All The More Reason

The Galloway Principle
June 1, 2006, 3:12 pm
Filed under: Iraq

As feuds go, the one between Christopher Hitchens and George Galloway is pretty good value for money. The latest salvo in the exhange has come from the Hitch, as a response to Galloway's claim that it would be morally justifiable for a suicide bomber to assassinate Tony Blair.

Leaving the legal rights and wrongs of what Galloway said to one side, his comments smack of a particularly acute form of moral idiocy. To describe something as 'justifiable' is qualitatively different from labelling it, say, 'excusable'. Whereas the latter implies that the action is morally permissible but nonetheless blameworthy, the former expresses approbation of the activity itself. If something is morally justifiable it is morally correct.

Taking Galloway's words at face value, it is difficult to surmise how one could morally justify the murder of the Prime Minister. One possible way of doing so, I suppose, would be to resort to an argument based on self-defence:

X killing Y would prevent Y from doing Z, where Zis an imminent, unjustfiable threat to X.

It's the old parlour game of 'going back in time to kill Hitler'. If you could, would you? I shall leave the answer, and any moral equivalence, to your own conscience. Galloway isn't talking about going back in time to kill Tony Blair though. He is advocating his assassination in the here-and-now.

The pseudo-utilitarian argument that murdering Tony Blair or George Bush would serve 'a greater good' is, by Galloway's own admission, a nonsense. He describes the hypothetical murder as 'counter productive', as it would, he says, create a 'backlash' (strange that).

When one scratches the surface, we see that George Galloway is advocating murder as an act of vengeance. For a Stalinist psychopath, I suppose this would be par for the course. Totalitarian regimes have often elevated murder-as-revenge to the level of the morally justifiable. Galloway's pronouncements are yet another example of the reactionary left's moral confusion. We see it in their support for the 'insurgency' and their apologies for suicide attacks on civilians in Israel and elsewhere.

Just a mischievous thought though. If revenge for a harm inflicted justifies murder, I would be interested to see how relatives of the children who died as a result of the misappropriation of Oil for Food money might seek to apply The Galloway Principle in practice.

Michael P


3 Comments so far
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Another great post over at the Heart of bitterness regarding George.

Comment by One Sorry Dude

“Another great post over at the Heart of bitterness regarding George”

No there isn’t, unless the great one has been replaced by a piss poor one since you last looked.

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