there? I don't think the two attacks are comparable in scale and impact, but I'm interested. I guess for the sake of balance I might refer to the weather underground, but I don't know much about their attacks. Telling, no doubt.

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Anglican_Brat
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quote:
Has anyone pointed out that remembering things is not the same as using them to justify present actions?

When I visited Israel/Palestine, right before we visited Yad Vashem, our guide spoke "Now we will understand the Israeli side of the dispute."

I thought this was a tad manipulative because it came close to suggesting that the Holocaust justified Israeli policy.

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lilBuddha
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quote:
Originally posted by simontoad:
Has anyone pointed out that remembering things is not the same as using them to justify present actions?

If everyone thought the same, there'd be no protest against the white poppy, would there?

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If it's not here soon, I might be done
No it won't be too soon 'til I say goodnight moon

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RuthW

liberal "peace first" hankie squeezer
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quote:
Originally posted by simontoad:
Has anyone pointed out that remembering things is not the same as using them to justify present actions?

Yes, Nicolemr did upthread.

quote:
Also, do they hold memorial services in Oklahoma City to remember those killed by the white supremacist terrorist attack on the Federal building there? I don't think the two attacks are comparable in scale and impact, but I'm interested. I guess for the sake of balance I might refer to the weather underground, but I don't know much about their attacks. Telling, no doubt.
They hold a ceremony every year; you can see video of this year's ceremony on the website of the Oklahoma City National Memorial. Part of the ceremony is reading all the victims' names.

The Weather Underground was a much bigger operation than McVeigh and Nichols', and it had a more specific political purpose: ending the Vietnam War. They never did anything on the scale of the OK City bombing, though it's possible that they could have, if things hadn't literally blown up in their faces in Greenwich Village. Check out the Weather Underground Wikipedia page; it's pretty extensive.

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Schroedinger's cat

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quote:
Originally posted by simontoad:
Has anyone pointed out that remembering things is not the same as using them to justify present actions?

So we should be remembering the victims of all terrorist attacks. Maybe, like Rememberance for those who died in war, we should have a day where we remember those who have died in terror attacks.

Of course, that would have to include the White Supremacist attacks too, so would be no good in stoking hatered of the Muslims.

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Doublethink.
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Is there going to be some kind of determination of who counts as a freedom fighter and who as a terrorist in this memorial ?

History is written by the victors etc

We could remember victims of violence & disaster ? Terrorism kills a tiny fraction of those who die by violence in our countries every year, and I think we are giving it more power in the way we name it and amplify it. We are allowing it to define us, change our societies and warp our values - almost every time our leaders loudly declare we won't.

Just look at what has happened to our civil rights over the past 15 years. In the UK we have secret courts, control orders that restrict unconvicted people of their freedoms, the reintroduction of exile (we strip you of your citizenship and throw you out, we can legally only do it if you are a dual citizen so this effectively makes dual citizenship second class citizenship), state mandated extremism reporting programs, undocumented immigrants held in abusive private institutions and now the government is trying to introduce legislation which self-modifies without parliamentary scrutiny.

But apparently terrorism will never change our way of life.

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All political thinking for years past has been vitiated in the same way. People can foresee the future only when it coincides with their own wishes, and the most grossly obvious facts can be ignored when they are unwelcome. George Orwell

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simontoad
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Yeah maybe. The idea of a day for things has been somewhat cheapened by things like National Ice Cream Sandwich Day (August 2nd). I'm happy with civic ceremonies. Tomorrow (September 14th) is National Cream Filled Donut Day.

I apologise for missing Nicole's post which said the same thing as mine. I often peruse the site while waiting for the AI turn to process on a computer game. Consequently both reading and my reading comprehension can suff

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Barnabas62
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quote:
Originally posted by lilBuddha:
quote:
Originally posted by Barnabas62:
Anyway, here is Harry Patch, quoted telling it like it was for him.

