Kids, don't do this at school!

Peter Schweizer cites a new white paper on public diplomacy by Michael Waller (Walter and Leonore Annenberg chair in International Communication at The Institute of World Politics) which concludes that ridicule can be a potent weapon against terrorism:

"Ridicule raises morale at home. Ridicule strips the enemy/adversary of his mystique and prestige. Ridicule erodes the enemy's claim to justice. Ridicule eliminates the enemy's image of invincibility. Directed properly at an enemy, ridicule can be a fate worse than death," writes Waller.

History teaches that ridicule weakens the moral and political capital of our enemies. Ronald Reagan employed it with great effect during the Cold War. We all remember the "evil empire" speech, but what about the jokes? Two guys were standing in line at the vodka store. They were there for half an hour, then an hour, then an hour and a half. "I'm sick of this," one finally said. "I'm going over to the Kremlin to shoot (Mikhail) Gorbachev." The man left and returned about an hour later. "Well, did you shoot him?" "Heck no," he responded. "The line up there is a lot longer than this one."

Schweizer advises mocking the terrorists and highlighting their ridiculous failures.

I agree.

Of course, whether it's a weapon or not, mocking terrorists might not be considered appropriate conduct at airports.

Or at certain colleges. Even using the word "terrorist" can cause trouble. (A problem I tried to address by proposing alternatives.....)

But no matter how careful we are, it is inevitable that sometimes, someone will be unhappy, or some group might be offended.

Regrettable as it is, the hard reality is that in war sometimes feelings get hurt.

posted by Eric on 03.23.06 at 10:34 AM










Comments

We need to spread a meme of jihadis as limp-dick pansies who need to repress women because they fear them.

I think Dr. Sanity has a number of posts on the pathology of the IslamoWhacko's and their need to oppress others. We need to wear tee-shirts and build websites ridiculing limp-dick jihadi.

we need to make "limp-dick jihadi" (or somesuch) as common a reference as grasping jew, swaggering cowboy, crooked politician or lying journalist. I can't think of the myriad other cultural references alluding to alleged proclivities of certain identity groups.

How 'bout some other ideas?

Anonymous   ·  March 31, 2006 2:10 PM

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