|Wednesday, November 17, 1999||
Volume 65, Issue 62
Dao on racism
Ed De La Garza
The war against terrorism
The Egyptian government requested that the FBI delay its investigation of the EgyptAir Flight 990 crash. Egyptian officials wished to further examine a prayer heard on the cockpit voice recorder, hoping to shed light on its meaning -- and interpretation.
So does a prayer spoken by someone in the cockpit around the time the plane began dropping mean there was foul play?
Does the fact that the flight data recorder showed the plane to be cruising normally until the autopilot and engines were turned off mean there is cause for alarm? Possibly.
There is no conspiracy theory at work here. However, recent airplane tragedies involving large numbers of people, as well as bombings and threats do force people to at least think about foul play.
It's not natural for a 50 ton object to glide through the air, but it's still a shock when one of them plunges to the ground when it's not supposed to. That tends to raise eyebrows.
The Moving Wall display reminded of us of a controversial period in American history. The great World Wars were over. We had nothing to fight for.
We were not in Vietnam to preserve our freedom. We had no clear objective. That "conflict" repeated itself over and over again with intervention in Somalia, Haiti and Kosovo.
We assume that our wars must be fought overseas. We assume that a war is fought through air strikes followed by a ground attack.
But the greatest threat to America isn't Slobodan Milsoevic. The greatest threat to America is terrorism.
Terrorism doesn't just physically threaten our safety in airports, bus terminals, subways, federal buildings or schools. It threatens our state of mind. It makes us wary.
As the Oklahoma bombing showed, there is such a thing as domestic terrorism. It isn't limited to radical Muslim groups. We are capable of being attacked from within.
The tragedy of EgyptAir Flight 990 isn't only that 217 people aboard that plane died. It's whether foul play is found to have been the cause or not, terrorists have won.
After all, when people first heard about the crash, did they ask "How?" or "Who?"
The Oct. 25 Page 1 article "New hike/bike trail first of its kind" reported
that the city of Houston plans to provide funding for parking lots related
to future bikeway projects. It should be noted that these will be bicycle
parking facilities -- mostly bike racks -- and not automobile parking.
The Daily Cougar regrets any confusion this may have caused.