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View Full Version : Hypothetical: London Bombings & Iraq War



MBM
20-07-2005, 09:21 AM
OK, would the London bombings have occurred if the UK had not been involved in the Iraq War?

On the one hand, it's reported that the bombers felt anger towards the UK and US regarding the Iraqi invasion.

On the other, JI in Indonesia were quite happy to bomb a nightclub in Bali long before the invasion of Iraq. There have been plenty of Islamic terrorist attacks prior to the invasion.

On balance, I reckon the UK had it coming long before Iraq or even 9/11.

What do you think?

hombre
20-07-2005, 10:46 AM
OK, would the London bombings have occurred if the UK had not been involved in the Iraq War?

On the one hand, it's reported that the bombers felt anger towards the UK and US regarding the Iraqi invasion.

On the other, JI in Indonesia were quite happy to bomb a nightclub in Bali long before the invasion of Iraq. There have been plenty of Islamic terrorist attacks prior to the invasion.

On balance, I reckon the UK had it coming long before Iraq or even 9/11.

What do you think?
the war against iraq started much earlier than the most recent confrontation or do you think the life of iraqis under sanctions was nice?

we need to put the entire thing in context. it is no secret what radical muslims want to achieve. osama bin laden says that quite clearly in his videos and audio tapes (his most important propaganda outlet). their actions are directed primarily against corrupt dictatorships in the islamic world, especially in saudi arabia, which are not islamic enough for their taste. people in those countries agree these dictatorships have to go. bin laden scores a point there. he blames the west for supporting the aforementioned dicatorships and scores another point. he blames the west for injustices against muslims in iraq and palestine and scores 2 more points there. and in a situation where hardly any political group even recognises these problems exist people turn to the apparently only group that seems to care and be remotely effective. the result is a situation in which radical islamism is seen as fighting for something many muslims can identify with, at least for the time being.

simply blaming this on the war in iraq is a simplification. that war clearly did make london an immediate target, but things are more complex than that.

martin
20-07-2005, 10:58 AM
Bit about it here

http://www.guardian.co.uk/comment/story/0,,1531997,00.html

Rambler
20-07-2005, 11:19 AM
It's impossible to imagine that Britain's involvement in Iraq wasn't used as part of the process in creating a suicide bomber.

BUT, just because it was, doesn't mean either that it was a) the sole condition for persuading someone to blow themselves up in London or b) a necessary condition for same. This is logic 101, yet I'm stunned at how many well-paid commentators can't be bothered to acknowledge this.

henrymiller
20-07-2005, 11:30 AM
it probably made the bombings more likely, and may well have motivated these specific individuals. i think it's strange how much people confuse the general causes with their substantive content. sure, subjectively AQ has an easy time of it with undereducated and malleable potential bombers, but that doesn't make the reasons good or strong in any wider rational schema. saudi 'not being islamic enough' is a bit of a chin-stroker.


the war against iraq started much earlier than the most recent confrontation or do you think the life of iraqis under sanctions was nice?

pre-sanctions iraq under saddam -- so nice.

3underscore
20-07-2005, 11:42 AM
It somehow confuses me how everyone seems to refer to the war in iraq, thoroughly neglecting everything that happened in afghanistan.

I would be a lot more sure it is related to the latter in some shape or form. The iraq war is barely over, so impact from terrorism as a direct result will be a few years in my opinion - allowing for the mobilisation and manifestation of hatred. Not a happy theory, mind.

henrymiller
20-07-2005, 11:49 AM
i dunno, i think the afghanistan war a) killed relatively few civilians, b) there wasn't much infrastructure to damage, but again, not such a destructive war. it's an interesting theory which i am surprised blair hasn't picked up on -- for most people the afghanistan war was *much* more easily justified, so if blair said 'oh this is revenge for afghanistan', most people would not see that as a 'legitimate grievance' on behalf of the bombers (unless they *liked* theocratic dictatorship, er, in which case, lame grievance).

hombre
20-07-2005, 12:57 PM
it probably made the bombings more likely, and may well have motivated these specific individuals. i think it's strange how much people confuse the general causes with their substantive content. sure, subjectively AQ has an easy time of it with undereducated and malleable potential bombers, but that doesn't make the reasons good or strong in any wider rational schema. saudi 'not being islamic enough' is a bit of a chin-stroker.
i said for osama bin laden's taste, not mine or yours. it is also naive to claim that the terrorists are uneducated, because they are not.



pre-sanctions iraq under saddam -- so nice.
that does not make the west look good though and we all know why.

having said that, pre-sanctions iraq under baathists was a nicer place than it is now in many regards and it seems most iraqis see it that way. and even if things had improved, the war against iraq remains a criminal enterprise with criminal motives behind it.




The iraq war is barely over, so impact from terrorism as a direct result will be a few years in my opinion - allowing for the mobilisation and manifestation of hatred.
most informed observers disagree.




i dunno, i think the afghanistan war a) killed relatively few civilians, b) there wasn't much infrastructure to damage, but again, not such a destructive war. it's an interesting theory which i am surprised blair hasn't picked up on -- for most people the afghanistan war was *much* more easily justified, so if blair said 'oh this is revenge for afghanistan', most people would not see that as a 'legitimate grievance' on behalf of the bombers (unless they *liked* theocratic dictatorship, er, in which case, lame grievance).
the war in afghanistan was as criminal as the war in iraq is, even if less obviously so. in fact it should be seen as a part of the same thing not simply because bush says it is ("the war on terror" etc.). the results are also far from nice. it would be stupid to try to sell afghanistan as a success story. so yes, afghanistan is another place where the west messed things up. it is another chapter in the history of ciminality and humiliation that surely contributed to radicalising a lot of young muslims

hombre
20-07-2005, 12:58 PM
oh, and that guardian article actually sums it up nicely.

henrymiller
21-07-2005, 12:15 PM
where does 'criminality' come from here? which law do you represent? i would have thought the taliban were equally criminal under any such law. i was uneasy about the afghanistan war -- strange, i thought, to launch a conventional way rather than simply strike terrorist camps, etc.

btw the idea the west 'produced' islamism is crass. it's a bit like saying the british empire 'produced' nationalism in india -- which has elements of truth, but then, did the austrian empire 'produce' italian nationalism? -- and from that arguing kashmir is also britain's fault. it's something like a fantasia which admits no other agency in history than the developed west.

hombre
21-07-2005, 12:58 PM
where does 'criminality' come from here?

both were wars of aggression. we also have every reason to question the motives of those who started them.



which law do you represent?

the un charter, international treaties and the precedent at the nuremberg trials.



i would have thought the taliban were equally criminal under any such law.

not equally, but they are criminal in their own way.



i was uneasy about the afghanistan war -- strange, i thought, to launch a conventional way rather than simply strike terrorist camps, etc.

the question is was the war really necessary and what was the true motivation for starting it. i don't buy what the us government is selling.



btw the idea the west 'produced' islamism is crass. it's a bit like saying the british empire 'produced' nationalism in india -- which has elements of truth, but then, did the austrian empire 'produce' italian nationalism? -- and from that arguing kashmir is also britain's fault. it's something like a fantasia which admits no other agency in history than the developed west.
erm, the us and its allies in the islamic world provided training and weapons for the islamic extremists during the soviet war in afghanistan. they did not simply came into being as a reaction to the western imperialist actions, they were actively supported by the west. furthermore in the past the us considered secular leftist forces to be more threatening to western interests, so they did their best to destroy them. in the process a political vacuum was created that radical islamists were able to occupy.

both in afganistan and in iraq the us forces are fighting against their former allies.