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After bin Laden, A Greater Enemy Remains

Article by David D’Amato.
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However plain it may seem, it’s worth remembering the fact that opposing — every now and then — someone or something that actually is worth opposing is no test for what we ought to support. While it’s clear that the indiscriminate murder advocated by people like Osama bin Laden is an affront to morality, there’s nothing about that fact that contradicts the causal link between United States imperialism and terrorism.

In the old banality, “two wrongs don’t make a right,” and none of this should be taken as an apology for terrorism. But there can be no doubt about the cause-and-effect relationship at issue, about the fact that consistent opposition to terrorism necessarily entails opposition to United States military exploits. The elimination of bin Laden is as good an occasion as any other to draw attention to the worldwide campaign of terrorism being carried out every day by the United States.

If bin Laden was an enemy of humanity and civil society, an agent of senseless death in the world, then the United States government is an enemy many orders of magnitude more dangerous. With its military bases scattered across the globe and its wars victimizing thousands of innocents each day, the attacks of terrorists are retaliations against the United States.

The question of whether such attacks are morally justifiably has nothing at all to do with recognition of the relationship between American Empire and the blowback it provokes. Since we object to the initiation of violence against non-aggressors, market anarchists are of course opposed to terrorism, to the arbitrary disregard of human life. What that means, though, is that we likewise stand against the foremost agency of terrorism in the world, the state — and particularly the hegemonic power of the empire that has spread across the world.

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