Posted by pancho (126.96.36.199) on October 25, 2001 at 13:34:56:
How many, many times has it been written down that no one should think of himself, or of his family or tribe or nation as something that exists apart from the rest of Humanity, that we really share with every living human the same feelings of pleasure and pain, of pride in our achievements, love of children, reverence for the sacred, hope for the future etc.
If see my enemy as myself I understand him better and if it should become necessary to fight him, can only improve my chances for I’ll know better what to expect. But the danger, actually the good, of knowing my enemy is that I might find out that only superficial differences exist between us, that he is essentially the same person and whatever made him angry enough with me to kill me, would have made me angry enough to kill him. Since we are the same, we can understand and appreciate both our actual differences and cause for hostility...but also what kinds of things could be done to satisfy us both for they would be the same things each of us would desire.
Kings and presidents and the men who control them would far rather the common folk never got that close to each other, never saw the other person’s point of view. All their efforts are bent at making the ones opposing us seem to be totally different from us…and that therefore, sinse we are GOOD, the other side must be BAD. Every common element
is painted in the most exotic colors and made to seem as different and therefore wrong from our own ways as can be. This makes it easier to view the enemy as not human, not caring parents or loving families as we understand the terms to be and therefore a threat to all we hold dear…so foreign are these feelings supposed to be to the other side, that out of jealousy alone or spite the other side feels we are as foreign to them and must be destroyed too. That’s how Raman and others can react with such outrage when innocents are killed, meaning their innocents…and not bat an eye when children on the other side are starved and have been for years. Those children are not innocent somehow…they don’t count because we have been convinced they are essentially NOT children at all, meaning not like ours.
Raman and the boys are of this make. In every way they can they press home the point that Moslems have none of the feelings of loyalty or trust or love of family or pride in children and longings for peace as we good Christians do. That he has to bend over backwards and turn himself inside out to do it doesn’t annoy him in the least. His and the boys’ grasp of what he calls history is limited to ferreting out whatever facts he thinks exist and presenting them in such a lopsided and calculatingly uneven manner as to sway and emotionally rile people into accepting it all as true and right. It is the same thing the dull witted fanatics on the other side are doing and have done for years past. If nothing else that should prove that we really all are one sort of Human Bean, and that the sleazy ones among us are the same, whether they pray to Mecca or Jerusalem.
Only one who truly reveres Ashur will see the justice of all sides…the humanity in each, and that the evil men do is not confined to one side alone, or that only one side seeks to hide its bloodthirsty cowardice behind a veil of religion. Ashur accepts us all, madmen and poets, he forgives all, but he has a special place in heart for those who would make peace without distinction and who respect anyone´s life.... no matter what.
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