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Does anyone truly believe that violence can lead the world to a better place?

Does anyone truly believe that violence can lead the world to a better place?

There can be only one reason for the attacks in Paris and that is to draw the West into increased military action in the Middle East, and from the sounds of it, that has been the call from many people today.

To those whose answer to the bombs and bullets is bigger bombs and more bullets, I would say you are being manipulated in the same way as the ignorant deluded handful of people who carried out these attacks.

How can you claim to be on the side of right when you use the same methods – go to a foreign country and kill innocent people?

How can you speak of national security and protecting your borders as you invade other countries?

How can you claim to be protecting human rights as you bomb hospitals?

How can you claim to be fighting for freedom as you lock up the people fleeing from oppression?

We have removed countless despots and dictators but rarely has it gone well. We install corrupt governments or leave when it becomes politically inconvenient to stay and leave people to cope with the mess we leave behind. We train and arm paramilitary groups and then abandon them and show surprise when they team up with others we don’t care for.

The armaments industry is a huge global business with no ethics. Defence forces are empire builders who demand hundreds of billions to ‘keep us safe’ as they spark aggression around the world.

If you kill people, others will want revenge. Where does it stop?

Is humanity capable of civilisation? Capable of tolerance? Capable of accepting the responsibility of caring for and nurturing all children, educating them, and protecting the environment so they can have a future?

Billy Connelly used to do a skit about his mother belting him for hitting his sister. Are we to respond to violence with violence and see ourselves as saviours?

Until we learn to respect each other and the planet we share, we are doomed to let those who would use us for their own power and profit pull the strings.


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  1. Wally


    I agree with everything you have written BUT how do we get groups like ISIS to stop terrorising innocent people?
    It is not only people in other countries of different religions/beliefs that are being attacked, they slaughter their own countrymen.

    Sometimes the only way to solve a problem is to tackle the bull by the horns. As a teacher did you ever find that mediation stopped bullying? My oldest son (and most of his class) were bullied by another student in primary school and everything the system did to resolve the problem failed. I sat with him one night when he didn’t want to go back to school ever and explained that the point had been reached where he was the only one who could fix the problem. I told him to hit this boy back next time he was bullied, which he did and I ended up in the principles office a day or so later. I explained that I had instructed my son to stand up for himself and off the record the principle agreed it was the only way to stop the bullying and it worked.

    Some of the Paris terrorists were born in France, how do these people turn against their own country? The negative impact on peaceful Muslim people will last for years to come. With radicals like ISIS there doesn’t seem to be any other way to stop them other than using military force. If anyone has a better solution I am all ears but the fatal mistake of getting involved in other countries issues has come back to bite the western world. Rather than starting a war in the middle east we should have provided a safe haven for the innocent people affected until the issues were resolved but we cannot turn back time.

  2. Wally

    I should add saying military action is the only option I am not suggesting a war, properly executed counter terrorism to eradicate the leaders of the radical groups.

  3. Matters Not

    There can be only one reason for the attacks in Paris and that is to draw the West into increased military action in the Middle East

    Not sure about that. There’s some evidence ISIL wants those who bomb to ‘desist’

    threatened further attacks against France ‘as long as it continues its Crusader campaign’.

    Already Justin Trudeau said that Canadian fighter jets will withdraw from US mission against Islamic State, even before these attacks.

    There’s no place for simplistic analysis here and there’s no simplistic solutions either.

    But I am sure that there’s plenty who know what to do.

  4. Pingback: Violence . . . Futility . . . Violence . . . Futility . . . Would You Like Pommes Frites with That? | THE PUB

  5. mars08

    …how do we get groups like ISIS to stop terrorising innocent people?

    Oh bugger me sideways!!!!

    A good start would be to tackle the BULLSHIT by the horns and stop doing stupid stuff that creates those groups! Good grief. Seriously… f+€k me!!! Was ISIS or Al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI) or the FSA around back in 2003?

    I despair…

  6. Wally

    Matters Not

    “There’s no place for simplistic analysis here and there’s no simplistic solutions either.”

    Unfortunately it has got to the point where many politicians just want the problem to go away so any well planned or thought out response is unlikely, if there was no oil in the middle east they would not hesitate to nuke them.

  7. kathysutherland2013

    I really don’t understand the process of radicalisation, but it seems as if this the way that such terrorist attacks are organised. If this is the case, how can our “conventional” intelligence agencies prepare us? How can the world deal with it? It’s impossible to negotiate with radicalised people.

    Wally, I don’t think your son’s experience with his bullying classmates is relevant here – radicalised terrorists seem quite happy to die for their cause (whatever it is) so I don’t think the threat of punishment or attack would have any impact. This makes my sense of hopelessness all the deeper.

    However, I do take heart at the reports of many Parisians offering shelter to those who need it, using the hashtag PorteOverte on Twitter. Perhaps the strength of humanity is our strongest weapon against those eho have no humanity.

  8. Kaye Lee

    I can see no other reason for it MN. I would be interested to hear one? I do not mean to be simplistic. To cover everything is beyond what any person, let alone a short article, can do. I just cannot work out what it is meant to achieve. It is far more likely to precipitate greater action against them than to scare anyone off.

    I cannot understand how big business can’t play more of a role. Banks must have a fair idea of where money is going. Someone is selling/giving them guns and trucks, Someone is buying the oil they have appropriated. Can’t a peacekeeping force create a secure area for Syrians to live? Why is anyone supporting a group who slaughters their own people? How can they ever expect any recognition or credibility or success when they kill kids for watching a soccer game?

    But back to my point. Violence won’t fix it.

  9. Wally


    Instead of putting other people down put a suggestion or is that beyond your ability?

  10. Kaye Lee


    I actually taught my children that being able to take a punch and not react was far more powerful than throwing one.

    As far as radicalisation of kids here is concerned, we should be asking how we can help them rather than how we can punish them. Why are they falling prey to seduction? Do they feel alienated here? Do they feel alone? Do they feel victimised? Are they bored? Is unemployment a factor? I cannot speak for other countries but kids here should not be susceptible – we should be able to offer them a much better life than those who trick them into becoming cannon fodder or sex slaves.

