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  #11  
Old 09-13-2001, 05:38 PM
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Amen, Tom. -Jeanie
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  #12  
Old 09-14-2001, 07:38 AM
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I just want to take a minute to tell all of you that I've been reading everything that you've written about the terrorist attacks. I want to thank everyone because I find all of your reactions, concerns and offers to help the victims very comforting.

I live and work in New Jersey, and I saw the attack on the World Trade Center in real life from my office. I've lost fellow-employees in the attacks on New York and Washington. My immediate supervisor's 25-year old son is missing in what was once the World Trade Center.

Here in the New York Metropolitan Area, we're so devastated that we tend to overlook the fact that all people throughout this entire country also have been terribly impacted by this horror.

My thoughts and prayers are with all of you.
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  #13  
Old 09-14-2001, 11:41 AM
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I was very touched and moved by all the comments in the many posts concerning this tragedy. I still cannot comprehend the magnitude of it all. I live in Manhattan, and like Lorraine, I know many people who are impacted by all this. Unfortunately, I will learn about more people as time passes.

Life is about surviving, as trite as that might sound right now. Also, we should keep things in perspective at all times. How often do we get annoyed with someone, particularly loved ones, for very unimportant reasons? We should always enjoy what we have each and every day because we never know what tomorrow will bring.

My wife and son were often in the world trade center for business. It is a chilling thought.

I believe that the free world will react positively to this outrage. However, I am not sure that they will keep enough things in perspective.

I hope that I am not going to sound too political as I voice my opinion.

Too many countries of the world that condemn Israel and the United States, among others, are the same ones who harbor terrorists and exploit their own people. Israel, with all its faults, is targeting only those who are initiating the terror. Our government has announced that the terrorists will be targeted. Isn’t this the same?

My wife is the Executive Director the American branch of a Jerusalem based non-profit organization. They help all citizens of the city and she just received an email from a Palestinian woman that she has worked with. She very strongly condemned the attack and stated that most of the people that she knew felt the same. It is important to separate the governments and the terrorists from the average citizen in many of these countries. So many people are just trying to survive on a day-to-day basis and the politics of hate will not allow it.

Nothing can justify a tragedy of this magnitude, but hopefully the dynamics of world politics will see some positive change.

Alan
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  #14  
Old 09-14-2001, 01:55 PM
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Alan, How exactly do you seperate the "innocent" common man on the street from the terrorist who turns to them for support, and receives it, as regards food, security, clothing, in short logistical support and assistance? The same for Governments who give tacit support to the same? Why are these " average citizens" not supplying information on the plans and movements of individuals if they so abhore violence? Why do they dance in the street at news of a horrible act such as a suicide bombing etc.? Do the same folks who now Decry the terrorist violence directed against the US also decry the suicide bomber who kills Israeli children on a bus or in a cafe? As I said in a previous post, if this be a true war on terrorism, there are no innocent by-standers any where-- and this includes this country. In war you donot have "innocents" you have casualties, period,and if fine distinctions are to be drawn, let us not pursue any further action. Either these groups and the populations supporting them must be crushed or we had best drop the whole thing and give in to what these groups demand of us. Perhaps these "common" people are no more guilty of anything than were the citizens of Dresden, Tokyo, Berlin---but in war there is and can be no distinction. War is against people otherwise we would be able to just blow a big hole in an unpopulated area of some country and claim victory because our bomb made a bigger crater than theirs did. It would be wonderful if this could be resolved by apprehending those responsible with no further destruction and loss of life, but when you are dealing with those who donot value life, do not value human dignity and worship only a God they call revenge, there are no options. The State of Israel is correct in its attitude and response--in fact they show a remarkable ability to maintain their resolve and National unity in the face of such casualties as they daily sustain. I hope this country can do the same. War is not a sterile neat little thing--it means death, destruction, fear and every negative thing humanity can muster to parade before our senses, but unless we are prepared to abandon our freedom and way of life and allow ourselves to be dictated to by fanatics who choose to hide among women and children, then, again, "There are no innocents in war"--Gen. W.T. Sherman Tom

Last edited by thomasgeorge; 09-14-2001 at 02:53 PM.
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  #15  
Old 09-14-2001, 02:54 PM
airubin airubin is offline
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I agree with your comments. War is hell and too many innocents always get hurt. Whatever we do as a response, we must not be deterred when the negatives occur.

All the Israeli’s that my wife and I know have the attitude that “life must go on”. Until recently, they were willing to make some sacrifices for peace, but the mood has shifted considerably to the right, even among many liberals.

