Free 50-Minute Phone Card + Free Shopping Spree! 

[ Follow Ups ] [ Post Followup ] [ Main Board ]

On the bombings

Posted by Noam Chomsky on September 13, 2001 at 23:16:32:

On the Bombings
by Noam Chomsky

The terrorist attacks were major atrocities. In scale they may not

the level of many others, for example,
Clinton's bombing of the Sudan with no credible pretext, destroying

its pharmaceutical supplies and killing
unknown numbers of people (no one knows, because the US blocked an
inquiry at the UN and no one cares to
pursue it). Not to speak of much worse cases, which easily come to

But that this was a horrendous crime
is not in doubt. The primary victims, as usual, were working people:
janitors, secretaries, firemen, etc. It is likely
to prove to be a crushing blow to Palestinians and other poor and
oppressed people. It is also likely to lead to
harsh security controls, with many possible ramifications for
undermining civil liberties and internal freedom.

The events reveal, dramatically, the foolishness of the project of
"missile defense." As has been obvious all
along, and pointed out repeatedly by strategic analysts, if anyone

to cause immense damage in the US,
including weapons of mass destruction, they are highly unlikely to
launch a missile attack, thus guaranteeing
their immediate destruction. There are innumerable easier ways that are
basically unstoppable. But today's
events will, very likely, be exploited to increase the pressure to
develop these systems and put them into place.
"Defense" is a thin cover for plans for militarization of space, and
with good PR, even the flimsiest arguments
will carry some weight among a frightened public.

In short, the crime is a gift to the hard jingoist right, those who

to use force to control their domains. That is
even putting aside the likely US actions, and what they will trigger --
possibly more attacks like this one, or
worse. The prospects ahead are even more ominous than they appeared to
be before the latest atrocities.

As to how to react, we have a choice. We can express justified horror;
we can seek to understand what may
have led to the crimes, which means making an effort to enter the minds
of the likely perpetrators. If we choose
the latter course, we can do no better, I think, than to listen to the
words of Robert Fisk, whose direct knowledge
and insight into affairs of the region is unmatched after many years of
distinguished reporting. Describing "The
wickedness and awesome cruelty of a crushed and humiliated people," he
writes that "this is not the war of
democracy versus terror that the world will be asked to believe in the
coming days. It is also about American
missiles smashing into Palestinian homes and US helicopters firing
missiles into a Lebanese ambulance in
1996 and American shells crashing into a village called Qana and about

Lebanese militia - paid and
uniformed by America's Israeli ally - hacking and raping and murdering
their way through refugee camps." And
much more. Again, we have a choice: we may try to understand, or refuse
to do so, contributing to the likelihood
that much worse lies ahead.
Noam Chomsky

Follow Ups:

Post a Followup




Optional Link URL:
Link Title:
Optional Image URL:

[ Follow Ups ] [ Post Followup ] [ Main Board ]
Site Meter