And this is an issue. Stories like those of Harry Patch are what we are called to think on when we remember.
Not all soldiers are Harry Patch. They are good, they are bad, they are indifferent. They are heroes and they are villains, but mostly they are just there.

I now wish I had living history recordings of what were for me both illuminating and precious conversations! But clearly our experiences have been markedly different. I won't generalise from mine, just remember them with gratitude.

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Who is it that you seek? How then shall we live? How shall we sing the Lord's song in a strange land?

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mousethief

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# 953

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In the US, Armistice Day has morphed into Veterans Day, and on it we honor all veterans, not just those of the Great War. This solves the pesky problem of having a day for each war. We also have Memorial Day in the Spring to honor the dead ones, from whatsoever war. I wonder if 9/11 will morph into a day on which we honor all victims of terrorism? Well maybe not all, meaning people who aren't Americans, of course.

quote:
Originally posted by mr cheesy:
The trauma of 911 had ripples and impacts far beyond the USA and it is right that the nation remembers and helps those affected. But I'm not entirely clear why those of us from other countries should similarly remember it above all the other things that have happened.

Who's making you?

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mr cheesy
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quote:
Originally posted by mousethief:
Who's making you?

Well I agree that nobody is forcing us exactly, and yet in another sense the status of the USA as a city-on-the-hill means that things which happen there have resonance in much of the rest of the world in a way that is not replicated.

It sometimes then feels like we (the USA's allies) are being told that we have to participate in various activities led by the USA because you've (nationally) felt such trauma by this event - in a way that we're not asked to participate in ongoing remembrance about (for example) Iraq's dead.

I don't know - perhaps it is because we Brits are so anxious to be seen as willing helper to the big-brother-superpower. I don't think it is just that, I suspect that many people around the world remember things that happen in the USA however far they are (geographically, politically) from North America in ways that they don't remember other events.

I'm not blaming anyone. It's just a quirk of an international system with a single super-power and everyone else looking to them I suppose.

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no prophet's flag is set so...

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Could September 11 prayers include the millions dead in the retaliation wars?
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Crœsos
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It should be noted that the 2001 Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF) passed by the U.S. Congress to fight al Qæda and the Taliban is still being used today as the legal basis for doing things like shooting down Syrian fighter jets. At the very least it seems like it's time to review what has essentially become a blank check for the American president to use the military whenever and wherever (and apparently whyever) he likes.

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simontoad
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Mr Cheesy said:

quote:
It sometimes then feels like we (the USA's allies) are being told that we have to participate in various activities led by the USA because you've (nationally) felt such trauma by this event - in a way that we're not asked to participate in ongoing remembrance about (for example) Iraq's dead.
I don't think you are saying that it is Americans who are telling the people of their allies to feel that way. Let me know if you are and I'll give you my view.

I make no comment about the British, but people I know who feel that Australia is pressured to participate in US led activities feel that way because they oppose the American alliance. They feel that the United States is dead wrong on most issues, and they want Australia to withdraw from the alliance, close American facilities in this country and adopt a generally neutral position in world affairs. These people I know who hold this position mostly admit that they don't like Americans. They think Americans are mostly stupid, conservative, and exploitative of each other and people in other countries. Naturally, these people I know wouldn't be so gauche as to express themselves so bluntly.

When Australia has supported the United States in military affairs, our influence in Washington has been used to urge war. That is true of the Vietnam war, and the wars in the aftermath of September 11. Foreign policy in this country is bi-partisan, with both major parties solidly behind ANZUS in Government, and mostly in opposition. This is because the interests of the United States and Australia are more or less aligned, and because the leadership of both countries approach international issues in broadly the same way.

In relation to remembering the attack on the World Trade Center, quite a number of Australians were also killed, and even more Britons. I remember vividly hearing of the attack and seeing it on television. I remember that our church was opened that night for prayer and reflection, and that people who were not in our congregation came in simply because they saw that the church was open. They were looking for a place to pray in company with others. The attack was traumatic for me and many others in this country. When I visited the memorial in New York last year, a shadow of the trauma returned.

