Sunday Night — 10.19.03 — Tariq Ali in discussion with Anthony Arnove & 16Beaver

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Sunday Night — 10.19.03 — Tariq Ali in discussion with Anthony Arnove & 16Beaver
This Monday’s event will take place on Sunday
Night so that we can accommodate a visit from
Tariq Ali, one of the leading voices of reason &
dissent in relation to the War and Occupation
of Iraq and the US’s misguided policies in the
Middle East
1. About this Sunday Night
2. About Tariq Ali
3. About Anthony Arnove
4. About “Bush in Babylon”
5. Links to text
6. Interview with Tariq Ali
7. Review of “Clash of Fundamentalisms” by A. Arnove
1. About this Sunday
When: Sunday — October 19, 2003 7pm
Where: 16 Beaver Street — 4th Floor (NY, NY)
Who: All are invited (seating is limited so arrive early)
What: Tariq Ali with Anthony Arnove
“Why are otherwise intelligent people in Britain and the United States surprised on learning that the occupation is detested by a majority of Iraqi citizens?”
Opening Bush in Babylon with this question, Tariq Ali, one of the most articulate, informed, and passionate English-speaking commentators on the Middle East today, provides in his new book, a thorough, timely and much-needed response. This Sunday night, Tariq will be joining us at 16Beaver to discuss some of the points raised in his book as well as field questions from attendees.
The evening will begin with a discussion between Tariq Ali and Anthony Arnove. Tariq as many of you know is a writer and filmmaker. He has written over a dozen books on world history and politics, five novels and scripts for both stage and screen. He is an editor of the New Left Review and lives in London. Anthony was invited nearly fours years ago by 16Beaver to speak about the sanctions against Iraq. At the time, he had just edited “Iraq Under Siege” an indispensable guide to the horrors of the Sanctions imposed against Iraq in the 90’s. More recently, he has come out with Terrorism and War, a collection of new interviews with Howard Zinn (Seven Stories Press). He is also the editor, with Howard Zinn, of Voices of a People’s History of the United States, forthcoming in 2004.
As a supplement to the evening, we have also posted a chapter from the book, so that those interested in asking some questions, can have an opportunity to consider some of the points Tariq raises. Furthermore, although the book will be out in November, copies of the book will be available for sale for the reduced price of $16.
2. About Tariq Ali
Tariq Ali: A Life of Dissent
Author, speaker, public intellectual, playwright, and filmmaker Tariq Ali has been, above all, a rigorous dissenter, consistently speaking truth to power. From Vietnam to Iraq, he has been an important and sophisticated voice against short-sighted Western foreign policy. Though less known in the US, Ali is highly respected in the UK and the rest of the world.
Born a Muslim in Lahore, then a part of British-ruled India, now in Pakistan, he attended Catholic school and moved to Oxford in the early 1960s when his opposition to the military dictatorship in Pakistan forced him to flee. While studying Politics, Philosophy and Economics at Oxford, he became involved in socialist student organizations and soon emerged as a key figure in what was dubbed the “political underground.” He debated with figures like Henry Kissenger and British Foreign Secretary Michael Stewart, protested effectively against the Vietnam War, led the infamous march on the American Embassy in London in 1968, and edited the revolutionary paper Black Dwarf, where he befriended numerous influential figures such as Stokely Carmichael, Malcolm X, John Lennon, and Yoko Ono.
As the radicalism of the 60s disintegrated, Ali turned to writing and speaking. He founded an independent television production company in the 1980s, and collaborated on plays with Howard Benton and films with Derek Jarman. A constant and prolific writer and speaker, Tariq is also an editor and board member of the New Left Review, a regular contributor to publications such as the Guardian and London Review of Books, and is currently working on an opera about Ayatollah Khomeini.
He has written over a dozen books on history and politics, including the “Islamic Quartet,” four award-winning historical novels that explore the encounter between the Christian West and the world of Islam that have implications for the conflict that continues today. His previous book, The Clash of Fundamentalisms, is a broad analysis of the historical and religious roots of the September 11th attacks, the “war on terror,” and the inexorable collision between rigid Islamic fundamentalism and persistent American aggrandizement.
