If you listen to the political debate in America today, you'd think that the only question is when and how to withdraw from Iraq. Some, especially those that opposed the war from the outset, want to get out soon; others say we have to stay the course. Opponents to the war talk of its costs, in lives (both American and Iraqi) and money. Advocates claim that, having started the war, we have an obligation to bring it to a stable conclusion. "You break it, you bought it!" Now I want to make it clear: I hate this war. It was unequivocally wrong from the outset. I lost a grandson to the war, after seeing him on leave so traumatized that he could barely function. The face of war these days is so terrible that it should only be considered in response to a direct attack (Iraq did not attack us on September 11), or by consensus of the international community (not be a "coalition of the willing"). But I don't want to discuss the war in Iraq in this thread. The question I have is how to deal with the fact that certain groups around the world use terrorism as a means to impose their demands. Al Quaeda, Hezbollah and others attack anybody anywhere to achieve their ends. They are well funded and well organized; they're not to be defeated by merely rounding up a group of brigands. Ordinary criminal procedures are not sufficient (though they are necessary). Moreover, it appears that they are at least feared, maybe tolerated, possibly supported by some governments. What I don't hear from war supporters is how we can deal with international terrorism when we are barely able to make inroads into the Iraq insurgency. What I don't hear from war opponents is how they expect us to deal with international terrorism if we don't have the social stamina to deal with limited war. Does anyone really think that we can deal with international terrorism without prolonged military involvement? Does anyone really think that we can deal with international terrorism depending only on prolonged military involvement? I have this romantic liberal notion that most people will choose economic stability over war, at least when stability with dignity is perceived as a real option. (If this is not true then Armageddon is upon us with a war of extermination.) An investment in stability with dignity may ultimately dry up the resources on which terrorist organizations depend. But it is clear that many Muslims have a different concept of stability with dignity, and it includes respect for their religion and their culture. Imposing American ideals of democracy and human freedom is seen more as imperialism than freeing them. What I would like to see discussed in this thread are some concrete ideas about establishing peaceful relations between Muslim and non-Muslim. I would like to stop investing in war. I would like to be able to visit the middle east safely, to visit historical sites and to engage in dialog with people there. What can be done to make this happen? Namiste.