A Holy War for Delicious Naan

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If you have a spare six hours, be sure to sit down with Larissa MacFarquhar's never ending, hagiographic profile of Shock Doctrine author Naomi Klein in this week's New Yorker. There is plenty of material to boil the blood, though I particularly liked this bit, when Klein explains how the so-called "Tipton Three" ended up being captured on a battlefield in Afghanistan:

While they were waiting for the interview to start, the interviewer, a young man in a black T-shirt, asked her what she'd been doing lately. She told him that she'd been working on the movie version of "The Shock Doctrine," which was being made by the director of "Road to Guantánamo."

"Did you see 'Road to Guantánamo'?" she asked.

"No. I heard about it, though."

"It's excellent-it's intercut between interviews with the Tipton Three"-three young British men who were held in Guantánamo for two years-"and they're just, like, blokes, you know? The best moment in the film was when one of them suggests going to Afghanistan because they've got massive naans there. That was the reason."

Read that again. These three religious zealots ended up in a warzone a month after the 9/11 attacks because Afghanistan is notorious for its huge naan bread.

Now. Either Klein is the most credulous writer working today or she is willfully distorting the story of the these three bozos (And as one London Times columnist wrote, if their "account is to be believed then these three are either the luckiest or unluckiest men in Britain, and certainly among the stupidest."). I haven't seen the Michael Winterbottom film, and, from what I have read, I would doubtless agree with his argument that the case was poorly handled from the get go, but this doesn't mean that these Keystone Talibianistas are telling the truth. Klein might want to look beyond the Road to Guantanamo film and see that one of the three recently admitted that did he indeed visit a terror training camp, where he trained with weapons. As The Guardian noted after this rather consequential revelation, "None of [this new evidence] justifies or excuses his sub-legal and subhuman treatment in Guantanamo, but it does raise some questions about the portrayal, in some quarters of the media, of the Tipton Three as blameless heroes."

Johan Norberg debunked The Shock Doctrine in reason here.

NEXT: Mandatory Minimums, Maximum Stupidity

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  1. I dunno, what if they’re stoners? I could totally see stoners being like “Hey, man, they’ve got, like huge naans! I mean, yeah, there’s a war, but wouldn’t it be just so cool to see how round those naans are?”

  2. And what if it was garlic naan, not just regular naan? And imagine the size of the tandoori ovens they must have! Fo’serious!

  3. NAANS” IS ALSO PASHTO SLANG FOR THE FEMALE MAMMARY GLAND.

  4. She told him that she’d been working on the movie version of “The Shock Doctrine,” which was being made by the director of “Road to Guant?namo.”

    They already made a movie version of The Shock Doctrine. It’s called Quantum of Solace.

  5. Geez, so she believed they liked the naan. At least she doesn’t believe that letting plutotarchs rule everything will maximize human freedom.

  6. Larissa MacFarquhar’s never ending, hagiographic profile of Shock Doctrine author Naomi Klein

    But why? Why?

  7. The poster at 4:14 isn’t me, but I agree with him.

  8. If the real Lefiti is indistinguishable from the spoofs, then the wavefunction of this blog is symmetric under the exchange of Lefiti and spoofs. I therefore conclude that Lefiti is a boson.

  9. “None of [this new evidence] justifies or excuses his sub-legal and subhuman treatment in Guantanamo, but it does raise some questions about the portrayal, in some quarters of the media, of the Tipton Three as blameless heroes.”

    Libertarians ought to reserve special hate for the people who portrayed these assholes as blameless heroes. There are real issues regarding how to prosecute terror. But pretending that realigous zelot assholes who went to Afghanistan to learn how to kill people are anything but scum just gives more ammunition to the people who want to use the war on terror as a justification to violate people’s rights. Anyone who thinks that these guys are blameless is not a serious person.

  10. I have never written anything as stupid as what has just been submitted under my name.

  11. In any given comments section, there is a superposition of Lefiti and not-Lefiti.

  12. Actually, the real thoreau (i.e. me) loves a good physics joke.

  13. I’m actually a fake physicist. Real physicists are busy doing physics.

  14. Thoreau,

    If that was you, I thought it was pretty funny. But I am a physics jock strap sniffer.

