[OPE] The Dog Days of August?

From: Jurriaan Bendien (adsl675281@tiscali.nl)
Date: Sat Aug 16 2008 - 07:58:35 EDT

In my experience, bureaucracies are rarely interested in "the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth". They're interested only if it is in their self-interest, but that is rare, and so they're usually more interested in selective truths which cast themselves in a positive light. Their power depends on others not knowing things, and therefore being dependent on those who do know.  If embarrassing incidents happen which reveal their incapacity or incompetence, or threaten their power & privilege, they are more likely to quietly sweep them under the carpet with ideas such as "that was yesterday, this is today, and we have to look forward to the future" and that we "have to think positive". 

It is thus unlikely that there would be a serious governmental commission of inquiry into what really happened in 9/11 and the leadup of the war against Iraq. Anyway, the report of such an inquiry could open a whole new can of worms, and it would have to allocate blame in such a way that it did not threaten the legitimacy of government agencies, or obstruct the political unity of the polity.

A healthy, honest democracy would not be afraid of the truth - in which case the president would, as a tribune of the people, have encouraged and participated in a wide public debate on the meaning of 9/11 and its moral implications, showing real leadership. But in a sickly plutocracy, 9/11 became, as Bacevich notes, a marvellous political opportunity to advance policies and strategies which had been sitting in the policy cupboard for quite some time, waiting for the right moment to implement them. Public opinion was carefully managed and channeled with stylised facts and disinformation. 

In this sense, the suiciding terrorists caused more damage than they ever dreamt of, causing the death of hundreds of thousands of innocent Muslim brothers and sisters and the misery of millions in the process.

Sure, there are always conspiracies, they happen in all strata of the population, but conspiracy theories cannot explain the motivation of social action as a whole. Every conspiracy assumes some shared goals, motives or interests, but those goals, motives or interests are not explained by the conspiracy itself, which is only an instrument to advance them. Thus, the conspiracy occurs in a broader context, which provides the actors with their motives, interests and beliefs. 

One of the most interesting things about 9/11 was the ideological "public relations" reference to the "attack on the Twin Towers". But these were the WORLD TRADE TOWERS. Now why pick the World Trade Towers? Why not the Empire State Building? What was the real significance? To my knowledge, this has never been discussed.


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