Friday, 2 May 2008

Full Circle: 3

BRITAIN’S intelligentsia has intensified its embrace of atheism and extended its intellectual sympathy, at least, to anti-American, anti-imperial, terror groups. Antipathetic to the values of the past the intelligentsia has run into the contradiction of trying to empathise with Islamic religious and cultural values they would otherwise eschew. Radical Muslims have been quick to take advantage of this dilemma. Multiculturalism, the separate development of different cultures, has displaced integration in Britain, with disastrous consequences for health, education and the latest in-phrase, social cohesion.

As a former senior race relations officer in Bradford told me: When we adopted multiculturalism in 1984 we thought there would be some reciprocity. There wasn’t. It has been a terrible mistake. Among jihadists, of course, there is no desire for reciprocity with the infidel – non-Muslims - only victory for the forces of Allah. Imam Samudra, one of four Muslims sentenced to death for the 2002 Bali bombings which murdered 202 people and injured hundreds more, told a Sunday Times correspondent in February 2008:-

To Muslim people I would say pardon – but Muslims only. While the unbelievers – they must be entering into hell. Allah says to all unbelievers that this road will bring you to hell…Your country, the United Kingdom, will lose of course because Allah says that only Muslims can win…Tomorrow is Islam.

But radical Muslims are not responsible for impaling British middle-class people on the horns of a dilemma: they have accomplished that themselves; by means of a mixture of short-sighted stupidity and guilt over Britain’s imperial past, they have surrendered ground to an alien religious culture utterly at variance with their own cherished liberal beliefs in a godless universe, abortion, women’s rights and equality for all. The road to ruin goes back to the late Sixties.

The radical chic of West Germany embraced the Red Army Faktion and held the FDR in contempt. In the United States, white middle-class American intellectuals embraced the Black Panthers and turned a deaf ear to the racism implicit in the separate development message preached by Elijah Mohammad and Black Muslim acolytes such as world heavyweight boxing champion Muhammad Ali.

Socialist Workers Party followers in Britain, and other Left-leaning political factions, identified the capitalist state as the source of political oppression and violence. From there it was but a step to pointing the finger of blame at the family as the sickest cell of capitalism’s corporate body politic. It became trendy to look at the family as society’s single most repressive structure which fostered alienation, anomie and all manner of sociopathic disorders. Alleged insanity was interpreted by radical psychiatrists such as R D Laing as a rational response to society’s collective mental breakdown. Laing’s 1961 book The Divided Self seemingly validated the anxieties of Swinging London’s angst-ridden middle class whose answer to the big question of What Am I To Do? was various. Some gave up materialism and took to making geodesic domes and living in the country. Others went into liberal studies in colleges and introduced students to film-makers such as Ken Loach. American hippies trekked out of the cities back to the land. Genuine idealism and self-indulgence combined to curdle the milk of human kindness that had flowed from the earlier liberating years of the Sixties.

The British pride themselves on being reasonably tolerant. People from other parts of the world have found Britain to be a fertile place in which to sow the seeds of their particular beliefs, most noticeably Islam. Over the years the British , whatever they might say about immigration into the United Kingdom, have come to respect people whose beliefs in the extended family, marriage and God are, seemingly, uncorrupted by drugs, alcoholism, divorce and child abuse. Many have colluded in the deception that forced marriage and izzat (family honour) are legitimate expressions of multiculturalism.

Little effort is required to accept radical Islamic claims that institutionalised Western violence – as expressed by the Judaic-Christian invention of capitalism – is chiefly to blame for the current state of international affairs especially in the Middle East. Just as well-to-do Russians in the 19th century sympathised with the anti-establishment aims of nihilists and well-to-do West Germans in the 20th century sympathised with the Robin Hood objectives of Baader-Meinhof, we are witnessing manifestations of similar behaviour among the well-to-do in the West today.

Among the anti-American white middles class of England, for example, there are those who admitted to feeling a frisson of excitement at the sight of the World Trade Centre imploding. The idea that punishment was being visited on mainland America for foreign policy crimes was greater, for these people, than the thought of the suffering inflicted on the people in the two hijacked aircraft, the people in the twin towers and the people in the streets of Manhattan. One writer known to me loudly declared that in the same circumstances he would like to think that he would be a terrorist. These Dostoyevskian Morlocks are still masquerading as concerned humanists. While they may not offer material support to Al Qa’ida they are quick to justify the depredations of the bombers, seeing acts of indiscriminate terror as being the equivalent of political acts.

