Random thoughts on terrorism

France responds to a terrorist wave today with a two-million-person-strong show of unity in the streets. When the US and UK (as well as any number of other countries) experienced seminal attacks, their governments’ primary response instead was to triple down on the security state.

In the US, additionally, the overwhelming (but by no means universal) public response was to demand that “we” bomb someone, and torture the fuck out of any prisoners, even random ones – which the US government was only too happy to do. And, 14 years later, the bombing and torture continue.

The French government has its own atrocities to answer for, but at least in the immediate aftermath of the past week, I like the French response better.

Meanwhile, another Islamic terrorist group, Nigeria’s Boko Haram, apparently slaughtered upwards of two thousand people last weekend in the former town of Baga, on Lake Chad in the northeastern Nigerian state of Borno. And US media didn’t even notice, probably because it’s sub-Saharan Africa, and, you know, “they” are always doing that down there.

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