Some of you may have missed yesterday's heated discussion.
LonePrimate fleshed out his position on his own blog.
B.W. Ventril, who used to live across the street from where the London bus blew up, shares his thoughts on Camus and London mayor Ken Livingston.
RobfromAlberta makes a simple statement of empathy.
G muses on the cycle of violence.
For me, there's no contradiction between loathing Bush's imperialist policies, and feeling deep sympathy for the victims in London and the people who love them. My heart breaks for the people of Falluja, and Tel Aviv, and Kabul, and London, and New York.
I see no reason why in condemning George Bush's actions, I must condone the actions of the bus bombers.
The people of Iraq and Afghanistan have every right to live in peace, and to live in whatever kind of society they choose.
The people of London have the same right.
I can easily imagine how the people of London feel today, because I've been there. I can well remember how I felt on September 11, 2001, and in the days and weeks thereafter. Yes, in Iraq every day is 9/11. I agree. But our anger over the senseless deaths in Iraq shouldn't numb us to London's pain. I see far too much of that from "our" side.
Why do we have to choose? Can't we stand in sympathy with all victims of violence? When your sister is blown to bits, what matters the political affiliations of her murderer? Does the murderer's claim to victimhood make your sister any less dead? If your sister lived in a country where her leaders were hell bent on senseless war, must she pay the ultimate price for their stupidity?
After 9/11, I was horrified by the war-talk that raged through the US. But I was equally horrified by the victim-blaming streaming from certain sectors of the left.
The people in the World Trade Center that morning had no more control over U.S. imperialism than the people who hijacked the planes. It's ridiculous to say "this will keep happening until we demand an end to US imperialism," or the like. The ordinary people killed by terror do not have the power to affect that change, and should not be made to suffer for it.
And what makes the terror-apologists so sure that it would end? This is part of the hypocrisy. By implying that the Islamist terrorists are merely reacting to Western policy, the apologists demean the very people they urge us to understand. Am I to believe that if only the US and Israel would leave them alone, the Islamic Fundamentalists would all be chanting peace prayers? Bullshit. People have their own agendas. Are we so arrogant to believe that the actions of all the world are only reactions to us? George Bush is a murderer - for sure. But there are other murderers in the world, with their own independent agendas.
The people on that London bus, the people in the World Trade Center, and the people of Falluja - none of them deserved it. It's all barbaric, it's all unjust, and it all must be condemned.