Final Word from Wednesday, May 22, 2002

Ivan Gabal, a sociologist who runs Gabal Analysis & Consulting, found in a recent survey that 80% of Czechs consider the war on terrorism to be their war too. At the same time, though, 56% of respondents don't fear a terrorist attack on the CR. Speaking Mon. at a conference sponsored by Altisa and the Business Leaders Forum, President Thomas Dine of Radio Free Europe said he winces every time he hears that Czechs don't consider terrorism a direct threat. If you believe it won't happen here, he said, it will. He added that the Nato summit in Nov. will be a big potential target. Gabal explained that Czechs perceive the threat differently from Americans, because they lived for 40 years under a kind of state-sponsored terrorism. Czechs feel solidarity with the U.S., he said, but this doesn't mean they let the fear of terrorism dictate how they live.


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