Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Summit May Favor Tackling Causes of Terrorism Over Military Response: "Governments afflicted by extremist violence must address its causes if they hope to defeat it, not just strike back as the United States has done, say experts who will take part in a world conference on terrorism in Madrid this week."

Yet another blow to the credibility of the US 'war on terra'. Of course, it is not a 'war on terror', it is a war against the Arabs for control of the world's remaining oil reserves, two-thirds of which are concentrated in the Middle East Gulf region. Terrorism must be combated by police and intelligence work, and by policy change to address the legitimate grievances of people which feed and sustain terrorist action.

The sad history of humanity indicates that militarism and authoritarianism are all too likely as responses to the global crisis of sustainability. There is another way, but the people will themselves have to take it, against the inclinations of their own governments and other power structures. And that way is to begin a switch to renewable energy and sustainable economies, without sacrificing the hard won values of liberal democracy (including civil liberties and the rule of law) and social democracy (including the welfare state and social and economic justice).

The epic lies and crimes of the Anglo-Saxon democracies also vividly illustrate another old truth, that Power cannot be trusted and must be checked. Part of this is devolving as much of government and public services as is practicable to regional and local government; and people must learn to take responsibility for their own communities.

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