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Rated: E · Preface · Political · #2254080
Written in 2004, wish I had pursued the project. Newbie here, but with thick skin!

         The Beginning of the End.

         How many times have you heard that expression? Have you ever tried to define it, that proverbial "Beginning"? Was it the election of 2000 with a President elected by law but--though by the narrowest of margins--not by the popular masses? Did that start the division? I don't think so. Do we have to go back a little farther to the inaction and self-serving foreign policy of the previous administration, where military strikes--no matter how minimal--were perceived as a tool for individual political survival gave the fundamentalists an excuse? Is that where it started to go wrong? I doubt it. I guess we could look back all the way to the collision of two beliefs, two faiths, both espousing peace but willing to resort to war to achieve the goals of their respective leaders. That seems a little too easy, a little too convenient. I guess the Crusades of the Middle Ages seemed like a big deal at the time, but no...I don't think that was the beginning of this particular End.

         This End begins with the dream of a small man determined to become a great one, a small man willing to sacrifice his faith on the altar of his ambition, a small man who ultimately became no more than a minor footnote in the obituary of a nation. The small man--with his grand scheme of becoming a great man in the eyes of the world--may have brought down the towers, but his only real accomplishment was to bring into focus the irrational hatreds of a nation too long secure, a nation given too much time to look into its own soul. Actually, the reason, the motivation, for the actual event is pretty much irrelevant. Now, well into the third year of the war, the kind of war that can only be brought on by too much peace, too much security--a true war of ideals--I doubt if anyone even remembers the name of Osama Bin Ladin. In the shadow of the Second American Civil War, he just doesn't count.....

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