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22 November 2003

A war that can never be won

The Guardian's Jonathan Steele has an essay about the escalation of the terror campaign. It makes the brilliantly obvious point (but unfortunately not obvious to Bush and Blair) that "war on terror" only works as a metaphor. We can no more "defeat terror" than we can defeat crime or poverty or death itself. This is because terror is not an enemy ideology, nor an enemy nation; it is simply a technique that can be used by any ideology and those beyond the reach of nations. When the evidence is so overwhelming that making war in Iraq or Afghanistan is not only not defeating terror, it is not even weakening it, one would think that they would get the message, but it is hard to reason with a man in the grip of eschatological oratory.

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