In 2003, with hopes of diverting the Iraq invasion, Ali helped to organize the February 15th anti-war rally in London, which attracted an audience of over a million. There he delivered the keynote speech, followed by Tim Robbins and Jesse Jackson. He is currently speaking in Australia, Germany, and Brazil on the occupation of Iraq, and launching simultaneous international editions of Bush in Babylon.
3. About Anthony Arnove
Anthony Arnove is the editor of Iraq Under Siege: The Deadly Impact of Sanctions and War (South End Press) and Terrorism and War, a collection of new interviews with Howard Zinn (Seven Stories Press).
He is also the editor, with Howard Zinn, of Voices of a People’s History of the United States, forthcoming in 2004.
An activist based in Brooklyn, he is a member of the International Socialist Organization and the National Writers Union, and writes regularly for ZNet.
His writing has appeared in The Financial Times, In These Times, The Nation, War Times, Mother Jones, Left Business Observer, Monthly Review, Le Nouvel Observateur, International Socialist Review, Z Magazine, and other publications.
Arnove is on the editorial board of the International Socialist Review and is a member of the Iraq Speakers Bureau.
He traveled to Iraq in 2000 and Palestine and Israel in 2001, and has recently toured France and the United Kingdom as an antiwar speaker.
Arnove worked for seven years as an editor and publisher at South End Press and now is a freelance editor and agent, working with Noam Chomsky and Arundhati Roy.
He is a contributor to The Struggle for Palestine and is on the editorial board of Haymarket Books.
Praise for Iraq Under Siege:
“This book gives us a key to understand the New World Order, and
warns about how Iraq’s tragedy may be a model for global bullying and
global impunity in coming times.”
-Eduardo Galeano
“Here is a brilliantly collated body of unrelenting, undeniable
evidence of the horrors that sanctions and war are visiting upon the
people, in particular the children, of Iraq. For ordinary citizens
sanctions are just another kind of dictatorship. Remote-controlled,
seemingly civilized, they actually, literally, squeeze the very
breath from babies’ bodies.”
-Arundhati Roy
4. About “Bush in Babylon”
“Ali’s style is vigorous, his narrative compelling.”
Karen Armstrong
“Ali broadens our horizons, geographically, historically, intellectually and politically … [He] has a sharp mind and wit. His mode of history telling is lyrical and engaging, humane and passionate.”
The Nation
“Tariq Ali is a vital corrective to the simplicities of Orientalism.”
In These Times
The Recolonisation of Iraq
“Why are otherwise intelligent people in Britain and the United States surprised on learning that the occupation is detested by a majority of Iraqi citizens?”
Opening Bush in Babylon with this question, Tariq Ali, one of the most articulate, informed, and passionate English-speaking commentators on the Middle East today, provides in this book a thorough, timely and much-needed response. Quoting from numerous first-hand Iraqi sources, including the region’s most notable poets and intellectuals (with whom he is well-established) the bestselling author of The Clash of Fundamentalisms provides evidence of the breadth of the resistance occurring in Iraq and explodes unconvincing Western media interpretation with fuller explanations based solidly in history.
For one thing the memory, at least the cultural memory, of British imperial occupation is relatively fresh. Tariq Ali recounts the British Mandate which ended in 1920, its effective control afterwards, its reoccupation of Iraq in 1941, and the diversity of resistance that emerged, especially between 1948 and 1958, “the high noon of Arab nationalism”, in chapter three. Particularly interesting is the revelation that close collaboration with the British enabled the Chalabis to emerge as one of the handful of hated families that controlled 56% of the private commercial and industrial capital of Iraq!
It was only in 1958 that Iraq proudly emerged as a republic, following a popular revolt, a united front between nationalists and communists, and a military coup combined. Ali’s first chapter offers the reader a rich sense of the cultural legacy of Iraq’s past. Iraqi self-determination, not servility, momentarily resulted from the felling of the statues of Emir Feisal and the British General Maude, and progress in land and urban reform began. Yet in chapter four Tariq Ali places the beginning of the rise of the Ba’ath Party and the young Saddam Hussein amidst the disappointing factionalism of this government, showing clearly that the tragedy of Iraq was at least in part, self-inflicted. The 1963 Ba’ath coup d’état, encouraged by US intelligence agencies, resulted in the systematic, brutal repression of Iraqi communists through 1968. The survivors, despite their suffering under Saddam, are quoted in Bush in Babylon as confident of the growth of resistance to any current collaboration with the US, especially Chalabi’s.
