April 30, 2004

War of words . Terry Jones, of Monty Phyton fame, writes about "coalition forces", "rebels", "civilians" and other words commonly used in the Iraq "adventure".

  • But perhaps the most exciting linguistic development is to be found away from the areas of conflict - in the calm of the Oval Office, where very few people get killed for looking out of their windows. Here words such as "strategy" and "policy" are daily applied to the kneejerk reactions of politicians and military commanders who think that brute force is the only way to resolve difficult problems in a delicate situation. As Major Kevin Collins, one of the officers in charge of the marines in Falluja, put it: "If you choose to pick a fight, we'll finish it."

    In the past, one might have used a phrase such as "numbskull stupidity" rather than "strategy". But then, language has a life of its own ... which is more than one can say for a lot of innocent Iraqis.
    Smack. Right on target.
  • Hilarious. Sad, poignant and true, but still hilarious.
  • I thought that it was easy. On one side is the Coalition Of The Willing. These are the good guys. Composed mainly of Americans, with a token presence of other nations whose governments have been duped, bribed, coerced, or otherwise incentivised to send their soldiers to a middle-eastern hell hole to get slaughtered for the greater good of humanity. Strangely, given the mission to bring democracy to the downtrodden of the Middle East, these governments are somewhat reluctant to listen to the opinions of those that they were elected to represent. The good guys are convinced that God is on their side. On the other side are the Terrorists. These are composed completely of fanatics, lunatics, and the suicidally misguided. The Terrorists have no doubt that God is on their side. Somewhere in the middle are the Capitulators. These are the nations whose governments have paid more than just lip service to the notion of democracy, and have actually listened to the opinions of those that they were elected to represent. The new government in Spain, in honouring an election promise to withdraw their troops from iRaq, have joined the Capitulators.
  • ...and then there are the suckers.
  • Terry Jones has written powerfully and amusingly on this subject before. He's absolutely right ... what is sad and depressing is so many people are taken in by politicians when they say black is white. What is equally sad, but less depressing, is that politicians seem bemused that the people who aren't taken in by their mangling of words and distortion of truth think that they're a bunch of c@#*s and don't want to vote for them ...
  • Thanks, homunculus.