…is the title of a thought provoking article by George Monbiot (who characterises himself as an “objector”) For him objecting to war is not about appeasing terrorists, nor does he view the events of 11th September as anything other than “a crime against humanity”, but he does argue strongly that if we forgo justice then the terrorists have already won.
His approach to resolving this situation, if evidence can be assembled that points to Bin Laden is to “cut out the world war and go straight to Nuremburg”. To encourage the Afghani people to drive out the Taliban and Bin Laden so that they can be brought before the courts he advocates massive humanitarian aid to these starving millions to “show the people that, unlike the Taliban, the West is on their side”.
What I found particularly interesting about this article was that far from being the sort of simplistic “all war is wrong” stance that most of the Western governments have accused the “pacifists” of adopting it does not duck the issue of bringing the perpetrators to justice, and it does offer a route that may stabilise the region rather than ferment further strife.
The underlying assumption on which it rests is that the Afghan people resent the Taliban but are both too weak to oppose them and too scared of the West. That is the presumption that needs to be tested over the coming weeks.