Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The Specter of Jihad

“An army helicopter swooped low over us, tossing aside a women’s headscarves and whipping up lines of washing. Six policemen darted into the corner building and worked their way up through the flats. They emerged on the roof and advanced along it, guns drawn, receding down the block until they looked like ants on a tabletop. The explosion came not from the roof, but the avenue, a few yards from the chief of police and fifty feet from me. There was the same metallic bang, a blue flash, a billow of smoke and screams”.

- John Thorne

Calling all Cybernauts…

The world we live in today seems a little darker and a little scarier than it did yesterday. Seemingly over night our planet's socio-economic landscape has been re-arranged into a nightmarish mix of archaic tribalism and multi-nationalism. A "Jihad" or holy war has been declared against capitalism in general and the U.S. in particular. A “Crusade” of western interests has descended upon the Islamic world, particularly Iraq and Afghanistan. Terrorists… Crusaders… Fanatics… Infidels…

Terrorism and covert operations have replaced diplomacy as a political first option. Even as "terrorist cells" get their footing around the world, traditional global economic mechanisms are breaking apart. We now find ourselves living in a post spy-vs-spy world. A murky, slightly sinister haze obscures a clear view of our near future, making prediction difficult and more than a little fuzzy. Our traditional sources will be helpful, but perhaps are not as accurate as they once were. Just because Fox News, or for that matter MSNBC says it's so doesn't make it really so.

The question of sensational reporting for the sake of television ratings aside… once the practice of “embedding” network news correspondents into military units became a common occurrence… their impartiality has come into question. It is not necessarily a question of conscious biasness on their part. It is more a question of objectivity. It is completely understandable that a war correspondent would become close to the military outfit they were assigned to and begin to identify with said unit. At that point, it would be impossible to report events as they occurred without prejudice.

When the Scottish government released convicted Libyan intelligence agent Abdel Baset Al-Megrahi from prison, highly charged emotions attached to the tragedy of Pan Am flight 103 resurfaced dramatically in the hearts and minds of the “western world”. The speculation of Iranian nuclear proliferation, real or imagined, has many governments, both eastern and western, eyeing the middle-east with jittery anticipation. The prolonged and continued occupation of Baghdad, ancient capitol of the land said to be the cradle of civilization, can only be considered an invasion of infidel crusaders by its population.

The beliefs expressed in the above paragraph are also examples of prejudice… understandable… but prejudice none the less. In times of war, the ability to access unbiased data is critical in formulating valid understanding of any given situation. It has never been so vital that our information stream flow unimpeded.

So where does that leave us in these “world infotainment wars”? Where can we obtain accurate, unbiased intelligence on global events? What sources can we rely on to provide us with the truthful, compassionate information we so desperately need in this holy-jihad-crusade world we find ourselves living in?

Having spent years exploring and participating in this vast working model of global consciousness commonly known as the internet, the staff at Tek-Gnostics has great respect and faith in all of you intrepid cybernauts on the other end of this network. Please leave your thoughts, hyperlinks and/or resource suggestions on the comments section of this blog post. Your insights will be very appreciated by the Tek-Gnostics staff… and will be incredibly useful to our community.

Blessed be thy input…