Thursday, November 16, 2006

Pirates & Emperors

I was reading this during lunchtime at work, and someone asked what I was reading. I flipped it over to the front, and they said, "Oh, is it about aviation?" I had to fight back the inner monster that wanted to say something about the state of literacy today...but it might have been a left brain/right brain thing - seeing the picture and not reading the words. Anyway, I thought that was pretty amusing. I mean, the subtitle is in very large letters: "International Terrorism in the Real World", as well as Chomsky's name. I guess Chomsky isn't known by absolutely everybody, but still.

Speaking of Chomsky's fame: I cannot think of a more ironic example of Chomsky's Propaganda Model in the fact that he's virtually never on television, and virtually never referred to on television or in writing, except to dismiss him. If the media truly was "liberal", he'd invited on all the time!

Well, about the book itself: I wouldn't say this is Chomsky's best. It appears to have been updated a few times, and chapters tacked on to update it to the post-9/11 era, and includes the terrorism that the U.S. and Israel (and other clients) carried out - if you couldn't guess from the title, it deals mostly with America's state terrorism. There is virtually nothing wrong with the book per se, just that most of this stuff he has discussed elsewhere, and even some of the post-9/11 have shown up in smaller pamphlet form. On the positive side, it serves as a collection of many of the details of America's disregard for law and its hypocrisy when it comes to carrying out terrorism (it's hard to even realize it is terrorism if you live within these borders) while deriding terrorism that is carried out on a much smaller scale (if done by official enemies, and not us or by allies).

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