Via DJ Mitchell

“It seemed to me then and even more so as I write two years later that we, Americans, have difficulty envisioning ourselves embroiled in a cycle of violence. The acts of 9/11 were viewed as unwarranted provocation that came out of the blue. And indeed they were. But it is also true that these acts can be equally situated not as isolated events but as part of a cycle with a history of actions, reactions, and counteractions.

Only when understood in the broader pattern, which in the short term can be very difficult to visualize, is it possible to see that how we choose to respond has consequences and implications in terms of a wider, historic pattern. Through our response, we choose to transcend or enter and sustain the cycle of violence. For the most part since 9/11 the leaders of the United States have chosen the route of perpetuation.

In less than two years as a nation we have engaged ourselves in two land-based wars costing billions of dollars. And by all current accounts, the route of choosing violent response has not increased domestic or international security. It has succeeded in fostering the cycle” — John Paul Lederach, The Moral Imagination