Tuesday, May 22, 2007


From this month's Harper's Index:

Percentage of Pakistanis and Indonesians who say that attacks on civilians are sometimes justified to defend Islam: 8
Percentage of Americans who say that attacks on civilians are sometimes justified: 24

So which ones are the terrorists again?


Well, looking at your numbers, it would appear none of these three countries.

It's interesting that the statistic references three allies, however. Perhaps the terrorists are from the Countries that oppose this alliance opposed to terror...

Posted by Graeme Edgeler : 5/22/2007 08:40:00 PM

Those are hardly equivalent questions.

Posted by Anonymous : 5/22/2007 09:44:00 PM

Well, let's cut a deal: The day I start advocating bombing railway stations in rush hour, torching the studios of C4, placing bounties on the heads of atheists like Richard Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens and your good self, and placing this country under Catholic canon law by force... all to 'defend the Catholic Chruch' well, please call me a 'terrorist'. I'll praise you for your restraint, but I suspect the Police will be laying criminal charges couched in considerably stronger language.

Posted by Craig Ranapia : 5/22/2007 10:35:00 PM

From the post, you're comparing apples with oranges? Did I miss something?

With no information regarding how the statistics were put together, the numbers are also pretty meaningless.

Sure, it's a nice glib comparison indicating that you hate America, but as presented your data doesn't support your case?

My question: why are the people from any country ok with attacks on civilians?

Posted by Anonymous : 5/23/2007 09:53:00 AM

The questions are clearly not equivalent and it would even be a fair position to answer "no" to the former and "yes" to the latter.

For example, most people would probably say "no" to the question "Are attacks on civilians sometimes justified to defend a religious belief such as Christianity from people challenging that belief?"

But many of the same people might say "yes" to a question like "Can attacks on civilians sometimes be justified by a liberal democracy if that liberal democracy is at risk of losing total war to a fascist and racist regime with policies of ethnic cleansing?"

The more surprising thing, I think, is that 76% of Americans appear to believe that attacks on civilians can never be justified ever. I am pleased they, the British and the Russians didn't think that way during the Second World War or they would almost certainly have lost.

Posted by Anonymous : 5/23/2007 10:17:00 AM

I suspect that "to defend Islam" translates as pretty much the same thing as "can attacks on civilians sometimes be justified by [people like us] if at risk of losing total war to a fascist and racist regime with policies of ethnic cleansing?"

Posted by Commie Mutant Traitor : 5/23/2007 11:29:00 AM

Commie Mutant Traitor: Perhaps, but it would mean the "yes" response is very low - you'd expect a much higher percentage to say "yes" if it meant that. I think it probably means something else to those asked, which is why 92% said "no".

Posted by Anonymous : 5/23/2007 03:08:00 PM

I agree with Craig - and by the way who actually is involved in killing the most civilians worldwide.

Espically with killing civilians of your own faith.

By the way that poll must of been done wrong - most other polls done put the figure at closer to 40%.

After all it wasn't NZders blowing up Indonesians in NZ or OZ but Indonesians blowing up NZders and Ossies in 2002.

Posted by Anonymous : 5/23/2007 03:24:00 PM