George Bush has given as a speech that should make us tremble and shake with fear:
All these separate images of destruction and suffering that we see on the news can seem like random and isolated acts of madness. Innocent men and women and children have died simply because they boarded the wrong train or worked in the wrong building or checked into the wrong hotel.
And while the killers choose their victims indiscriminately, their attacks serve a clear and focused ideology, a set of beliefs and goals that are evil but not insane.
With greater economic and military and political power, the terrorists would be able to advance their stated agenda: to develop weapons of mass destruction, to destroy Israel, to intimidate Europe, to assault the American people and to blackmail our government into isolation.
No act of ours invited the rage of the killers, and no concession, bribe or act of appeasement would change or limit their plans for murder.
In truth, they have endless ambitions of imperial domination and they wish to make everyone powerless except themselves…They seek to end dissent in every form and to control every aspect of life and to rule the soul itself.
The psychology in all this is obvious: make us afraid and make George Bush appear to be the only thing that keeps the murderous chaos out of our lives, make us forget that Bush attacked a country that had nothing to do with 9/11 and that he has served as the best hiring tool of the terrorists, make us forget that some of the things he is supporting are also trying to control "every aspect of life and to rule the soul itself". We are presented two choices: George Bush or utter catastrophe.
But these are false choices, because in reality we do have other choices than these two, and in reality George Bush can't keep us safe or protect us against the terrorists, at least without destroying what he says he tries to protect: freedom and human rights.
From the very beginning of Bush's dominion I believed that terrorism should have been attacked as a task for law maintenance, not as a war, because the idea of a war makes the other side look legitimate and contributes to the halo that bin Laden wears in some Muslim countries. The idea of a war on terror also veers dangerously close to the edge of a religious war, something ready to sprout and spread and gain legitimacy among Muslims who are not extremists yet. I wonder how this speech reads among those groups?