“it’s amazing how many people refuse to see this”

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Last updated on June 6th, 2017 at 08:14 am

Christopher Hitchens on Osama’s followers and those who rationalise their madness:

Suicide is not so much their tactic as their rationale: they represent a cult of death and they are wedded to destruction. It’s amazing how many people refuse to see this. They persist in saying that it’s a protest against something, or a reaction to some injustice. They are right to an extent: as long as there is a non-Salafist Muslim anywhere, or a Jew or Christian or rationalist, or an unveiled woman or a profane work of art, the grievance can never be appeased. Of course this does have something in common with fascism – “Death to the intellect! Long live Death!” was a favorite slogan of some Francoists: I think it was coined by General Quiepo de Llano – but even fascism could build an autobahn or design a rocket, while these primitives only want to steal enough technology to wreak devastation.

I wonder if Michael Leunig prayed for Osama this Christmas. Meanwhile, Hitchins’ latest receives a mixed review from Karol Sheinin:

On one hand, it’s a beautiful book, written in a style unique to Hitchens. On the other hand, his pre-9/11 writing was so focused on knocking prominent, admired people, like Mother Theresa and Winston Churchill, off their perches that it gets a little old. Even when I share his criticism of certain people, like Bill Clinton, I feel like Hitchens’ complaints come off as a tad obvious. My favorite parts of the book concern the Kurds, who have never had a better friend than Hitchens (despite their motto ‘the Kurds have no friends’), and his various travels through war torn countries. His take on NYC’s Bloomberg nanny laws is spot on.

Posted by Tim B. on 01/01/2005 at 06:31 PM
    1. You’ve gotta love Hitchens.
      9/11 changed him the way it changed me!

      Posted by Brian on 2005 01 01 at 08:47 PM • permalink


  1. It’s also why Hitchens has been dropped from the ABC’s regular rotation in recent years.
    Great article, thanks for posting it!

    Posted by Brian on 2005 01 01 at 09:24 PM • permalink