"Crusade in Asia"

Lou Paulsen wwchi at enteract.com
Tue Sep 18 04:04:07 MDT 2001


Here:
http://dailynews.yahoo.com/h/ap/20010917/us/attacks_crusade_1.html
is an interesting article quoting some pro-war intellectuals who are
somewhat unhappy at Bush's choice of the word 'crusade' to characterize the
war, at a time when Powell is at work trying to build a coalition that will
include unwilling partners in the Islamic world, like Pakistan.

They point out that when people east of Italy hear the word 'crusade' they
recognize the historical connotations and remember what the crusade was.  In
form it was a holy war.  The intellectuals don't stress the following point:
in practice it was imperialist plunder and colonization, and it involved
massacres at every point: when the Christians took Constantinople (from
other Christians) and Jerusalem from the Turks, there was a general
slaughter of the cities' inhabitants.

The interesting question, is, WHY did he choose to use that word?

(a) Is it because he really wanted to alienate Muslims, rally Christian
fundamentalists, sabotage his own "coalition", and make the war even
broader, longer, and bloodier?

(b) Or is he just a dunderhead?

I'm leaning toward (b) at the moment, but I will listen to arguments for
(a).

Lou Paulsen




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