Western liberal democracies failed throughout to show any significant efforts to help Iraqi’s toward independence or self-determination, prompting many in Iraq to turn to communism or fascism, the latter favored by nationalists and eventually by the Ba’athists. Chapter five explores how Saddam simultaneously fed this disillusion with the West, spouting nationalist rhetoric while secretly fondling the US. Taking the reader through a fascinating, integrated account of the Iran/Iraq war, the disintegration of the Soviet Union, Osama bin Laden’s threats to defeat the unbeliever Saddam Hussein with fedayeen from Saudi Arabia, and the Gulf War, Tariq Ali stresses that far from the propaganda of Bush and Blair, containment of Saddam did not fail the first time around—it was never tried. Meanwhile sanctions afterwards provoked further hatred.
Chapter six switches the focus to the United States and provides an up-to-the-minute account of the administration’s use of the national trauma of 9/11 to create a fight-terror-law-and-order patriotism at home, and an audacious imperial agenda abroad. From the 1997 ‘Project for a New American Century’ to the latest Patriot Act and pressure on Syria and Iran, Ali covers the growing mobilization against the administration’s foreign policy, not amongst client countries or the UN, but amongst citizens in the US and abroad. Eight million marched in February 2003, most of the US was polled as believing itself misled in July, casualties are growing, and possible intervention by India and Pakistan, encouraged by the administration, looks disastrous.
Framing this history at the beginning and end of the book, Tariq Ali argues forcefully that the invasion and occupation of Iraq marks a turning point in world history and a renewal of the two-hundred-year-old war waged by the North against the South. Whatever the final outcome, the assault—and the resistance it has provoked—will shape the politics of the twenty-first century. His introduction spells out the bleak possibilities for Iraq—balkanization, a doomed Vichy-style collaboration, and growing popularity for Ba’athist and other resistance groups as US soldiers bulldoze houses and taunt local populations. Bush in Babylon’s conclusion, examining the occupation of Iraq in the context of empires old and new, argues that neither European-style empire-building of the nineteenth century, nor the examples of US dominance of the Philippines in the twentieth, nor even the Japanese variety of success, is relevant to the current situation.
Bush in Babylon is as well a magnificent cultural history; a heartfelt homage to the great poets of Iraq and the Arab world whose influence remained strong throughout their long periods of exile, and who are united in poetic resistance to the latest catastrophe. It is a must-read for anyone trying to understand the past, present, and future of Iraq and the Middle East.
5. Links to text
Chapter: Empires & Resistance
part 1
part 2
6. Interview with Tariq Ali
How the Bush Used 9/11 to Remap the World
[This interview with Tariq Ali was conducted by Fábio Fernandes of Mão Única, the Brazilian Magazine.]
Question: After the September 11th attack and its consequences in US and in the Middle East, do you believe the world is facing a state of war right now? Why (or why not)?
Tariq Ali: I think a war is going on in Afghanistan. Every week there are reports of casualties. Almost 2000 Afghan civilians have alreeady been killed, usually by ‘accident’. Who mourns for them? Who builds memorials in their honour? Who cares about their families?
Simultaneously there is Sharon’s war against the Palestinian nation, backed by the Bush administration. The American media is more biased than the Israeli press. It treats Israel as the victim. It ignores the fact that Israel provoked the suicie attacks by a systematic policy of assassinating Palestinian leaders. ‘Operation Defensive Shield’ is designed to crush the Palestinian resistance and destroy all hopes of a sovereign and independent Palestinian republic.. Leaving aside the moral abomination that this is and the double standards of the West, let’s ask ourselves whether such actions will lead to a decrease or increase in acts of terrorism? Anyone capable of thinking independently knows the answer to this one.
Question: Along with Noam Chomsky, you are one of the English-language writers that criticizes most fiercely the U.S. government policies, particularly on the subject of security. In your opinion, how does the opposition (by which we mean the Left, not especially in the US but in the First World) view the Bush Administration?
Tariq Ali: I think that the Left, using the word in its broadest sense, is divided. Many intellectuals were panicked into supporting the ‘war on terrorism’. Though a strong minority exists in the United States that opposes the new imperialism. In Europe there is a majority in Germany, Britain and Italy that is opposed to any new war on Iraq and many are now beginning to see that the US utilised 9/11 to re-map the world. So there is an opposition in the First World. In Britain at the moment 170 Members of Parliament (mainly Labour) have signed a public declaration against a war on Iraq.
