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The Atlanta Bomb

'HELL SLAP IT INTO THEMí was the first gut reaction of many Ulsterfolk when they first learned of the terror bombing at the Olympic Games in Atlanta. Georgia. For folk who have suffered from nearly three decades of such attacks, this may be understandable given the US government's ambivalence towards the Provisional republican movement, but it is wrong.

It is interesting to see Clinton advocating the death penalty for the perpetrators of the Atlanta explosion and the suspected bombing of TWA Flight 800 - a sentence he would doubtless criticise if it were handed down to the Provo Active Service Unit who killed two in Canary Wharf.

Americans have begun to stiffer as we have suffered and we ought to offer our sympathy and hope for greater understanding of the reasons for our indignation at the US government's role in support of pan Irish national chauvinist demands.

WHO DID IT? Who stands to gain? The finger of blame was first pointed at all sorts of patriotic militia groups without a shred of evidence to back up the accusations. Most of these militias appear to be well penetrated by government agents, so it was unlikely to have come from that quarter unless one of the security services permitted it to happen.

It is all very convenient that Clinton now seems set to push a number of repressive laws through Congress which would not have stood a chance before the Atlanta bomb. For example, he wants to end encryption in all Internet transmission on the implausible grounds that it may be used to transmit bomb making instructions. In the present hysterical atmosphere he might even get away with this nonsense but his real object is to abolish the very existence of a means of communication which is outside state control. Shades of the Ceausescu regime when it banned ownership of typewriters and photocopiers in Communist Romania!

To add insult to injury, the US is already prosecuting companies outside its jurisdiction which do business with Cuba and Iran.

This tyrannical attitude towards others is now being extended Io US citizens too. Our American readers should note the recent case where Clinton abused his office and had the FBI check for dirt on hundreds of his political opponents. He's getting more like Sheriff Buck from American Gothic every day.

David Kerr

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