Saturday, October 14, 2006

Poor man's Dust Congress

From a fascinating conversation between Nichole Argo and Omar Amanat in this fall's Bomb:

Argo: Rather than "I'll fight to win," a sort of rational cost-benefit strategy, the logic is moral-emotional: "I'll fight because it is the right thing to do; because what they are doing is wrong; because I cannot live with myself if I accept their actions." ...the data show that most jihadis did not come to the jihad through religion, or through indoctrination. They come through family and friends. The motivation is communal.

Amanat: ...the global fault lines in the "war on terror" do not fall along ideological, economic, or political lines but on emotional perceptions of humiliation of members of a group, especially as perceived and exacerbated through the lens of mediated reality.

On an entirely different note, the cover of Bomb features my new favorite photograph, a Tod Papageorge shot of Central Park in 1969 featuring three dogs sniffing one another's asses in an equilateral triangle of olfactory delight while a woman glares at them in pinched, glum disapproval. The thumbnail shot online does not provide enough resolution for one to fully appreciate the glory of this photo. If you're wondering what to get CC&P for the non-denominational holiday season, here's a hint: a giant framed print of that photo.