Car bombings and suicide attacks on civilians are, they imagine, the legitimate voice of the voiceless, the authentic cry of distress rising from the people made wretched by the West. Evidently they see no irony in offering plausible justifications for terrorism by the God-fearing – even though they probably do not believe in God. They like to think of themselves as the true defenders of liberty; but in fact they are the unwitting dupes of the totalitarian enemies of democracy. George Orwell described exactly the same phenomenon in his essay The Lion and the Unicorn.

Fundamentalist Islam has been at war with the West since the 1970s. Black September was one of armed and militant Islam’s early manifestations. 9/11 was proof that Islamic terrorists do not require a political pretext for their actions, as they tell the credulous, because their actions are not political but religious. People forget that 9/11 and the Bali bombing occurred long before President George W Bush and Prime Minister Tony Blair sent American and British forces into Iraq in March 2003.

The present global phenomenon of Islamic terror attacks would not stop even if US and UK-Coalition forces were withdrawn from Iraq and Afghanistan. White liberals would dearly love to see the ineffective peace keepers of the United Nations take over in Baghdad and Kabul. The world saw what UN blue helmets were capable of in Srebrinicia in the summer of 1995. There is no necessary correlation between the West’s foreign policy and Islamic terrorist acts. As for Muslim claims that they are upset by what they see happening to other Muslims, this is merely another argument to deceive the credulous.

In eight years of the Iraq-Iran War between 1980 and 1988, in which more than one million Muslims were killed, there was barely a squeak of protest from Muslims anywhere in Britain, let alone Western Europe. At the end of the war, Iran’s Ayatollah Khomeini, whether by luck or design, hit upon the idea of boosting his waning authority by denouncing Salman Rushdie’s novel The Satanic Verses. In this book Rushdie imagined what might have happened if Satan had hacked into the divine stream of consciousness between the Archangel Gabriel and Muhammad, all those centuries ago in the desert.

Khomeini’s fatwa had the desired effect in the Muslim world: it galvanised them, brought them together in an imagined global brotherhood. And after Khomeini died they simply switched their allegiance to his former enemy Saddam Hussein. Hypocrisy, we see, does not belong exclusively to cynical foreign diplomats in the West. Saddam cemented his popularity among Muslims by firing Scud missiles at Israel in the first Gulf War.

The move to unite Muslims world-wide along ideological lines is a more dangerous variation of pan-Arab nationalism that goes back to the time of Egypt’s President Nasser. Nasser was more than an Egyptian nationalist, he dedicated himself to the annihilation of Israel. Like the Nazis before them, Islamic terrorists are profoundly anti-Israeli, anti-Jewish. They hate America for defending Israel. They like to remind feeble Westerners that whereas we love life, they love death.

When their white liberal apologists suggest a variety of material deprivation as reasonable explanations for Muslims becoming suicide bombers they are, once again, turning culprits into victims. This is like saying the real perpetrators of the Holocaust were Western Europe’s Jews, who failed to be more sympathetic to the social and economic plight of the Weimar Republic.

The West must beware of Islamic blandishments and vigorously challenge the usual accusations of racism and Islamophobia. When Islamicists rhetorically ask why Jews and Catholics do not suffer the same public suspicion it is because Catholics and Jews do not dream of a global theocracy established and maintained by world-wide terrorism.

Culture & Terrorism: 2

We know from 9/11 and the London bombings of July 7, 2005, that not all Islamic bombers are impoverished no-hopers from Palestinian refugee camps.

The people who planned, co-ordinated and carried out those attacks were mostly college or university educated, who had also spent time in terrorist training camps in Pakistan or Afghanistan learning how to murder and maim civilians. Some of them were married with young families. Others were popular in their local community.

Whatever prompted them to step over the line between civilisation and barbarism has been attributed to a range of reasons and causes, from anger at the plight of the Palestinians to opposition to British and American foreign policy in Afghanistan and Iraq. Any case may be argued, but only one thing is certain: this strain of terrorism, of megalomania, masquerading as selfless commitment to an historic cause is not new.

