Just War?

US military deaths in Iraq have surpassed the amount of people killed on Sept. 11, 2001.

This does not even factor in the unforgivable amount of Iraqi civilian deaths. Everyone who had a hand in enabling this war-- from the Senate to Pat Boyle--owes it to the families of those who have died, to once again, explain their rationale for supporting this crime against humanity.

Moreover, if the ultimate goal of the War on Terror, and of "just wars" in general, is to minimize death and harm to the people of the world, how can we say that war is useful in accomplishing these ends in light of the evidence to the contrary?

Howard Zinn writes in Z Magazine:

"The repeated excuse, given by both Pentagon spokespersons and Israeli officials, for dropping bombs where ordinary people live is that terrorists hide among civilians. Therefore the killing of innocent people (in Iraq, in Lebanon) is called accidental, whereas the deaths caused by terrorists (on 9/11, by Hezbollah rockets) are deliberate.

This is a false distinction, quickly refuted with a bit of thought. If a bomb is deliberately dropped on a house or a vehicle on the grounds that a 'suspected terrorist' is inside (note the frequent use of the word suspected as evidence of the uncertainty surrounding targets), the resulting deaths of women and children may not be intentional. But neither are they accidental. The proper description is 'inevitable.'

So if an action will inevitably kill innocent people, it is as immoral as a deliberate attack on civilians. And when you consider that the number of innocent people dying inevitably in "accidental" events has been far, far greater than all the deaths deliberately caused by terrorists, one must reject war as a solution for terrorism.

For instance, more than a million civilians in Vietnam were killed by US bombs, presumably by 'accident.' Add up all the terrorist attacks throughout the world in the 20th century and they do not equal that awful toll."

No comments: