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Featured Column
Week of 12.4.2006
Another "Day of Infamy"
          Seventeen Representatives and three United States Senators were missing from the joint session of Congress as were 2 members of the Supreme Court. Dozens of aides, assistants, secretaries and Secret Service officers – they were all dead as the result of the bombs.
          More than 320,000 other Americans had died suddenly as the sun rose the previous day – the result of the four massive explosions in four American cities.
          Some Senators and Congressmen didn’t have time to go to their homes to get suits and ties. Some were wearing what they had worn the night before. Many had not shaved. Two female Representatives wore skirts, sweaters and flat shoes.
          If it were not for the extraordinary safety measures and precautions taken in Washington, D.C. to prevent bombings and sneak attacks this city would have gone the way of New York City, San Francisco, Denver and Chicago. Two suicide bombers were captured within 3 blocks of the White House before they could set off their bombs.
          The balcony area of the Halls of Congress were filled with guests who had bulled their way in, overpowering and disregarding centuries old procedures for admitting guests. The biggest and roughest got the seats.
          Below, on the floor of the House, Senators and Congressmen stood, anxiously talking about the events of the day before. One Senator, who had no time to dress appropriately, wore a Cleveland Indian baseball cap, loose fitting slacks, a yellow golf shirt and a black leather jacket. He sat with his head in his hands, quietly weeping, his head moving back and forth. 
          The National Park Service, guardians of the area around the Capitol, for the first time in their history, carried automatic machine guns. 
          The Speaker of the House, standing by the rostrum, was encircled by 4 Senators and 5 members of the House. They all seemed to be talking at once. The Speaker, tall, tanned and gruff, glanced at his wrist watch and told the men and one woman to go to their seats. 
          The Senate Sergeant of Arms opened the heavy doors leading to the floor of the Joint Session, straightened his tie, tugged at his black suit jacket, straightening his collar and introduced, “The President of the United States.”
          The Sergeant of Arms led the way down the aisle, followed closely by the President. There wasn’t the usual reaching out to shake the hands of the President. The President walked directly to the rostrum as the members of the Senate and House sat quietly. Nobody spoke as the Speaker of the House stood at the highest rostrum and said, “Ladies and Gentlemen, the President of the United States of America.”
          A powerful burst of applause greeted the President. Everyone on the floor stood, applauded and glued their eyes on the country’s leader.
          The President, a highly popular man in his early fifties, glanced over the assemblage. His face carried no emotion – neither joy nor sadness nor fear. He had been an outstanding athlete in college and at one time considered a professional football career over politics. He had won his second term with a vast majority over his opponent. He had a mandate from the American people. They trusted the man. He was a man’s man as well as being favored by a majority of women voters.
          No American President had ever faced what this President has had to deal with in the past 24-hours. Hundreds of thousands of his countrymen had been killed within 3 hours of each other and threats existed that could kill millions more.
          The President acknowledged the applause with a series of nods. He then lifted his left hand as if to say, “That’s enough.” The applause slowed, then ceased.
          Realizing that this was a momentous juncture in American history, the President, stood straight, noticing the silence of the room. He took a deep breath and began his report to the American people.
“Yesterday, May 10, 2011, is a day that will be listed in the history of our planet as an unforgivable display of human treachery and brutality. At 9:30 a.m. yesterday simultaneous nuclear explosions were detonated in these American cities: Chicago, San Francisco, Denver and New York City. The initial estimate of American deaths is 320,000. Deaths resulting from nuclear fallout in future years could reach 1,000,000 more.”
          “Nuclear explosions were also exploded yesterday in Sydney, Australia; London, England and Madrid, Spain. Immediate deaths from these attacks are estimated to be more than 270,000.”
          “The governments of these countries have told us that they have inaugurated talks with a coalition of Islamic nations in a search for the end of attacks. The Prime Ministers of these countries have told me that they are willing to grant concessions to terrorist factions in these countries in order to achieve a cessation of violence.”
          “Further reports indicate that armies from Iran, Syria, and Jordan are massed at their borders. Intelligence indicates an imminent attack on the state of Israel.”
          “It further appears that the coordination of the nuclear attacks around the world were directed by members of al Qaida, led by Osama bin Laden.”
          “Each attacked country was sent a directive from the leadership of al Qaida stating that the use of nuclear weapons and violence in general would continue until they were guaranteed that Muslims in each country would be treated as equals with Jews and Christians. Until those guarantees were met al Qaida, Iran, Syria and Jordan would consider the United States, England, Australia and Spain at war with them and they would take appropriate actions.”
          “Previous Presidents of the United States were told that Osama bin Laden had ambition to join the ‘Nuclear Club’. He stated that it was the ‘religious duty’ of Muslim states to acquire nuclear, chemical and biological weapons.”
          “Today we are faced with the most profound threat ever visited upon American soil. Numerous urban and surrounding areas of Chicago, Denver, San Francisco and New York City no longer exist. The fates of London, Madrid and Sydney are the same.”
          “The nuclear devices are believed to have been smuggled into all of these cities by radical Islamist terrorists. The explosions destroy everything in a ½ to 1 mile radius. Within hours, prevailing winds will carry the nuclear fallout, containing radioactive Iodine miles from the center of the explosions. Deaths and serious illness will begin showing up within hours.”
          “It will be recorded that America and our allies have taken a mighty blow. Thousands, perhaps millions of Americans have died. More will die in future weeks, months and years.”
           “The people of the United States have formed their opinions and clearly understand the implications to the very life and safety of our nation.”
           “As Commander-in-Chief of the Army and Navy I have directed that all measures be taken for our defense. “I have ordered all of our military forces to prepare for all eventualities, which include an immediate heavy bombing of all military centers in Iran, Syria and Jordan as well as the known headquarters of al Qaida wherever in the world they may be.
          “All weapons at our disposal will be used to stop the advance of any armies marching towards Israel. The full might of the United States will rise not only to defend itself, but to defeat and bring to their knees the aggressors and terrorists. We will use our vast arsenal to defeat those who have attacked us. We will not rest until those responsible are brought to justice or removed from the planet.” 
          “As you hear these words United States bombers are headed towards the capitals of Iran, Syria and Jordan as well as al Qaida headquarters in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Within 3 hours the leaders of these nations will feel the might and determination of the United States of America.”
          “As President Franklin Roosevelt said 70 years ago, ‘With confidence in our armed forces – with the unbounded determination of our people – we will gain the inevitable triumph – so help us God’ “
          “I ask that Congress declare that a state of war exists between us and all identified Islamic terrorist nations and organizations.”
          “I thank you and God bless America.”
          For a few seconds the guest gallery, Senators, Representatives and members of the Supreme Court stood in awe and silence. Then the hall exploded in a barrage of applause.
The day of hell on earth
      Ron was born in the Bronx, New York. He was raised in Southern California and lived in Honolulu, Hawaii for three decades. He attended Inglewood High School and U.C.L.A.. His youthful goal was to become a major league baseball player. In Hawaii Ron played on a series of championship softball teams. He is an active tennis player.
      Ron’s career began at the Inglewood Daily News where as a youngster was enrolled in a publisher training program. He served as an advertising salesman, circulation manager, writer and layout and design staffer. He has been a newspaper publisher at the Oregon City Oregon Enterprise Courier, the Beloit Wisconsin Daily News, the Elizabeth, New Jersey Daily Journal and This Week Magazines (Hawaii).
      Ron lives with his wife, Marilyn, in San Diego, California. His two children, Douglas and Diane also live in the San Diego area. Ron’s interests range far and wide and are reflected in his columns diverse topics.
     
Ron Cruger