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Armed aid

Remember that recent unpleasantness in the Gulf? I clearly recall hearing politicians and uniformed military people telling me how they could now fill a missile with 100,000lbs of high explosive, fire it from a hundred miles away and post it through Saddam Hussein's letterbox. Minimal collateral damage, they said. Surgical strikes.

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Mystery vs. magic

Much of my recent reading has focused on how to find ways to deal with the losing of religion while still maintaining the sense of wonder that seems to my eyes to be perhaps the greatest aspect of faith. I have resolutely refused to retreat into mystery because this seems to me to be just a way of avoiding the difficult questions. But the refusal of an explanation is not really a solution, and I wasn't really sure why I objected so much until I sat down with my 9-year-old daughter and

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