[Up] [Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: justice what is vengeance?

>No one has advocated indiscriminate slaughter.

Perhaps not where you are, but believe me there are plenty of people
over here who have, ranging from bombing every acre of Afghanistan or
whichever country they think is responsible to lynching everyone who
is wearing a head scarf.  That's what posting lurid fictional speeches
about vengeance sounds like to many of us.  There have already been
attacks on completely unrelated Muslims.  Let's not promote that,
even inadvertently.  If we're going to talk justice, let's talk justice,
not vengeance.

> Of the five thousand dead or
>missing there about five hundred Brits, seventy five Australians, one
>hundred Japanese , Canadians, Frenchmen, Germans and others.

Yes, we are aware of that.  The British deaths alone in this catastrophe
make it the greatest terrorist attack on British citizens ever.

>In urgent circumstances, states sometimes use armed force for political

I already used an example of:

1) In WWII the Allies applied what force was necessary,

I believe you will find just about everybody in agreement that some
sort of force must be applied in order to deal with the perpetrators
of the attacks.  Note the emphasis on "what force was necessary".
Despite many mistakes, the Allies tried to aim the force they applied.

In addition I said:

2) and then the U.S. applied the Marshall Plan.

Which I use as an example of a way to apply non-military means (although
possibly partly using military personnel and materiel, as was done in the
Marshall Plan) to deal with the underlying problems that led to the war.
You no doubt recall that after WWI the losing countries were punished
rather than aided, and what we got was WWII.  After WWII and the Marshall
Plan, who among the recipients is not an ally now, not to mention rich?

And I said:

> That worked.

By which I mean the combination of (1) and (2) worked.

It is very easy to get caught up in (1) and completely forget about (2).
It is very easy to think that getting everyone stirred up about (1)
is what we need to concentrate on exclusively right now.  If that's
all we do, we'll just be back in the same place but worse very soon.

>Panama ended with the apprehension of Manuel Antonio Noriega, Panama's head

And Noriega, like Saddam Hussein, like ben Laden, like so many others,
was trained and supported by the U.S. government as long as they were
considered useful.  Then they used their training to their own ends,
which weren't in accordance with our ends.  Why keep creating problems?

If we can spend $40 billion dollars (the sum Congress just unanimously
appropriated) to deal with terrorism after the fact, why not do something
about the circumstances (poverty, overpopulation, health, political
system, or whatever they may be) that nourish it?  Which expenditure
contributes more to the wealth and safety of the world?

Right now we don't have much choice about that $40B.  If we don't think
ahead, we'll continue not having much choice and more people will die

>There are  circumstances in which lengthy negotiations and moderate means
>send the wrong signals to ruthless authoritarian leaders.  Justice must not
>only de done it must appear to be done.

Who asked for lengthy negotiations and moderate means?  I didn't.

We all know something like (1) will happen.  Let's do it as justice,
not vengeance.  For that matter, remember that picking up a gun
or flying an airplane are not the only ways you can help (1).
Helping responsible decisionmaking could be another one among many.

 ``Government is not reason, it is not eloquence, it is force;
   like fire, a troublesome servant and a fearful master.
   Never for a moment should it be left to irresponsible action.''
   --George Washington

As Tim Wallace-Murphy said, "responsibly and accurately."

Many people find it very difficult to rise above thinking
solely in terms of (1); understandably so in the circumstances.

But I think we must.  If we forget about solving the problems that led to
these circumstances while we are in haste to deal with those who did it,
the world will continue to pay for its cycle of irresponsibility.

Let us break the cycle of hate and revenge.  We the people and nations
of the world have the means to do this; we have the wealth; we have the
technology; we have the knowhow.

This is the Sinclair discussion list.  Sinclairs often brag about a
centuries-long international Sinclair strategy, even though nobody seems
quite sure what it was.

We have seen on this list how many of us are accustomed to think
in terms of centuries and millenia across the whole world.  And we
are distributed across much of the world, with experience of much
of the rest of it.

Well, here's your chance.

What can we do to try to make (1) swift, sure, and responsible?

What can we do to try to determine what (2) should be and make it happen?

We are just a group of concerned individuals worldwide who sometimes
talk to each other.  Any actions we might choose to take would
almost certainly be decided and performed by each of us individually.

But what should they be?

John S. Quarterman <jsq@quarterman.org>
[ This is the Sinclair family discussion list, sinclair@quarterman.org
[ To get off or on the list, see http://sinclair.quarterman.org/list.html