Saturday, January 9, 2010

Catching Terrorists

War against terrorism. I don't understand this. We've had war against poverty, war against crime, war against drug traffic, war against cancer. War is waged between two bodies -- between nations, between cities, between religious bodies, between individuals. Not only is the term misplaced; the metaphor is warped; the concept is wrong. A war is resolved by victory of one body over the other; there is the victor and the vanquished. The victor decimates the vanquished or the latter surrenders to the former and allows it to be incorporated, swallowed up, enslaved. Or else, a truce is drawn and the warring parties agree on a compromise. No society ever succeeded in eradicating crime; sickness and poverty, no less than drug use, will ever vanish from modern society. There is no victory over terrorism. To claim it as a goal is a deception. To believe that a potential terrorist can be screened and caught anywhere is a delusion. Terrorism can be dealt only as a crime, not as a war. The best we can do is to contain and abate it. But, of course, what do I know.


  1. One former US Senator on the 9/11 Commission pointed out that what we call terrorism is simply a tactic, or a set of tactics, and tried to emphasize the fundamental absurdity of declaring war on a tactic. And then taking the "war" as literal rather than metaphorical and attempting to prosecute it as such. Sadly, this point just kind of vanished after the day he made it, without sinking into too much grey matter among our politicians, media or public.

  2. I think (and I think you know) that the naming of all these wars is done by the warmonger with the specific intention of hiding the true identity of the enemy-object (or enemy-body). The war on poverty turned out to be a war on the impoverished, and especially on blacks and latinos. And it turned out to be a war on the American city, with the goal for government and developers being to gain territory both inside the cities and in the rural areas (creating suburbs). The war on 'terrorism' is truly ingenious - some claim that it is the war on islam or muslims, but I say it is better than that, it is a war on whomever the warmonger defines as a 'terrorist', or potential terrorist; a war on anyone or everyone.

    I just began reading some of your blog today, Kaori - fascinating and touching - I shall return...

    warmly from snow covered South Amboy,