The Monotony of Evil
You cannot stand what I've become,
You much prefer the gentleman I was before.
I was so easy to defeat, I was so easy to control,
I didn't even know there was a war. - Leonard Cohen
Thanks for the suggested cold remedies. I took the raw onion cure (as well as, I must admit, heaps of echinacea, Benylin and Tylenol Ultra), and whatever may have worked or not, my head's cleared. Now, I'm merely nauseous. But that's just a symptom of the times, and there's not much to be done about that.
These are, after all, Simone Weil's times. Evil, wrote the socialist mystic, is monotonous: there is "never anything new, everything about it is equivalent.... It is because of this monotony that quantity plays so great a part." This seems counterintuitive, or perhaps simply wrong, because the world today appears full of often lamentable novelty. But the novelty, evil's artifact, is an illusion.
We'd never seen anything like 9/11. Except we had, and didn't recognize it. We needn't go back to Gladio or the other false flags of suppressed history. Just two summers before, nearly identical mechanisms of terror and control were deployed upon the Russian people to consolidate the transfer of power to Vladimir Putin, who was facing his first election, and to provide the pretext to invade Chechnya.
After four apartment complexes had been demolished and 300 killed, residents of a fifth in the city of Ryazan discovered a huge bomb in their basement and called the local police. Initially, federal authorities claimed terrorists had been thwarted, but when the perpetrators were apprehended shortly thereafter by Ryazan police, and found to be agents of Russia's security service FSB, the story changed: it was now claimed to have been an "exercise," and the sack of explosive hexogen was said to have contained nothing but "sugar." (Disbelief, a documentary regarding the bombings and the revelation of state guilt, may be viewed here. The story of Ryazan begins at approximately the 36 minute mark.) In 2002, an incurious Duma voted against a parliamentary inquiry into the bombing campaign.
Not only by history's precedence, but by current events, 9/11 isn't really that extraordinary.
It's interesting to note how Western pundits who would likely dismiss as nonsense the mere suggestion of a 9/11 conspiracy have no problem at all assessing the Russian apartment bombings as state terror. David Satter, a fellow of the Hoover Institution and the Hudson Institute and former Moscow correspondent for the Financial Times of London, wrote "The Shadow of Ryazan" with funding from the Smith Richardson Foundation, an abbreviated version of which was published by The National Review. It's funny how easily the generalized dismissals of conspiracy, such as how it meets a "psychological need," or that "something so big couldn't be kept a secret," vanish into one's political blind spots. That is, to the opinion makers, conspiracy can be the most reasonable explanation of events, so long as it's over there, and it's something they do. Satter finds the FSB guilty of waging a false-flag terror campaign against the Russian people and pronounces the Putin regime illegitimate, but don't expect him to be called a kook in a tinfoil hat for it.
The monotonous evil behind both the Moscow bombings and 9/11 is the tediously familiar, ceaseless appetite of the powerful for yet more power. Perhaps it's just as misleading to speak of "state terror" as it is to say "Bush Knew," as states are increasingly junior partners in the transnational equation of deep politics. Governments are the social clubs fronting the backrooms where the hard deals go down. As Peter Dale Scott writes in his important paper from last Fall entitled "The Global Drug Meta-Group," many 9/11 theorists create a false dilemma, suggesting the guilty party is either al Qaeda or the Bush administration, whereas elements of both were employed as assets by a deeper power network wired into narcotics and arms trafficking which has sometimes been called the Octopus. "In America few are likely to conceive of the possibility that a force in contact with the U.S. government could be not just an asset, but a force exerting influence on that government." It may be inconceivable to most, but I think it best accounts for the actions of a gangster elite. Though for the most part, the "elected" officials comprise the consiglieri, not the capos. (Why do you think so many of them are lawyers?)
Because evil aways wants more of the same, and there will always be less until there is none, it's easy to lapse into pessimism. Perhaps too easy. And perhaps that's where Weil returns.
Simone de Beauvoir writes of Weil, in Memoirs of a Dutiful Daughter, that "A great famine had broken out in China, and I was told that when she heard the news she had wept: these tears compelled my respect much more than her gifts as a philosopher. I envied her having a heart that could beat right across the world."
Weil died in England in 1943 of tuburculosis, though her death was hastened by her refusal to eat more than the ration allowed her compatriots in occupied France. She wrote, "Human beings are so made that the ones who do the crushing feel nothing; it is the person crushed who feels what is happening. Unless one has placed oneself on the side of the oppressed, to feel with them, one cannot understand."
Evil doesn't do empathy. We had better. Because if our hearts can beat around the world - if our consciousness can be elevated such that we see our isolation to be an illusion and our divisions a deceit of criminals who mean to crush us with them - then maybe the world will yet see some glorious novelty.