Is There "something admirable" About Murdering People for the "greater good"?


Killing in the name of

Former political prisoner Aung San Suu Kyi's historic victory in Myanmar elections (mentioned in this morning's A.M. Links) is a reminder that man's dogged determination to be free can and eventually will overcome all totalitarians. But this Darragh McManus column, in Ireland's Independent, is a reminder of the opposite sort–that some people in the free world will continue providing intellectual cover for political mass murderers. Writing about Che Guevara, McManus ends his column like this:

Yes, Che was ruthless and fanatical and sometimes murderous. But was he a murderer? No, not in the sense of a serial killer or gangland assassin. He was one of those rare people who are prepared to push past ethical constraints, even their own conscience, and bring about a greater good by doing terrible things.

Whether morally justifiable or not, there is something admirable in that -- pure principle in a world of shabby compromise. Maybe this is why Che remains such an icon, both in image and idea.

Link via the Twitter feed of Reason Contributing Editor Michael C. Moynihan.

Reason.tv on Che's "Killer Chic":