  15. I just bit my own tongue.

  16. I think the spoofs are spoofing themselves?

  17. 24 Hour Naan People —

  18. It wasn’t me. You just sniffed Lefiti’s jock strap.

  19. Why did I put a question mark at the end of a statement?

  20. Because you’re an idiot?

  21. I just followed that link. I didn’t realize Thoreau had a blog and that Thoreau is apparently a border collie. I always have heard they are an intelligent breed.

  22. “film and see that one of the three recently admitted that did he indeed visit a terror training camp”

    libertarians do support the right to bear arms and the right of free association, innocence until proven guilty, huge Naan, not torturing people, etc. that is unless they run against the wrath of Moynihan.

  23. I’m in favor of a Naan in every kitchen.

  24. Cool. Now I’m in superposition. I wonder if this means superpowers soon?

  25. Do libertarians believe in Jesus or some reasonable substitute?

  26. but Jesus believes in Lefiti

  27. I believe in a WHITE Christmas.

  28. That wasn’t me!

  29. Won’t somebody please think of the children!

  30. “libertarians do support the right to bear arms and the right of free association, innocence until proven guilty, huge Naan, not torturing people, etc. that is unless they run against the wrath of Moynihan.”

    Just average law abiding people go to AFghanistan in a middle of a war and visit terrorist training camps for the fun of it? Yes you can bear arms. But you can’t bear arms for the purpose of killing innocent people. Yes you do have free association, but you can’t associate with people for the purpose of killing large numbers of innocent people. No you shouldn’t torture. But even if these guys were tortured that doesn’t mean they aren’t scum.

  31. Superpowers – are you now the Flying Naan?

  32. Naan shall pass.

  33. Naan shall pass.

    That’s a win. Even my impersonators should be able to agree.

  34. These three religious zealots ended up in a warzone a month after the 9/11 attacks because Afghanistan is notorious for its huge naan bread.

    Sounds like big naan sense.

  35. I love that spoofers are too damned stupid or lazy to enter the spoofees e-mail addresses in the comments form.

    Trolls like lefiti don’t submit e-mail addresses. That coupled with the fact that his actual posts are so inane, make it harder to tell who’s the spoofer and who’s the real lefiti.

  36. On any given day, we all have a little lefiti in us.

  37. If the real Lefiti is indistinguishable from the spoofs, then the wavefunction of this blog is symmetric under the exchange of Lefiti and spoofs. I therefore conclude that Lefiti is a boson.

    Or the boson’s mate.

  38. Lefiti lacks the motor skills to handle bo’s’n duties.

  39. The Guardian link only says that one of the guy admitted receiving training. It doesn’t say from whom, or when he received it.

    Right up until the day the US invaded Afghanistan, the Taliban was not our enemy.

    If they received training from Al Qaeda, then yes, they’re terrorists and should be prosecuted as members of a criminal conspiracy.

    But the Taliban was simply an armed force engaged in a conflict to rule Afghanistan. If they travelled to Afghanistan prior to our invasion and trained with the Taliban, I don’t give a rat’s ass. It’s nothing worse than travelling to Spain the 30’s to train with one of the parties to that civil war. And it certainly doesn’t make them enemy combatants. Right up until the day we invaded, no British Muslim would have any reason to believe that the Taliban would imminently be at war with the US or Britain. The act of training with the Taliban would not be the same as declaring war on the US.

    We fought the Taliban because they refused to extradite bin Laden. Not because they were terrorists. That means that Joe Asshole who was a supporter of the Taliban prior to our invasion can’t just be uniformly assumed to be a terrorist, and should not be automatically considered an enemy combatant unless he was captured bearing arms in the field.

  40. Fluffy,

    Someone who served in the SS was an enemy combatant. That fact didn’t make them blameless victims or heroes when the Soviets found them and shot them. Further, it seems very unlikly that a foreigner would go to AFghanistan merely to live and fight with the Taliban. It seems a lot more likly they went there to be trained as terrorists.

  41. “But she’s got huge … tracks of naan”

  42. One other thing Fluffy. The Taliban were in no way equivilent to even the facists in 1930s Spain. They were by far one of the most barbaric regimes of the last 20 years. Really the only thing they didn’t do was exterminate the population like Pot or Mau. But they engaged in every other form of barbarity short of mass murder. Please tell me you think that anyone who went to joing and fight for them is anything but a religous fanatic scumbag.

  43. And Fluffy, there was that small matter of the Taliban harboring and refusing to extradite the people responsible for 9-11. You make it sound like the Taliban were just a typical government and going to join them no different than the French Foreign Legion. That is a lie of the first order.

  44. “Please tell me you think that anyone who went to joing and fight for them is anything but a religous fanatic scumbag.”

    They wouldn’t make my Christmas card list. But thats seperate to how we should go about treating them and their supporters.

  45. “But thats seperate to how we should go about treating them and their supporters.”

    Certainly if these two had ever gotten a hold of you or I, we would have had it a lot worse than they ever had it in GUITMO. They are cold blooded fanatics and are getting to laugh at us while living in freedom. We should have just hung them as soon as we captured them. We wouldn’t have taken any worse a PR hit when we did and they would be dead and are enemies would fear us. Nothing could have been worse than the way we handled it.

  46. …the naany state.

  47. We demand a sacrifice!. . .A naanery!

  48. This thread was funny until Fluffy’s Aserperger’s syndrome showed up and ruined it.

  49. Man we got to get to Afghanistan! The chicks there got these massive naans that jiggle and shake! They’re almost more than one man can handle!

  50. My points are so important that I must post not once, not twice, but thrice in a row in order to share all of my brilliance with you!

  51. Going to a warzone to get naan sounds like something Naomi Klein fans would do.

  52. FREE MUMIA!

  53. I was going to point out that the one thing more annoying than Naomi Klein herself was her acolytes. Have you ever tried to discuss No Logo with a Klein fan in 2007? It becomes painfully obvious that they rarely pick up the business section of a newspaper, let alone understand how a retail outfits operate, let alone the fact that some of her targets like the Gap haven’t been financially healthy for quite some time…

    But to hell with that – I’ll just spam the forum.

  54. Certainly if these two had ever gotten a hold of you or I, we would have had it a lot worse than they ever had it in GUITMO. They are cold blooded fanatics and are getting to laugh at us while living in freedom.

    And this is how one should decide on one’s own ethical standards. By benchmarking against the lowest standard you can find?

  55. +1 Mike Laursen at 7:38 pm

  56. Begin William Shatner impersonation…

    NAAAAAAANNNNNNN!!!!!!

    ending William Shatner impersonation

  57. spoofing non-trolls is fucked up. whoever’s doing it should stop.

  58. All I want for Christmas is for someone to make a movie exposing what a huge fraud Naomi Klein is.

  59. Damn, what a great thread. best one all day in my book. It’s got everything: Naan, boobs, Lefiti spoofing, urkobold, thoreau making fun of himself, and a self referential comment that used the word “jock-sniffing”.

    I can die happy.

  60. -1 for thoreau being a shitbag at 8:38pm

  61. +1 me for being meta
    -1 me because meta is dumb

  62. Naan naan naan naan, hey hey, goodbye.

  63. Didn’t the Beatles sing about naan in “Hey Jude”?

  64. I’ve just finished Norberg’s takedown of The Shock Doctrine. Thomas Frank’s The Wrecking Crew is another work in TSD’s genre (also detrousered on this site); “republican wrecking crew” is now part of the political lexicon, according to Google anyway.

    It’s certainly valuable to have these arguments on hand, if only so we don’t become one of Klein’s cultists ourselves, but it’s a waste of time arguing with a cultist. Klein’s readers aren’t normal people with jobs. They are “agitators in corporations unions, … societies in the towns formed of directors of assignats and trustees for the sale of church lands zoning and eminent-domain, attornies, agents, money-jobbers, speculators, and adventurers, composing an ignoble oligarchy, founded on the destruction of the crown, the church, the nobility, and the people”. We could add to this list of villains the idle rich brats of wealthy men, playing at revolution. And they’ve just about done with destroying the crown, church, and nobility; guess who’s next?

  65. anoh ne…etoh….kore wa naan desu ka?

  66. Kore wa naan desu.

  67. You all support corporate welfare! Admit it! I don’t care that you’ve always protested loudly when the government starts bailing out large corporations! Admit it, you corporatist scum!

  68. ALL LIBERTARIANS ARE FASCISTS.

  69. I believe its possible to simultaneously and rationally believe that

    (1) These numbnuts went to Afghanistan to play terrorist, and their tall tale about the big naan is the weakest alibi ever.

    (2) As (alleged) illegal combatants, they can and should, if captured, be held in some kind of prison facility while their actual status is determined.

    (3) That determination should happen reasonably quickly.

    (4) They should not be tortured, for reasonable values of “torture.”

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