Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Mumbai terrorist attacks

As usual the rolling news coverage is a mixed bag, especially the hybrid form that results with US and UK news channels often picking up coverage from their Indian equivalents. So you get strange TV scenes like cricket updates on the screen crawl underneath the images of hotels on fire. While the news outlets try to put a clearer picture on things, it's really worth taking a look at this article from the Guardian in August by Pankaj Mishra. It captures the wishful thinking and delusions that feature prominently when one of these attacks hits the news.

UPDATE: Consider this opinion from National Review's Cliff May --

Terrorists like these would be thrilled to pull off a similar attack in the U.S. Aggressive surveillance and other tough policies will be necessary to prevent them.

The Fox News analysts are expressing a similar sentiment -- that America is at risk from madmen with guns opening fire in crowded places. The sort of thing that wouldn't happen otherwise? The sort of thing that a tough policy like, say, gun control might prevent?

FINAL UPDATE: Consistent with our initial theme above, note that the focus of PM Manmohan Singh's address today was on blaming external forces for the attack -- before the situation is even resolved, let alone investigated.

ONE MORE THING [2 DECEMBER]: Very interesting opinion piece by the aforementioned Pankaj Mishra in today's New York Times.

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