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September 2001


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Reply To:
A LISTSERV list for discussions pertaining to New York State history." <[log in to unmask]>
Tue, 25 Sep 2001 15:54:12 EDT
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Is this posting meant to offer a comparison with the recent World Trade
Center tragedy?

If so, it misses the mark on several levels.  Pearl Harbor was an exlicit act
of war taken by one nation-state against another.  The suicide bombings at
the World Trade Center appear to have been a crime commited by a group
interested in targetting important symbols of a powerful nation-state.

Comparing the WTC bombings to Pearl Harbor suggests that war is the
appropriate response.  Recognizing the bombings as a different phenomenon
suggests different responses.  These might include:  criminal investigation
and punishment of transgressors, re-considering U.S. foreign policy with an
eye towards understanding why such symbols might have been selected, or
making airline security the responsibility of government rather than
individual airlines.

The comparison to Pearl Harbor is also chilling when we remember that one
result was the internment of U.S. citizens of Japanese descent.

If this subject was raised as a comparison, I am glad that the list is
finally addressing the events at the WTC.  I have found it difficult to read
some of the recent postings because of the smoke in my eyes.  It seemed
strange to read musings about the material culture of past centuries when the
National Guard is in the city where I live and the bureaucracy is straining
to produce enough death certificates so quickly.  Our newspapers keep telling
us that we in New York are now seen as part of the nation.  I would be happy
if this list saw the city as part of the state.