Western writers have been describing its symptoms in one form or another ever since Edmund Burke, Tom Paine and William Wordsworth wrote in their own ways about the ramifications of the French Revolution. In 1861, Ivan Turgenev’s greatest novel, Fathers and Sons, was published in Russia. The two main protagonists in this slim volume are Pavel Petrovich, a landed aristocrat of limited means who enjoys thinking of himself as a liberal, and Yevgeny Bazarov, a young university friend of Pavel Petrovich’s nephew. Bazarov is a doctor who says the cure for society’s social and economic ills is its complete destruction. Bazarov is a nihilist. The older generation reels back in bewilderment as Bazarov casually dimisses as irrelevant their cherished beliefs in art, philosophy, political reform, music and aesthetics. While they throw up their hands in consternation, Bazarov devotes himself to dissecting frogs. The empiricism of rigorous, unemotional scientific inquiry is the only useful tool that modern man has got, he says. But Bazarov is not an unconscionable monster: he is perhaps the last of the Romantic figures in 19th century European literature, a Byronic character unsuited to the ruthless epoch that he predicts as inevitable. Bazarov, impaled on his own human contradictions, dies while trying to save the life of a woman with whom he has fallen in love. What Turgenev shows so brilliantly is the way in which the Russian liberal intelligentsia, mistaking novelty for originality, fastened on to the latest political trend, as though it were a fashion, to make themselves more interesting. The novelist was attacked for being unsympathetic to nihilists.

Fyodor Dostoyevsky goes deeper and further into the psychology of the monomaniac. His novels Crime and Punishment, The Idiot, The Devils or The Possessed and The Brothers Karamazov explore the extremes of delusional behaviour. To take two of them, Crime and Punishment and The Devils: in the first Raskolnikov, an impoverished young student of good but poor family, becomes fixated by Napoleon. He dreams of all the good he could do in the world if only he had the courage, like Napoleon, to ignore his conscience and take a gigantic step over the normal constraints and proprieties of life. The end, he convinces himself, is justified by the means providing that good triumphs over evil. Raskolnikov argues himself into the necessary state of mind and murders his miserly landlady, hitting her on the back of the head with the haft of an axe. Unfortunately he is interrupted by another woman and is obliged to kill her too. Driven demented by his crimes, he ultimately confesses to his crimes, redeemed from damnation by the selfless Christian love of Sonia. She is as poor as Raskolnikov. To feed her family she takes up prostitution; but, unlike Raskolinov, is uncorrupted. Raskolnikov serves as a blueprint for other dangerous characters. One Russian critic’s description of Raskolnikov as “a demon embodied in a humanist” could equally apply to the four Muslims, among them a cricket-lover, who exploded nail bombs on three London underground trains and one double-decker bus in the summer of 2005, killing fifty-six and injuring and maiming seven hundred.

Dostoyevsky’s most sinister terrorist, Nikolai Stavrogin, can be found in The Devils, published in 1871/72. Again, the Russian intelligentsia were outraged by the “harsh depiction of ruthless radicals”. Intellectuals then, as they would be later, were fascinated by young idealists willing to give up life for the sake of the cause of political freedom. The myth of revolution has always been breath-taking to the credulous and the supine. The life-denying force of nihilism was the antecedent to the anti-democratic force of Bolshevism, the Dictatorship of the Proletariat, as preached by Lenin and carried out with unconscionable ruthlessness by Stalin – Machiavelli’s modern political autocrat.

In 1907, two years after Russia’s first revolution and ten years before its decisive one, Joseph Conrad’s novel The Secret Agent introduced the English-speaking public to the idea of terrorist bombing. In this book, though, the plot is thickened by the fact that Mr Verloc, the angel of destruction, is an agent provocateur working for the authorities. To provoke a backlash against London’s anarchists, led by Michaelis, Mr Verloc plans to bomb the Greenwich Observatory. But he sends his half-witted nephew Stevie to do the job. The bomb explodes prematurely as Stevie carries it across London, blowing him to pieces. Winnie Verloc revenges herself for the loss of her brother by killing her husband. She then goes off with Comrade Ossipon, who later deserts her. Michaelis is jailed, but in prison he writes his memoirs and is supported by Lady Mabel, his patroness. Conrad’s fictional bomber, Verloc, appears to anticipate the real Muslim bombers of 2005:-

He had no future. He disdained it. He was a force. His thoughts caressed the images of ruin and destruction. He walked frail, insignificant, shabby, miserable – and terrible in the simplicity of his idea of calling madness and despair to the regeneration of the world. He passed on unsuspected and deadly, like a pest in a street full of men.

