The Long, Steep Descent of Noam Chomsky

by A. Jay Adler on November 10, 2010
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“The explicit and declared motive of the [Afghanistan] war was to compel the Taliban to turn over to the United States, the people who they accused of having been involved in World Trade Center and Pentagon terrorist acts. The Taliban…they requested evidence…and the Bush administration refused to provide any,” the 81-year-old senior academic made the remarks on Press TV’s program a Simple Question.

via PressTV – Chomsky: US-led Afghan war, criminal.

The descent, of course, has been a very long one, on this level dating back to rationalized denials of the Cambodian Killing Fields. They include, too, Chomsky’s rationalizations in behalf of Slobodan Milosevic and opposition to NATO action against him, toward questioning the reality of the Srebrenica massacre, and accusations that it is the U.S. that is the world’s leading terrorist state and that the U.S. was engaged in genocide in Afghanistan during 2001, all of which, in great filigrees of casuistical argument he later denies. The only development here is the appearance on Iran’s Press TV to defend the Taliban and accuse, in that venue, the U.S. once more of being criminal in its actions in Afghanistan, not the Taliban or Al-Qaeda. He is now fully the laughing stock that Ramsey Clark became.

A very small detail worth relishing is Chomsky’s characterization, elided from the transcript above, that the Taliban request for evidence from the U.S. was “natural.” We are all well aware that the culture of the Taliban is a culture of evidence and the” natural” warrants of reason. What a shock it must have been to their intellectual sensibilities not to be provided with any. How striking that Chomsky still desires to make this argument now, when Al-Qaeda’s role, on multiple levels, in terrorist war against the U.S. is beyond question by all but the fanatic and the delusional.

A mainstay of 9/11 disingenuousness is to continue to speak of response to warlike attack in the terms of judicial evidentiary review. On that point, let us consider that argument over the origination of a Final Solution to the Jewish Question has continued for decades after the Second World War ended, and that a copy of the minutes to the Wannsee conference was not discovered until two years after the end of the war.

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