December 26, 2003


The purpose of the war against terrorism, Malcolm Knox seems to be saying, is to secure the re-election of conservative governments:

War against an abstract noun; war which cannot, by definition, be won or lost; war whose purpose is to convince the public that they must, in these dangerous times, stick with the devil they know.

It would be interesting to learn what Knox would propose to do about terrorism. Nothing, presumably.

Posted by Tim Blair at December 26, 2003 04:42 PM

That's because liberal governments refuse to deal with such realities.

What a freakin' knob...

Posted by: Roger Bournival at December 26, 2003 at 05:11 PM

"Terrorism" doesn't seem all that abstract. At least not any more abstract than "slavery", "fasciscm", etc.

Posted by: scott h. at December 26, 2003 at 05:33 PM

The only reason it's called "The War Against Terrorism" is because über-sensitive people like Mr. Knox would be offended if we switched it to "The War Against Militant Islam", or a more accurate description. Therefore, we are stuck with the somewhat Orwellian WAT acronym. So suck it up.

Regards, Döbeln

-Stabil som fan!

Posted by: Döbeln at December 26, 2003 at 06:03 PM

"War against an abstract noun; war which cannot, by definition, be won or lost;"

It is always hilarious to watch deeply ignorant people try to draw conclusions about things they are manifestly incompetant. Arguably the worst thing about the Allies requirement for unconditional surrender in WWII is that it has inspired the generations of intellectually ignorant with the rather bizzare notion that armed hostilities always have a fixed and distinguishable terminus.

Over twenty-five years after the formal surrender on the decks of the USS Missouri, Japanese soldiers were popping out of the jungle to carry on the fight.

The great nations of the West did little or nothing to suppress radical Islam from the end of WWII until 9/11. The price for this respite is that our great-grandchildren will be dealing with Islamist terror cells sixty years hence. Everybody in the decision loop in the US, UK, and Australia is aware of this fact. Bush, Rumsfeld, Cheney, Powell, Blair, and Howard all know this. Announcing this like it is some kind of surprise only serves to indicate that you are too stupid to influence meaningful policy.

Posted by: Patrick Lasswell at December 26, 2003 at 06:13 PM

Malcolm Knox was a barely competent cricket scribe; it's alarming that they've given him any wider responsibilites.

But then, this is the SMH, where Margo is "Chief of Staff", so all things are possible. Maybe even Lunch.

Posted by: Scott Wickstein at December 26, 2003 at 10:12 PM


"The War Against Militant Islam", ...

Part of the War against militant Islam is to determine how large militant Islam is as a fraction of all of Islam. Think of Iraq, in part, as a large-scale "2001: A Space Odyssy" style socal experiment. Purpose: to sort out how widespread is Islamofascism and can it be tamed. If you think a PC idiotarian would blow steam over "War on Islamism", just imagine the reaction to this experimental kind of thinking. "What? You're comparing Muslims to Neanderthals!"

Posted by: Dean Douthat at December 27, 2003 at 12:32 AM

And a real smart-ass would say, "hey that's an insult to all good Neanderthals".

Posted by: David Crawford at December 27, 2003 at 03:05 AM

He writes for the SMH. What do you expect?

Posted by: Jonny at December 27, 2003 at 04:37 PM

"It would be interesting to learn what Knox would propose to do about terrorism."

Surrender, of course. That he can complain about the misogynistic, racist, homophobic theocracy that we are forced to live under. The essence of Leftism is not about ends or means, but in whining about both.

Posted by: Clem Snide at December 27, 2003 at 06:44 PM

I'm currently involved in a war against leftist stupidity. Are either of those abstract ?

Posted by: Osamas Psychotic Proctologist at December 27, 2003 at 08:49 PM