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Produced & Maintained by Idaho Mountain Express, Box 1013, Ketchum, ID 83340-1013 
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Copyright © 2001 Express Publishing Inc.
All Rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission of Express Publishing Inc. is prohibited. 


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For the week of  September 19 - 25, 2001


The ‘Sleeping Giant’— Awake!

Shortly after Japan’s infamous Dec. 7, 1941, attack on Pearl Harbor, the reluctant architect of the Imperial Navy’s strike uttered a gloomy prophesy that became an epitaph for the House of Hirohito.

"I fear all we have done," said a glum Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto, "is to awaken a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve."

And so it is, nearly 60 years later, another sneak attack on U.S. interests has erupted into seething national anger and soaring patriotism.

Devastating retribution for plotters of the New York and Washington kamikaze attacks is only a matter of time.

Make no mistake, however: severe tests, perhaps dark days, lie ahead for Americans.

Changes and limitations in the American lifestyle are inevitable. Americans anxious for retaliation must be patient. Our courage will be tested as casualty lists from U.S. military operations reach home.

But the most crucial American strength — one that’ll surely rebuke the barbarism of Sept. 11— is the determination to get on with the work of America, our spirit unbowed, chins up and heads high.

Terrorists count on paralyzing the United States with fear. Their next targets might well be giant communications towers, Internet systems, exposed petroleum pipelines, reservoir dams, harbors, hospitals, key highways.

But this will only strengthen Americans, who never fail to bounce back by forging a national unity so psychologically impregnable that whomever tested the country’s national will with violence ultimately was crushed.

Signs and symbols of a nation rising from the figurative ashes of a disaster are everywhere — poetic and patriotic newspaper columns and letters to editors; families buying and displaying millions of U.S. flags; broadcast and print media devoting their best resources to round-the-clock news coverage; spontaneous fund-raisers for relief agencies, and rescue workers risking their lives for others.

The new American commander-in-chief, President George W. Bush, and his advisers are burdened with monumental tasks: they must fine-tune a global strategy for crippling a cunning, surreptitious and hideous enemy while also shifting Washington’s agenda and resources from domestic programs to the military and intelligence.

While America’s democratic tradition requires that political discourse and debate continue, partisans of both major parties in Congress have pledged to rally around the nation’s unexpected new crisis.

Already, in the works is proposed new legislation giving U.S. intelligence and law enforcement agencies the weapons for choking off financial resources of terrorist cells and creating faster detention and arrest powers.

The most ironic unintended consequence of their ghastly attacks on New York and Washington was the day the terrorists chose — Sept. 11, or 9-11, the number that stirs emergency action.

The Idaho Mountain Express is distributed free to residents and guests throughout the Sun Valley, Idaho resort area community. Subscribers to the Idaho Mountain Express will read these stories and others in this week's issue.