Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Terrorism as a Zero Sum Game

Negotiation has no place in a zero sum game. Here is why.

The basis for real negotiations, excluding manipulation and trickery, is finding the best win-win situation. In a zero sum game, any one player's gain is the other's loss, so there can be no win-win situation.

In a friendly chess game, the scope is defined, so negotiations outside the game make sense. However, in a game with no limit to it's scope, even those topics which seem to have no direct pertinence to the fight, are non-negotiable.

Hence, any party playing a zero-sum game that initiates negotiations of any sort should be suspect.

Terrorist organizations who's sole mission is the elimination of their targets are playing a zero sum game with their targets. This definition excludes terror-supporting countries or organizations that use terrorist methods, but have other goals besides the elimination of their targets.

That is why negotiation or "talks" of any sort with terror organizations should be avoided.

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