    And we should, at the same time, recognise that our greed has meant that many in the world do not have enough food, they do not have a decent education or healthcare. We gobble up the world’s resources and resent those who want to share a similar life.

    The problem is indeed complex but I reiterate, violence breeds violence.

  11. mars08

    Wally… it seems to beyond everyone’s ability… or desire. So, until someone finds a miracle solution we can agree on… why don’t we work to minimise the risks?

    BTW… why the eagerness to consider ISIS as the perpetrators. No doubt those who carried out the attack were inspired by events in the Middle East, but they probably weren’t actual foot soldiers. Maybe we can look at why some are tempted by martyrdom?

  12. MargCal

    I’m not a wholly enthusiastic supporter of mars08 but on this occasion (11.20) I agree with the sentiments if not the words used.

    As for suggestions, the US and it’s ‘followers’ (I’m being polite) should all pack up and go home – from everywhere. Has the US been anywhere in the last 50 years where trouble has ‘not’ escalated?
    Should any military action need to be taken it should be decided by the UN alone and directed by the UN, not the US. The UN isn’t perfect but it can’t be worse than the world’s self-appointed sheriff. The consultation required would hopefully come up with a more considered approach to trouble spots and with luck prevent hysterical, too-hasty action. Was GWBush anything but petrol on a fire?

  13. Matters Not

    KL, I am not being critical of your article. For me, I assume that any article from you or anyone else is just a starting point for a discussion. And this one cultivates a fertile ground. So congratulations.

    I think I suggested that ‘backing off’ might be a motivation. As to other ‘reasons’, ISIL is currently under extreme pressure, given the intervention of the Russians and their apparent disregard for ‘civilian’ casualties (same with the US in Iraq but we don’t admit that do we). While ISIL claims responsibility (and that seems likely) the means/detail is yet to be established.

    As for ‘insider knowledge’ there is no doubt that some are more ‘informed’ than others but it’s not in their ‘financial’ interests to break confidences.

    I might add I argued from the out set and marched accordingly, we should never have been there.

  14. Kaye Lee

    Killing innocent people does NOT make you a martyr. If there are any martyrs they are the doctors and nurses from MSF, the aid workers who risk everything to bring food and water to children, the people who, in the course of trying to help others, are massacred by those who think violence can work.

  15. mars08

    @Kaye Lee… Is that explanation of martyrdom for my benefit?

  16. Kaye Lee

    I did not take your comment as critical MN. I considered what you said. And yes, I just want to prompt a discussion. And to dream that maybe one day we can realise that helping people works so much better than hurting them.

  17. Kaye Lee


    It was my response rather than an explanation.

  18. Chris the Greatly Dismayed

    Wally, I got the same advice from my Dad and it didn’t work. I fought bullies and their mates all through Primary School and early High School. My dad was dead wrong and mostly because he had never had to fight in his life. I beat one bully and his next tougher friend would want to take me on. There were days when I had to fight off several people in one day. I never lost. I gave many blood noses and busted lips. I put out an open challenge to anyone in the school. The Harry Houdini trick where he offered anyone in the audience to punch him in the stomach as hard as they could. I left several peoples wrists in slings with that trick and never let anyone catch me off guard (the way Houdini died when ).
    I would never suggest violence as an option to my kids. Confidence and self belief provide a much better protection to bullying.That is how I broke the cycle. Changing schools helped. That High School was a dysfunctional place.
    In the case of war we are dealing with the next generation of people who have already been traumatized by war and injustice and in this case also the cycle can only be broken by building the confidence and self belief of these people and their families – not by breaking or killing them. That will only drag more people, extended family, or people who sympathize with the injustice of fighting against the major powers, into the conflict and then the next generation also. That is how I see it.
    As Kaye Lee points out with the cartoon; war only benefits the rich who can insulate themselves and their families from the effects of war.
    My Dad would have probably been a more sensible human if his Father had not suffered from elements of PTSD from his ‘service’ in World War 2.
    Don’t take your guns to town son…Leave your guns at home…

    – Johnny Cash. I don’t know why that particularly came to mind apart from the simple anti-violence message. : )

  19. Wally


    My son had learning difficulties at that time in his life and the bullying in this case was much more than being hit. It had reached the stage where it was having a negative impact on his entire life and the system didn’t allow for the perpetrator to be expelled or moved to another school. The home life of the bully was a tragic tale, in the end he was institutionalised because of neglect and was happier than at home.

    “kids here should not be susceptible – we should be able to offer them a much better life than those who trick them into becoming cannon fodder”

    Muslim kids and other migrants I grew up with in Footscray were torn between 2 worlds, at school they did the best they could to fit with the rest of us but at home they were expected to live a life that they had difficulty relating to just so their parents were happy.


    “why don’t we work to minimise the risks”

    I agree but many people believe that turning back the boats and putting people in detention reduces the risk. This bullshit beleif gives the right factions the power to treat people like animals.

  20. Chris the Greatly Dismayed

    Hey there was only one comment when I started writing that….. : /
    I did say I was a slow writer…. 😀

  21. Matters Not

    Where does this French attack go from here? (Of course, in other parts of the world, this outrage is now somewhat normal.) How does Australia respond? More metadata retention? More dollars for ‘security’? More …

    BTW, not sure that generalising from the particular and peculiar experiences of offspring adds much to this discussion, interesting as it maybe.

  22. Kaye Lee

    Tony Abbott has hit the press saying told ya so backed up by that maniac Leyonhjelm who wants everyone to carry guns.

  23. Kaye Lee

    I think the discussion about bullying is valid because it comes back to how we respond.

    Wally, I found when teaching that the kids doing the bullying needed more help than the kids being bullied. That is not to say I in anyway tolerated it. I insisted my classroom be a hassle free zone. I tried to teach victims ways of dealing with bullies by helping them understand why it was happening which always boiled down to the inadequacies, fear, jealousy, ignorance, frustration, abuse of the bully.

  24. Wally

    Matters Not

    We will all suffer to some extent as a result of this and as for meta data retention it was just over a decade ago when we were all more worried about privacy issues than security. The world has changed dramatically since then and certainly not for the better.

