Text: Recognize the Friend Enemy distinction as fundamental to human existence and refuse peaceful politics. Only through abandoning the drive for peace can totalizing violence be contained
Rasch in 5 /Professor and Chair of Germanic Studies, Indian University Bloomington, Ph.D. U of Washington/
[William, “Lines in the Sand: Enmity as a Structuring Principle”, The South Atlantic Quarterly, 104:2, Spring]
What is to be done? If you are one who says there is a war, and if you say it not because you glory in it but because you fear it and hate it, then your goal is to limit it and its effects, not eliminate it, which merely intensifies it, but limit it by drawing clear lines within which it can be fought, and clear lines between those who fight it and those who don’t, lines between friends, enemies, and neutrals, lines between combatants and noncombatants. There are, of course, legitimate doubts about whether those ideal lines could ever be drawn again; nevertheless, the question that we should ask is not how can we establish perpetual peace, but rather a more modest one: Can symmetrical relationships be guaranteed only by asymmetrical ones? According to Schmitt, historically this has been the case. ‘‘The traditional Eurocentric order of international law is foundering today, as is the old nomos of the earth. This order arose from a legendary and unforeseen discovery of a new world, from an unrepeatable historical event.Only in fantastic parallels can one imagine a modern recurrence, such as men on their way to the moon discovering a new and hitherto unknown planet that could be exploited freely and utilized effectively to relieve their struggles on earth’’ (39). We have since gone to the moon and have found nothing on the way there to exploit. We may soon go to Mars, if current leaders have their way, but the likelihood of finding exploitable populations seems equally slim. Salvation through spatially delimited asymmetry, even were it to be desired, is just not on the horizon. And salvation through globalization, that is, through global unity and equality, is equally impossible, because today’s asymmetry is not so much a localization of the exception as it is an invisible generation of the exception from within that formal ideal of unity, a generation of the exception as the difference between the human and the inhuman outlaw, the ‘‘Savage Beast, with whom Men can have no Society nor Security.’’ We are, therefore, thrown back upon ourselves, which is to say, upon those artificial ‘‘moral persons’’ who act as our collective political identities. They used to be called states. What they will be called in the future remains to be seen. But, if we think to establish a differentiated unity of discrete political entities that once represented for Schmitt ‘‘the highest form of order within the scope of human power,’’ then we must symmetrically manage the necessary pairing of inclusion and exclusion without denying the ‘‘forms of power and domination’’ that inescapably accompany human ordering. We must think the possibility of roughly equivalent power relations rather than fantasize the elimination of power from the political universe. This, conceivably, was also Schmitt’s solution. Whether his idea of the plurality of Großräume could ever be carried out under contemporary circumstances is, to be sure, more than a little doubtful, given that the United States enjoys a monopoly on guns, goods, and the Good, in the form of a supremely effective ideology of universal ‘‘democratization.’’ Still, we would do well to devise vocabularies that do not just emphatically repeat philosophically more sophisticated versions of the liberal ideology of painless, effortless, universal equality. The space of the political will never be created by a bloodless, Benjaminian divine violence. Nor is it to be confused with the space of the simply human. To dream the dreams of universal inclusion may satisfy an irrepressible human desire, but it may also always produce recurring, asphyxiating political nightmares of absolute exclusion.