Respectful Insolence

September 11: Five years later

i-e7a12c3d2598161273c9ed31d61fe694-ClassicInsolence.jpgToday is the fifth anniversary of September 11. There will be a whole lot of verbiage put forth into the blogosphere, spanning the gauntlet from blaming all Muslims for the attack, to blaming America for bringing it upon itself, to the idiotic 9/11 conspiracy mongers who will claim that George Bush and/or the Mossad were responsible for blowing up the towers or that the planes that hit the tower were remote controlled. (Who knows? Perhaps the Masons and the Illuminati were involved as well, all as part of a plan to produce the dreaded One World Government.) Given all this verbiage, I wasn’t sure what, if anything, I should post today. Certainly, I find it very hard to believe that it’s been five years. In some ways, it seems so acute, but in other ways it’s already starting to seem like ancient history receding into the mists of time. It’s through an odd quirk of fate that I actually now live close enough to New York City that I can get NYC media coverage. Consequently, my wife and I almost felt as though we were New Yorkers in the aftermath of the attack, and for the first week or so I spent pretty much every waking moment that I wasn’t at work watching the news coverage. For a brief, shining moment, all the things that divided us as Americans seemed to melt away. We all knew that it couldn’t last, but labored under the illusion that it would.

Consequently, I decided simply to repost an updated version of what I wrote last year. The reason is that there were some things that happened that day that, if you read this blog, may inform you a bit of how I came to be what I am today. Because there have been further developments in one of the aspects of last year’s post, I will add notes where appropriate to let you know what has happened since. September 11 was without a doubt the worst single day in the history of the United States encompassed by my lifetime. It is our generation’s Pearl Harbor. Although the attacks of September 11, 2001 did not precipitate our entry into a World War, their repercussions continue today and will likely continue for at least the few decades that I have left in my life. It has led to a war that we had to fight and one that we never should have started. Many things have changed, but much has not. Most frighteningly, the attacks have provided the pretext for the government to try to chisel away at our Constitutional freedoms. No doubt any government in power at the time of such an attack would have done this, as war always shifts the balance between state power and individual liberty towards the state, but this particular government has been frighteningly aggressive about claiming power for itself, all “to protect” us.

Recently, I saw the Oliver Stone movie World Trade Center. To my utter surprise, given who directed the film, the WTC vividly portrayed all that was good about that day: the heroism and self sacrifice of the rescue workers (people who, while everyone else was running away, ran into the mortally wounded towers), the desire of “regular” Americans to do whatever they could to help, and the coming together of people from diverse backgrounds. On this, the fifth anniversary of the attacks, I wish I knew how we could recapture that spirit again.

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WTC attack 1 Pentagon attack 3

The fourth anniversary of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 is upon us, and it seems odd to me. In one way, so much has happened since then, such as the invasion of Afghanistan (which I supported) and the war in Iraq (which I started out ambivalent about and then came to oppose), that sometimes the attacks seem like ancient history, distant and increasingly irrelevant. Yet, in another way, it seems like only yesterday that the horror of the images being beamed to the nation from New York and Washington were burning their way into my consciousness. Today, I’d like to reminisce a little, maybe ramble a little as one can only do in a blog, but with a purpose (I hope). Because on that day, I discovered online just how pervasive hatred of America was even before our invasion of Iraq, and, given how complacent I had been in retrospect, this revelation shocked me even more than my discovery of Holocaust denial eight years ago.

