BruinDan leads A Life Less Ordinary

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–Pope John Paul II sent a telegram to President George W. Bush. “I hurry to express to you and your fellow citizens my profound sorrow and my closeness in prayer for the nation at this dark and tragic moment,” he said. Speaking at his Wednesday audience, he said Americans should have the courage to persevere because “evil and death will not have the last word.”

–Russian President Vladimir Putin also sent a telegram to Bush. “Dear George,” he wrote, “such an inhuman act must not go unpunished.” Putin said a moment of silence will take place throughout Russia Thursday, and offered to stand side-by-side with “civilized nations of the world to stand against terrorism.”

–Guy Verhofstadt, the prime minister of Belgium, which currently holds the chair of the EU, expressed “deep shock and dismay” on hearing of the attacks. “On behalf of the European Union, [we] condemn in the strongest possible terms this type of cowardly attack on innocent civilians,” he said.

–Widespread vigils have been reported throughout Australia and New Zealand, and thousands of drivers in New South Wales have been seen driving with their headlights on in a somber show of support.

–German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder said: “This is not only an attack on the United States but an attack on the civilised world.” He described Wednesday September 11, 2001 as a “day that will change the world,” and stated that “all Germans stand with our American brothers and sisters on this dark day.”

–French President Jacques Chirac, in a live televised address, condemned the attacks as “monstrous,” AP said, while prime minister Lionel Jospin talked of his “sadness and horror.”

–Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chretien, in a statement released through his office, said he had “expressed his horror at the news that the United States has been the victim of multiple terrorist attacks.” He added: “It is impossible to fully comprehend the evil that would have conjured up such a cowardly and depraved assault upon thousands of innocent people.”

–Turkish Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit was reported by Reuters as saying: “The United States of America is face to face with one of the greatest tragedies in its history, something that could affect the entire world. And today we offer our assistance, our words, and our prayers.”

–Mexico’s President Vicente Fox reiterated his country’s “total, categorical rejection of forms of violence, of all forms of terrorism.” He added, “Our friends, our neighbors cannot and should not suffer this injustice alone. We will be there as brothers with all possible support.”

–Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon reported he was “shocked and horrified” by what he say in America Tuesday. Sharon said: “The fight against terrorism is an international struggle of the free world against the forces of darkness.” He added that Israel was standing-by to provide the U.S. with any help it may need.

–Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat said: “We are completely shocked. It’s unbelievable. We completely condemn this very dangerous attack, and I convey my condolences to the American people, to the American president and to the American administration, not only in my name but on behalf of the Palestinian people.”

–Japan’s Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi said he could not forgive the suicide attackers. “Acts of barbarism are an attack on each of us, our honor dictates that we not stand by silently but that we act in kind to repulse this evil at every turn. This incident in the United States is extremely cowardly and is beyond what any words can describe,” Koizumi was reported by Reuters as saying.

–Europe embraced America, although some countries gently urged the world’s wounded superpower, in a grim mood for vengeance, to think calmly before it unleashed retaliation. The European Union has declared Friday a day of mourning throughout its 15 member states in solidarity with the victims of the attacks. At noon Brussels time, three minutes of silence will be observed and all activity will cease.

–British Prime Minister Tony Blair said the attacks on New York and Washington were “an attack on the free and democratic world everywhere.” As the world recoiled with horror from Tuesday’s events, Blair said it was important for the countries of the free world to show they were prepared to stand shoulder to shoulder with the U.S. to defeat the terrorists.

–Belgium announced meanwhile that it was sending a medical contingent to the U.S. — doctors from Neder-over-Heembeek Hospital in Brussels, a hospital that specialises in burn treatment and five members of the federal police who are specialists in identifying corpses.

–Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II sent a message of condolence to Bush expressing her “disbelief and total shock.” She will attend a memorial service at St Pauls cathedral on Friday.

And those are just our friends…take a look at what our traditional enemies have been saying:

–Cuban Foreign Minister Felipe Perez Roque said: “Cuba laments and expresses its profound sadness for the loss of so many innocent lives and expresses our absolute rejection of acts of terrorism, wherever they may come from.” The Cuban official also offered airspace and airports to any aircraft from the United States or elsewhere that needs it.

–Chinese President Jiang Zemin sent a message to Bush expressing sympathy over the deadly attacks, Xinhua news agency was reported by Reuters as saying.

–In Kabul, Afghanistan, Wakeel Ahmed Mutawakel, the foreign minister of Afghanistan’s ruling Taliban government, told the Arab television network Al Jazeera, “We denounce this terrorist attack, whoever is behind it.”

–Mohammad Khatami, the Iranian president, said he felt “deep regret and sympathy with the victims.”

–Even Libyan President Muammar Gadhafi, widely known for his staunch anti-American sentiment, expressed his shock at the attack and offered condolences for the victims and their families.

And, most poignantly:

–“In the darkest days of European history, America stood close by us and today we stand close by America,” European Commission President Romano Prodi said after the most serious assault on the United States since Pearl Harbor in 1941. “Nothing will ever be the same.”

From Life’s a Blog and Then You Die – A blog by BruinDan

EDIT: Removed dead link. -TJB 23 September 2004

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