It is easy to imagine that America directs and controls its allies. It's not as true as it looks. It is necessary for American politicians to assume the mantle of Caesar domestically, and the sheer size and strength of the US's military means that they will always have much more on the line than us. But behind the scenes it is a different story, one of consultation and negotiation to refine and achieve goals in the perceived interests of all of us.

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Baptist Trainfan
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quote:
Originally posted by Jane R:
Barnabas62:
quote:
By Baptist Trainfan:
And the observance of Armistice Day (unless it fell on a Sunday) hardly happened at all.

[Roll Eyes] Well, if we're going to argue about what to *call* it...
I'm not. "Armistice Day" is the actual date, 11th November, which seemed to be largely unmarked by ceremonies when I was a child (although mentioned in my school's Assemblies that day, though not at 11 am). "Remembrance Day" is the Sunday nearest (and, of course, sometimes coinciding with) it when public services were held at war memorials or in church. But now, in Britain, we seem to be being encouraged to do both - which, to me, seems confusing, at the least!
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rolyn
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Reading this thread it is surprising that a comparison has been made between September 11th 2001 and November 11th 1918 as the only thing that appears the same is the number eleven.

The comparison is though being made because both these dates have become politicised and exploited. Lest we forget-- the official Armistice Day had, as BT has pointed out, been largely overlooked, neglected and abandoned. That was until a handful of determined Europhobes quietly managed to revive it, along with the full two minute silence.
So if anyone thinks a day might come when 9/11 won't ever be revived for some political purpose then forget it, because it will.

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Barnabas62
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quote:
Originally posted by rolyn:

The comparison is though being made because both these dates have become politicised and exploited. Lest we forget-- the official Armistice Day had, as BT has pointed out, been largely overlooked, neglected and abandoned. That was until a handful of determined Europhobes quietly managed to revive it, along with the full two minute silence.

See here (1999 News article).

Particularly this quote

quote:
This is the fifth year in which the legion has campaigned for the silence on 11 November and it has the backing of the three main political parties and organisations around the country.
I don't think the British Legion is the front organisation for determined Europhobes. For folks in other countries, here is a link.

The first sentence provides its enduring purpose.

quote:
The main purpose of the Legion was straightforward: to care for those who had suffered as a result of service in the Armed Forces during the war


[ 13. September 2017, 18:37: Message edited by: Barnabas62 ]

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Doc Tor
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quote:
Originally posted by Barnabas62:
I don't think the British Legion is the front organisation for determined Europhobes.

But neither can you say that (given the demographics of the average Legion member) a great many aren't Europhobes, nor that it didn't influence their campaign.

Also, political parties are going to be pretty spineless when it comes to standing up to a bunch of 'patriotic pensioners' who only want the two minute silence reinstated. Which, shortly afterwards, was used to quell dissent over our foreign adventures and ginger up support, not for our glorious dead, but our currently fighting.

I always remember the Remembrance Days of my youth as incredibly sombre affairs, where the roll-call of the fallen was read out and "Our God our help in ages past" was sung (along with "Abide with me"), standing shoulder to shoulder (or, given my age, head to knee) with old soldiers.

That generation has gone. Almost no one taking part has been in a war (unless they're a refugee), let alone fought in one. That, in itself, is not a reason to discontinue it. But when it's used as a recruiting sergeant for the military? No, thank you.

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Pangolin Guerre
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I have an odd relationship to 11 Sept., as I was working in a bank/broker at the time, by the trading floor, and a few of us knew that something very wrong was happening in advance of CNN. A friend of mine in a different bank lost a colleague who was having breakfast in the office of Cantor Fitzgerald.

Lest the American shipmates think that the outside world "doesn't get it" (and, really, mostly we do), I highly recommend watching

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