    I think the experiences of children and bullying play a very big part in how people are radicalised and without foot soldiers willing to die for the cause terrorist groups have much less impact. The leaders of terrorist groups never seem to be as willing to die for the cause as those they enlist. The same could be said about our leaders who send soldiers off to war, if we could manage to get Tony Abbott and his supporters to face off with the leaders of ISIL the rest of us could get back to enjoying life.

  25. Chris the Greatly Dismayed

    Kaye, It’s very hard to know what is the truth yet but one report claimed that pump action shot guns were used. I wonder how different to the Turkish made Adler shot guns with twelve cartridges that are being imported here they were (I know they are lever-action but reporting on such things is often not accurate). That’s what I thought when I heard that report.
    ” I tried to teach victims ways of dealing with bullies by helping them understand why it was happening which always boiled down to the inadequacies, fear, jealousy, ignorance, frustration, abuse of the bully.”
    That was exactly my point “confidence and self belief” defeats violence.
    I wish I didn’t live quite so ‘within ear-shot’ of a rifle range.They fire off crazy volleys of orgasmic proportions at times. Ruins the peace of my garden and quite surreal after spending time on the computer to go outside to that. Too much immersion….

  26. Matters Not

    Yes KL. Abbott is determined to make a comeback. When he next appears in Parliament (not sure when that will be) he will be presumably ‘packing heat’.

    Go Tony! The newly appointed clown of Australian politics finally take his place in political history. Needless to say the ghost of William (Billy) McMahon can now rest easy.

  27. Kaye Lee

    I never felt under threat from McMahon he was just useless. Abbott has caused untold damage and is looking to cause more with his intemperate remarks.

  28. mars08

    @Chris the Greatly Dismayed… in the hands of a competent, trained shooter, a pump-action shotgun will be a bit faster. I had one for a few years and never really mastered it. That said, I suspect that it makes little difference to the poor person in the line of fire.

  29. mars08

    “All that we have to do is to send two mujahedeen to the furthest point east to raise a piece of cloth on which is written al Qaeda, in order to make generals race there to cause America to suffer human, economic and political losses without their achieving anything of note other than some benefits for their private corporations.”
    ~Osama bin Laden, 2004

    Whenever a nation exaggerates the scale threat posed by terrorism, they play into the terrorists hands.

  30. Kaye Lee

    Whenever a nation engages in the same sort of behaviour as terrorists they diminish themselves. While nations let terrorists dictate the game plan, they will never find a solution. We pretend to abhor violence but it is endemic in our society. Love thine enemy. Build rather than destroy. Help rather than harm. Hope rather than fear. Build respect by giving respect. Encourage tolerance by protecting and celebrating diversity.

    You may say I’m a dreamer but I’m not the only one…..

  31. mars08

    @Kaye Lee…. it’s not a dream, it’s a cure…

    But as with any sickness, first the patient has to accept the diagnosis.

  32. mel

    I would rather live in your world than theirs Kaye Lee… thank you for another excellent article.

  33. mark delmege

    France the UK the US Turkey and the Gulf States have used terrorism to achieve a political ends. Terrorism is policy. These sorts of terrorist attacks are nothing out of the ordinary over the past few years and take place daily or weekly elsewhere – as I have written about ever since coming on here. The West has used fundamentalists to remove nationalist, socialist and countries that will not bow to empire for 100 years and probably longer. These sorts of attacks are blowback. IS and similar have a romantic view of history and their own religion and have been empowered by ‘our’ side for a purpose. Expect more of the same if you allow ‘our’ side to continue with these despicable policies.
    Our media are also partly to blame. They are no longer independent truth tellers but have become a lie machine and our political process is a cesspit of backslapping corruption or worse.

    If we don’t change – they won’t. Who ever they are. But ‘these’ people need to be confronted but our side is not capable and have no moral authority.

  34. mark delmege

    Lets assume they are IS cadre (for a moment – and thats by no means certain)– they are not very smart. Whatever they think they will achieve by suicide attacks will have the reverse outcome. The real criminals are those who empowered them and if the French people were smart they should be criticising their own government for their role in this.
    If you want more background follow Pepe Escobar or Eric Draiser on FB or watch this video as an intro on if how or why.

  35. paul walter

    Interesting try from Mark Delmege.

    I think they know full well that this polarises the masses and it is what they want… reprisals and a sense of us’n them.

  36. bobrafto

    ….they slaughter their own countrymen.

    We do the same here on a daily basis, spouses is the specialty.

  37. Möbius Ecko

    The West has used fundamentalists to remove nationalist, socialist and countries that will not bow to empire for 100 years and probably longer.

    More often than not the other way round mark delmege. The West has removed democratic or quasi-democratic governments who had the majority support of the people and aided in replacing them with dictators.

  38. bobrafto

    You may say I’m a dreamer but I’m not the only one…..

    Unfortunately dreams are all that we can cling to as history throughout the ages to the present times is littered with wars and violence and will only end when we humans expire and most probably from the incurable spread of the cancer of war.

  39. corvus boreus

    Pretty much what bobrafto said.
    The puppet-masters are manipulating a global frenzy of pin-headed dick-god worship fanaticism and political extremism.
    Secular reason is being broadly denounced as the enemy of all.
    It feels like we are all being lined up for another world resource war under banners of primitive ideology.
    Meanwhile, the biosphere continues to quietly fry and die.

    I predict humanity will likely self-extinguish within the next century, largely from the hubris of having shaped god into the image of an angry man with an erection for blood offerings.

  40. mars08


    …the biosphere continues to quietly fry and die.

    I wouldn’t worry too much about the biosphere. Sure humanity and a ton of other species will be gone. But the “biosphere” will shrug it off and keep plodding along.

  41. corvus boreus

    I know that. Life wants to continue to be, and life wants to be different. That’s evolutionary biology.
    From a broader perspective, this is merely the 6th global mass extinction event in our planet’s life-span, and likely to be small fry compared to, for example, the Permian die-off.
    It still hurts like hell to watch it happening, particularly seeing the avoidable become inevitable through sheer blinkered stupidity.

  42. Terry2

    Thinking about bullying brought back a school days memory : a friend in grade seven was constantly picked on by the school bully and his acolytes, evidently because he was gawky. I felt helpless and ashamed that I could do nothing when it was happening.