It was a Tuesday morning like any other Tuesday morning, except that the weather was spectacularly beautiful. It was a little after 9 AM were wrapping up our usual weekly Breast Cancer Conference, when a faculty member poked his head into the door of the conference room and informed us that apparently a plane had hit one of the World Trade Center towers and that there was a huge fire there. As the meeting was ending anyway, we all got up and headed over to the chemotherapy suite, where there were several televisions provided to help our cancer patients pass the time while they received their infusions, which for some of them could take 3 or more hours. There, the staff and patients were all riveted to the screens of every available TV. I gently muscled my way in and what met my eyes was far worse than anything I had expected. By this time, the second aircraft had hit the other World Trade Center tower, and enormous plumes of smoke and flame were pouring out of both towers. All of us remained riveted to the television, with only breaks to tend to the patients, as the chaotic news reports came in, with news of the Pentagon attack, news of the crash of the fourth plane in Pennsylvania, rumors of multiple other planes still in the air. I missed the fall of the first tower, but I was watching, jaw agape, when the second tower fell. I remember muttering intentionally loud enough to overhear something along the line of, “We have to get whatever fuckers did this,” with a quivering rage greater than any I could remember every having experienced before. I think I knew then what people must have felt like when they learned of the Pearl Harbor attack; only in 1941 people couldn’t watch it happening live on TV. I called my wife, who was not working that day, to see if she had turned on the TV yet and just to talk. I called my parents to let them know I was OK, even though I was many miles from the carnage.

It’s easy to forget how chaotic the reports coming in were that morning, how full of rumors, how full of fear over planes unaccounted for, how difficult it was to know what was really going on. Given that our affiliated hospital is within helicopter range of Manhattan, we all assumed that we might be receiving casualties. The E.R. went on emergency footing; at the cancer center, we closed the chemotherapy suite and sent the patients home as soon as we could. Orders came down that no physician was allowed to leave. Not that any of us wanted to leave yet. We wanted to help if we could, if we were called upon. The rest of the day was a blur, as we scrambled to set up, and as others used the chemotherapy suite for an impromptu blood drive. We had more donors than we could deal with quickly.

Night fell, and the last college students from our University filtered out after having donated blood, it had become clear that no casualties were coming, and the reason was becoming increasingly obvious. There were so few survivors that local hospitals in Manhattan and just across the river could handle them. As the medical staff had still been asked to stay, I went back up to my office and listened to the news reports on the radio. I couldn’t concentrate on doing any productive work; so I fired up my computer and browsed the Usenet newsgroup, alt.revisionism to kill some time until word came down from above that the medical staff could leave. I immediately came across a thread begun by an angry post entitled Who Blew Up the World Trade Centers and Pentagon? It wasn’t long before I came across a post by a regular on the group, who said:

It seems manifestly obvious to anyone who surveys this afternoon’s festivities that the primary targets were not the American people but the financial and military installations of those who spread murder, poverty, death and despair throughout the world.

“Festivities”? Then unknown thousands of my countrymen had just been murdered in terrorist attacks, and this asshole was calling it “festivities” only three hours after the towers fell, as if it were a joke, a celebration? Suppressing the urge to respond immediately, I continued reading the thread, and came across this post by the same author in response to a comment calling him “beneath contempt” (a sentiment I thoroughly agreed with; this guy was and is scum):

For many months now the government of America, with the backing of the British government and other lackeys around the world, has been directly responsible for the deaths of thousands of children in the Middle East. Sometimes your filthy friends dropped death from the skies in the form of bombs directed at the people of Iraq. Sometimes your fellow vermin in the American government sponsored other governments to do their murderous work for them, as has been the case with their support for the strutting war criminal Sharon in Israel. Sometimes you people starved your victims slowly to death, depriving them of medicines and other essentials, as has been the case not only in Iraq but also in the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan. The difference is that we never heard about those deaths. We were not shown the pictures of smouldering buildings crumbling to the ground when they were Iraqi buildings. We did not see the bleeding bodies when they were the bodies of Iraqis. We were not allowed to hear the cries of the dying children of Afghanistan or Palestine. Those things were kept from our television screens. And because you kept it from our television screens, you kept it from the minds of our poor, betrayed people. Now, however, the chickens are coming home to roost. This afternoon a truly wonderful thing has happened: the oppressed of the earth have turned around and have shown that they do not have to be nature’s eternal victims. They have shown that the poor, the downtrodden, and the powerless can strike back at the very heart of the dark forces that are oppressing them. This time it was not Palestinian children who cowered in fear as death came from the skies — this time it was the very fat bankers and financiers who sustain the terroristic regime of Sharon. This time it was those very military men who mastermind the attacks on the women and children of Iraq. They thought they were so safe as they planned death and destruction from their comfortable offices in the Pentagon, and as they did their dirty deals in the World Trade Center. Now they have been given a bloody nose that they will never forget.

