Mumbai

I just checked Facebook & Twitter which I normally never do from work, and *no one* I know is talking about this (though if you go to http://search.twitter.com you can see constant live updates from people who are talking about it, many from people who are there.) Or at least you could when I wrote this, of course once it's not really happening that link will be less interesting.

I don't understand how people can be not upset. In my mind this is a bigger military change in strategy than September 11th. It is more organized, the people who are being killed (both Indian & UK/US) are much more specifically targeted, and they did it when they knew all America would be home watching TV. This is a much more targeted attack.

You could even argue it is a more ethical than a conventional air raid, since they know who they are killing and why. This could be a whole new paradigm for sectarian warfare, which might appeal to organized religious people. The people doing this don't have to be much braver or more intelligent than ordinary soldiers. It's only unusual because it's happening outside of what is conventionally considered a context of war. But I'm sure the fighters are convinced this is a part of a larger war. I am afraid there will be more attacks like this. I hope I'm wrong and this is as fixable as airport security.

I keep waiting to see an intelligent analysis of who might be doing this and why. I assume it has something to do with the "redrawn map of Pakistan" which is some sort of internet rumor allegedly started by an American conservative think tank trying to figure out how to stabilize the Middle East. Obama has said he will take troops out of Iraq & put them in Afghanistan, and allegedly some people are afraid Pakistan would be threatened by being between two states that are relatively organized and friendly with America, although of course most countries in the world do not live next to failed states. For years, India wasn't friendly with America because they sided with Russia because they were afraid of China, but that silliness ended in the last decade.

I'm glad the US is now friends with the world's largest democracy, but unfortunately a lot of people in the world believe every game is zero sum, so for example India can't gain anything without Pakistan losing. Zero-summness is provably wrong -- look at how all the economies in the world grew together for so long, and are now shrinking together. But it's hard to convince some people with reason & evidence -- like for example, American creationists.

This isn't at all to say it must be Pakistan who did it. Perceived threats to Pakistan could be seen as a bad thing to many smaller communities too. India is huge; there could well be domestic groups who are worried. I suppose no one wants to publish an analysis prematurely in fear of making things worse.

I was not going to celebrate Thanksgiving today anyway. I have to go out with the KLI. Will & I had a nice lunch together Monday before I left Dublin & tried to be thankful then.
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