    His father enrolled him in Judo classes and it must have been some months later when the bully confronted him and he stood his ground, nervous but poised. When the first punch was thrown, he executed a text book defensive move and the bully landed heavily on his rump, humiliated and hurting.

    The balance of power was effectively returned to neutral.

  43. James Fitzgerald

    Kaye, that is such a truthful article. Violence is such an accepted part of our lives and until we boycott every aspect of it, we will never stop any of it. At an individual level, we fantasise about violence, through entertainment, so that the lines of reality blur. We have violence as sport, for entertainment. We applaud violence in sport, that is outside of the rules, (State of Origin Rugby League). We are violent to our families and children. We have killed 70 of our wives / ex-wives / girlfriends / ex-girlfriends in Australia this year. We protect the bullied from bullies instead of convincing the bullies to stop. We punch the piss out of each other outside nightclubs. We build hatred in so many aspects of our lives: from driving our cars, torturing refugees, hating certain religions to teaching our military personnel how to work. We need to drop masculinity. How many fathers see themselves as “protectors” when it is they who are controlling their families with intimidation. As individuals we need to drop all violence from our lives and replace it with cooperation, being gentle, having empathy. We need to stop watching movies, TV, sport and Computer games. We need to stop competing and start helping each other. at all levels of society. We can all make a start and ignore the fact that peace seems to be impossible.
    Thank you for opening this discussion.

  44. mars08

    @cb… The Permian die-off was bound to happen. I think we can blame Lionel Richie, Meg Ryan, Oprah… And, of course, Jon Bon Jovi. What they did was inexcusable.!

  45. mark delmege

    No Walter I will stick with my argument for a while at least. Before the Russians invaded Afghanistan it was a secular socialist state which the US decided it didn’t like – and armed the fundamentalists who morphed into al qaeda and the Taliban. Libya was the most developed wealthiest country in the whole of Africa but the US France and others didn’t want so they bombed it and enabled al qaeda types who destroyed the country and then armed to the max went on to bigger things. Syria was a more or less secular country but the West and others used al qaeda types in an attempt to bring it down and this gave rise to IS. Iraq too over decades was taken out.
    The latest I read on the Russian plane downing was that explosives were not used and that the control system was hacked – that just maybe was beyond IS capabilities – or maybe not.
    Sure the thinking of IS may have been that it will create a greater US and Them than already exists but I still say it will backfire.
    And you know why the Israelis promoted Hamas to help destroy the secular PLO. And the Brotherhood by the British yonks back to kill off nationalism.

  46. donwreford

    I suggest the sanitization of Western thinkers are responsible for the main source of violence today? meaning they are at arms length from greater violence, as example a hundred deaths or so in Paris is a small amount of deaths compared with the manufacturing industry of Western production of armaments sold throughout the world and we note their is often a lack of information on where terrorists acquire arms, whilst the West pontificates on the morality and shocking ideology of terrorism? I am stating the greater source of violence is hidden from the eyes of what the population of our public thinks? part through the media and the propaganda defines as to how we should think about our planet?

  47. mars08

    @mark delmege… Although it’s true that the Russians invaded Afghanistan… It was only after the US started supporting the tribes hostile to the reformist govt in Kabul.

    No doubt you are aware of that point… but others may have missed it.

  48. paul walter

    There is much in what what you say that resonates, Mark D.

    As for the Permian extinction, just recall also, if we hadn’t had the Permian extinction,we wouldnt have had a Triassic extinction, or, probably, a Jurrasic extiction…think about it.

    Also, an interesting qualifier from mars 08 concerning Kabul.and the big game in Afghanistan, the home of freebooting travelling imperialism politics for nearly three thousand years.

  49. mars08

    There were clear warning signs 6 years ago… and even longer for those paying attention…

    Our terrorists
    2 October, 2009

    Now would be a good time to stop repeating these foolish policies. Of course, that’s assuming the ruling class and mainstream media puts any real value on the lives of innocent civilians…

  50. paul walter

    Mars, they do…so long as it doesn’t affect their Christmas bonus.

    evacripps nailed it.. our incomprehension and those conditions that make for such a thriving example of denialism.

    Since ww2, Westerners have been brought up to beleive it is all about themselves and we no more “see” the Other than than the Romans did the prisoners they threw to the lions or plantation owners, slaves.

    Never mind about these murderous chap rebels- we’ll fix those fellows.

  51. mars08

    @paul walter…. errr… hahahaha! You may have noticed that I said “puts any real value on the lives of innocent civilians”

    But now I see that qualifier is up for interpretation.

    See also: “A man who knew the price of everything but the value of nothing.”

  52. paul walter

    Hmmmm…sounds like Rupert Murdoch. Values tend to rise and fall, depending on proximity. We would scream if our folk lived in Aleppo or Falluja and it was our people killed , as we see with Paris.

    But why not milllions of people in Africa, the Mid East and other poorer parts of the globe, if it’s to do with pain and suffering?

    Different “values” at play, as I realised last time I checked interest rates on my rollover. I guess you never get to know what it is like to be poor or displaced or maimed if you live here, you never get to know why others hate westerners.

    But, I suppose, if you’d been beaten up by the secret police, your daughter had had her legs blown off and yourself were forced to recover in a cold dusty camp while your burns healed and you knew it was some Western formation responsible, I can concede you might feel different about us than we do.

  53. Matthew Oborne

    Around 2003 there was a lecture program on radio national on terrorism. It dealt with specifically how the UK dealt with the IRA.

    Soldiers never worked, it just legitimised the IRA’s need to fight the way they did.

    Police and investigators rather than soldiers were a better way to deal with attacks because it sent the message that is was criminal, soldiers got the UK nowhere because it creates a war mentality.

    In that lecture the lecturer proposed that the response to terrorism as it was after 911 would create more terrorists, more attacks and we would slowly be drawn into a larger and larger terrorist effort, exactly what we see now.

    We have to admit our role in creating this situation, address it and admit the allies are no knights in shining armour,
    For control of the middle east we have created this and have to deal with the root causes of why youth can be radicalised, why people living in desperate situations too can see these groups as a way out.

    Our response has been to maintain the propaganda rather than deal with reality.

    Being inclusive and allowing terrorists to be heard so they could find the real issues driving terrorism worked better than shutting them out.

