America unites after bombing

The bombing at the Boston Marathon succeeded in quieting the political debate. As Americans tend to do during these events they unite not as Republicans or Democrats but as concerned citizens.

Generally, outside of a few so-called “terrorism experts” the media performed well and responsibly. There was a modicum of finger pointing and the United States’ opinion appeared solid in front of the world.

It served as a reminder that Americans of all political persuasions share more in common than differences. For most, the pain of those who lost loved ones or had some wounded was their sorrow as well.

Even those usually not inclined temporarily rejoiced in the victories of the Red Sox. From shock to resolution, Americans united in their response to terror, and despite the off-expressed opinion that the world stands against us, our allies tripped over themselves to stand behind our country.

The Russian Federation, itself a victim of this form of terror, offered to help the United States.

Perhaps it is instructive for the United States that not all agitators against a foreign government are benign. The revolt in Chechnya and Georgia received favorable press in some American publications. Perhaps we will now see all terrorists as equally against us as they are their primary target. There is some evidence that Russian intelligence tried to warn the FBI about the two bombing suspects. Again not all rebels are freedom fighters. Certainly Bin Laden, who received U.S. aid in his fight against the Soviet Union, is an example of the folly of embracing “the enemy of my enemy is my friend.”

Also it serves to mute those who were so eager to go into Syria without checking the roster. Better to go with those you know than reaching out behind a darkened door. As well, Libya is hardly a success story either. Best to allow civil wars to take their own course, before jumping to conclusions. Russia may have been covert about the motivation of those within their own boundaries.

But Vladimir Putin displayed generosity, refusing to engage in “I told you so” politics and offering police support. Having seen schools seized, buildings blown up and hostages taken by the Chechen terrorists, Putin was fully familiar with their techniques. Perhaps the Boston bombings were simply an act of lone wolves – but it is instructive to remember the origins of the bombers.

It is important to weigh events soberly before assessing blame. Woodrow Wilson’s “moral diplomacy” is something that in matters such as terror should be discarded. It is terrorists trying to set powers against one another for selfish reasons.

It is incumbent for the United States to stand along with other established governments against forces of disorder. Giving a power such as China or the Russian Federation the benefit of the doubt would be a help to our nation as well.