George Scialabba on Hitchens when he writes about Noam Chomsky.
Over the last decade, Hitchens has reenacted the drama of Dorian Gray: his prose style has waxed ever more elegant, while his political judgment and his polemical morality have decayed.
American intellectuals, whose responsibility it was to lead the national conversation beyond uncritical acceptance of the premises of state policy, failed entirely.
If the American citizenry ever learn, in relation to their country’s international behavior, Auden’s simple yet difficult lesson that “Those to whom evil is done/Do evil in return” (or their benighted sympathizers do), it will be despite rather than because of the efforts of Hitchens and the large majority of American intellectuals who, about these matters at least, agree with him.
Suppose someone says that Pearl Harbor so inflamed American feeling that the firebombing of Japanese cities and the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, though morally indefensible, were all but inevitable. Does saying this absolve the American officials who ordered the bombings or imply that the fate of the hundreds of thousands of Japanese civilians who died as a result was “richly deserved”? By Hitchens’s logic, yes.
Noam Chomsky’s reaction to OBL’s assassination.
It’s like naming our murder weapons after victims of our crimes: Apache, Tomahawk… It’s as if the Luftwaffe were to call its fighter planes “Jew” and “Gypsy.”
There is much talk of bin Laden’s “confession,” but that is rather like my confession that I won the Boston Marathon. He boasted of what he regarded as a great achievement.
Although Israel hasn’t claimed credit, and probably never will, a meticulously planned hit took place in Dubai a few weeks ago. Investigators have started to place clues together, thanks to CCTV coverage, but when the body was discovered, the assassins were thousands of miles away.
I find that following the current events entries on Benazir Bhutto (بينظير بھٹ) in Wikipedia is a great summary of what happened and the international reaction to the assassination attempt.
This entry, Assassination of Benazir Bhutto, has a complete timeline of the events and their fallout.
It is yet unclear who is responsible for the attack. Some reports say that it was Al-Qaeda, others say that Taliban supported warlords are responsible.
This article gives the international reaction to the assassination and is titled this way.
The Red Mosque incident led to the Taliban supported rebels to scrap a peace deal with the government and continue the War in Waziristan. Which would be the reason why the warlords tried to assassinate her on the 18th of October 2007. More on the Karachi bombings.
Most interesting are the charges of corruption against Bhutto and her husband by different countries. Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely? Then again, this doesn’t justify the assassination. It is an attack on democracy, even if Bhutto was corrupt.
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