    A war response would make this worse, Treat it as a crime.

    A person with a good future and a promising life ahead of them doesnt strap bombs to themselves.

    They want to understand where these people have gone wrong yet they ignore the role we have played in it.

    Terrorism like this more shows everyone failed.


    Unfortunately it is all too easy to stir up violence. It is much, much harder to avoid it. Violence is wired into our primitive brain, so it is responsive to more direct stimuli. Because it is tied to emotions, it is easy to encourage that response, particularly in those who aren’t really experienced with what real violence looks like. The desire for revenge, for getting rid of muslims, is very clear in social media. The logic jump is easy to push. These terrorists are Muslim, ergo Muslims are terrorists.

    Employing the cortical faculties requires a bit work. Suggesting that violent revenge on moderate Muslims is exactly what the terrorists want (what better recruitment tool is there) just doesn’t compute with those people who are being ruled by their amygdala. And it doesn’t help when you have politicians who know that and use emotions to try and stir the masses.

    If there was one saving grace. At least we don’t have Tony at the wheel just now. I cannot imagine what fear many Australian Muslims are going through at present, but at least we won’t have Tony stoking that particular fire.

    The brain is an incredible piece of kit. How it allows those who work in the arms race to rationalise their work as somehow being for good the world reveals just how hard wired those survival mechanisms are.

    But like climate change, and population growth, this is another test to determine whether modern civilisation has legs, or whether we will fall just like Rome did before us. I bear at least some comfort in the knowledge that the meek (those “most primitive” of the worlds cultures still capable of living off the land), will inherit the world.

  55. mars08

    Matthew Osborne:

    They want to understand where these people have gone wrong yet they ignore the role we have played in it.

    If by “they”, you mean the ruling class… you underestimate them. They know EXACTLY why it happens, but it doesn’t matter. Terror attacks on innocent civlians are part of the deal. Collateral damage. Better yet, it increases the power of the ruling class by making people depend on them for protection. And all the time it’s the bloke on the street who bleeds. Helpless victims on both sides.

    Make no mistake, they only ignore the role we have played in it because they WANT everyone to ignore it. In fact they will dismiss or demonise anyone who even hints at the issue.

  56. Wally

    James Fitzgerald

    You make some very good points,

    “We have killed 70 of our wives / ex-wives / girlfriends / ex-girlfriends in Australia this year.”

    Some people probably bullies have, the majority of our society do not condone domestic violence but this raises the question: If you saw someone belting the crap out of his wife what do you do? Try to talk to the perpetrator, physically restrain him to protect the female victim, just watch the events or walk away and forget what you saw? I doubt that talking is going to make him stop and would probably make you a target so do you get physical or walk away?

    “We protect the bullied from bullies instead of convincing the bullies to stop.”

    When talking no longer works do you use physical force to convince the bullies to stop?

    “We punch the piss out of each other outside nightclubs.”

    Some people punch the piss out of each other, most people despise this behaviour and the so called party drugs are to blame in many instances. We can blame DuPont for that one, using their influence as the largest company in the world to make marijuana illegal has had major ramifications. Unlike alcohol marijuana is a drug that slows people down and makes them happy rather than aggressive. Psychosis is an issue but surely a test could be devised for this.

    “We need to stop watching movies, TV, sport and Computer games.”

    I don’t think TV and computers exist in many countries that have violence issues, some movies take violence to another level and there undesirable but there is a lot of education to be taken in on TV. Violence has existed throughout history if anything having media and sports to occupy our time gives us less time to get into trouble.

    An idol young man will become a disgruntled old man if he lives long enough.

  57. Wally

    Sorry spelling mistake.

    An idle young man will become a disgruntled old man if he lives long enough.

  58. Mercurial

    Just as you can’t blame all people for the behaviour of the few, Wally, so you also cannot blame the actions of the few on the drugs many consume with safety.

  59. Mercurial

    mars08, I was listening to Hollande, and wondered what’s the point of closing the border? He obliged: “to ensure more terrorists don’t enter France, and to ensure the perpetrators of this episode are caught.”

    Really?? More like to be seen to be in control.

  60. Matthew Oborne

    I know Mars, what I was more looking at was how to end it and the UK ended their issue with the IRA by talking with them and treating terror as a police issue.

    You are right the powers that be know how to end this, they just wont let it end.

  61. Mark Needham

    OH, Kaye Lee.
    Wouldn’t it be lovely!


  62. Chris the Greatly Dismayed

    Yep. Mercurial. France has never been able to have closed borders. There are always mountainous bits that people sneak through (or smuggle through).

  63. mars08

    It all part of the illusion of doing something meaningful…

  64. James Fitzgerald

    If I can add two comments;
    It is very, very, obvious from the collection of comments flowing from Kaye’s essay that we all want harmony, peace, cooperation, integrity of leadership, personal safety, national safety and good for all others and us on earth. (We are blessed by our own goodwill).
    It is only by our own commitment to personal peace, (via a very strong abstinence from every level of violence, including corporal punishment and other retribution), that family peace, neighbourhood peace, national peace and international peace can ever be achieved.
    (Please allow alto-comments, in brackets, to be included within the main theme?)

  65. James Fitzgerald

    And…. Mars, Mercury, Wally, Paul, Kaye, Chris, all you others and the Northern Crow, It is not out of our hands. It may seem incredibly enormous at present, to contemplate countering the Neo-Con, war-mongering, fascist, extremist, fundamentalist, driven, destructive, political level of chaos that is affecting so many of us, directly and emotionally. We can all be clever and cease subscribing to their motives by our choices within consumerism. Why does not the “Anonymous” legion counter the western, middle eastern and eastern fascism?

  66. mars08

    @James Fitzgerald

    ummmm… Mars? As in the god of war? Haha!

  67. Kaye Lee

    I object to violence because when it appears to do good, the good is only temporary; the evil it does is permanent.