Of course many of those who shifted allegiances to back Bush’s war in Afghanistan — the belligeratii — are also in favour of a war against Iraq. Their favourite guru is the former Trotskyist Kanaan Makiya — the Anglo-Iraqi writer touted by sycophants as the ‘Alexander Solzhenitsyn of Iraq’ — wants his chums in the US State Department to take over Iraq and rule it.
Question: A few months ago, you went to the Bienal do Livro de Sao Paulo, to talk about the Brazilian edition of your latest book, The Clash of Fundamentalisms . Are you acquainted with how people in Latin American countries is reacting to this not-so-new World Order – especially Brazil, which current government is considered one of the most faithful followers of the neoliberalism?
Tariq Ali: My impression is that most of Latin America is deeply hostile to the New Order. South America has always been treated by the US as a ‘co-prosperity sphere’, ie, shamelessly exploited and under a permanent semi-occupation. So opposition to Washington in this region hardly comes as a surprise. Look at Argentina. A tragic outcome of neo-liberal economics. This country was the laboratary of market fundamentalism. The IMF mullahs followed its every turn. The US Treasury authorised its policies. The result? A total disaster.
This is what the PT in Brazil should be explaining to the people. Cardoso’s policies could lead to a similar disaster in Brazil. I know perfectly well that Lula’s options are restricted, but if he does nothing, the result will be a tragedy. The combination of an economic collapse and mass depoliticisation is the worst possible scenario. So the PT has to implement some radical reforms, especially in relation to health, education and the landless peasants.
Question: In some of the interviews you gave right after September 11th, you said that you didn’t fear the U.S. government, but you feared the fundamentalists. Everyone knows, however, that this current “enemy of the free world” have already worked for the CIA and the Pentagon, and had its religious traits enhanced to attack and destroy. May the fundamentalism be used in both sides of this war, and until which point?
Tariq Ali: I think you must have misread some interview. I have always argued and this is the thesis of my book that the US Empire and its economic-military policies are the mother of all fundamentalisms. They have spawned the groups which they now fight.
Question: What can we expect of the conflicts between Jews and Palestinians in the near future? Are you pessimistic on this subject? That’s why you put in your book that excellent interview with Isaac Deutscher, by the way?
Tariq Ali: I am not optimistic. How can one be when the war-criminal Sharon talks to US Senators about a hundred year war against the Arabs and an urgent need to transplant a million more Jews in Israel. This sonofabitch won’t be around for much longer (even Zionists cannot overcome the laws of biology) but he wants to bequeath a legacy to the coming generations: war, war and more war. But the Palestinians will not give up their struggle for nationhood. Since 1948, all attempts to crush them, to obliterate their memory have failed.
The Oslo Accords created bantustans. The Palestinians rejected them. They will not accept a Palestinian which is an Israeli protectorate. So till the United States forces Israel to accept a two-state solution nothing much will change.
Question: In their book Empire , Antonio Negri and Michael Hardt didn’t consider exactly the US as THE Empire itself, but merely a representation of it. Were they right?
Tariq Ali: EMPIRE is a very stimulating account of globalisation, but it is hopelessly wrong on two central issues. The state has not withered away. Strong states still exist—USA, China, Germany, etc—– but the difference with the past is that there is now only one Empire and this is not the nebulos entity imagined by Cultural Studies, but a real, living organism and it has a name; the United States of America..
Question: Assuming they weren’t right on this point: can we live without the American Empire? Will we live without it someday?
Tariq Ali: Whether we will live without it is unlikely, but I hope our children and their children will. All Empires suffer from an invincibility complex, but when the end comes we see that it was unpredictable and it surprises everyone. In the case of the US it will probably be a combbination of internal and external factors, economic and military.
