Sunday, Dec 04, 2022
Outlook.com
opinion

The Other 9/11

Terror, as the tool of despair or virtue, has ruled our world order

The Other 9/11
The Other 9/11
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53

Though many pretend to see terror as a neophyte in global politics, they shut their eyes to the human propensity to hitch terror to organised, ideology-led political praxis. Robespierre said—on behalf of all revolutionaries—that without terror, virtue was helpless. Terror, he went on to claim, was virtue itself. Despite pretensions, all states believe that when it comes to Satanic others, all terror is justified as long as interpreted as counter-terror, retributive justice or collateral damage. Guernica, Auschwitz, Dresden, Nanking, Tokyo and Hiroshima are all formidable mileposts in attempts to hitch terror to virtue. The culpable states were sometimes autocratic, sometimes democratic. Few are now surprised that some of the iconic defenders of democracy, such as Winston Churchill, were as committed to terror as Robespierre was. Churchill not only co-discovered area bombing, as against strategic bombing, he also did not intercede when supplied with evidence on Nazi death camps.

Into this atmosphere has entered a new genre of terrorists, the suicide bombers. They come prepared to die and, therefore, are automatically immune to the fear of counter-terrorism, which they see as a useful device for polarisation of public opinion. This is what hedonic cultures cannot handle. What kind of person are you if you don't leave an option to see the future you're fighting for and if you don't care what backlash does to your neighbourhood or community?

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