They feel that there is no longer a partner in the peace process and that until the hate that is being taught in the Palestinian schools is stopped; things will continue to get worse. It is unfortunate that the ratio of moderates is rapidly decreasing.

The average Palestinian cannot earn a living under the present conditions and this helps fuel the conflict. Even though many of them blame the PA, it is at Israel that they vent their frustrations.

This is a very brief and over simplified response. My wife has been privy to much information that you never see in the papers. It is amazing how much Israel has offered and tried to do that was rejected at the last minute.

One can only hope that a “hopeless” situation can change. Sometimes things get so bad that they can only get better.

Alan
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  #16  
Old 09-14-2001, 03:14 PM
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Until such time as the Palestinian people renounce terrorism, they will continue to die. When the aim of the PLO and its supporters is "a Jew free Palestine", I dont hold much hope for any type of peace. The holocaust is not just an abstract historical occurance, it is a way of thought, a plan of action; and Israel realizes that. When the Palestinian people finally get rid of those "Clerics" and others who preach not Islam but hate and cease to listen to them, healing and improvement in their lives will occur--but not before. As long as they or any group practice terror, they will reap for all their people what they so casually sow. Tom
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  #17  
Old 09-15-2001, 07:35 PM
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Thomas

I have to try to inject a note of sanity into this thread!

Thomasgeorge - im afraid what you are implying is total madness, and means that the US will end up sinking to the same insane level as these "terrorists". Not only that but it will without doubt lead to an escalation that will have HUGE repercussions.

A distinction has to be made between murderers and what are simply an opressed and foolish minority.

Innocent people wherever they are simply don't deserve to die. Even people with the opinion that the United States is an Evil Empire don't deserve to die -even if their opinions are misguided. People with these opinions ARE IN THE MINORITY in their countries too remember. I'm afraid that is the whole basis of what democracy is about- and that is what we really should be fighting for.

Horrifying as it is there are plenty more young arabs (STILL IN THE MINORITY) all willing to die for their hatred. What we dont want is to give them any more reasons. As far as they are concerned history already gives them reasons enough.

The only just and respectable way to respond to this horror is to root out the actual perpetrators and dispose of them. To include a whole culture in that is fundamentally racist and without any justification. As I said at the begining its important to make sure that in fighting something you don't sink to the same level as your enemy. Just my thoughts
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  #18  
Old 09-15-2001, 08:40 PM
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Exactly what madness do you refer to? I stated that it is my fond wish that no more destruction or death result from this but that if a war is to be fought and the fanatics stopped there are tough decisions to be made and the results will not be pretty. You sound as though you belong to the appeasment school which feels that simply by saying nice things and talking reason to these types it will somehow convince them to behave. That was tried by Chamberlain a few decades ago and the results speak for themselves. It was the policy of the British government in WW 2 to cripple the Nazi state by destroying the infrastructure and associated civilian support apparatus, witness Harris of bomber command RAF--and it worked. I am not sure what your point is, I suppose something along the lines of lets all just get along. That would be nice but you obviously have never confronted the realities of purposeful and malignant violence, and I am somewhat shocked to hear, especially from a citizen of a country which has its self suffered so from terrorist attacks, from bombings to mortar attacks on 10 Downing street, such a shockingly naive stand. No innocent person deserves to die, certainly not the Israeli children blown apart by a suicide bomber, certainly not the Palastinian child caught in a cross fire and certainly not a 2 year old American child slammed into a skyscraper at 300 plus miles per hour. But die they do-- and unless firm measures are taken by the World community, they will keep dying. As long as populations and governments supply the fanatics needs, "innocents" will die, Period. As to the inference I am racist in some way because I mention a particular group, that contemptable suggestion reveals exactly how off base you are and displays a shocking lack of character as well.No where did I ever suggest the despicable concept you seem to imply Myself and other Americans hold as regards eliminating people because they dont like or agree with us. You lower yourself to the gutter with that type of blathering. Surely you are a more enlightened person than that. If you are scared,you are not alone but such inuendos and insulting implications as you are throwing around do not earn you much in the way of sympathy or respect. Perhaps you should re-read what I wrote previously and this time use your mental facilities to analyze it instead of your emotions, which clearly impede your ability to communicate in a rational manner. It is also amazing to me that anyone could try to bring "sanity" into anything as insane as war. There is nothing rational or sane about killing.But sometimes it must be done to prevent an even greater calamity.As long as these terrorist cowards hide among women and children, hide in cities, hide in refugee camps, there will be casualties ,regardless of how one tries to go about"eliminating" the principal "players". That is the hard cold truth even if it doesnot fit into your neat little concept of things. There is no sanity in war or conflict. War has no winners--one side simply loses less than the other and when it is over we are all losers in many ways. But better to stop this growing tide of World wide organized murder, and quickly, than to suffer it any longer. The best way to do that is, to quote again Gen. W.T. Sherman, "..Make war so terrible that generations will pass before they think of resorting to it again." Tom

Last edited by thomasgeorge; 09-16-2001 at 02:51 AM.
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  #19  
Old 09-16-2001, 07:53 PM
airubin airubin is offline
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Mark and Thomas

The world we live in is not a simple place and there are no easy solutions to its problems. We are currently focused on the WTC tragedy and terrorism, which is what I will address here.