Today was a glorious day. May there be many others like it.

Death to American capitalism!

Death to international finance!

I was flabbergasted. “A truly wonderful thing”? “Glorious day?” “May there be many others like it”? Here was a Brit who hated America so much that he was rejoicing in the deaths of thousands of us. Although I had become somewhat familiar with how much many Arabs and Palestinians hated the U.S., I had never seen such an intense hatred of the U.S. before coming from someone like this.

Time went by, and memory of the attacks became less intense. Then, earlier this year, I was reminded of this Usenet encounter when the Ward Churchill controversy arose. Ward Churchill, as you may recall, is a Professor of Ethnic Studies at the University of Colorado who apparently had had a bit of his brain snacked on by the Hitler zombie, inspiring him to write an essay about the September 11 attacks that surfaced early this year and caused him no end of trouble, thanks to his referring to workers at the World Trade Center as “little Eichmanns.” (NOTE: A university panel has since recommended that Ward Churchill be removed from his tenured position at the University of Colorado for plagiarism and other academic misconduct) His essay entitled Some People Push Back: On the Roosting of Chickens, written not long after the September 11 attacks, seemed to me to be an expansion of that Usenet post that I had seen mere hours after the attacks, so much so that I almost wondered if he was channeling that British Usenet poster. Consider this quote by Professor Churchill:

On the morning of September 11, 2001, a few more chickens – along with some half-million dead Iraqi children – came home to roost in a very big way at the twin towers of New York’s World Trade Center. Well, actually, a few of them seem to have nestled in at the Pentagon as well.

Or this quote referring to the civilians killed in the World Trade Center:

Well, really. Let’s get a grip here, shall we? True enough, they were civilians of a sort. But innocent? Gimme a break. They formed a technocratic corps at the very heart of America’s global financial empire – the “mighty engine of profit” to which the military dimension of U.S. policy has always been enslaved – and they did so both willingly and knowingly. Recourse to “ignorance” – a derivative, after all, of the word “ignore” – counts as less than an excuse among this relatively well-educated elite. To the extent that any of them were unaware of the costs and consequences to others of what they were involved in – and in many cases excelling at – it was because of their absolute refusal to see. More likely, it was because they were too busy braying, incessantly and self-importantly, into their cell phones, arranging power lunches and stock transactions, each of which translated, conveniently out of sight, mind and smelling distance, into the starved and rotting flesh of infants. If there was a better, more effective, or in fact any other way of visiting some penalty befitting their participation upon the little Eichmanns inhabiting the sterile sanctuary of the twin towers, I’d really be interested in hearing about it.

He went on to compare Americans to “good Germans” who supported Hitler’s aggression, at least until the defeat of the Wehrmacht at Stalingrad in January 1943. Sound familiar? Yes, it does sound a lot like that Usenet post I encountered that day four years ago, the one that turned my stomach. But what really caught my attention was the dichotomy between the two sources. You see, in marked contrast to Ward Churchill, the person whose post on September 11 churned my stomach was not a leftist, an aggrieved Native American, or an Arab. No, he was a British ultra-right wing white nationalist, Hitler apologist, and Holocaust denier named David Michael with whom I had been sparring in alt.revisionism for three or four years before. He had also admitted admitted involvement with the National Front and the British National Party in Britain and the Conservative Party, Afrikaner Weerstandsbeweging, and Afrikaner Volksfront in South Africa. Michael’s usual modus operandi was either to downplay the Holocaust as exaggerated or, failing that, to claim moral equivalency between the Nazis and the Allies because, according to him, the Allies did just as bad or worse. All the while he denied that he was an anti-Semite, even though he oozed contempt for Jews and blamed them for “exaggerating” the Holocaust. As an example of the sort of mindset David Michael was coming from, I quote one of his most infamous posts about National Socialism:

