The stars are in our belly; the Milky Way our umbilicus.
Is it a consolation that the stuff of which we’re made
is star-stuff too?
– That wherever you go you can never fully disappear –
dispersal only: carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen.
Tree, rain, coal, glow-worm, horse, gnat, rock.
Wednesday, 2 December 2015
heroics & Syria
Of course we need a concerted effort against ISL. I just believe we should at the very least be genuinely seeking multi-nation political and diplomatic solutions, and be looking immediately for ways to check the flow of arms, money, and oil revenue towards ISL (not to mention addressing as a matter of urgency the radicalisation of young people).
Is there such a thing as a just war? If so, what are the criteria, and who decides which situation fits?
I can't imagine how the current proposal can do anything other than provoke even worse situations, and the number of civilian casualties is bound to be grotesque, given ISL's embedding within towns and cities.
Does anyone really believe that such an intervention will result in jihadists saying 'OK then, you win', and walk away into subdued lives of quiet desperation?
And after the bombing – what then?
And why is nobody incorporating the perspective put forward here?
Mostly, the discussions between opposing factions of parliament have been civil and reasonable. Cameron's exhortations to MPs to come over to the dark side, though, hit a very different note when he resorted to calling Labour members 'terrorist sympathisers'. Suddenly this looks like comic-book politics, though there's nothing either funny, trivial or light about what's at stake.
What I mean is it's suddenly a case of the 'blood being up', as they say, along with the testosterone levels: Cameron wants, or at least has tunnel-vision vis à vis war, and bombing, and what was a perfectly well-argued case seems to have morphed, or rather degenerated, into Boys' Own heroics and name-calling.
Mr Cameron, you may just have done yourself a big disfavour. Let's hope.
Gandhi's words about an eye for an eye being a terrible way to blind the world are as relevant to the bigger picture, of course, as ever.
George Monbiot is, as always, a passionate and intelligent voice on this:
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