Monday, November 27, 2006

Pete Townshend on the War on Terror

In an interview for an, I guess, online magazine called "Morphizm," Pete Townshend, of all people, ends up "on the far right" concerning the war on terror. The interviewer can't believe it and authors a HuffPo post entitled "Who are You, Pete?" The answer, as Townshend himself indicates, is that he's a man who won't get fooled again:
Morphizm: Endless Wire , whether it's tackling the Beslan hostage crisis or Mel Gibson's Passion of the Christ, has the feel of millennial violence to it. Are you worried about where we're headed on that count? We can't seem to stop killing each other.

Pete Townshend: Of course I am concerned. But I don't ascribe to any apocalyptic scenarios that will send our young people back to psychotropic drugs and the insane belief that attending the lovely Burning Man Festival will truly realign the planets. We need pragmatism, balance and to accept that there are people out there that hate us.

Morphizm: How does Beslan ring to you now, this long after a global War on Terror that doesn't seem to have an end?

Pete Townshend: How can a ‘War' on terrorism ever end? We have had terrorist bombs in Britain (IRA) since the fifties. It has only stopped recently to be replaced by extremists of another variety. The police in the UK are fantastic at following up tiny details, and have already prevented some horrific bombings. But prepare yourselves.

Morphizm: For what?

Pete Townshend: Do you really want Islam to have access to nuclear warheads they could set off in downtown Minneapolis? I'm sure you don't. But pretty soon they will have that access. That is why ‘we' went into Iraq. We believed -- wrongly it has turned out -- that the torturer Saddam might have nuclear weaponry. I am on the far right on this issue. Sorry.

Morphizm: Why?

Pete Townshend: I'm not a shoot-first-ask-questions-later survivalist by any means, but I grew up in a neighbourhood where every second house was a bombsite -- a little like downtown Baghdad today. I have no heart for war, but I have no heart either to stand quietly waiting for someone to kill everyone in my neighbourhood before I look to protect myself. It is a tricky time for the West. The rules have changed. Don't get fooled again folks. Remember Pearl Harbour.

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