Thursday, March 25, 2004
Op-Ed Columnist: No Vote for Al Qaeda
Poor Mr.Friedman continues to dream.
I agree with almost everything that he says - that Europe needs to understand that Al Qaeda is as much a threat to her as it is to America, Israel, India, Japan or any other non-Islamic state.
However, Mr.Friedman completely misses the point when he states that this war is between Islamist Al Qaeda and democratic states, and then proceeds to justify acts of the leaders of the democratic states blindly. Democratic states are good because the people are believed to take take decisions in good conscience with good amount of quality information. If this is violated, then democracies are no better than dictatorships - mass hysteria is no better than a single man's hysteria.
Be it Bush or Aznar, they violated this principal rule of popular democracies - that decisions are taken by leaders after legitimizing them by levelling with people, and deserve to lose. It would have been a bad day for Spain had the conservatives gotten away with it all.
The only way to put all this back together is for these countries to come together again under new leadership. The entire crop of leaders we have now - Bush, Blair, Chirac - have to lose. Let's hope that happens sooner than later.
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