…National Socialism was a revolutionary movement that was based upon a wonderful dream. Forget the stories of corpses for a moment, and imagine a world very different from the world we inhabit today. Imagine a world free from the wars that have scarred the face of this tired old planet since the beginning of time; a world with no extreme poverty, with no disease, with no exploitation of worker by employer, no jolting financial crises (with the misery that such crises entail) — a world united in a common purpose and a common vision. . . Imagine, if you will, a world where, through a process of artificial genetic selection, mankind has been enhanced to heights undreamed of: when, year by year, mere human beings grow ever closer to becoming gods. Think of the beauty of those people, of their art, their music, their literature. Think of their levels of culture, their humanity, their nobility. Now contrast this with the world that has been bequeathed to our children as a result of that needless and miserable world war. Just pick up a newspaper and look around you — look at what your ‘liberals’ and your ‘democrats’ have left to them. Look at the dull-eyed teenagers, drugged to their eyeballs, staggering around bleak housing estates, their stereos blaring drum-beats! What do they know of the glories of a Bruckner symphony, or the heart-rending beauty of Nietzsche? What good have ‘democracy’ and ‘liberalism’ ever done for them? Answer me that! Look at Africa and Asia — thousands upon thousands of square miles, characterized by war, starvation, famine, massacre, corruption, decay, filth. What good have ‘freedom’ and ‘rights’ ever done for the inhabitants of those miserable regions? Answer me that!

If that doesn’t sound like Nazi apologia, I don’t know what does. Michael seemed to be arguing that it was a bad thing that the Nazis lost the war and that democracy is not a good thing. The funny thing is, he would somehow manage to get all indignant any time anyone accused him of being a Nazi apologist.

As I first started to write this post many months ago, inspired by the Ward Churchill controversy, I still thought it odd that a leftist Native American “activist” could sound almost indistinguishable from a hard core British white nationalist Holocaust denier (who now calls himself a National Anarchist) in his contempt for America and its policies and that they could both argue that we “asked for” the September 11 attacks. [NOTE: David Michael’s website no longer appears to exist, but, thanks to the Wayback Machine, you can get a flavor of his ramblings here.] I could fall back on the idea that the far left and the far right start to resemble each other as one moves away from the center as one explanation, but that doesn’t seem to cover it, even though both Ward Churchill and David Michael used very similar imagery and language in their indictments of U.S. behavior. In the end, I think it doesn’t necessarily boil down to whether one is left wing or right wing, but rather one’s sense of victimization–and upon whom or what one blames for that victimization. As the world’s only superpower, the U.S. represents a big fat target for blame for whatever goes wrong in the world–all too often deservedly so but also often not. Ward Churchill identifies with the victimization of Native Americans, even though he is probably not himself of Native American ancestry. Given the unfortunate history of how the U.S. has treated American Indians, it is not surprising that he would come to view the U.S. as a major source for evil in the world and behave accordingly. David Michael, who apparently lived in South Africa for a time, given his involvement with nationalist political groups there, seems to consider himself a victim of increasing liberalization that led to the loss of his privileged status as a white person as Apartheid ended. It is less clear to me why he would consider America to be a major source of his victimization, except that he seems to blame globalization and multiculturalism for his woes, and the U.S. is indeed at the heart of these. I also rather suspect that, as an anti-Communist, he still blames us for having aligned ourselves with Stalin to defeat the Nazis, rather than with the Nazis to defeat Stalin.

Although Churchill and Michael are generally nonviolent (although they appear to applaud violence against those they disapprove of), this same sense of victimization, whether justified, imagined, or exaggerated, very likely played a role in motivating the terrorists. I was not alone in being taken aback at the intensity of their hatred. Nor, I suspect, was I alone in being surprised by the number of our own fellow citizens who share a less homicidal version of that contempt and who, metaphorically speaking, spit on the victims of that attack by claiming that they deserved their horrible fate on that clear fall morning four years ago, as both Churchill and Michael have. Since adulthood, I had always recognized that my nation, as much as I love it, has done things throughout its history that did not even come close to living up to the lofty ideals expressed in our founding documents or the writings of our Founding Fathers, but I had always believed (and still believe) that, in the balance, the U.S. has been and is far more a force for good in the world than evil. Certainly, I’ve always viewed it as a good thing that we try to strive for those ideas, even though we often fail to live up to them. Maybe I was naïve or ignorant before, my contact with right wing Holocaust deniers notwithstanding, but 9/11 was a major wake-up call to me. Part of that wakeup call was the utter intensity of the hatred some have for us, to the point that some would be willing to commit suicide in order to commit mass murder of me or my countrymen and others like Ward Churchill, David Michael, and others willing to justify or even applaud that mass murder, representing it as “just” retribution for America’s sins, both real and imagined. The second part of that wakeup call was that the hatred of and contempt for America doesn’t just come from radical Islamicist or Jihadist beliefs, but can also arise from more conventional left wing and right wing radical ideologies in our very own country or in western Democracies. Paradoxically (or maybe not so paradoxically), whether this rhetoric comes from the right, the left, or from fundamentalist religious beliefs, it ends up sounding very much the same, and its results can be seen today in the empty site where two of the tallest buildings in the world once stood.

