Fear is bad Counsel

The US is preparing to designate Iran’s Revolutionary Guards force as a foreign terrorist unit, officials say. That is, the BBC reports that ‘officials’ say this. If confirmed, this will be the first time official armed units of a sovereign state are included in the list of banned terrorist groups. We can all easily see what this is leading up to. Presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich saw it in 2002 and spoke out against it. Why does he have only 2% of support?

There is this strong feeling that George Bush does not know what he is doing. We grant that we cannot be led by fear. We grant, too, that many people start talking about prudence to hide their fear. But that does not mean there isn’t such a thing as ‘prudence’. The US has repeatedly accused Iran of destabilizing Iraq and Afghanistan, blaming the Revolutionary Guards for supplying and training insurgents. So now they want to brand them ‘terrorists’. Fools rush in where angels fear to tread ….

What are they thinking?

There are currently 42 organizations on the state department’s list of foreign terrorist organizations. They include al-Qaeda, the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah and the Palestinian groups Hamas and Islamic Jihad. Ms Condoleezza Rice has championed a diplomatic approach to relations with Iran over the past 12 months. Terrorist groups are ‘legitimate’ targets, not only financially (as they are now emphasizing in Washington), but also militarily. So what on earth are they thinking?

Remedy worse than the malady

Here, as before, the point is not whether these Guards are dangerous zealots, or not. Or whether we agree with their ideology and the way they try to propagate it. Some of it we may agree with, some of it not. In general we reject offensive violence as an instrument of government policy, which includes offensive violence perpetrated by ‘terrorist groups’. It’s not that. Neither do we advocate standing idly by, while atrocities are being committed under our very noses. The point is that if we try to end these atrocities the wrong way, we cannot produce any good results. The remedy can be worse than the malady. This is what George Bush doesn’t seem to understand.

Democracy and freedom are under serious threat in the USA (and in the rest of the world), more from within than from without. The Neo-cons are the inside threat. The problem with this situation is that you end up being anti-American because of its misguided leadership and its imprudent and counter-productive ways of pursuing its policies, whereas in reality we are pro freedom and democracy and therefore pro-American.

We place a humor video today to lighten things up a bit.