Local business seeing effect of embassy attacks | News

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Local business seeing effect of embassy attacks
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FRUIT COVE, Fla. -- Mike Smock's travel agency, Cruise Hot Deals, is more than 7,000 miles from Yemen, but he said the Middle East turmoil is already affecting his business.

"Some of the cruise lines have already altered some of their itineraries," said Smock.

"Alexandria, Egypt was one of the ports of call. They're not going to be going there in the near future," he added.

Smock has watched in awe as embassy after embassy come under attack; he feels it is time for America to move out.

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"If they don't want us there, why are we there?" he asked.

UNF Professor Nancy Soderberg, a foreign policy strategist under President Bill Clinton, a former member of the National Security Council and former ambassador to the United Nations, is monitoring the events.

"The good news in this story is it is not the government, it is not the the people. In fact, the government and the people where Americans are being attacked are out in droves to support the Americans and say 'this is not what we represent,'" said Soderberg.

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Soderberg said America has to remain in the troubled Middle East in the face of opposition.

"Unfortunately, we can't just withdraw," she said. "We have to be out there promoting American values, pushing back on the extremists or we will be at risk."

As the distance is from Smock's business to the Middle East, so is the path between diplomacy and how many Americans view of the efforts in the Middle East.

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"I think the time for being diplomatic has come and gone," said Smock.

Soderberg said what needs to happen is the countries represented, Egypt, Libya, Yemen, need to take a stronger stance against the attackers.

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