September 11 inaugurated both the age of terrorism in US foreign policy and the demand that we identify ourselves ideologically as anti-terrorist. This double action defines and demarcates the political space in which we now live; it begins the movement of our democracy into its other, into that in opposition to which we have until now defined ourselves, namely totalitarianism. History has long prepared this road, but history can no longer be appealed to as either the genitor or as the possibility of escape or redemption. The force of the contradiction born on September 11 is that of a rupture with history: we now live, both as a culture and as individuals, somewhere between absolute forgetting and déjà vu. History will only resume after the fact, when the rupture is complete and the new system has already erected its edifice. At that time we will wander around as shock victims, with dust in our hair and on our clothes, and remembering finally what has taken place, we will have no recourse but to vomit.