Is Joker the terrorist of our times?

Vir Sanghvi makes a chilling comparison between the Joker (villain in the movie Batman) and the terrorists who attacked Mumbai last month.


Consider the plot of that film. Gotham City is gripped by a wave of terror. The motive of the criminal does not appear to be money—in one memorable scene, the Joker sets fire to a mountain of cash—and there are no demands made of the authorities. The villain causes mayhem and murder simply because he can.

Nor do the usual methods work. When the Joker is arrested, the police leave him alone in a room with Batman who beats him up to find out what his plans are. But no amount of violence—even from as powerful a figure as Batman—makes any difference. The Joker is past the stage where he cares about pain.

In that sense, the Joker is the crime fighter’s ultimate nightmare: a villain with no wants or desires, with no agendas and no obvious weaknesses. He kills because he likes it. He keeps Batman alive because he enjoys the battle.

Now, consider the situation we found ourselves in during the siege of Mumbai. We had nothing to negotiate with the terrorists. They did not care about money and they had no political demands. We could not engage them in conversation, listen to their demands and then slowly whittle them down as hostage negotiators usually do.

Interesting read.  Read the full article here