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Never forget!

Comments

  1. #1 Prup aka Jim Benton
    September 11, 2006

    A wonderful post, as I would have expected from you. I am going to take space here to do my own rambling, tied in with your comments, certainly, but with ideas that touch on yours but are my own.

    I am, as I have said repeatedly, a Brooklynite, which means, in a very special way, someone who sees America work right every day. (I am also far enough from Manhattan that I did not quite see the towers fall, but that morning my wife woke me up because of the many sirens she heard as they moved in that direction. I too saw the towers fall on television, and my sister-in-law, who worked in that area, still has psychological problems from what she saw and experienced that day.)

    “Work right?” I live in an area that is mostly Jewish, My ex-landlord used to travel to Israel regularly, as do several of the store owners I know. And my area directly abuts on the main Pakistani area in Brooklyn — and Pakistan is not merely Muslim, but predominantly Wahabbist, the most strict of the variants. Yet the two areas are totally peaceful, there are Pakistani stores in my areas, people from my area shop in both, there are stores selling both kosher and halal foods. Little things, but for both groups, the inclusion that is America works — in ways that, by reports, it does not in other countries with strong Muslim minority areas.

    I cannot help but thinking of a famous campaign slogan from a century and a quarter ago, “We love him for the enemies he’s made.” America has made many enemies, sometimes because of our errors and blunders, but most of all because of our freedom. I hate to quote a President who, in so many ways is a representative of the worst in us, but George Bush was right that ‘they hate us for our freedom.’ (And so, indeed, did Hitler. Our democracy was supposed to be our weakness, our freedom was supposed to permit the rot he foresaw destroying us. And our freedom, that let us work together for a common goal without needing thought police controlling us and making sure we obeyed orders, was one of the reasons why we were, from 3000 miles away, at a time when we were not literally fighting for our country, able to do as much as we did towards defeating him.)

    It is our freedom that first inspired the opposition of Al Qaeda. They did not attack us for our support of Israel — at least not at the beginning, that became a recruiting tactic for later — but because we dared to let women fight with men, to walk, unveiled on the sacred soil of Saudi Arabia, even to command men. They hate us for our ‘decadence’ by which they mean that we are not surrounded by the bonds of sexual repression that they view as necessary, that we do not use a ‘sacred-text’ as the basis for our laws but a Constitution that is entirely secular, that we choose our own leaders (sometimes well, sometimes badly) for our own reasons, and not because they are the most knowledgeable in a sacred text, that we disagree constantly among ourselves on so many things instead of being ‘unified’ in our view of the world, of politics, of social matters.

    And, sadly, there are those among us, on both sides, but more on the right, who agree with them, who would press us into a religious straight-jacket, who would eliminate our freedoms — Ed Brayton has a post
    http://scienceblogs.com/dispatches/2006/09/the_inanity_of_dinesh_dsouza.php#more
    on Dinesh D’Souza’s arguement that “It is only by curtailing the left’s attacks on religion, family, and traditional values that we can persuade moderate Muslims and others around the world to cooperate with us and begin to shun the extremists in their own countries.”

    There are others who see our freedoms as weaknesses — as there were in the Cold War, and in WWII — and say that the enemy is so strong and dangerous that we can only defeat them by becoming more like them, who support torture and other violations of who we are.

