Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Intermission - Victims of War

I interrupt my scheduled topic of chatter for this story...

600 trampled to death through fear.

Make no mistake, these people are casualties of war - of the fear that war spreads, every bit as much as those who lost their life in, frankly, similar circumstances at Bethnal Green tube station during the Blitz.

War cheapens all lives, causes fear and disruption, and though no-one pulled the trigger here, the war itself is directly - and horriffically - to blame.

Peace, now, at any political cost, no matter what Iraq is produced, no matter where American troops are, the workers only have one interest in this struggle - to live.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

What nonsense.

Peace now at any price?

What if the price is even more deaths, the very reason you are asking for peace now?

7:45 AM  
Blogger Bill said...

Mon cher anon...

I was more careful than that, I said peace at any political price, not at any price at all. There is a difference. I would not count any price that included more deaths as peace, nor would, I suspect, anyone who dabbled in logic.

8:37 AM  
Blogger Andy M said...

Actually, I just wanted to say thanks for respondiong to me on the Dylan thread at Harry's Place. Comments on that post are now closed, so I couldn't take the issue any further, but I intend to do something about it on my own blog when I get round to it. I'll let you know if and when that blessed day occurs.

On this point, I tend to think you're indulging in unwarranted counter-factual theorising. Sure, this incident would not have happened without the war. Why? Because before the war, the Shia were not allowed to celebrate whatever nonsense it was they were celebrating, and would have been shot for trying it. It seems more reasonable to me to blame either bad management by the people who were nominally 'in charge' of this event, or the Sunni fanatics who fired mortars at the crowd, killing 7, earlier in the day. If you want to ignore proximate causes and always look for ultimate ones, that's up to you, but it won't help to prevent similar things happening in the future. When a number of people were trampled to death at a Who concert in Cincinnatti, one could, if one were so minded, have chosen to blame the inventor of the electric guitar for those deaths. Or indeed, Michael Faraday. Or Edison. You can choose whatever point you like when you start tracking back blame like this. It doesn't really help anyone, though, does it?

10:44 AM  
Blogger Bill said...

Lo Barmcake,

sure, the people in charge fucked up, but the immediate context was the actual physical fear of attack that sparked the panic - although tehse sortsd of crushes often happen in big crowds, not on this scale, this took a special sort of panic.

Like I say, I think all told the important thing is to stop the fighting, and start real politics. Abolishing Islam might also help avoid such events in future....

11:27 AM  

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