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Eye for an eye?

Don Rogers

Tom Tancredo, that lightning rod representing Littleton in the U.S. House, has made himself another moment.

He’s page one, a la Ward Churchill, the nutty CU professor who dismissed the victims of the World Trade Center terror as “little Eichmanns.” Only Tancredo’s remarks managed to be even more reckless, and frankly dangerous.

Churchill, the wannabe Indian, is merely a sad nut case drawing attention to himself, a buffoon with credentials. (How he got them is a bit of an indictment of CU itself.)



Tancredo’s radio show posturing about how the U.S. should attack Mecca and other Islamic holy sites in retaliation for a terrorist attack of sufficient horror is not only illogical and repugnant on its face, but is the kind of talk that puts innocent people at risk of nuts. Fully Christian nuts.

Let’s start with supporters’ assertions of “right on, you tell ’em” Tom. “Eye for an eye, you bet.”

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In a word: Huh? Eye for an eye?

For starters, eye for an eye is what President Clinton tried with Al Qaida. They bomb a Nairobi Embassy. We shoot off some Tomahawks.

President Bush started out right by going after Al Qaida in their lair after the World Trade Center attack. I think he’s basically right to remove Saddam Hussein from Iraq, although this occupation of that besotted country is deeply flawed, thanks largely to Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld’s utter lack of planning for the postwar.



It’s a bit more than eye for an eye, though. We’re trying to take out the nest for Islamic terror and replace it with a home for democratic principles in a region starved for that. If we succeed, the seeds of terror will have a lot harder time growing.

Tancredo’s remarks are something else entirely, calling up the utter stupidity ” not to mention murderous bigotry ” of the fools suggesting the U.S. ought to just drop a bunch of nuclear bombs on Vietnam and be done with it.

Let’s look at what he’s saying, understanding that well over 99 percent of the billion Muslims on Earth are peaceful people who are just as appalled at the violence as you and I. Also, consider that there are more Muslims living in the United States than Afghanistan.

So out of that tiny fraction of Muslims who are terrorists, a cell has a successful strike against innocents. Tom and his ilk say that makes Mecca a target.

Sound like eye for eye to you? Sounds more like playing into Osama bin Ladin’s hands to me. Good job, Tom, played for a sucker. Let’s have that holy war, which would indeed be World War III, big time.

But you know, in the Christian world, well over 99 percent of the faithful are peaceful, too. But say the IRA blows up something, or Christian terrorists in the former Yugoslavia or India or wherever pull off an attack, what’s the answer? Using the Tancredo doctrine, why the Vatican or Bethlehem or the neighborhood church are targets worth talking condering.

Does that really make ANY sense to you?

This is the stuff of David Duke, of grand wizards and such. Tom is misplaced in time and location. He belongs in the Jim Crow South, with his rather stunning display of logic, sobriety and moral values. He would have done very well then and there.


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