In the late 20th century Czech writer Milan Kundera used the Prague Spring of 1968 and the subsequent invasion of what was then Czechoslovakia by Soviet-led Warsaw Pact forces as the focus for his novel The Unbearable Lightness of Being.

Kundera differentiates between patriotism of the heart and political idealism, which is depicted as a kind of mental aberration. The former is embodied in various ways by the three central characters, Tomas, Teresa and Sabina – a doctor, a photographer and an artist. Political idealism is embodied by Franz, a Swiss academic, whom Sabina meets in Geneva. She interrupts his eulogy about marching for freedom by expressing the hope that he is not going to be boring. Franz is carried away by the idea of “the grand march of History”, a disembodied ideal that steps over all objections and obstacles in much the same way that Raskolnikov imagined Napoleon stepping over the lives of men sent to oppose his political ambitions. Kundera, like Turgenev, has a sharp eye for those who are easily duped by what the British philosopher Karl Popper called “historicism”.

In November 1978, the world was horrified to see television pictures beamed in from Guyana in South America which showed the bodies of the followers of American evangelist Jim Jones.

Up to 900 men, women and children had committed suicide en masse in the muddy compounds of Jonestown. There is a recording of Jones speaking to them, encouraging them to drink the Kool Aid juice laced with poison. The forces of oppression were gathering, he said. On the airstrip outside Jonestown five people lay dead from gunshots, among them a US Senator.

Novelist and writer Shiva Naipaul went to Guyana. His subsequent book, Black &White, published in 1981, traced the influence of Jones back to ideas that had germinated in California in the 1960s: Black Power, self actualisation, ecology, direct action against State oppression – the ultimate form of this being Vietnam. These ideas bubbled heatedly in the cauldron that the United States became from President John Kennedy’s murder on Elm Street, Dallas, in 1963, to President Richard Nixon’s historic resignation in 1975. Twelve years of mayhem which had included the assassinations of Martin Luther King Jnr, Senator Robert Kennedy and Malcolm X.

Into the cauldron went many preconceived ideas of race, marriage, family, the raising and education of children – de-schooling was an idea of American educational radicals – patriotism, careers, civil rights, political rights. Lots of rights, few obligations. It all proved too much for poor little rich girl Patty Hearst, an heiress whose ‘gangster period’ of personal development, included a spell with real gangsters, an urban guerrilla group which planned to redistribute wealth by robbing banks.

A crazy time for people driven crazy by the feeling that they had no control over anything; but a cool time for Weathermen, Yippees, the Black Panthers, Elijah Mohammad and his Black Muslims. What was a little street violence in Los Angeles and Chicago compared to America’s corporate terror in Vietnam? The ruins of a dream was what Naipaul found in the ruins of Jonestown.

In Western Europe, Left-leaning radicals eagerly embraced the dream of revolution. Coincidentally, 1978 was the year in which Jillian Becker’s study of the Baader-Meinhof gang, Hitler’s Children, was published.

Calling itself the Red Army Faktion, after a similarly-named Japanese organisation, the gang was the first in West Germany to organise itself into an underground urban guerrilla body. Shortly after this took place in 1970, the gang made world headlines with bank raids and street gun-battles. Later it was to dabble in bombings, both inside and outside the borders of the German Federal Republic.

Similar terrorist groups existed in Italy (the Red Brigade kidnapped and murdered former prime Minister Aldo Moro), the United States, England, Northern Ireland and elsewhere. Most of them grew out of student protest movements in the late 1960s, the most radical of which shared the same ideological aim: the overthrow of capitalism. Capitalism was likened to fascism, imperialism, the exploitation of the worker. Becker explained:-

The chief characteristic of the student movements and the new left everywhere was a morally ambitious identification by affluent rebels with the poor, the victimized, and the socially outcast, and especially with the people of Vietnam, on whose behalf they protested that the United States was waging aggressive war against them…The West German movement had a special antagonism to what it called ‘authoritarianism’. All authority, without distinction, was considered ‘fascist’ by the German rebels.

