In This Edition: Re: HARD NEWS - Selling The War
Re: HARD NEWS
Still very fascinated by the bin Laden thing, especially the following aspects of the issue:
1: USA has opened hostilities with Afghanistan, which the whole world agrees did not initiate the September 11 events.
2: Britain, a country with a massive and devout Islamic population, has been very quick to rush headlong into violent posturing in an argument which does not directly affect it.
3: bin Laden has not come out and said "yep, it wuz me"...we just assume it was he, either directly or by his activity funding Islamic extremist groups.
So I agree with NZ's response, as you do: the SAS as fine instruments of anti-terror (hope ours are somewhere as effective as the originals in the UK), and medical and infrastructural units that can help with casualties of this messy business and might also help re-establish food and medicine supplies into Afghanistan when it's all over.
Not wanting to upset the wounded pride of America, but I do think the guilty ones are the people in the streets, who have failed to hold successive Governments accountable for their dirty tricks campaigns; and who have failed to ask the hard questions about how America conducts itself as a de facto World Policeman.
Consider: September 11 killed between 4,000 and 6,000 largely innocent people. America's War on Terror is about to starve to death a good percentage of the 6-8 MILLION relatively innocent Afghanis who cannot or will not flee their homeland to allow the US and UK to kill Taleban militia until they are sick of being killed and cough up bin Laden.
Winter's a-coming, and will Dubya acknowledge his part in this mass tragedy when the deaths number in their tens of thousands? Not likely. And who in America will care anyway? Those ol' Afaganis don't look like Americans, they don't talk like 'em or even smell like 'em.
What better scapegoat for nationalist revenge?
John Pilger must be having a fine old time gathering material for his next book eh?
Selling The War
Your reader Tim Mycock says that the "War on Terrorism" should not be confused with the Vietnam war, because that conflict was "a political conflict based on an unclear objective."
Surely, an elimination of terrorism as a war aim is the most vague objective of any war in human history.
Of course, it is not a real war aim.
It is a piece of rhetoric, that has been swallowed whole by the world's news media and apparently by the kiwi general public.
If the USA genuinely wanted to achieve justice for victims of terror, the first person arrested would have been George Bush senior, sponsor of a terrorist campaign in democratic Nicaragua.
The current military action is a punitive campaign against a country, not a serious attempt to defeat a form of warfare.
The world are being sold a war with the language of advertising.
When we can speak about it accurately, without being constrained by advertising language, then we can assess whether the war is just or not.