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13 September, 2001
Hagelin Responds To Tuesday's Tragedy
A Message From NLP Leaders

The leaders of the Natural Law Party extend their deepest, heartfelt prayers and condolences to the families of those who have lost their lives, and to those who have been injured, in this week's terrible tragedy.

We pray for the restoration of peace, as we redouble our efforts and rededicate ourselves to the noble aspirations of our Party: Peace, harmony, and prosperity in the family of nations, through life in accord with Natural Law.

The following analysis and proposed solutions to the persistent threat of violence were released on Wednesday by our 2000 Presidential Candidate, Dr. John Hagelin.

Hagelin Responds To Tuesday's Tragedy

Let us not waste precious time lamenting what should have been done to prevent this week's barbaric acts. Let us instead do what must be done now to prevent further carnage.

For next time, the devastation could be worse. This week's attack was partly symbolic: targeting the icons of U.S. military and commercial power. It would have been easier, analysts say, for the terrorists to unleash a biological weapon, or to detonate a crude nuclear device, than to execute their highly coordinated, pinpoint attack, involving the simultaneous breach of multiple airport security systems.

While a narrowly targeted response against the perpetrators of the atrocity is clearly mandated, we must resist any impulse to retaliate militarily against entire nations or even communities. Such retaliation would be as barbarous as the very act we are condemning—and would only cause an escalation of bloodshed on all sides.

Even as we pursue such justice, we must also recognize the impotence of this pursuit. First, because the damage is done; reactive steps cannot change this fact. A proactive, preventive strategy is needed. Second, suicide bombers and the bin Ladens of this world will only welcome the perpetuation and escalation of violence. It fuels their cause, expands their support base, enflames their followers—and feeds their own blood lust.

What do we do? It is abundantly clear that conventional strategies of defense provide no effective defense against terrorism. And despite the cry for a dramatic escalation of our intelligence services, nothing short of a totalitarian police state—entailing a massive invasion of our privacy and individual liberties—could have prevented this week's horrific acts. Even with the government's ultra-high-tech eavesdropping technologies, echelon and carnivore, already prying into the lives of American citizens, our intelligence agencies had no clue of the impending, massive attack.

Clearly, we need a new approach—one that targets the underlying causes of fanatical, violent behavior. Setting aside, for now, recent U.S. foreign policies that foster international resentment and invite retaliation, such causes include:

  1. Mounting tensions among rival factions in critical hotspots throughout the world; and
  2. Deep-seated ignorance and underdevelopment of the brain caused by outdated education.Education must expand comprehension, and it must develop the brain fully.

It should incorporate the most profound scientific knowledge, including the discovery of the unified field, which establishes the ultimate unity of life and of humanity. This knowledge can be effectively conveyed even at primary levels of education. Research shows that the assimilation of such knowledge, together with its associated balanced brain development, virtually precludes narrowly self-centered, violent and destructive behavior. Highly successful examples of this "unified-field based" education can be found throughout the world, including at my university in Iowa.

But it may take years to modernize education and "enlighten" the world. In the meantime, we must halt terrorism now. And we can, according to research published in leading scientific journals. We can diffuse acute ethnic and religious tensions that underlie regional conflicts and terrorism, using field-tested approaches that have demonstrated their ability to quell violence and warfare. Novel as it may seem, these approaches include the practice of stress-reducing meditation techniques by strategically located groups—an approach that was scientifically shown to produce an 80% drop in war deaths and war-related injuries during the Lebanon war.

Right now, Major General Kulwant Singh, a highly decorated 35-year career veteran, is in Washington, D.C., urging President Bush to quickly implement a "prevention wing" in the military—10,000–20,000 troops trained in the powerful peace-promoting technology of Transcendental Meditation and related techniques. This approach is being supported by a growing number of military leaders throughout the world.

Unfortunately, rather than look seriously at something new that might work—something with extensive research behind it—the Bush Administration is pushing costly, outmoded and invasive strategies that we know don't work. Now is not the time for hollow assurances—nor the hasty abridgement of our hard-won freedoms. Now is the time for a new approach—an approach with a demonstrated ability to prevent social violence and stop terrorism.

John Hagelin, Ph.D., a Harvard-trained quantum physicist, is Director of the Institute of Science, Technology and Public Policy at Maharishi University of Management, and Minister of Science and Technology of the Global Country of World Peace.