International links with other groups and with the Palestinians were funded in a variety of ways including donations by West Germany’s middle class intelligentsia, whose economic fortunes had blossomed since the 1950s. They were eager to distance themselves from any association with authoritarianism, which meant fascism. Baader-Meinhof (Andreas Baader was a thief converted to Marxism, Ulrike Meinhof was a well-known magazine journalist married to a rich publisher) represented the ultimate romantic fantasy. Jillian Becker again:-

It (the gang) had the romantic, aesthetic, and even erotic fascination for many people which bandit gangs always had – especially and predictably, though not exclusively, for the young.

Those not so young but old enough to know better were also stimulated vicariously by acts of violence and murder. Jean-Paul Sartre, whose influence on the young and the educators of the young in Europe and America should not be under-estimated, visited Ulrike Meinhof in prison. He also visited the China of Mao’s Cultural Revolution and gave it his stamp of approval – just as he had visited post-Stalinist Russia in 1954 and subsequently wrote an article full of untruths, as he later admitted.

Sartre did not invent the European climate in which terrorism flourished as a romantic alternative to dull bourgeois conformity; but to flatter his reputation as the leading avant-garde thinker of the day, he did much to encourage it. In part, says Paul Johnson in his book Intellectuals, to excuse his lack of real activity, and to bolster his waning reputation as a radical. He rushed about offering his support to all Leftist alternatives and idealogues such as Franz Fanon, the black African, whose 1961 book The Wretched of the Earth showed the way for black African racism to go, says Johnson.

This was an updating of existentialism: self-liberation through murder. It was Sartre who invented the verbal technique (culled from German philosophy) of identifying the existing order as ‘violent’ (e.g. ‘institutionalised violence’) thus justifying killing to overthrow it. He asserted: ‘For me the essential problem is to reject the theory according to which the left ought not to answer violence with violence.’…He thus became the academic godfather to many terrorist movements which began to oppress society from the late 1960s onwards. What he did not foresee, and what a wiser man would have foreseen, was that most of the violence to which he gave philosophical encouragement would be inflicted by blacks not on whites but on other blacks.

The same can be said about every justification of armed and militant Islam. Al Qa’ida’s cadres kill more Muslims, just as the Provisional IRA killed more Irish Catholics than their respective enemies. Sartre’s support of Maoism made him a natural ideological influence for Poll Pot’s Khmer Rouge leadership in Cambodia (renamed, temporarily, Kampuchea). Johnson says the eight leaders of the Khmer Rouge, the ‘Higher Organisation’, had been educated in France where they belong to the Communist Party and had absorbed Sartre’s doctrines of philosophical activism and ‘necessary violence’. These mass murderers were his ideological children.

France, it should be remembered, was the chosen base for the Ayatollah Khomeini. French intellectuals of the Left abased themselves at the feet of what they regarded as a desert prophet, a kind of Islamic Ezekiel or Elijah, come to rid the corrupted land of Iran of the reign of its Shah.

The French Government of Jacques Chirac banned Muslims from wearing the veil; but from 1977 to 1979, following the creation of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Khomeini and his followers were feted. In Britain too, the Shah of Iran was attacked by the Left as a stooge of the United States and British imperialism. The public, liberated by the second Enlightenment of the Swinging Sixties, applauded. Paul Johnson identifies three post-war influences on mass culture in the West:-

Agnosticism or atheism
A fascination with violence

The Evil That Men Do: 1

Christianity teaches two overwhelming truths…that there is a God, of whom men are capable, and that there is a corruption in nature which makes them unworthy. It is of equal importance to men to know each of these points: and it is equally dangerous for men to know God without knowing his own wretchedness as knowing only one of these points leads either to the arrogance of philosophers, who have known God, but not their own wretchedness, or the despair of the atheists, who know their own wretchedness without knowing their Redeemer…

Against Indifference, p155, Pascal’s Reflections

The massacre of children and teachers at the school in Beslan by Chechan separatists in 2004, the triple attack from the air on the United States on September 11, 2001, the bombings in Bali, Madrid and, on July 7, 2005, on London’s underground and bus system, remind us that supposedly God-fearing men are wholly capable of ungodly wickedness.