7. Review of “Clash of Fundamentalisms” by A. Arnove
Islam’s Divided Crescent
A review of
The Clash of Fundamentalisms: Crusades, Jihads and Modernity
by Tariq Ali
[from the July 8, 2002 issue]
On September 23, 2001, midpoint between the horrific events of September 11 and the beginning of the war in Afghanistan, the New York Times ran an intriguing headline. “Forget the Past: It’s a War Unlike Any Other,” it advised, above an article by John Kifner noting that “Air Force bombers are heading toward distant airfields to fight a shadowy foe flitting through the mountains in a deeply hostile land already so poor and so ruined by two decades of war that [it] is virtually bereft of targets.” It was a poor headline for an article that began by noting the long history of conflicts among great powers over control of Central Asia, but it was a message with a significant degree of resonance.
History was often being ignored in the heated discussions of the coming war and the attacks that provoked it, of course, but usually without anyone having to instruct us to forget it. Pundits and politicians alike could draw on a long tradition of keeping the public ill informed about the role of the United States in the world. And once the “war on terrorism” actually started, those who tried to speak about a context for the attacks of September, or of how the history of US intervention in the world had produced rage and frustration that could help fuel such actions, were accused of justifying terrorism.
In The Clash of Fundamentalisms , a riposte to Samuel Huntington’s much-discussed “clash of civilizations” thesis, Pakistani writer and filmmaker Tariq Ali sets the ambitious goal of challenging such organized historical amnesia–“the routine disinformation or no-information that prevails today”–and of speaking forthrightly about many topics that have become unpopular or even heretical in the West, as well as within what he calls the House of Islam. “The virtual outlawing of history by the dominant culture has reduced the process of democracy to farce,” Ali puts it in one chapter, “A short course history of US imperialism.” In such a situation, “everything is either oversimplified or reduced to a wearisome incomprehensibility.”
Whereas Huntington’s “clash of civilizations” thesis posits a cultural conflict between Islamic and Western civilization, and sees religion as “perhaps the central force that motivates and mobilizes people,” Ali argues that economics and politics, especially oil politics, remain central to the friction between Western powers and states in the so-called Islamic world, particularly in the Middle East. He rejects Huntington’s identification of the West with “human rights, equality, liberty, the rule of law, [and] democracy,” and he reminds us of the vast disparities that exist among cultures and nations within the Islamic world itself.
Few people are better disposed than Ali to serve as a guide to the neglected and distorted histories relevant to the conflict in Afghanistan, the broader “war on terrorism” now being fought on numerous fronts by the Bush Administration, and the intimately related conflicts in Pakistan, India and Kashmir, which have recently put the world on a heightened nuclear alert. Ali, a longtime editor of New Left Review and Verso books, is the author of three books on Pakistan and has deep personal and political connections to the region. In The Clash of Fundamentalisms he surveys a range of regional and historical conflicts that remain open chapters, including the creation of Israel and its ongoing occupation of Palestinian lands, the unfinished legacy of Britain’s brutal partition of India in 1947 and the fallout from division of the world by the colonial powers. The book is an outstanding contribution to our understanding of the nightmare of history from which so many people are struggling to awake, and deserves serious engagement and consideration. Ali broadens our horizons, geographically, historically, intellectually and politically.
Despite his obvious hostility to religious modes of thinking–defending against religious orthodoxy in favor of “the freedom to think freely and rationally and [exercise] the freedom of imagination”–Ali has a sophisticated appreciation of the many contradictory movements and ideas that have organized themselves under the banner of Islam. He can debate Islamic doctrine with the most ardent purists while at the same time dispensing with the simplistic (and all too often racist) caricatures of Islam that pass for analysis in the West. In The Clash of Fundamentalisms he takes the reader on a necessarily schematic and selective history of Islam, though one wishes he had provided more signposts for those interested in further study than the scattered and inconsistent references included in this volume.
Ali writes here of his “instinctive” atheism during his upbringing in Lahore, Pakistan, and of being politicized at an early age. His experiences then helped him understand Islam as a political phenomenon, born of the specific historic experiences of Muhammad, who worked on a merchant caravan and traveled widely, “coming into contact with Christians and Jews and Magians and pagans of every stripe.” Ali writes that “Muhammad’s spiritual drive was partially fueled by socio-economic passions, by the desire to strengthen the communal standing of the Arabs and the need to impose a set of common rules,” thus creating an impulse toward the creation of a universal state that remains an important element of Islam’s appeal.