    (Ironically, so many of those who would weaken our freedoms or have us torture are the first to condemn not just Al Qaeda but all Muslims, who would act against anyone who chose Allah over the ‘right choice’ of Christ, who knew ‘those people, all of them’ were dangerous, who spoke of people who ‘drove cabs during the day and were terrorists by night.’)

    So, it is now five years since 9/11, and many of us have ways of remembering how it particularly affected each of us, have our own memorials. But there are two ways in particular in which we can stand up to the ideas that sent planes into that symbol of who we were.

    First, we can find some way of celebrating our freedom, of celebrating the diversity that lets us glory in a population that includes Muslims and Jews and atheists and fundamentalist Christians and is better for all of them — however we may disagree with some of them — that includes perpetual virgins and libertine bisexuals, that has newsstands that include pornography and Christian magazines condemning it side to side. Find your own way to celebrate this wonderful specturm that is America.

    And for New Yorkers and others who, tomorrow, have primaries, what better way to celebrate the special thing that is America than going to vote.
    Even if you have abandoned politics as meaningless years ago, many states allow you to register at the time of voting. Do it. Vote for whoever you want, or write in your own names and those of your friends for every office. It is NOT a meaningless symbol, but the one thing that you can do to reject the ideas that threaten us, to say that you do believe in the idea of democracy that is what America is.

  2. #2 Graculus
    September 11, 2006

    I think you should read more of what Churchill actually said, and not what gets cherry-picked.

    “(The technocratic core are) The people who perform the technical functions that results in the impoverishment, immiseration and ultimately the deaths of millions in order to maximize profit, and I don’t believe that there is any reasonable definition by which food service workers, firemen, janitors, children, random passerby fit that definition. And it is clearly articulated.

    …But I would have gone further to explain the Eichmann reference to be a framed by Hannah Arendt that Eichmann was essentially a bureaucrat, a technician. He killed no one, but he performed technical functions with a great degree of proficiency and full knowledge that the outcome of his endeavor would be essentially mass murder.

    ….I think terrorism as a phenomena should be quelled. But if you deal with any phenomena, you first must define, and more importantly understand it. And what I’m saying this is a perfectly comprehensive response to the way the U.S. projects itself in the world. …

    … when you designate the civilian casualties in another country as being so much collateral damage, you’ve utterly devalue and dehumanize those people in addition to killing them.

    …My object is to figure out if we’re going to solve this problem, how to go about it. And first thing is to understand the nature of the response. And my thesis basically was that any people subjected to the kind of degradation, devaluation and dehumanization, say the Iraqis, or say the Palestinians, will either respond in kind, or people will respond in their name in kind. And it doesn’t matter whether they’re Arabs or they’re Americans.”

  3. #3 Orac
    September 11, 2006

    I’ve read his other comments. It changes nothing of my opinion of him.

  4. #4 valhar2000
    September 12, 2006

    Orac, do not be fooled: hatred of america is not limited to extremists; it is pervasive in much of the world. Most people will, indeed, balk at the idea of murdering thousands of americans in their beds, but they do subscribe to the view that the actions of the terrorists, while despicable, were completely understandable, and really only to be expected, when you stop to think about it.

    Such sentiments were what I heard all the time after the attacks here in Spain.

  5. #5 Graculus
    September 12, 2006

    Oh, I don’t have a high opinion of him, but that’s for other reasons.

    You’ve said that he applauds violence against those he disapproves of. I see no evidence in Ward Churchill’s witings or comments that support this.

    You’ve compared Churchill to a man who supports genocidal eugenics. Do you see any of that in Churchill’s output?

    You’ve compared him to a man who lusts for a “Golden Age” of Nazism. I see no such Platonism in Churchill.

    Churchill was an obcure and annoying academic with a habit of occassionally appropriating bits of others’ work. For the latter he will lose his job (rightly). For the former you have made him morally equivalent to a bull-goose Nazi.

  6. #6 Orac
    September 12, 2006

    You’ve said that he applauds violence against those he disapproves of. I see no evidence in Ward Churchill’s witings or comments that support this.

    His “chickens coming home to roost” remark says otherwise, his later backpedaling that he didn’t mean the “little guy” (cooks, janitors, etc.) working in the towers notwithstanding.