    Mahatma Gandhi

  68. James Fitzgerald

    mars08, god of war is only an ancient belief system that you have every right to subscribe to. You present, very strongly, as a (deity?) person who favours deep thoughts, debate, creativity and cooperation.
    Kaye, can we not bring Gandhi’s wisdom to the headlines? Imagine: “You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty.” on the front page of the Daily Tele, the Herald-Sun, tomorrow…. It just may work…

  69. mars08

    @James Fitzgerald…. I shall not smite you today. Be thankful…

  70. diannaart

    We can make a fair start by not accepting the corporal punishment of children – while a few still cling to the notion that a quick slap is a good form of discipline; violence will continue to beget violence throughout the social strata of our world.

    While my parents did not ever hit me, they were pretty useless in helping me to learn to handle the (many) bullies at school – I encountered both physical and verbal abuse. There was a time, a mercifully short time of around 6 months, when I would come home and take out my frustration on my much younger sister – I did not use violence but my manipulation of her; I remain ashamed for my regrettable actions to this day.

  71. Chris the Greatly Dismayed

    James Fitzgerald – Yes I very much believe in not supporting the consumerist system as much as I can….I still have never had a drivers license, even……It can make things very tricky and I have been punished economically (and worse) for it. I’m not giving in any time soon though. : )
    I like the neighborly peace idea but I wish people would be more considerate of others and actually communicate. Most people seem barely capable of either. I try not to take anything too seriously. It is rarely worth it. I like to make people laugh if possible…I can always make my kids laugh if no one else.

  72. mark delmege

    Now if you want to attack Turnbull you only have to listen to him on Erdogan. Erdogan who has done more for the terrorist cause than almost anyone – arming and the rest in Syria, pushing hundreds of thousands into Europe and starting a war against his own people aka the Kurds. And was it Shorten who quoted Obama -the man who has dumped billion dollars or more into terrorist pockets in his regime attempt in Syria. These people are all part of the problem.
    Most days I see these sorts of attacks go largely unremarked and Palestinian civilians shot dead in Palestine and most never even make to the MSM. That they are ignored and this one receives so much coverage is a sign of racism embedded deeply in our culture.

  73. Kaye Lee


    I am not looking to attack anyone. I find it hard to feel sympathy for any side in the Middle East. You talk a lot of Palestinians being shot but rarely mention their suicide bombers. It seems to me that the cycle of violence is perpetuated by all sides and playing the blame game is useless in my opinion.

  74. Kaye Lee

    You are very wrong mark. I did NOT blame anyone at all and I do not like having words put in my mouth. All sides in this horror are guilty of using violence. You have decided who you think the villains are. In my opinion, anyone who uses violence is part of the problem.

  75. Mercurial

    Chris, it’s not so much as the borders of France are porous, it’s just I think if there are further attacks planned, those attackers are most likely in France already, perfecting those plans. Closing the borders is an empty gesture.

  76. James Fitzgerald

    Thanks Mars. Cooperation, dignity and empathy work well, indeed. And as Parker has said within Fair Weather: They sicken of the calm, who knew the storm” We best well prepare ourselves for peace so that we actually know what it is when the war ends. We should not lose sight of our compassionate essence.

  77. king1394

    Capitalism loves war – goods are produced, sold and destroyed at great cost, then more goods are needed. Any disaster is great for increasing GST
    Stop the money flow; stop the manufacture and sale of weapons – or just stop the sale of ammunition if you like.

  78. mars08

    Seven years ago, maybe more. Those of us paying attention could see it was going to go wrong… it was inevitable. Even parts if the msm started to raise the alarm. But hardly anyone noticed.

    And here we are again, the Australian public shocked, angry and outraged. So many calling for genocide against Muslims. So many trembling in fear of refugees bringing an Armageddon. An overwhelming victim mentality, manifesting as jingoism, bigotry and hatred.

    How different it could be if lazy, self-absorbed, incurious, clueless, distracted, Chauvinist fools in this country turned off the idiot box and tried to think for themselves.

    Extremist element among Syrian rebels­ a growing worry

    10 September, 2013­­ist-element-among-syrian-rebels-growing-­worry-f8C11115141

  79. Chris the Greatly Dismayed

    Too True Mercurial…about the borders but it made me think of the Basques…they could always cross the borders, other mountain people too. I didn’t mean that it would have any effect in this case. more that it wasn’t possible anyway.

  80. diannaart

    Agree king1394, Capitalism keeps the war machine running – that and an innate human trait of the desire for power, to appear the biggest and the toughest and the most deadly – basic behaviour found in any kindergarten.

  81. Lee

    It will never stop, because the USA will never stop sticking its nose into other nations’ business. Protecting their oil supply is a front for capitalists who want to profit from war.

  82. mars08

    @Lee… Thank you, oh thank you.

    Recently… with the ruling class promotion of Islamophobia there has been far to much emphasis placed on religious aspects of terrorism. It is being treated as a clash of civilisations… a battle of ideologies. No doubt that side of it does exist, but it’s primarily about people wanting to be let in peace, to run their own affairs. We would do well to consider that when we look for the cause of their anger.

  83. mars08

    @Lee… I don’t have a problem with that article other than the comment that “Da’esh… seems to be pretty committed to fighting for its own sake…”

    Da’esh, like the Muslim religion, is not a homogeneous group. There are bound to be various levels of fanaticism within the organisation… there will be new converts to Islam and traditional indigenous members. There will be those who joined for various personal reasons.

    It should be possible to lure some fighters away by following the author’s other suggestions. Rather than give them a cause to die, give them a reason to live.

  84. Chris the Greatly Dismayed

    The influence of climate change and demographics are not unrecognised as a cause of the Arab Spring (that also coincided with high grain prices driven by speculative trading – what was going on there ?) or but that does not explain the people in Western countries or outside the ME being involved.
    That guy(Yonatan Zungerer) seems to want to absolve the West. It is our climate change we are inflicting on the world and it was not unpredicted.
    Claiming that it is nothing to do with petroleum resources doesn’t wash. Taking Iraq and Libya out of production and market influence gives control of the market to others (mostly Saudi Arabia’s Oil War With Russia ) although gas resources in the region are often mentioned as influential in the policies of several countries.
    It is more of ‘The Great Game’ and IS supporters would laugh at this guy (and call him every name under the sun).
    “The destructive legacy of Arab liberals” paints an interesting picture
    From my comment in the other thread “The US and the West have expended any political capital or influence with almost any people in the middle East and North Africa.
    All these people have good reason to be full of hate for democracy, capitalism and the west.
    Our system finds it impossible to understand this. We are perfect and beyond reproach, with our goldfish like memories and tunnel vision.
    It must be ‘them’ the ‘talking heads’ say…..they have no hope….”
    He can have is “hogwash” , which is probably very poor choice of words when discussing Muslims.
    PS. AWww Fawwk….he’s a bloody Gooble engineer…..’Do no hogwash’ – I was guessing a Swiss investment banker/hedge fund guy….he probably does that too.

