|THE PILL BOX|
A CATALOG OF CULTURE & BARBARITY
to backtrack a bit from yesterday, i have no problem AT ALL with the idea that this (actually existing but somewhat inccomptently DIY) terror op was wound up JUST RIGHT NOW as a white-house-led counter-event to the result in the lamont-leiberman election -- the bush-cheney-rove administration is clearly VERY rattled by leiberman's narrowish defeat, judging by the scale of the chorus spinning the result as a CALAMITY FOR THE DEMS
my objection was the idea of "distraction from the war(s)" -- because i don't see how that, needful or no, has much of a short-timing element, in which urgency might trump care
...yeah, that was partly why i was suspicous about its origins in AMERICAN intel to begin with ... altho it does serve Blair, re possible revolt in the Labour ranks, everyone being on their hols notwithstanding...
... and further, re Israeli tactics on the ground (or from the air): why go to the trouble of having civilians massacred in camps a la Shatila, which may need a 'cover up' and may risk some kind of para legal aftermath... when you can achieve the EXACT same ends under cover of 'collateral damage' ... Better! you even get to blame it on Hezbollah, for having the temerity to live amongst populated areas!
similarly, if you look at the reports about the ex lebanese Prime Minister's assasination a year or so ago, Hariri, and the subsequent withdrawal of Syrian troops from the lebanon - many of them talk about who actually benefited from the situation? not Syria who were blamed for the killing, but Israel - and a lot of them talk about the possibility that this event might pave the way for an Israeli invasion (I'm talking Guardian style reports here, not conspiracy theory sites and whatnot) - I ended up thinking, of course Mossad did it, it's not a conspiracy, it's a certainty - and... then you think, and..? I mean, in the light of the current situation, what use is this information?
given the way it's played in the wake of lamont's win, i think the announcement was moved up (a week, this story claims) for short-term US electoral reasons (rather than medium-term UK ones)
more still, from a kos poster: i guess what i want to stress here is the potential fact of strains and tensions within the bush-blair project -- one of the things which makes me tear my hair out re sub-chomskian analysis is the assumption that within the circle of the power-structure of the class foe, all is agreed and transparent
but brit and US (and israeli and pakistani...) interests and strategies and tactics and general forces and flow have all kinds of potentially very serious fissues and wave fronts in them, which "we" should be on the lookout for, to exploit -- i CANNOT RUBBERSTAMP the belief that the more radical you are, the more you have to amplify "their" firmness of purpose and serene monolithicity of self-knowledge and understanding; bascially it strips "us" of all manner of VERY USEFUL weapons
I've been reading v. good book called LYING IN STATE How Whitehall Denies, Dissembles and Deceives [From the Chinook Crash to the Kelly Affair] by Tim SLessor -which convincingly and exhaustively proves that sometimes (a lot of the time) cock-up can be identical to conspiracy: someone like MOD takes an 'incorrect' 'position' on something, but then for variety of reasons can never bring itself to admit they were wrong or misguided or economical with the verite...
here's the US evidence of the actual effect of the brit swoop on terrorists: no polling benefit AT ALL to bush
now given my argt previously i can't use this to bolster my position -- just bcz a stunt produces Effect A doesn't mean iot wz deployed to produce Effect B (unless you assume that the deployers are superpowerfully all-knowing, which is SPECFICALLY the assumption i reject)
my argt (as it evolved) became: a somewhat sketchy and very DIY high wycombe plot was (genuinely) uncovered by brit policework, but then MADE A TOO-BIG DEAL OF at the behest of the bush administration attempting to spin the leiberman loss -- to the momentary benefit of leiberman now running AGAINST his old party; but to no effect WHATEVER in terms of popularity of bush or of war
i don't think "convenience" was an issue -- this was probably the word i reacted most against -- as i think the bush-blair THING is entirely now between a rock and a hard place, all the time; they are having simultaneously to argue that iraq has everything and nothing to do with homegrown terrorism; that iraq is a success but the threat of terror is ever-present; that a state of constant panic is proof they are on top of stuff; and -- and this is where the "convenience" element really breaks down, that 50,000 items of air-luggage is a "price worth paying" for freedom (where freedom is defined in terms of absolute freedom to consume without consequence)
so my analysis is now this: IF they have ANY GUMPTION AT ALL, they are stuck with a set of awful choices --they HAVE to release the news of the plot and the arrests (= send the message ALL FUCKED UP EVERYWHERE NOW); best (just about) to do so when the war in lebanon can still "distract" from it (even if it means keeping blair's caribbean holiday in the news)
however it's frighteningly possible they have NO GUMPTION LEFT, in which cae all bets are off how this was "meant" to be played
(given that i lost a friend in 7/7, i am somewhat inclined to hope that real policework is making a follow-up impossible, but i am actually fairly sure these kinds of media spectaculars to damage to such policework)
oh for goodness sake:
"just bcz a stunt produces Effect A doesn't mean it wz deployed to produce Effect B" shd be "just bcz a stunt produces Effect A doesn't mean it WASN'T deployed to produce Effect B
"50,000 items of air-luggage LOST" = "50,000 items of air-luggage"
magic word: warpumr
i think this piece holds up well a month on -- newberry is a rather clodhopping stylist (obscure in meaning sometimes, haha like i can take shots, plus a V.POOR speller) but very adept INDEED at doing what he doing here -- strong but detailed political economy wound into military and cultural analysisPost a Comment
anyway the stuff at the end explains why BushKru is seemingly impervious to revelations that would have destroyed predecessors AND (implicitly here) how the widespread angry revolt of the professional classes has been played back, populist-style, against itself
(SN also writes string quartets and engages in blog flamewars and has a take-down commodity theory of modern pop culture which i haven't really got my head round: i hope he's writing a book about it all which has a GOOD EDITOR bcz i wd def read it if he is)