Why did our European and US governments invade Afghanistan? How many of us can recall the general rhetoric of a Just War fought in the name of an ‘Enduring Freedom’ to liberate Afghan women from their burqa and Afghan men from their long beards, as well as bringing to justice bin-Laden? The Afghan campaign has been a half military success, with US and Nato generals blaming each other for the other half failure, while bin-Laden, if not dead by natural cause, can celebrate Bush’s most evident flop. The Afghan war, while facilitating a new form of old corruption in the cities and capital, has increased the suffering of the rural population, often caught in battles of which they are only the victims. Yet some say that Afghanistan is now a better place since it is on the route toward democracy, though a fictional and corrupted one. Continue reading
After many years, I came back to Italy during the summer. As many of you may have noticed, I have been on holiday even from my blog. Yet today I have decided to make an exception and comment on a debate that for three days (from 13th of August to the 15th) has made the headlines. The Italian Prime Minister, Romano Prodi, has unceremoniously broken one of the main rules which have governed the last six years of the ‘War on Terror’: never speak to the bad guys, just isolate and, if you can, bomb them. My fellow citizen Machiavelli used to say that the end justifies the means.
The BBC has started an interesting project focusing on the disastrous war in Iraq. In one its web pages it is monitoring the effects of the war, week by week, by looking at casualty figures, the pressure on hospitals and quality of life for ordinary civilians.
The war in Iraq has been a disaster; Bush gifts Americans and British people with grief and a dark future of fear, and the Iraqi people with genocide and a multilateral civil war. The only happy guy, were he not dead, would be Mr Osama bin-Laden, who would have seen his corporation and franchise of terror wealthy as never before. But we know that the Bush family is very used to exchange gifts with the bin-Ladens. It is a long tradition, which this time, probably, has its Freudian side.
However, if President Bush still believes that his controversial surge strategy in Iraq is succeeding, it can only mean that he is still speaking to god. Yet, as an anthropologist, I suggest that this god can only be Kūkā`ilimoku Ki`i Hulu Manu, the Hawaiian feather-headed war god.