A Vote for Sanity
by Rigoberta Menchú Tum,
Nobel Peace Laureate
September 18, 2001
After learning of the events which moved the world in the early hours
of today, I wish to make my position public with the following words:
- I strongly condemn and repudiate the terrorist acts that have cost
thousands of innocent civilian lives and have unleashed a spiral of
violence and unforeseeable consequences. Terrorism, regardless of
origin, is a politically unjustifiable and morally unacceptable conduct.
- I express my deepest feelings of condolence and solidarity with the
victims, their families, and the people of the United States.
- I put out a call for calm and sanity to avoid responding to this
provocation and senselessness with actions that could then result in a
retaliatory offensive that would only fuel an escalation of violence.
Despite knowing how and when this violence would start, no one would
be able to foresee how or when it would end.
- I invoke making full use of the resources that would make a dialogue
possible between a hegemonic world system that includes and excludes
selectively and unilaterally, and the desperate radicalism of the
responses it has engendered.
- I alert the international community to the danger that the actions of
these terrorist groups may contribute to unleash a warlike logic seeking
to settle old and new controversies between nations and justifying
actions against groups and sectors which, within the current
institutional framework, have not found a pluralistic disposition for the
recognition of and respect for their expressions of identity.
- I call upon the media to avoid alarmism founded on interpretations
of strong ideological affiliation, which only promote confusion and
feed the ghosts of intolerance.
- Finally, I summon the planet's civilian society -- the Nobel Prize
winners and those who carry the responsibility of governing all the
countries of the world -- not to hasten to conclusions about today's
events, but to commit to a grand FRONT OF SANITY which may halt
the cowardly senselessness of violence and avoid greater suffering for
Rigoberta Menchú Tum
Nobel Peace Laureate
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