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Friend or Foe??

Reader comment on item: [Ra'ed Mansour al-Banna:] The California Suicide Bomber

Submitted by Rebecca E. Moulds (Egypt), Apr 5, 2005 at 12:01

Dear Mr. Pipes,

It is a sad day when we really don't know our neighbours' true intentions. I'm afraid that our world is fast turning from trust to paranoia, especially in the US. I am living in Cairo and know for sure that there may be elements of jihadists right in our midst, but how do we know whether someone is friend or foe? As an American who has spent nearly ten years here, I can honestly say that most of the Arab people I have met have been absolutely up front with their beliefs, whether or not they agree with your point of view. Naturally, I don't know 100% if a person is wearing explosives and about to blow him or herself up in front of me. My daughter's school is protected by armed men and the Israeli Ambassador's residence by the Egyptian army. We, as expats, are trying to live as peacefully as possible in a Middle Eastern country but are very aware that there could be terrorists next door. That is a chance that we all have to take, even in the USA, where, as once we felt isolated from terrorism, we are no longer. Life itself is a huge risk that requires great optimism combined with realism.
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