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It all began with 9/11


"'Soon, God willing, their happiness will turn to sadness,' it said, 'their blood will be mingled with their tears.'"
Thus Al Qaeda following Osama's death.

It is hard not to think of the current Middle East strife as part of the broad panorama that opens up when we begin with 9/11.

Inevitably, we chose the exact wrong course. Had we merely taken out Al Qaeda we would have done the proportional thing, the fair thing, the right thing. 

Instead we set off a chain which has exacted more lives than were ever lost on 9/11. And now Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iran are  set against us, Iraq spins close to a meltdown and Syria is involved in a grisly program of serial genocide with the support of Russia and China.

We are walking at the edge of an abyss that can be traced back to the warped mind of the President we allowed our Supreme Court to put into office twelve years ago.

The history of life since 9/11 has been one of monstrous error and limited efforts to counter it with sanity.

To praise the President would be a wonderful option were it not for two things. He has helped compound. the karmic burden by refusing to see the value in truth as given to the world by one Bradley Manning and he had stored up grapes of wrath with the move to the drone. Both these "policies" are fraught with future danger to our nation. To the point that we cannot and should not say we are safer now than we were four or eight or ten years ago.

It is easy to be against Al Qaeda and to fault radical Islam. But it is more accurate to lay blame equally and even to lay it more heavily on ourselves. This is precisely what the GOP thinks is so terrible. That we should be apologetic. Well we should be. And we should understand that the way of Abba is in the direction of this understanding, not in the Santorum, McCain, Gingrich direction. 

We are in a tragic vortex and we will get out of it only by a grace which we do not deserve.    
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A Setting for a Poem "Denial" Beloved by the Greek People by the Nobel Prize Winning Poet Giorgos Seferis

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dhk0ckaCxDI
The remarkable video at the link above is of a performance of "Sto perigiali" Mario Frangoulis and Mikis Theodorakis in 2001.

Frangoulis and Theodorakis are joined by musicians, including two bouzouki players, and a very large audience that is completely familiar with the words. The audience joins in at Frangoulis' prompt.

This is my very favorite Theodorakis melody. Those who know Theodorakis only for his "Zorba" music are in for a treat. When I was in Athens in 1966, for a short period of study with Constantinos Doxiadis, I knew nothing of Theodorakis. But about five years later, my friend Irene Vassos sang "Sto perigiali" to us. I have never gotten the tune out of my mind.

Later, when Irene joined our group to form a travelling company performing "New Rain", I learned to pick out a …

Stephen C. Rose Bio

Stephen C. Rose (1936-) was born in New York City and raised there. He currently lives there. He was educated at Trinity, Exeter, Williams and Union Theological Seminary. He served in the Student Interracial Ministry in Nashville. He founded and edited the prize-winning Renewal Magazine in Chicago and studied with C. A. Doxiadis in Athens. His first books "The Grass Roots Church" and "Who's Killing The Church" established him as a prominent critic of American Protestantism and American religion. He was and remains a civil rights activist. He has interviewed and done in depth pieces on Saul Alinsky and Martin Luther King, Jr. He won awards for editorial courage and for two documentary films. He has written and published many songs and musical works including "We Are All Americans". During the late 90s and early 2000s he worked for UN agencies, most recently editing CHOICES Magazine at UNDP. Since 2000 he has written several books for distribution via K…