Tuesday 31 July 2007


This piece on terrorism by Bruce Schneier is very interesting — and deeply wrong in a great many ways. What I particularly wanted to comment on was this excellent example of Bush Derangement Syndrome:

Perversely, Bush's misinterpretation of terrorists' motives actually helps prevent them from achieving their goals.

It is endlessly interesting to me, the way in which the conviction shared by so many highly intelligent people that George Bush is stupid turns their intelligence off so effectively. Their absolute refusal to consider that he might ever achieve what he sets out to leads them to say things which are simply thick.

Let's, for the sake of argument, assume that everything else in Schneier's article is correct. Even then, wouldn't this make more sense?

Cunningly, Bush's misrepresentation of terrorists' motives helps prevent them from achieving their goals.

As for the rest of Schneier's argument — his conclusion is that terrorism doesn't work — most of his commenters have pointed out the flaws in his reasoning and assumptions, some at great length. Much as I'd love to join in, there's really no point, because this short and unfortunately anonymous comment cuts to the chase and blows the entire idea apart so beautifully concisely:

So if THE TERRORISTS take a deep breath, think it over and change their objective to KEEP the US in Iraq and continue bombing they will fail because terrorism doesn't work and the US will leave.



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