What is Terrorism?

Most people would undoubtedly label suicide bombers as terrorists.  Or car bombs or events such as 9/11.  Valid examples.

But the simple definition of terrorism is “the use of violence and threats to intimidate or coerce,especially for political purposes.”

With this definition, almost all acts of any government are terrorism.  So where is the line drawn?  I think an important factor is the amount of innocent people that are involved in the attack, either purposely (as in the case of suicide and car bombs) or through complete indifference.

People seem to overlook acts of terrorism if the massive toll of innocent deaths is claimed to be an accident.

But in my book, it’s still terrorism.  Innocent civilians don’t die by accident in those sorts of numbers.  And it can be committed by any government whether or not it is one of the superpowers.  Terrorism cannot be confined to only those who do not have a military or other means, but it is so often stereotyped this way.

Also, I think if violent threats are directed specifically at innocent people, whether a large amount of casualties were involved or not, are a mild form of terrorism.  The things that settlers say and graffiti in the villages in the West Bank are truly horrendous.  It’s Jewish extremist terrorism.  Sometimes it is more than mild, such as when they shoot and attack and cause entire villages to evacuate (as they did in Yanoun in 2002).  My students in Boreen have been attacked twice since I left in December by large groups of settlers carrying guns and beating villagers.

It’s probably a phrase you’ve never heard: Jewish extremist terrorism.  Learn it.  Because it is happening without so much as a slap on the wrist as punishment.

When was the last time you read this in the news? : “‘Death to Christians’ sprayed on monastery”

It is real, it is disgusting, and it is not being stopped.

We have to stop looking the other way.  This is a serious issue that needs to be addressed.

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2 responses to “What is Terrorism?

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