Letter to the editor: Reflecting on endless war on terror

On Saturday, Sept. 8, my husband and I were visiting loved ones in Manchester, Vt. I was drawn to a park where I could listen to and watch the flow of the Battenkill River. It was a good place to continue with my daily prayers.
I was pulled away by the engraved dates in the curved sidewalk: World War II, 1941-1945. Korean War, 1950-1953. Vietnam War, 1965-1973. Gulf War, 1990-1991. Global War on Terror, 2001-the present.
Does that mean that the Global War on Terror lasts forever? The United States Army sent Special Forces into Afghanistan in October 2001. The United States sent troops into Iraq in March, 2003. That was the beginning of this new war.
Tom Engelhardt, in The Nation, wrote an article, “A New Map Shows the Alarming Spread of the U.S. War on Terror.” It was published on Jan. 4, 2018. The Costs of War project at Brown University’s Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs has made a map that shows disturbing information. The map shows where the U.S. has military bases and/or lily pads used in counterterror activities, where there is training in counterterrorism, where the U.S. has troops on the ground, and where the U.S. operates direct air and drone strikes. Seventy-six countries have been affected so far.
What kind of hideous Pandora’s Box did the Bush-Cheney Administration and members of Congress unleash upon us?
War is terror.
I’d rather pay attention to Martin Luther King, Jr. ”Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” “Wars are poor chisels for carving out peaceful tomorrows.” That second quote is posted on the website of September Eleventh Families for Peaceful Tomorrows. Eighty-seven year old fellow peace activist, Bunny Daubner introduced me to this group. These families who lost loved ones on September 11th believe it is important to work for peace. One of their most recent projects is supporting The Afghan Peace Volunteers and their Global Days of Listening. Go to the website and find out more.
Reflect. If you are so moved, make a donation online or write a check. Make the check out to Peaceful Tomorrows/Tide Center and mail it to September 11th Families for Peaceful Tomorrows, PO Box 20145, NY, NY  10025
Patricia Heather-Lea

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