Skip to comments.US author( Kurt Vonnegut)lauds suicide bombers
Posted on 11/19/2005 4:24:36 AM PST by Leisler
ONE of the greatest living US writers has praised terrorists as "very brave people" and used drug culture slang to describe the "amazing high" suicide bombers must feel before blowing themselves up.
Kurt Vonnegut, author of the 1969 anti-war classic Slaughterhouse Five, made the provocative remarks during an interview in New York for his new book, Man Without a Country, a collection of writings critical of US President George W. Bush.
Vonnegut, 83, has been a strong opponent of Mr Bush and the US-led war in Iraq, but until now has stopped short of defending terrorism.
But in discussing his views with The Weekend Australian, Vonnegut said it was "sweet and honourable" to die for what you believe in, and rejected the idea that terrorists were motivated by twisted religious beliefs.
"They are dying for their own self-respect," he said. "It's a terrible thing to deprive someone of their self-respect. It's like your culture is nothing, your race is nothing, you're nothing."
Asked if he thought of terrorists as soldiers, Vonnegut, a decorated World War II veteran, said: "I regard them as very brave people, yes."
He equated the actions of suicide bombers with US president Harry Truman's 1945 decision to drop the atomic bomb on Hiroshima.
On the Iraq war, he said: "What George Bush and his gang did not realise was that people fight back."
Vonnegut suggested suicide bombers must feel an "amazing high". He said: "You would know death is going to be painless, so the anticipation - it must be an amazing high."
Vonnegut's comments are sharply at odds with his reputation as a peace activist and his distinguished war service. He served in the US 106th Division and was captured by German forces at the Battle of the Bulge.
Taken to Dresden and held with other POWs in a disused abattoir, Vonnegut witnessed the appalling events of February 13-14, 1945, when 800 RAF Lancaster bombers firebombed the city, killing an estimated 100,000 civilians.
The experience inspired his book Slaughterhouse Five - the title of the novel coming from the barracks he was assigned in the POW camp. The book became an international bestseller and made Vonnegut a luminary of the US literary left.
But since Mr Bush was elected, Vonnegut's criticisms of US policy have become more and more impassioned.
In 2002, he was widely criticised for saying there was too much talk about the 9/11 attacks and not enough about "the crooks on Wall Street and in big corporations", whose conduct had been more destructive.
The following year he wrote that the US was hated around the world "because our corporations have been the principal deliverers and imposers of new technologies and economic schemes that have wrecked the self-respect, the cultures of men, women and children in so many other societies".
But Vonnegut's latest comments are likely to make many people wonder if old age has finally caught up with a grand old man of American let
Stupid liberals...I'm laughing now (coz I believe in God having the innocent souls in reserve in heaven)... it's so pathetic...someone end their identity agony.
We've had this idiot lauded here in Indiana, since he's an Indiana native. I guess I never knew why he was "one of the greatest living writers", but now I know. He's just a liberal leftist USA hater. That's why the MSM loves this jerk.
Old decrepit fool. Who reads his meanderings of a sick mind?
A book is crying out to be written on this subject, not just about KV, but about the whole phenomenon. It has to be heavily documented and clearly presented, with a title somethign like:
When Old Leftists Go Insane
Sounds like Mr. Vonnegut has some issues of self-loathing, doesn't it?
Vonnegut is a great writer but he's also mentally ill. His opinions aren't worthy of a great deal of attention.
So I guess blowing up innocent men, women, and children really doesn't matter then, as long as you believe in it.
Everyone reaches an age at which they need to shut up. Murtha and Vonnegut are past that point, so the media need to stop paying attention to them.
Prior to WW II US liberals supported and lauded fasists in Germany: Notably Joseph Kennedy and Charles Lindburg among others. It is the same with Vonnegut. He doesnt know whether is rectum is bored or punched, and has lived in the plots and sub plots of his own novels too long, to comprehend a self evident truth: The terrorists are fascists and need to be prevented from gaining power in any nation.
there's no doubt he was a great writer who now has senility issues. Even so, I find these comments -- presuming they were not taken out of context -- extraordinary.
Ever try to read one of his gawdawful books? I tried a few times and couldn't get past the 10th page
It seems as though many "great writers" seem to border on insanity. It must be something in the brain of the artistist types.
When Old Leftists Go Insane
"Ever try to read one of his gawdawful books? I tried a few times and couldn't get past the 10th page"
No, I've never tried reading one of his books. I don't read fiction. I only read non-fiction stuff such as history, etc.
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