Thursday, June 29, 2006

War on Terrorism

Listening to Open Source on NPR right now. William E. Odom made a point about this that I think everyone realizes, but not many have articulated particularly well. A war on terrorism is a ridiculous because it's a war on a tactic, which is ridiculous. Militarily it doesn't make sense, it doesn't allow for a real enemy. He likened it to waging war against people who use knives--it's impractical. The rhetoric is distracting us from the real problem. Our war isn't really against terrorism, it's against al Qaeda, the Taliban, Wahhabis, and against, essentially, those who are violently anti-American. This is a culture war. Democrats should grab ahold of this.

3 comments:

Ben said...

Are you questioning the War on Terror?!? That's it, now it's the War on Terror and Will.

Sanity Clause said...

Not only is the so-called War on Terror an oxymoron, it's more than a little ironic for the good ol' US of A to condemn "terrorism" at all. We seem to forget that we're a nation of genocidal maniacs who celebrate fear and intimidation in increasingly hideous ways every hundred years or so. After all, what was the Boston Tea Party if not an act of terror (and didn't we teach the British a thing or two about guerrilla warfare at the time)? And didn't Sherman's March to the Sea define the psycholological aspects of a real old-fashioned war in terms of "scorched earth" (a much more friendly euphemism than "terror," I'd say)? How about the second in the series of wars to end all wars and our subtle use of the A-bomb on the entire population of Hiroshima and (once is never enough, you know) Nagasaki? Of course, these isolated incidents don't even take into account the 400 years of state-sanctioned slavery our fore-fathers enjoyed (how do you keep 'em down on the farm, if not through fear and violent oppression?). It's amazing to me that we can fashion a "war" against even the Taliban for failing to respond to our ultimatum to turn over the un-indicted suspected conspirators behind the 9/11 attacks (by the way, weren't the hijackers Saudis legally admitted to the US?). We overthrew the elected government of Afghanistan because we assumed they were complicit in harboring fugitives who have still not been charged with any crimes under US law, and then proceeded to pursue a vendetta against Saddam Hussein, for no articulable reason. It's like losing your keys outdoors, and then looking for them in the kitchen, because the light's better there. But, I digress. Back to defining your opponent by his tactics - I seem to recall a certain campaign of "shock and awe" that was supposed to yield immediate results with a minimum of "collateral damage." Where do we fall on the "holier than thou" scale? Who's the bigger terrorist now? Shall we have Saddam and W drop trou and see who measures up? As Walt Kelly's Pogo observed more than 30 years ago, "We have met the enemy, and he is us."

Emiko said...

hear hear!

on to a personal note, um remeber how i told you that i met a cute boy. well, i told he was funny, and then and then, guess what he said!! "funny lookin'"
what do i do, what do i do????