in the aftermath of last November’s terrorist attacks in Mumbai and the March 3 assault on the Sri Lanka cricket team in Pakistan, it has been decided by the Indian government that they cannot supply security forces for both the national elections and the IPL.

which means that the IPL – one of the fastest growing leagues in world sports – will play its second year outside the country it calls home.

this, in a word, blows.

sport is one of the things that brings the world together, regardless of ethnicity or religion. or it should, anyway. and cricket is one of the three great international sports – the other two being association football and baseball.

i realize that terrorists don’t care about goodwill – international or otherwise – but everyone else should. no terror organization can exist in a vaccuum – they are all supported, in one way or another, by those outside the group. sometimes it’s a government supporting them, sometimes a non-governmental group, and sometimes by the general population.

pretty much the only way to deal with terrorists is to kill them. there are cases where they have been “rehabilitated,” but this is usually happened when public or international opinion has shifted to more closely approximate the terrorists’ political or social ideal.

but how can we deal with those who support them? is it possible that shifting events like the IPL to safer venues can influence those supporters? perhaps. or it may simply encourage them – it depends on their goals. force is not the only tool we in the civilized world can bring to hand. it’s just the easiest. it’s possible that the terrorists’ supporters are working outside the system because the system is broken and needs to be fixed. or they need to be eliminated just like the criminals they enable. either way, that’s who we need to focus on; those who supply aid and comfort – not simply the terrorists. you can swat cockroaches all day long, and you’ll still have a vermin problem if you keep leaving old food out.

the Indian people should not have to watch their league play on television, broadcast from foreign shores. but until the world manages to turn away from violence against the innocent as a political tool, it appears they may have to.

quote of the day:

“The best political weapon is the weapon of terror. Cruelty commands respect. Men may hate us. But, we don’t ask for their love; only for their fear.” – Heinrich Himmler


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