Wisdom of Pastor Martin Niem?ller
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"There's three of us who are going to do something about it."
"There are places where history is inescapable, like a highway
accident-places where geography provokes history."
- Joseph Brodsky
Language fails to describe the place where one of the darkest events in
the history of human liberty took place.
'Kill one, frighten a thousand" is the totalitarian and terrorist
As the only survivor of the Iron Curtain Crossing, I know that it is
possible to frighten millions. I also know too well how for years and
years excuses for communism were offered and accepted, and a policy of
appeasement was adopted.
In the effort to defeat terrorism, individuals and nations must not be
content to preach from the sidelines.
The same type of effort that was put together to get rid of communism
is required now. No shelter for terrorism must be allowed to remain no
quarter can be given, or the plague will resume with even greater
The last of four hijacked planes advanced toward an unknown but surely
populated destination, passengers huddled together and plotted
resistance against their captors, an act that explains why the plane
failed to reach its target, crashing instead into an empty field
Why am I proud to be part of our human race despite the barbarism I
witnessed? Because I believe that moments before the San
Francisco-bound plane went down, businessman Mr Thomas Burnett of San
Ramon, California, called his wife and told her he feared the flight
was doomed but he and two other passengers planned to do something
about it. Mr Burnett and his friends were not willing to lose freedom
without a fight.
The many ways some people found courage and others came together to
help one another may be the only redeeming factor of this horrible
Watching this week's tragic events unfold filled me with intense
feelings of sadness, anger and powerlessness.
No matter how much we try to be deep, we try and try ... it dawns upon
us that no one can really comprehend what happened to us on 11
September 2001. It was too big, too sad.
It is now our responsibility to make the world become a safer and
better place. One and all of us need love, care, prayer and our own
personal ways of showing defiance and that we will not accept
Nothing is Impossible. Especially, winning the war against terrorism.
Freedom and Truth always, always, always prevails. It must
One story which we must keep alive is about the captain of the United's
Flight 564 who few days after the terrorist attack came on the public
address system saying:
"I want to thank you brave folks for coming out today. We don't have
any new instructions from the federal government, so from now on we're
on our own.
If someone were to stand up,brandish something such as a plastic knife
and say 'This is a hijacking' or words to that effect here is what you
should do: Every one of you should stand up and immediately throw
things at that person - pillows, books, magazines, eyeglasses, shoes
-anything that will throw him off balance and distract his attention.
If he has a confederate or two, do the same with them. Most important:
get a blanket over him, then wrestle him to floor and keep him there.
We'll land the plane at the nearest airport and the authorities will
take it from there.
Remember, there will be one of him and maybe a few confederates, but
there are 200 of you. You can overwhelm them.
The Declaration of Independence says 'We, the people' and that's just
what it is when we're up in the air: we, the people, vs. would-be
terrorists. I don't think we are going to have any such problem today
or tomorrow or for a while, but some time down the road, it is going to
happen again and I want you to know what to do.
Now, since we're a family for the new few hours, I'll ask you to turn
to the person next to you, introduce yourself, tell them a little about
yourself and ask them to do the same."
Under communism, samizdat magazines used to misquote the German
anti-Nazi activist, Pastor Martin Niem?ller.
After one of the darkest events in the history of human liberty I want
to take a liberty to misquote Pastor Niem?ller.
First the terrorists came to kill the Americans
and I did not speak out ( or do anything to help) - because I was not
Then they came for the English
and I did not speak out - because I was not English.
Then they came for the French
and I did not speak out - because I was not French.
Then they came for me, the Slavic born exile, -
and by then there was no one left to speak out for me.
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