Thursday, October 07, 2010

Actually, For Real, Mad As A Box Of Frogs

Yuks and japes with Tony Blair this week, as he explains how the West is losing the Battle Of Ideas to a bunch of terrorist headbangers. 

He's right to bitch, of course - after all, just how crap are our Ideas, if we're losing a Battle to those whose Ideas are Everyone gets killed, including us, then some kind of crazy, ultrareligious empire of death and mutilation?

Naturally, the articles are good for War On Terror-related chuckles, as the former PM bemoans "the paucity of our counter-attack in the name of peaceful co-existence".

Now, I'd quibble over "paucity" (How many trillions of dollars so far?) "counter attack" (Where?) and "peaceful coexistence" (Too Orwell for me) but I can see why he went with these.  With the naked bullshit excised, "The of our in the name of" carries less rhetorical punch.

I could go on and on about the multi-layered insanity on display, but let's get down to brass tacks.  Sure, the West is not responsible for the rise of militant Islamist groups, nor will any of them put down their RPGs and take up knitting if we stop bombing them.  Thousands of headbangers will continue to sign up for bloodcurdling terror missions on the promise of some kind of wank-fantasy Valhalla regardless.

And yet... If you're concerned that nutters are winning because they convince their followers that the West is pursuing a war on Islam, then invading and occupying Iraq and Afghanistan, while also bombing Pakistan, Lebanon, Somalia, Syria, Yemen, Gaza and the West Bank and threatening more or less everyone else looks like a bit of a schoolboy error.

Far from resembling a poverty-stricken humanitarian outreach programme, it does sort of look like a generalised war on lots and lots of Muslims.  While Tony may believe that saying so is tantamount to joyous bumsex with the enemy, I must insist that the actual violence and death is probably a more effective recruiting tool for psychos.

Plus, there's the small issue over how bad it looks when you once more decry cynicism over Western neutrality in the Israel/Palestine conflict while speaking to yet another major Israel advocacy group.  That looks a bit silly.

Anyway, let's end with the now traditional, pro-forma Blair-bashing as I observe for the thousandth time that the problem with the former PM isn't that he's a liar.  The problem is that he believes his own bullshit, which has made him considerably more dangerous to ourselves and to those he intends to help, not to say infinitely useful to people who don't believe a word of it.

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