  85. mars08

    The disappointment of the “Arab Spring” and the collapse of Pan Arab nationalism… Hope extinguished.

  86. corvus boreus

    That guy also makes some very dubious claims.
    eg; “People in the Middle East aren’t systematically any more religious than people are in America.”

    I would say that some Middle-Eastern states having a mandatory state religion and criminal penalties for denial/apostasy would tend to deter definitive secularist behavior amongst the broad citizenry.
    The USA, for all it’s existing theological discrimination, has no such legislative religious impositions.

  87. mars08

    cb… when I read that statement, I took it to mean more devout rather than more inclined to worship.

  88. Lee

    “The influence of climate change and demographics are not unrecognised as a cause of the Arab Spring (that also coincided with high grain prices driven by speculative trading – what was going on there ?) but that does not explain the people in Western countries or outside the ME being involved.”

    The reason they give to the masses is to protect their oil supply in a volatile region.

  89. Lee

    “I would say that some Middle-Eastern states having a mandatory state religion and criminal penalties for denial/apostasy would tend to deter definitive secularist behavior amongst the broad citizenry.”

    A mandatory state religion cannot make people believe or worship behind closed doors.

  90. corvus boreus

    Being, as a citizen, legislatively obliged to adhere to a religion would, for me, definitively constitute ‘systematically religious”.
    Devotion can be habitually instilled through obligatory worship, particularly if required many times daily.
    Such is the nature of indoctrination.

    Being forced to live a fundamental deception, keeping your core beliefs secret to escape social damnation/legal repercussions, would that not hurt your rational mind and living soul, especially over a lifetime?

  91. mars08

    My Catholic mother tried to indoctrinate my for many years. It was a total failure…

  92. corvus boreus

    Your mother did not have the backing of law to enforce your adherence to that branch of ‘faith’, thus you had (as did I) the right to choose your own path without officially sanctioned enforcement forbidding choices.
    Those born into theocracies do not enjoy such freedom.

  93. mars08

    How many theocracies in the Middle East?

  94. corvus boreus

    mars 08,
    Technically, only 1 (Iran).
    ‘Theocracy’ was the wrong term to employ.
    However, other nations in the region have enforcable religious statuary requirements, including, as previously mentioned, serious legal punishments for denial/apostasy of the official faith, including the death penalty.
    To close this somewhat circular discussion, it is, in my view, wrong to claim there is not a strong systematic imposition of religious adherence woven into the fabric of many Middle-eastern societies.

  95. mars08

    So… is “a strong systematic imposition of religious adherence” by some states, a major factor in the creation of ISIS?

  96. corvus boreus

    I would more say ‘significant’ than ‘major’, but I do think that the region’s preponderance of indoctrination in the Islamic branch of monotheism (particularly where it is preached in salafist variants) is a factor in the creation of ISIS/L.
    Such does provide a source of young men with fundamentalist surety in their cause and a craving for the ‘reward of martyrs’.

    In context, however, I would agree that a more major immediate cause of the general antipathy for ‘the west’ which directly feeds the daesh is the fact that western powers are forever cynically tampering in their affairs with detrimental results, destabilising and deposing relatively popular/moderate regimes whilst arming and supporting extremists, despots and tyrants, and often sent men to drop bombs on their lands and people.

    I would feel hate towards people who came to level my house and kill my kin.

  97. mars08

    Unfortunately… being on a commercial tv light entertainment show… Waleed can only get away with addressing one part of the issue. No mention of how ISIS was created and how to prevent it happening again.

  98. Möbius Ecko

    Yes Kaye Lee, Waleed Aly’s speech on TV was good but of course the racists are still doing the very thing ISIL said they wanted them to, that is utter hate and division against Muslims.

    Aly is right. Here we have ISIL telling the world their plan in that they want the West to attack Muslims in the Middle East and for the racists to attack Muslims domestically, so what do the idiots do, follow ISIL’s plan to the letter.

    mars08. Waleed said there was no simple solution but he did give one, and that is to unite as that’s the one thing terrorists groups don’t want to happen.

    Instead we have mostly the right wing idiots espousing the opposite, and that includes governments.

  99. mars08

    So… Waleed, the Muslim, WOULD say that… wouldn’t he?

  100. Lee

    Being forced to live a fundamental deception, keeping your core beliefs secret to escape social damnation/legal repercussions, would that not hurt your rational mind and living soul, especially over a lifetime?”

    Christians managed it in the USSR. Going to church for a few hours a week and pretending to be interested has got to be a whole lot easier than being a woman or girl, forced into an arranged marriage with someone they despise or who is cruel to them.

  101. Wally

    In some countries (India comes to mind) a shortage of woman is blamed for many crimes in particular rape. Can the same excuse/reason combined with sexual inexperience be applied as a reason for Muslims to become suicide bombers? I am certainly not suggesting that a shortage of woman is a legitimate excuse but allowing multiple wives under Islamic law results in a the shortage of woman available for marriage to young men, the only exception would be if they are wealthy or powerful.

    Not having a partner or soul mate of the opposite sex can make a male vulnerable and yearn for what they are denied. The promise of 10 vestal virgins when they arrive as a martyr on Allah’s doorstep must be extremely tempting for someone who has no sexual experience and very limited opportunity to engage with a female. The obvious answer is that someone in this predicament would be better off if they were to engage with an experienced sex partner but people in this predicament are rarely worldly or experienced enough to realise this.

  102. mars08

    Can we consider that Iraq was been in some sort of crisis for over a quarter of a century. Can you imagine what it’s like growing up in such an environment?

  103. jimhaz

    Wonder if we could learn anything from rereading Lord of the Flies.

