Friday, November 10, 2006

+Durham on the ‘global war on terror’
I draw attention to the fact that the very notion of a ‘war on terror’ strikes a false note. It wasn’t, of course, invented by Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld; Bill Clinton and other earlier presidents used similar language, and the western powers have engaged in military action against terrorists and those who harbour them long before September 11. But the oddity of the notion itself, and the illogicality of actions which were bound to encourage terrorism rather than quieten it down, should tell us we’re in a moral mess. Rather than think things out properly, we have relied on the same methods as we used in the nineteenth century: if in doubt, send in the gunboats and teach Johnny Foreigner a lesson he won’t forget. The only way to fight terror is by working for mutual understanding and respect – winning hearts and minds, often said but not often done. Throwing stones at a wasp’s nest because one wasp has come out and stung you is not the best way of addressing, let alone solving, the problem.
From Verbum ipsum.
... he also thinks that an international organization (like the UN or something better) needs to impose ‘order’ and prevent ‘chaos’. But is an international force really less likely to see corruption? I don’t think so.
- Jonathan Marlowe

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