Letter of October 1st 2001 from Jacques Gaillot
Tomorrow has to be made





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Tomorrow has to be made.  silence
We will remember for a long time this 11th September when a terrorist attack struck the United States, an unprecedented event in the history of this century. There had been the fall of the Berlin wall on 9th November, a remarkable threshold in the future of the peoples, it was giving hope that many things were going to become possible.

le drama  From now on there will be the 11th September 2001, a day of terror and devastation when America was stricken at its heart. Humanity is going to topple over. Nothing will be the same. Some terrorists have used the strength of the most powerful country of the world to turn it against itself. The emotion was intense. The condemnation was unanimous or almost. Like you I was watching on the TV these apocalyptic images, I felt full of compassion for the victims, their families and the American people. 

How can we not feel close to and support a people plunged into such a drama? From everywhere, it was moving to see this proximity of the human beings and of the peoples, beyond religious, political and cultural frontiers. The three minutes of silence followed by so many men and women where they were, were making them enter into a mysterious communion with the whole human family.
Facing the unbelievable acts of terrorism directed against the first power of the world but revealing in the same time its vulnerability, I heard these words that sound so terrible for me. A sound of fear: war, repost, reprisals, and attack, revenge…. words that I already heard during the Golf war.
Terrorism is the enemy, it can be anywhere, and it has no face. To declare war to the terrorism with enormous military means is a risk of calling for a new and big crusade with a spirit of revenge.
In part, terrorists are a product of our societies. We are preparing men who are today murderers, men who do not accept the domination of new masters of the world. They are rightly accused of being fanatic and of killing in the name of God. However are we not taking the risk of reposting in the name of God? As if God was still the God of the armies?   croisade 
At the moment when I am writing, I don't know what this war will be, but I am afraid, as always, that we use the means used by the terrorists, that is violence. Then we stay trapped in an infernal cycle with a spirit of revenge and domination. We have been trained in this culture of domination and violence, which is so contrary to the Gospel. The Gospel teaches us that taking over somebody is always a defeat. The disciples of Jesus were never asked to dominate the others, whoever they are.
To yield to war is a regression. It is a sign that violence is still a breach into which one is plunging. To resolve into war is already a failure.

proche et solidaire  The Moslems, that I meet, understand that. They fear, despite of the denials, the confusion between terrorism and Islam. They know that for many they will become suspects.
The Palestinians of occupied territories have all the reasons to be worried. To the international opinion the war against terrorism will legitimate the actions of the Israeli army. For each suicide attack, the repression could be disproportionate and merciless.
For the countries that are suspected to harbor the terrorists, surely they can fear the worst. Once more the ordinary people will suffer from the war.
If we stay enclosed into the cycle of the violence, with the will to retaliate, we move away from peace. War is always a source of new injustices. Peace obtained by the arms cannot last long because it is not based on justice. It is justice between the peoples that creates peace.
The dramatic event of 11th September could open the opportunity to build the coming century in another way, with a spirit of justice and peace and not in a spirit of retaliation and domination. Not easy!  autre monde est possible
We should keep hope that another world is possible, with the Martin Luther King's dream that he had during his long march for freedom in United States: the dream of equality between all the humans.