Why is it we're giving so much time to the murder of Danny Pearl? Why aren't we giving just as much attention to the 10 American soldiers who died in a helicopter crash off of the Philippines?

I've gotten a ton of emails on this question, so here goes my answer…

The American soldiers died in a war effort. They will be given all of the tributes of fallen warriors. What happened to them is tragic, but different from what happened to Pearl.

Pearl was an American taken hostage. It doesn't matter that he was a reporter. It almost doesn't matter that he was Jewish, though that probably matters more than his profession. What matters is that he was an American who was kidnapped and then killed... on videotape.

That makes Pearl's murder directly connected the events of Sept. 11 — terror by kidnapping. Murder for all of the world to see.

I don't think the American networks are going to show Pearl's murder, but I have no doubt the images will circulate in that part of the world where hatred for America is so strong.

This is what American authorities have been talking about: The terrorists are still active, and still trying to kill us. They will strike dramatically, and with as much media punch as they can muster.

The reason coverage of Pearl's murder is so important is because it has the power to invigorate Americans about this war, which is still going on. Our enemies are still trying to kill us. If they get you in Pakistan, or in any another Muslim country, they don't even face the death penalty. If you are Christian, Jew, Buddhist, Hindu … if you are a druid, you are an infidel. To some Muslims — not all — you are a lesser form of life, and there is little or no punishment for your murder.

I'm going to get a ton of email about Islam being a religion of peace. Most Muslims feel this way, yes. But the Koran is laced with passages that empower those who hate, passages which say kill the infidel, strike terror in his heart.

The special ops soldiers who died in the Philippines perished in combat. Danny Pearl died in the terrorist war against the infidel. He could have been any one of us. That is why his death is so important.

That's My Word.

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