Ali offers a fascinating discussion of the Mu’tazilites, an Islamic sect that attempted to reconcile monotheism with a materialist understanding of the world, including a theory of the atomic composition of matter; some of its members also argued that the Koran was a historical rather than a revealed document. “The poverty of contemporary Islamic thought contrasts with the riches of the ninth and tenth centuries,” Ali argues. But he is by no means backward looking in his own vision. He is particularly scornful of the mythical idealized past valorized by the Wahhabites in Saudi Arabia, the Taliban and other Islamic sects. “What do the Islamists offer?” Ali asks rhetorically: “A route to a past which, mercifully for the people of the seventh century, never existed.”
Ali sees the spread of reactionary impulses within Islam in part as a response to “the defeat of secular, modernist and socialist impulses on a global scale.” Various forms of religious fundamentalism, not only Islamic ones, have partially filled a void created by the failures of parties operating under the banner of secular nationalism and Communism in the Third World. These failures–his examples include Egypt and Syria–were connected to the limits of the nationalist leaderships themselves, especially their lack of democracy and suppression of religious movements by politicians seeking to preserve and extend their own power. But Ali also goes on to argue that “all the other exit routes have been sealed off by the mother of all fundamentalisms: American imperialism.”
Consider, for example, the consequences of the US work to train and arm the Islamic forces in Afghanistan, the mujahedeen, to wage a holy war against the Soviet Union. A decade after the Soviets were expelled, the country “was still awash with factional violence,” while “veterans of the war helped to destabilize Egypt, Algeria, the Philippines, Sudan, Pakistan, Chechnya, Dagestan and Saudi Arabia.” The factional instability in Afghanistan, coupled with Pakistan’s intervention, created the conditions that led to the Taliban’s rise to power.
To discuss the US government’s role in overthrowing the secular nationalist Mossadegh in Iran in 1953 and supporting the brutal Shah for decades; in operating through the intermediary of Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence units to back the mujahedeen in Afghanistan; in repeatedly downplaying serious human rights abuses by US “friends” such as Pakistan under Zia ul-Haq and Benazir Bhutto, whose governments actively sponsored the growth of the Taliban; and in lending support to groups like the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, Sarekat Islam in Indonesia and Jamaat-e-Islami in Pakistan is not merely a case of obsessing about past wrongs. As Ali argues persuasively, the past is indeed prologue.
Ali has a sharp mind and wit. His mode of history telling is lyrical and engaging, humane and passionate. He repeatedly points to the lessons learned by people in the course of struggle, challenging the pervasive view that people can be liberated by those other than themselves, setting out his differences with the advocates of “humanitarian intervention.” Ali writes that Western intellectuals have been far too quick to support US-led military interventions such as the Gulf War and to provide a liberal veneer of respect to wars prosecuted only rhetorically in the name of human rights and democracy but actually motivated by traditional “reasons of state.” Where other people see closed doors in history, he sees roads not taken and paths that remain to be pursued.
Yet Ali spends too little time enumerating what some of those alternate paths might be, especially for readers who are new to the history recounted in The Clash of Fundamentalisms (certainly a significant section of his readership, given the intense interest in Islam, Central Asia, the Middle East and US foreign policy that has been so much in evidence in recent months). In his final chapter, “Letter to a young Muslim,” Ali provides a thoughtful challenge to his correspondent, but I fear he has not done enough to convince his reader to change allegiances. He has more to say about the weakness of Islamism than about any alternative vision of how a more just world might be achieved. What would a compelling agenda look like in an era when, as he notes, “no mainstream political party anywhere in the world even pretends that it wishes to change anything significant”? What might a radical secular program consist of today? How does one effectively mount a challenge to the claim that there is no alternative to American-style capitalism, or that attempts at fundamental change will reproduce the horrors of the Soviet Union?
Indeed, The Clash of Fundamentalisms would have been stronger if Ali had engaged this question more thoroughly. Though he expresses contempt for the bureaucratic and dictatorial regimes that confronted the United States during the cold war, at times he gives the Soviet bloc more credit than it deserves. To suggest that China and the Soviet Union were “striving for a superior social and economic system” is to give those regimes far too much credit, and in essence to maintain some illusion that Stalinist authoritarianism was a real alternative.
Ali at times repeats himself verbatim and gets a few details wrong (such as misdating Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait in 1991, rather than 1990). None of this takes away from the importance of his argument that we are not living in a radically new epoch in history, but in a period with all too much continuity to the one before September 11.