The Reasoned Review

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At War With…. Everyone

with one comment

The New York Times’ jingoist At War blog gives us a fantastic proposition, starting with the observation that Yemen is not the only “haven” out of which Al Qaeda might operate.

But there is nothing new about Yemen. It has long been a base for Al Qaeda. Osama bin Laden’s family comes from Yemen, the U.S.S. Cole was attacked in Yemen in 2000, many Yemeni fighters were either killed or captured in Iraq, and, during the last decade, the US has helped the Yemeni government fight.

As a side note, will we ever forget this USS Cole incident? It happened a decade ago, and only killed 17 soldiers. I’m willing to bet more die per year in just run-of-the-mill accidents. Taking that aside, this intrepid blogger continues:

But there are many havens for radical militants who follow the violent tenets of Al Qaeda — from North Africa to Europe to Asia.

Today, the front line of the war against terror can be anywhere in the world. Mr. Abdulmutallab was radicalized, recruited and trained in three continents before attempting to explode the Detroit-bound plane.

Yes, that is the solution – instead of rethinking our parameters in this “war against terror”, we must infinitely expand them! But of course this would not be The New York Times without the assumption of the justice of our goals:

The war against terror did not begin with the Bush administration and it will not end during President Obama’s. The battle has started, but I do not see any end. The release of Guantanamo’s prisoners has not helped to deter attacks. President Obama’s use of soft power, the withdrawal plan from Iraq, his Cairo speech, his alteration of the semantics of war, by dropping the term “war against terror,” have not stemmed the flow of would-be suicide bombers.

Imagine! A slight change in semantics (following no real change in murderous policy) failed to staunch the anger against the US! Who would have thought?

Of course, all this war-mongering must have some kind of internationalist counterweight, so our intrepid blogger throws this line in at the very end:

The U.S. cannot unilaterally wage this war. The war against terror is universal; it has no specific zone because the entire world is its war zone. Who will be the next: Yemen or Somalia or Nigeria, or…….? It is a long list.

This is one of the most insidious articles I’ve ever seen out of the Times.

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Written by pavanvan

January 7, 2010 at 11:29 am

One Response

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  1. Have you been getting the feeling lately that 1984 is slowly coming to fruition? A few decades late, but still. I just keep visualizing the 1984 plot device where the country is waging a perpetual war and all the media keeps saying, “we’re winning, we’re winning.” And all the history books are constantly being rewritten to show that our side was always winning and yet for some unknown reason could never finish the damn war. Seems war is the most efficient way to incite nationalism and xenophobia, yet only the xenophobia part seems to be really working here in America since we still don’t produce anything and import most of our crap.

    Eugene Bilmes

    January 7, 2010 at 7:22 pm


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