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We had been warned that much of the world despised America. We tuned out -- until killers delivered to America its most tormented day since Pearl Harbor.

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A harmonious Middle East -- or, at least, a Middle East where the bloodshed is slowed -- would defuse much of the animus directed at America.

If "globalization and "free trade mean building our prosperity by impoverishing most of the rest of the world -- and increasingly undermining our own citizens' wealth -- we'd better realize it's time to change. Or it's time to accept we're going to have plenty of enemies.

We should lead the world in being the bulwark for international treaties that address the environment, human rights and disarmament. We should halt trashing pact after pact, swaggering as we trumpet our "right to pollute, strip-mine the earth's resources and, to my mind the most egregious, flood the world with weapons.

Finally, and most of all, we should protect our freedoms, slamming the door on those who tell us that it's worth giving up just a "little liberty to "fight terrorism. It isn't, and if we do, when the terrorists' next bombs explode, the only difference is that we'll be slaves and not free women and men.

Senior Editor John Sugg can be reached at 404-614-1241 or at john.sugg@creativeloafing.com

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