Monday, June 11, 2007

After the Bomb

This article from the New York Times, authored by former Clinton Defence Secretary William J. Perry, and Harvard Professor Ashton B. Carter, deals with the aftermath of a terrorist nuclear attack on a US city. I give them credit for dealing with a difficult subject matter. However, I found the article strangely unwilling to deal with some of the more controversial questions that come to mind. Assuming the attackers to be Muslim extremists, how should we deal with the Muslim populations in the United States in such a scenario, knowing that it is impossible to distinguish between potential radicals and moderates? Would the public not demand expulsion or internment? Should we retaliate with a nuclear strike on Mecca? Evaporating Islam's holiest site? Should such a scenario be openly threatened in advance in order to gain whatever level of deterrence possible to try to avoid the attack to begin with? These are the difficult questions that never seemed to be asked, let alone answered in public. Perry and Carter avoid these obvious questions like the plague.

Lowry: The Age of Cynicism

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