Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not to his own facts.
--Daniel Patrick Moynihan
Showing posts with label Osama bin Laden. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Osama bin Laden. Show all posts

January 21, 2012

Imagining Terrorism: Bombs Not Nukes, Guns Not Germs

By David K. Shipler

After 9/11, we blamed ourselves for lacking the imagination to think that hijackers might drive jetliners into buildings. To compensate for this failure, we expanded our imagination to picture terrorism by nuclear, chemical, and biological means. Now a carefully researched study concludes that weapons of mass destruction are unlikely to be used by jihadi terrorists. Their goals are more attainable with explosives and firearms, and the skill and equipment needed to mount an unconventional attack are far beyond the reach of existing terrorist groups.

May 27, 2011

Bin Laden's Immortality

By David K. Shipler
(Published by The Daily Beast/Newsweek May 26, 2011)

The damage that Osama bin Laden did to the United States went far beyond the attacks of September 11 and will outlive him, at least for a time.

In search of safety from his grand scheme of unending terrorism on American territory, the country jeopardized key constitutional rights at home, and most of those compromises remain in force, both in law and in practice.

May 6, 2011

Pragmatic Torture

By David K. Shipler
(Published on The New Yorker's News Desk, online, May 5, 2011)

Advocates of torture who enjoy tormenting the rest of us with the hypothetical ticking-bomb scenario might be tested with the counter-hypothetical proposed by Michael Sandel, a political philosopher at Harvard. In his 2009 book, “Justice,” Sandel writes,

“Suppose the only way to induce the terrorist suspect to talk is to torture his young daughter (who has no knowledge of her father’s nefarious activities). Would it be morally permissible to do so?”

It would be interesting to hear the answer from those who are hauling the country back into the repugnant debate over whether torture “works.”