mr. zilla goes to town

Saturday, September 11, 2004

hiatus interruptus

Bouncing out of the bandwagon onto the blogstreet are some questions about the response to the bombing of the Australian Embassy in Jakarta:

Why is it that all of the Australia's papers today scream "Target:Australia" or "Attack on Australia" not "Attack on Indonesia"? Why does the Sun Herald have a single picture of the devastation and a quote from John Howard on it's entire back cover? Why is that all of our media outlets are so eager to share with us the most horrific details of the event in colour photos, video footage, double page spreads and streaming digital audio? Why is it that almost none of these outlets will address the most important question - Why do these people view us as an enemy?

Here in mirrorworld Matt Yglesias has an excellent post I think dovetails into these questions:

The nation -- not only the "average American" but the permanent governing class here in Washington -- remains astoundingly ignorant about obviously relevant things. The national conversation is stuck on an astoundingly naive debate about whether "they" hate us because of our policies or because of who we are. Who "they" are seems barely examined. That "they" might -- like all the actual people I know -- be subject to complicated motivations that are not entirely transparent even to themselves, seems barely to be considered. People have almost no idea what al-Qaeda actually is, and the sort of people I work with -- the sort of people whose job it is to be aware of what is known and what is disputed among the experts -- have almost no familiarity with the contours of the controversy.

The fact that October 2001 through February 2002 proved not to be the disaster many feared has lulled the nation into a false sense of complacency. People don't realize that 9-11 has, in fact, been followed up by a fairly massive wave of violence, albeit violence that's largely occurred outside the United States of America.

...Confusion is still as widespread as it was on 9-12-01 but back then we at least felt confused. Like Socrates we knew, to some extent at least, what we did not know. Now the worst are filled with passionate intensity. The ratio of unknown unknowns to known unknowns is frighteningly high.

...I'm afraid. Not in the panicky way I was afraid three Septembers ago, but a deeper, less intense but more profound fear that we may have made some horrible mistakes and we have barely any idea what to do about them.

Back to the packing.


  • Thank you Mr Z for acknowledging the Indonesians who died in this bombing. The Australian media haven't bothered to.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5:14 am  

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