Another simple-minded attempt to mix up guerilla-warfare and suicide-bombing. As suicide-bombing is not even analyzed within its ideology, understanding has to be waited for. The similar tactic in Sri-Lanka is enough “fact” for the autor, to keep silent about, what really should be talked about: That those attacs in Sri-Lanka are directed mostly against military aims and that the aims of the struggle are just secessionism. The suicide-attac of Islamism are deeply rooted in literalism and anti-semitism. They have not any cause in rational military reasoning or an intolerable state of being, but alone in anti-semitism an religious fanatism. They generate out of a patriarchy that supresses men and women, sexuality and joy. The enemy is associated with jews and apostates, while both stand for each other as the ultimate evil, that must be eradicated.
Whereas a modern, liberal army tries to break armed forces for rational purposes under the laws of war, islamic suicide bombing tends to hurt and kill civilians, that are marked as totally evil. What the autor also mixes up: It is not Sri-Lanka, that has a relevant number in suicide missions, be they military or directed against civilians. It is Iran, that sent thousands of kids for mine-sweeping with plastic keys from taiwan around their necks to open the doors of paradise. It is Iraq, where terrorists celebrate their macabre party of death in the name of Islamism. And least: It is the wall around israel, that decreased the number of islamic suicide bombings.
The peaceful islamists with their anti-americanism and their anti-semitism are fruitful bearers for the recruitment of suicide bombers out of peaceful europe, out of africa, indonesia, india etc.
It is absurd to call this an unfair military struggle, while the terrorists are fed by billions from iran and other oil-rich states, are supported by european development aid, can buy their weapons in Austria, in Germany, in China and from anywhere they want via “peaceful” traders in Quatar etc. All this with the moral and intellectual support of european lefties, the UN, that go common sense with Hisbollah and Hamas, and with officials from sweden, scandinavia, etc.
They will always seem weak to those, who imagine an unbeareble “superpower” of US and Israel and so feel sympathy for the self-declared enemies of civilization.
A better philosophical study on suicide-bombing is Gerhard Scheit: Suicide attack. Zur Kritik der politischen Gewalt. Ca ira-Verlag. Freiburg. 2004. 615 pages.
Comment from: Deborah [Visitor]
thanks for the post. I agree that this book by Asad is brilliant in the thought-provoking way it unsettles categories. It’s anthropology at its best.
I taught a couple of chapters from the book to advanced undergraduates and they were stimuated by the way the reading made them reflect on what they took for granted.
Comment from: anonymous [Visitor]
I just read this book for my class at the University of Chicago. It was brilliant.