Ideas Have Consequences

2001-10-23

Iraqi dissident Kanan Makiya (now of course living abroad) writes powerfully in this article that the challenge for Muslims today is to throw off the culture of vicitimization and cure themselves of blaming the West for their troubles when they are in fact home-grown. Yes, ideas have consequences, and there are some extraordinarily unhealthy ideas afoot in the Islamic world.

Now playing: Duke Ellington's 1943 Carnegie Hall concert. Also I just finished reading a volume of poems by Anna Akhmatova (much more beautiful in the original Russian, I'm sure) and am almost done with The Third Chimpanzee, the earlier book by Jared Diamond (author of Guns, Germs, and Steel). Diamond inexplicably idealizes the hunter-gatherer lifestyle a bit too often for my taste, but his historical and evolutionary insights are strong enough to outweigh that bias, in my opinion.

I'm still puzzled why no one in the U.S. government (or media) seems to be following up strongly on the leads that point to cooperation between Osama and Saddam (especially considering that the original WTC bombing in 1993 was most probably perpetrated by Iraq). Osama and his followers have no experience with hijackings, but the September 11th hijackings are deeply similar to those masterminded in the past by one of Saddam's top security officers. In addition, the anthrax attacks to me indicate state-sponsored terrorism -- and Iraq has probably the most advanced biological warfare capabilities outside the USA and Russia, not to mention the motivation to terrorize the U.S. population.


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