Martyrdom and Pyrotechnics: Engineering the Human Bomb

Open to the Public
Nador u. 9, Monument Building
Gellner room
Wednesday, March 17, 2004 - 5:00pm
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Wednesday, March 17, 2004 - 5:00pm to 7:00pm

The lecture debated the phenomenon of the suicide bomber, both as a smart weapon of asymmetric warfare and a peculiar type of campaign-driven martyrdom. The main objective was to provide contextualized information about the process of making, the moral justification, and the utterly terrifying impact of this weapon. Its invention and further perfection is conditioned not by strategic research, scientific discoveries and technological advancement, but by the unlimited irrational resources of a culture mobilized by the pursuit of an absolute, nonnegotiable idea and radicalized by religious zeal. Thus, the very fact of the human bomb presents a serious challenge to our scholarly apparatus of understanding and to the rational response to threats. The cultural process involved in this weapons construction could very well defy the validity of any rational explanation. The human bomb is a weapon that the West could never have and therefore could never fully reason, because we follow a categorically different cultural imperative that renders life inviolate. This makes this weapon strike unchallenged.