Good for us

In late April, the world’s foremost intellectual addressed a group of future US soldiers:

The U.S. Military Academy at West Point was host last night to one of the world’s foremost critics of American foreign policy.

Noam Chomsky, the Institute Professor Emeritus of Linguistics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, spoke at the academy as part of its Distinguished Lecture Series.

More than 500 people attended the lecture, most of them cadets who could someday serve in the Iraq war.

Last night, they heard the gray-haired scholar explain that, in his view, that the war in Iraq is unjust.

Chomsky, who spoke on the issue in response to a question from a cadet, said that while the war could be called preventive, it was still an act of aggression by the United States that most people in the world didn’t support.

He added that Iran might legitimately have grounds for its own preventive war.

“If preventative war is legitimate under these circumstances, it’s legitimate for everybody,” he said.

Chomsky raises an important point. Current Western “logic” dictates the notion of pre-emptive war as legitimate and acceptable. What if Iran, North Korea, Syria, and a host of other nations decided similarly? Washington, London and Canberra would never accept this, of course, refusing to see the profound hypocrisy in their position; Western exceptionalism is notorious throughout the developing world.