Thursday, February 14, 2008

Common Sense Knows No Boundaries: Neither does Bureaucratic Vindictiveness

This post does not relate directly to the War on Terror. It is, however, a tribute to common sense and individual responsibility.
"The Man Who Saved the World by Doing Nothing"

The remarkable tale of Stanislav Petrov. If you're alive, you probably have Mr. Petrov to thank.

Without his common sense and willingness to think, back in 1983, the Soviet Union might have launched a 'counter-attack' to an American nuclear strike that never happened.

The Soviets had recently shot down Korean Air Flight 007, killing hundreds of people, including an American congressman. Soviet leadership seems to have thought that America would launch a nuclear attack as a result. Psychologists call that sort of thing "projection."

And yes, the account of Stanislav Petrov's good sense, and the price he paid for saving the world, seems to be true.
I contrasted Soviet and American responses in "Six Years Ago, Tomorrow: Remembering 9/11" (September 10, 2007). People who honestly believe that America is an imperialistic, militaristic, warmonger oppressor with no regard for human life might benefit from comparing the fates of Korea Air Flights 007 and 85.

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Note! Although I believe that these websites and blogs are useful resources for understanding the War on Terror, I do not necessarily agree with their opinions. 1 1 Given a recent misunderstanding of the phrase "useful resources," a clarification: I do not limit my reading to resources which support my views, or even to those which appear to be accurate. Reading opinions contrary to what I believed has been very useful at times: sometimes verifying my previous assumptions, sometimes encouraging me to change them.

Even resources which, in my opinion, are simply inaccurate are sometimes useful: these can give valuable insights into why some people or groups believe what they do.

In short, It is my opinion that some of the resources in this blogroll are neither accurate, nor unbiased. I do, however, believe that they are useful in understanding the War on Terror, the many versions of Islam, terrorism, and related topics.