What if the government had simply decided to turn the other cheek and forgive those who sought to attack it, not seven times, but seventy times seven? What if the grief and mourning that followed 9/11 were allowed to foster a nonviolent ethics of compassion rather than a violent politics of revenge and retribution? What if the crime of the Sept. 11 attacks had led not to an unending war on terror, but the cultivation of a practice of peace — a difficult, fraught and ever-compromised endeavor, but perhaps worth the attempt?
Not actually from the article, but a poem written by Jane Hirshfield after 9/11
The dead do not want us dead; such petty errors are left for the living. Nor do they want our mourning. No gift to them--not rage, not weeping. Return one of them, any one of them, to the earth, and look: such foolish skipping, such telling of bad jokes, such feasting! Even a cucumber, even a single anise seed: feasting
Jane HirshfieldSept. 11 and the Cycle of Revenge - NYTimes.com