Monday, July 25, 2005

Articles on Terrorism

Two articles on Terrorism. The first is from Roger Scrunton:

I resent your success. I hate you and your kind. So I bomb you.
Apologists for terrorism (and they are not in short supply) argue that it is a weapon used by people who despair of achieving their goals in any other way.

It is a cry from the depths by those deprived of a voice in the political process. The terrorist is not an aggressor but a victim, and we must disarm him not by violence but by addressing the grievance that motivates his deeds.

This argument has been used to excuse Palestinian suicide bombers, IRA kneecappers, Red Brigade kidnappers, and even the mass murderers of September 11. Its main effect is to blame the victim and excuse the crime. Read More

The second, from George Fletcher

Defining Terrorism
Every age has its enemies. In the mid-20th century, Fascists were the evildoers. After World War II, Communists became civilization's public enemies. The bombings across London of July 7th have shown that terrorists remain today's designated masters of evil.
The word "terrorism" now appears in law books around the world and is gaining new legislative adoptions. Various civil sanctions apply to "terrorist organizations." It can be a crime to assist a terrorist organization.

But it is sometimes hard to determine who "they" -- the terrorists -- are. Whether organizations are terrorist or not is largely an administrative determination motivated by politics. Politically divided, the UN repeatedly passes resolutions against terrorism but cannot agree on how to define the term. Read More

Both are worth reading, particularly in light of the discussions of this topic here in recent weeks.

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