    Churchill was an obcure and annoying academic with a habit of occassionally appropriating bits of others’ work. For the latter he will lose his job (rightly). For the former you have made him morally equivalent to a bull-goose Nazi.

    No. I simply pointed out how both the far right and the far left often harbor a hatred of the U.S. sufficient to lead to the applauding of the attack on the U.S. on September 11 (or at least to the smug satisfaction that we “had it coming”), using him and David Michael as examples

  7. #7 epador
    September 16, 2006

    Churchill may be “obscure” now, but 5 years ago he was not.

    Grac is a famous apologist. Well, almost famous. Well, maybe just obscure…

  8. #8 D Michael
    January 23, 2007

    Well, well! That really is selective indignation. In comparison with the 650,000 slaughtered in Iraq as a result of American policy, 9/11 was but a smack on the wrists. In comparison with the completely unnecessary (read Alperovitz) nuclear attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, 9/11 was but a smack on the wrists. In comparison with American butchery in Asia, Africa, Europe and elsewhere over the decades, 9/11 was but a smack on the wrists. People who think like you have created a world where more people die unnecessarily of starvation-related causes every three years than died in the whole of World War II (even accepting the ‘official’ figure of around 50 million) — a world in which a child now dies unnecessarily of hunger every 3 seconds. In comparison with THAT, sir, 9/11 was but a smack on the wrists. What is notable about your holier-than-thou indignation, sir, is how it focuses on the slap rather than the crimes that caused the slap.

    Yes, I despise America and its New World Order. Not, sir, because I am ‘scum’. Not because of the luxurious life you impute to me in South Africa (I was living in a one-bedroom flat for most of the time and earning about $400 per month). It’s much simpler than that. I see that you Americans and your fellow travellers have created a brutal, miserable world. I happen to believe that I can and should play some small role in trying to plant the seeds of a better world. That’s what I have in common with Osama and those on the ‘far left’ who also denounce you Americans. Now go live with it.

  9. #9 Roger
    January 24, 2007

    Look the eight legged whiner has re-surfaced!

    Maybe you won’t run from the question if I pose it here: how many starving children are you ***right now*** actively sponsoring?

    Or is their own value to you the crocodile tears you shed while you snipe at the New World Order?

    I seem to recall you never *could* tell how your deludo-anarchy might address their needs better than the Free Market, other than by letting them starve out and preventing them from reproducing…

  10. #10 Orac
    January 24, 2007

    David Michael,

    Well, well, well. It took you long enough to discover this post, given that I wrote it originally for the fourth anniversary of September 11 and simply reposted it for the fifth. I’m also puzzled. Where in the post did I impute to you a “luxurious” life in South Africa? I merely said that you had admitted involvement in the Afrikaner Weerstandsbeweging and Afrikaner Volksfront in South Africa, without mentioning anything about how you lived while you were there. You seem to be reading something into it that wasn’t there.

    You seem mighty touchy about this.

    By the way, whatever happened to your National Anarchist website, where you spewed your neo-Nazi-volkish racialist twaddle to the world? I had to use the Wayback Machine to retrieve the text. Didn’t pay the bill, perhaps?

    As for the whole starvation thing, are you really claiming that the U.S. is responsible for all the starvation in the world (or even most)? That’s a risible claim, even for you.

  11. #11 bernarda
    September 13, 2007

    Of course zionist fanatic orac gives his racist view of things.

    “Although I had become somewhat familiar with how much many Arabs and Palestinians hated the U.S.,”

    How is he familiar? What proof is there that they hate the U.S.?

    Though they might have some reason in that Bush is going to give $30 billion over ten years in military aid to Israeli terrorists.

    That, and the $100 billion plus that the U.S. has given to racist Israeli terrorists over the last forty years might create some resentment.

    911 for me is when Nixon and Kissinger overthrew the democratic government of Allende in Chile in 1973. But orac doesn’t care about that as it had nothing to do with his zionism.

    orac, I will not comment on these things in other blogs, no matter how many times you bring up delusional antisemite/holocaustdenier lies.

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