However, there is human suffering and tragedies throughout the world that are either ignored or given lip service. This includes starvation and genocide.

My wife and I attended an unveiling for her aunt who died a year ago. Since it is the custom at the Jewish New Year to visit the gravesites of family members, we spent a considerable amount of time at the cemetery.

After, the family gathered at a relative’s house for the usual discussion of the memories of the person being remembered. Naturally, the discussion turned to the sad events of the past week. Two family members were within two blocks of the WTC and were evacuated from their offices just before the building collapsed. One actually took the subway to get home, only to go one stop, which was under the WTC. She was in the subway when the towers collapsed. Therefore, we were also celebrating our relatives luck.

It is a natural gut reaction to want to strike quickly and with force. It is also easy to paint everyone with the same brush, regardless of his or her innocence.

It is my hope that a clear and doable policy will evolve in the aftermath of this terrorist attack. It should include a coordinated international commitment to fight terrorism and a futile prolonged ground war should be avoided.

Israel is attacking and killing those who are responsible for the terrorism. They try to avoid harm to civilians as much as possible. I do not know if this will be an effective approach, but it makes sense to hit at the source of the problem.


The US is not the only country that has reason to combat terrorism. Every effort should be made to isolate all the countries that support and harbor the terrorists. However, getting this cooperation will not be easy as the complexity of world politics is always a factor. Prudent diplomacy is required and this requires time.

A few of my relatives are in favor of isolating Moslems from mainstream America. This was in part the result of reported examples of cheering in local Moslem communities.

I believe that these incidents are not reprehensive most Moslems living in America. It strikes at the basic values of our society when we consider restricting people’s freedom unjustly. The overwhelming majority of immigrants come to the US for freedom and a chance for a better life.

The United States, which is beacon of freedom, does not have a perfect past. Some of our darker moments include slavery, the treatment of the Indians and the internment of Japanese-American citizens during WW2. As I said, the world is not a perfect place and it is important to do ones best to make it the best we can. This applies to individuals as well as nations.

One of my loves is history, particular American History between 1750-1850. I am impressed with individuals who founded our country. They differed in many ways, being liberal, conservative, northern, southern, landowners, farmers, etc.; but they all came together for the common goal of freedom and liberty. It is particularly interesting to see how our country truly becomes the nation that we know it today during the first thirty years of 1800’s. The national government, with its guidance from constitutional law, almost did not survive, as we know it today. Freedom is very precious and we should not take it for granted.
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  #20  
Old 09-16-2001, 09:07 PM
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Ed_L Ed_L is offline
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Alan said: "A few of my relatives are in favor of isolating Moslems from mainstream America.
This was in part the result of reported examples of cheering in local Moslem communities."

Who reported these examples? I'm not saying they are false, but I would like to know who reported them. A short distance from my home, there is a gas station which is owned or operated by an Arab. After the attack on the WTC, someone started a rumor that this man said to a customer "See what we can do to you?" He allegedly then refused to sell gasoline to the customer. I have bought gas several times from that station, and I find it *extremely* hard to believe he would say a thing like that, or refuse service to any customer. That would be lunacrist, especially at a time like this. We don't need people with deep prejudices to make matters worse. I am not referring to anyone in particular. Strictly over the board.

Alan also said "It is my hope that a clear and doable policy will evolve in the aftermath of this
terrorist attack. It should include a coordinated international commitment to fight
terrorism and a futile prolonged ground war should be avoided."

That sounds great, but in my opinion, the depth of the war will depend on how much the other nations are willing to do. If it is left up to the U.S. to do alone, I'm afraid it will take in a great deal more territory, and with many more governments involved than if we had a good faith commitment from many nations to go in and rid the world of this curse right from the start. If most of the world would do their part of ridding the world of terrorism, I think it would be much better for mankind in general. However, I'm afraid that the U.S. will be the only ones to actually go to war to save the whole world. I sincerely hope I'm wrong on this one. If other countries don't want the war widened, they had better be ready to help right from the start. We're gonna do it one way or another.

Ed
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