OPINION

Bombing to rebuild?

There are many reasons for one to be «shocked and awed» following the outbreak of a war. Just the nightmarish ease with which the annihilation of human lives is planned out on paper is enough to make one question whether man is really the apex of creation, the only rational being. The «postmodern» wars – in Serbia, Afghanistan and now in Iraq – provoke shock for yet another reason: the monstrous indifference and savage greed with which the «reconstruction» of the countries being bombed is planned. It is as if the razing of these countries is nothing more than the collapse of an empty building during an earthquake – with no dismembered bodies, destroyed souls, children who age before their time, drugged memories and pillaged futures. It is as if cement, sheet metal and glass are enough to recreate the world. You destroy and then you «rebuild» – not to offset your crimes, of course, but because you have to repay the «sponsors» of your war, the companies which have financially backed your bid to become senator or parliamentary deputy and then minister or even president. Indeed, it is former ministers and the like who usually direct such companies, whose major shareholders tend to be high-ranking government officials. Here, the term «corruption» is as useless against this stark reality as a rifle is against a cruise missile or a depleted uranium bomb…