09-07-05

Let's NOT sacrifice a bull to Zeus.

I really didn't want to write about the London Underground bombings, because, for all practical purposes, I've built up a tolerance to these disasters.

In a twisted sense, terrorist attacks have taken the place of natural disasters, because just as in the pre-scientific era, an earthquake would have people scrambling to find a cause, i.e. any action of them that would have displeased the gods, so as to refrain from doing that and prevent further displeasure of the gods, terrorist attacks yield some highly tenuous or even irrational theories as to what caused them.

Not caused, in the sense of people placing explosives on public transport, mind you, but caused in the sense of, just as the gods of yore, our actions displeasing the people placing bombs. As these, for obvious reasons, prefer to remain anonymous, a variety of these "displeasing acts" circulate.

However, while we can be certain that suggesting "we should sacrifice a bull to Zeus", or even following up on that, will have zero effect on the occurence of the next earthquake, the same can't be said for terrorist acts, because we can't rule out that there are people out there wanting to kill us, and just waiting for an excuse. We should not provide them with excuses, because that might cause another attack.

Once we acknowledge there is no magic bullet to prevent terrorist attacks, it's a lot easier to start treating them as other natural disasters, with law enforcement playing the parts of scientists or engineers in the domains of prevention, damage limitation and data gathering.

Terrorism is here to stay, the least we should manage is a sane response.

11:36 Gepost door GMT +1/+2 (c) 2006 The dog --- WHAT'S YOUR OPINION? / WAT IS UW GEDACHT? | Permalink | Commentaren (7) |  Facebook |

Commentaren

Ik ben een eikel. Ik heb hier een idiote, niet terzakedoende opmerking geplaatst en nu heeft de uitbater die veranderd.

Gepost door: Ronaldo | 09-07-05

Indeed Very wise your posting is, Master Dof.

Gepost door: LVB | 09-07-05

Hallo, Wij zijn vervelende comment-spammers. Let niet op ons.

Gepost door: Annick en Iani | 09-07-05

time to kick ass I don't agree. You may have built up a tolerance to these disasters, I haven't, quite the contrary.

"Terrorism is here to stay".

I hope not. If it is here, I'd say it is here to be beaten.

Gepost door: The Outlaw Michael Cosyns | 09-07-05

All out of bubblegum? Well, terrorism is an abstract idea, and it will always be there for small groups wanting to effect political change disproportionate to their numbers. Short of shooting everyone showing signs of possible dissent I don't see how you can reduce the chance of a terrorist attack to zero.

It's either what we have now, or a policestate a la Saddam.

Gepost door: dof | 09-07-05

don't like bubblegum "Short of shooting everyone showing signs of possible dissent I don't see how you can reduce the chance of a terrorist attack to zero. It's either what we have now, or a policestate a la Saddam."

Inside the West, I don't either. However, apparently there are fellas who do. In the States. There are a gazillion targets there and somehow the US managed to thwart all attacks thus far. Don't tell me AQ or whatever haven't tried. As for that police state: well, that Patriot Act seems to be a mighty tool, yet I haven't heard any of the americanos I correspond with complain about it - and I tell you they look and sound pretty normal.

Outside the West, especially in the ME, I'd say stay the course. Dry up the jihadist pool. Force democracy down their throats. The mere viciousness with which the loons carry out attacks in Iraq is testimony that the US strategy is working.

Gepost door: The Outlaw Michael Cosyns | 09-07-05

"I'm all out of bubblegum" I'm not singling out Islamic terrorism, so for me it makes more sense to look over an extended time period. If so, we'll find that Timothy McVeigh killed 168 and wounded 500+, while Theodore Kaczynski killed 3 and wounded 29 over a period of almost 18 years.

My point is that there will always be nuts and loons and disgruntled people who will engage in terrorist acts, and possibly even , as in John Brunner's "Stand on Zanzibar", just out of plain boredom.

When planes get hijacked you normally don't go out and try to drain the reservor of potential plane hijackers, but you design security protocols for planes and airports. Don't get me wrong, going after known terrorists is OK, and can sometimes act as a deterrent, but in the long run, it just means that future terrorist acts will be committed by other groups or other ideologies. But designing robust infrastructure is, if you allow me the use of the term, a [terrorist-]faction-neutral measure. These may have the disadvantage of being defensive, and always trailing terrorist modus operandi, but they will work against new future terrorist factions.


Gepost door: dof | 09-07-05

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