The idea of the God-fearing committing ungodly acts seems a contradictory proposition, except to those who believe that religion is a curse. In fact there is no contradiction in Pascal’s proposition about the corruption in nature that persuades men they can know God without knowing their own wretchedness. It is one thing to justify mass murder in the name of God; but only a deluded lunatic would justify 9/11 according to the mind of God.

The utterances of the 9/11 terrorists, as re-enacted in the television documentary A Hamburg Cell make perfect if appalling sense. Here were well-educated young men who been convinced that the mind of God commanded them to slaughter as many Jews and Americans as possible. Such an act requires a longing for death and an abiding contempt for life. Intellectually, this is an untenable position if, as a devout man, one believes that life is a gift from God. Contempt for life to the truly Godly is a sin akin to blasphemy, like spitting in the face of God.

Throughout history men have tried to hate life as a philosophical condition for bringing themselves closer to a state of rapture in which they hope to perceive the mind of God.

The idea is that this life is not the whole story, that behind or in front of this world, there is another reality. This world is merely a cave of shadows, silhouettes on firelit walls. This path of hatred is taken by men and women who cannot confront the causes of their deepest fears. They embrace denial and solitude as a way of negating the risk of loneliness should human love prove transitory or illusory.

But to embrace one’s wretchedness without the possibility of redemption, as Pascal suggested, is to put one’s self into a false position, a position of error in which judgements are made from a permanently flawed point of view. Monks embrace asceticism cheerfully. Those who give up worldly things must do so willingly, in good heart and good conscience, otherwise their sacrifice will be vitiated by hatred.

In the Christian tradition the willingness to accept death and martyrdom has always meant laying down one’s life for the love of God or to save another. Martyrdom has never meant taking the lives of men, women and children in a school gymnasium, bus, underground train, hotel or office building.

The true martyr surrenders his life not out of hatred. At the point of death Christ asked God to forgive those who had betrayed, humiliated, scourged and crucified him. The religious terrorist, the ugodly God-fearer, dies in the blood of others: his choice is their fait accompli. And for what? No man knows the measure of the universe, therefore no man knows the mind of God.

Only the intelligent ones would think of presenting murder as martyrdom and cowardice as heroism. Ordinary people without the dubious benefits of higher education tend to have more humility. For all the heartache and heartbreak that life entails they embrace it with a relish that more fastidious natures find common or vulgar.

George Orwell observed in his wartime essay The Lion and the Unicorn that the most notable feature about the English intelligentsia was its severance from the common culture of the country. England is perhaps the only great country whose intellectuals are ashamed of their own nationality.

Great Goodness and great wickedness are alike in one respect: they both require imagination. The Final Solution, as devised in January 1942, and the Islamic bombings of 2001 and 2005 are examples of both wickedness and imagination.

The Nazis believed they would be doing the world a favour by ridding it of ugliness, cupidity and biological error. Auschwitz-Birkenau was the logical outcome of this idea. The Islamic terrorists in the United States and Britain imagined they were doing the will of Allah by murdering Jews and Americans. The only discernible difference between the Nazi and Islamic outlooks is that political power is not a reality for Jihadists.

In his book The Crisis of Islam: Holy War and Unholy Terror, Dr Bernard Lewis says:-
If one may speak of a clergy in a limited sociological sense in the Islamic world, there is no sense at all in which one can speak of a laity. The very notion of something that is separate or even separable from religious authority is totally alien to Islamic thought and practice.

Annihilating Israel and destroying the Great Satan, the United States, are very big ideas requiring enormous amounts of detailed planning and logistical calculation. Destroying the World Trade Centre was breath-taking in conception but wicked nonetheless. The loss of life was not in itself wicked: more people have been obliterated by earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, let alone by acts of warfare or terror. What made the 9/11 attacks wicked was the presumption by the perpetrators that they were carrying out the will of God.

Therefore we should not be surprised when the God-fearing carry out godless atrocities. Their awareness of their own wretchedness has been entirely varnished over by their conviction that everyone not like them is wretched, ungodly and therefore unfit to live. The flaw in nature identified by Pascal comes down to a lack of imaginative sympathy for the human condition, the flaw that Shakespeare has the old maddened King recognise in Act Three of King Lear. It is the inability to imaginatively connect with others that makes men hate themselves, and removes the final obstacle to indiscriminate murder.

Denial of the self in hatred is not the answer: a willingness to embrace the self that yearns to know and love itself through its creator may be.