Justice not war: A 9/11 victim's relative's view

By staff writers
May 3, 2011

"I and my group of 9/11 victims' relatives hope we will take this opportunity to restore the US to the path of justice, not war," says Andrea LeBlanc in a moving article for the Guardian newspaper entitled 'America after Osama bin Laden'.

Judging from media in the US, this is a minority view among those who lost friends and loved ones in the Twin Towers murders. But it is nonetheless a powerful and healing one. The whole article is worth reading, for context (http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/cifamerica/2011/may/03/osamabinl...), but here are the three central paragraphs:

I wondered how the Muslim world viewed the celebrations here in the US and was reminded of the distressing scenes of public celebration after the attacks on 9/11 in some parts of the world. Bin Laden was the ringleader, the inspiration for many, but his death won't end the threats from al-Qaeda. I suspect that he would never have allowed himself to be captured alive. His death has undoubtedly made him a martyr and perhaps will be cause enough for renewed attacks.

There are not many things I know to be absolutely true, but one of them is that violence begets violence. I suppose bin Laden's death proves the point. I and my fellow members of September 11th Families for Peaceful Tomorrows want the perpetrators of the 9/11 attacks brought to justice, but we believe justice is achieved in the courtroom, not on the battlefield.

I do not seek revenge, but rather justice – and these are two very different things. Bin Laden's death doesn't change the fact that my husband is dead. For nine and a half years, I have been thinking about the human costs of 9/11 – not only the lives that were taken on that day, but all those, military and civilian, who have died since, in two wars, and whose lives are still threatened and being destroyed in the name of 11 September.

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