Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Finally, we're questioning Afghanistan, something that will almost inevitably lead to a public questioning of what happened in the U.S. after 9/11

Because you really can't separate the two. The invasion of Afghanistan wasn't a rational decision. It wasn't as if a bunch of legal scholars sat down after 9/11 and thought about what would be the just way, the way in accordance with international norms, to deal with Al-Qaida in the wake of 9/11. Instead, it was a full out unilateral strike, directed at a State because States are what you make war on. We twisted the UN's arm to give us authorization and pressured our allies to send troops in order to provide a modicum of legal cover, but there was no doubt that this was the U.S. applying its will on the world without really bothering to pursue legal options besides war in order to respond to 9/11. And it wasn't exactly something that was isolated either. The push for war in Afghanistan was united with the attack on Muslim communities by the INS, which sifted through them and detained people without warrant or justification, it was united with the push for the PATRIOT-ACT and legal spying on your neighbor, and it was united with the America--Love it or Leave it sentiment that sprung up immediately after 9/11.

Once you start questioning whether or not invading Afghanistan was a good idea, irrespective of Al-Qaida being there, you open up a whole can of worms that implicates a whole lot of people in everyday life who may have been against the Iraq War, and who may have been against Bush, but who participated in the general blood lust that followed 9/11, and who are guilty of urging the U.S. on to a dictatorial, nationalistic, state.

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