Thursday, August 04, 2005

I knew there was a reason I didn't sign that "Unite against Terror" thing...

And just to keep those who continually read the worst into everything I write happy - George Galloway is a dangerous idiot for spouting this kind of abject shite.

8 Comments:

Blogger Devil's Kitchen said...

Jesus fucking Christ, Galloway really is something quite special, isn't he?

It's the utter ignorance of world politics that I really object to.

DK

8/04/2005 03:28:00 pm  
Anonymous soru said...

Can you explain on what grounds you don't consider that 'fisking' of the unite against terror stuff to be a load of pedantic wankery?

I mean, can you find one sentence in it that actually shows any signs of having made any attempt to read the stuff it claims to be disagreeing with?

soru

8/04/2005 03:42:00 pm  
Blogger Eric S said...

Here's the complete transcript of Galloway's comments:
http://memri.org/bin/latestnews.cgi?ID=SD94805

Unbelievable stuff.

8/04/2005 03:48:00 pm  
Blogger Nosemonkey said...

Soru - I thought the bits where the statement was quoted at length were a bit of a clue that it might have been read.

I wouldn't call it a fisking anyway (although I'll confess to being usure of the precise definition of that term). It's certainly pedantic. But sometimes that's necessary. The main point of all the criticism of that whole campaign is the fact that the denouncement of terror itself is too long and gets too specific, and so allows itself to be interpreted in different ways. All it needs to say is "We denounce the politically-motivated killing of innocent civilians". Hell, you could even leave out the "politically-motivated" bit.

My signature on the thing wouldn't make the blindest bit of difference (the terrorists are hardly likely to go "Ooooh! People on the INTERNET don't like terrorism - let's stop"), but when I sign anything I like to make sure that I know precisely what it is I'm letting myself in for. If it can be interpreted in ways other than how I'd interpret it, I won't sign. That Talk Politics piece is a rather good indication of how it can be interpreted in different ways to how (I hope) its authors intended it.

Eric - ta, didn't have time to track down a transcript. The guy really is a fucking loon.

8/04/2005 03:55:00 pm  
Anonymous soru said...

_I thought the bits where the statement was quoted at length were a bit of a clue that it might have been read._

If you read it closely, you can see that is not the case. In some cases, you can see exactly which individual words were scanned and reacted to, but in no case can I see evidence of the contents of whole sentences being taken acount of.

Just look at this nonsense:
'Here the narrow concept of responsibility is being used to deny the existence of any relationship between Western actions in the Middle East and terrorist attacks on the West by Al Qaeda – this is fundamentally a false premise and pure sophistry.'

How does that relate in any meaningful way to the sentence quoted?

8/04/2005 04:21:00 pm  
Blogger Unity said...

Actually Soru, it seem that you're the one who hasn't read through the commentary fully and are reacting to individual words/sentences - in fact using them out of context to support your argument.

The single sentence you quote refers to this passage of the UAT statement.

This terrorist violence is not a response by 'Muslims' to the injustices perpetrated upon them by 'the west'. Western democracies have been responsible for some of the ills of this world but not for the terrorist murders of these deluded Bin-Ladenists.

To which my full response is...

Right, we're back on to terrorism now – note how 'response' as in “not a response by 'Muslims'” leads into the notion of 'responsibility' as in ' Western democracies have been responsible for some of the ills of this world but not for the terrorist murders...”

The claim that 'the West' are not responsible of Al Qaeda's actions does not preclude those actions arising as a response to actions undertaken by the West – one can dispute the legitimacy of the response but not its existence. Here the narrow concept of responsibility is being used to deny the existence of any relationship between Western actions in the Middle East and terrorist attacks on the West by Al Qaeda – this is fundamentally a false premise and pure sophistry.


Put back into its full context, you can see that what I am commenting on is specifically the juxtaposition of the terms 'response' and 'responsibility' to create a self-referential circular argument as follows...

Terrorism is not a response to the West's actions, therefore the West is not responsible for the terrorist attacks.

The West is not is not responsible for the terrorist attacks therefore terrorism is not a response to the West's actions.


This, as I point out, is pure sophistry.

If, as the evidence suggests, the terroists who attacked London were motivated by their anger at the invasion of Iraq then they are responding to that invasion and the actions of the US & UK in carrying it out. While you can argue that such a response is invalid or disproportionate, what you cannot do argue that such a response does not exist.

A better drafted statement, one which did not seek to vindicate the invasion of Iraq as well as condemn terrorism, would have read...

"This terrorist violence is not a valid response by Muslims to injustices they believe have been perpetrated upon them by 'the west' and we believe that no injustice, real or imagined, can justify the indiscrimate use of violence against civilians"

You'll note I've also not put the term Muslims in quotes as its not for us to say whether these terrorists are Muslims or not - such a comment would be valid if made by someone within Islam with the legitimate authority to make such a judgement, i.e. someone qualified in the eight schools of Islamic jurisprudence.

8/04/2005 05:22:00 pm  
Anonymous soru said...

This is what you said:

'deny the existence of any relationship between Western actions in the Middle East and terrorist attacks'

But there is no such denial, you are (still) reading one where none exists.

I agree with you that the meaning is clearer if you add the word 'valid' before 'response', but a serious reading can't take every possible ambiguity as a license to insert made up stuff.

Incidentally, the only actual evidence I know of that there is a direct Iraq link comes from the same guy who claimed he only planted a 'flour bomb', which may for all I know be true (loads of disinformation, from both sides, out there). Have to wait for the trial, I suppose.

Nevertheless, it's overwhelmingly likely there is such a link. If you can find someone actually denying the possibility of such a thing, then congratulations, you've found an idiot.

8/04/2005 05:59:00 pm  
Blogger sean said...

Unity, it would help if your writing style was not as boring as buggery, with added piffle. The eyes just glaze over. I'm sorry. God knows how Nosemonkey can wade through your torpid and stagnant prose without lapsing into a coma.
Actually I'm not sure he does. He seems to have a fondness for dull, trite, effortlessly tedious screeds; perhaps he hopes that the rest of us will be so bored we won't read them, then we can't challenge his egregious remarks.
I fear he may be right.
Anyway, get some style and pzazz, quick. Or shut the F up.

8/05/2005 10:20:00 am  

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