    .”At an allegorical level, the central theme is the conflicting human impulses toward civilization—living by rules, peacefully and in harmony—and toward the will to power. Themes include the tension between groupthink and individuality, between rational and emotional reactions, and between morality and immorality. How these play out, and how different people feel the influences of these, form a major subtext of Lord of the Flies”

    Here is a Nietzsche quote which describes both Islamic terrorists and the Tony Abbott types (not that I ever fully understand Nietzsche)

    “On the doctrine of the feeling of power. – Benefiting and hurting others are ways of exercising one’s power over them—that is all one wants in such cases! We hurt those to whom we need to make our power perceptible, for pain is a much more sensitive means to that end than pleasure: pain always asks for the cause, while pleasure is inclined to stop with itself and not look back. We benefit and show benevolence toward those who already depend on us in some way (that is, who are used to thinking of us as their causes); we want to increase their power because we thus increase our own, or we want to show them the advantage of being in our power—that way, they will be more satisfied with their situation and more hostile towards and willing to fight against the enemies of our power. Whether in benefiting or hurting others we make sacrifices does not affect the ultimate value of our actions; even if we stake our lives, as martyrs do for their church, it is a sacrifice made for our desire for power or for the preservation of our feeling of power. He who feels ‘I am in possession of the truth’—how many possessions does he not renounce in order to save this feeling!

    What would he not throw overboard in order to stay ‘on top’— that is, above the others who lack ‘the truth’! The state in which we hurt others is certainly seldom as agreeable, in an unadulterated way, as that in which we benefit others; it is a sign that we are still lacking power, or it betrays a frustration in the face of this poverty; it brings new dangers and uncertainties to the power we do possess and clouds our horizon with the prospect of revenge, scorn, punishment, failure. Only to the most irritable and covetous adherents of the feeling of power—to those for whom the sight of those who are already subjected (the objects of benevolence) is a burden and boredom—might it be more pleasurable to imprint the seal of power on the reluctant. It depends on how one is accustomed to spice one’s life; it is a matter of taste whether one prefers the slow or the sudden, the safe or the dangerous and daring increase in power—one always this or that spice according to one’s temperament. An easy prey is something contemptible for proud natures; they take delight only at the sight of unbroken persons who could become their enemies and at the sight of all possessions that are hard to come by; they are often hard towards someone who is suffering, for he is not worthy of their contention and pride—but they are the more obliging toward their equals, against whom it would be honourable to fight and struggle if the occasion should arise. Spurred by the good feeling of this perspective, the members of the knightly caste became accustomed to treating each other with exquisite courtesy. Compassion is the most agreeable feeling for those who have little pride and no prospect of great conquests; for them, easy prey—and that is what those who suffer are—is something enchanting. Compassion is praised as the virtue of prostitutes”

    Violence seems unavoidable where there is little respect for the Law. In the case of Islamists an individuals Will to Power is exaggerated and in some cases such as ISIL completely unchecked. The strength of this self-power feeling overrides social laws that have evolved to control those who harm others. In the west this Will to Power has been repressed in the masses due to a strong belief and history in the application of social laws.

    I really do not think non-violence will get anywhere in the middle east. In any case it is all hypothetical, what has occurred has occurred so a situation of tit for tat violence and minimal rule of law already exists.

    “Ought to be” moral idealisms requiring a different middle eastern history are moot. I can just as easily say “Who knows what would now exist if the US did not take down Hussein and control Al Qaeda in Afghanistan and so on – maybe Israel would have felt forced to nuke some of its aggressors”.

  104. Wally


    From the comfort of my lounge chair in Australia I try to imagine but my thoughts are no more valid than saying to someone who has lost a child that I know how they feel. Unless you have had the same experience you cannot know.

    How I imagine it to be scares the crap out of me.

  105. mars08

    ISIS could not function without a steady stream on new recruits. How can that stream be stopped?

  106. mars08


    … a more major immediate cause of the general antipathy for ‘the west’ which directly feeds the daesh is the fact that western powers are forever cynically tampering in their affairs with detrimental results…

    Detrimental is such an inoffensive word…

    From 6 years ago:

    It’s the Occupation, Stupid

  107. Mark Filby


    Let me be blunt: as long as this planet has “privileged” elites, royalty, bankers,
    criminal politicians, insurance conmen, fraudulent courts and every bent spiv
    who games society, (us), for their “Profits”, fueled by a MONEY/BANKING SCAM
    that has entrapped the entire population of the planet, WE ARE DEAD.
    WE need a Global Non-Profit Bank that SERVES everyone on this planet, bar none.
    WE need a BANK that raises the bottom upwards and limits personal GREED.
    WE need to ARREST the leaders and place THEM in prison for CRIMES AGAINST YOU.
    WE need a BANK that charges NO INTEREST, DOES NOT fund WARS.
    WE need a SOCIETY that can GROW past this FEUDAL RULING BANKING CABAL.
    WE need OUR lives to be OURS, just as GOD gave us ALL for FREE.
    WE need to sack the sATANS destroying OUR HOME.

    I never said anyone would like it. Imagine no financial LIES and FRAUD. IMAGINE A BANK
    THAT REFUSES TO FINANCE ANY WARS EVER. I dream of the monkeys waking up.
    Yes, by your “normal” standards I am INSANE.


    YES, I am mad. Mad at a planet fool of greedy, self centred, emotional lunatics, drugged
    via water and air, eat manufactured crap called food. Drug our kids! Force is NO choice.


    THE WAY IT IS”, must be said like a mindless dolt. Our minds cannot comprehend change!
    WE are stupid idiots living in a penal colony still owned by that lovely Germanic Queen
    who nicked the throne! Hahaha. What a joke!



  108. Matters Not

    Mark Filby, I make it a point to ignore those who SHOUT.

    Grow up. Or seek help. Or do both?

  109. Michael Taylor

    Mark, that was uncalled for.

  110. Matters Not

    Well Mark adds to the hits, I suppose.

    But I suppose it also raises the question, as to the responsibilities one has when one sees ‘mental illness’?

    What to do? Note.


    Probably be recorded via ‘metadata’. Or maybe not.

  111. Michael Taylor

    I missed that bit. His comment has now been deleted. That was a threat that won’t be tolerated.

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