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What is a 'terrorist'? Can anyone be one?

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posted on Oct, 3 2004 @ 06:40 AM
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First of all, do you think the definition is a bit vague? If you were to ask 100 Americans to define the word 'terrorist', how many do you think would agree? How many distinctly different answers would you get?

If you posed the same question to the world, would the results differ?

If Italy were to invade Tunisia neutralizing their military, and groups of Tunisian people were to fight back, would these people be terrorists? What if the Tunisian people became so desperate as to target civilians?

Are people who do unimaginable things to defend themselves and their loved ones terrorists or just human beings? Does it matter whether the threat was misperceived or not?

Despite the fact that my entire post is just a bunch of questions, I hope it stimulates discussion on what I think is a very important issue.



posted on Oct, 3 2004 @ 06:44 AM
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There is a very fine line between Freedom Fighter and Terrorist

Remember the saying:

One man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter



posted on Oct, 3 2004 @ 06:59 AM
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I think it is not that hard... The line is thin, yes, but there you go:
A terrorist is IMO someone who is not a military, fighting for an ideology, and targeting non military establishments.

As such, most of attacks in Irak are not terrorist attacks, but somewhat more like a people's war against an invader. As the name suggests, a terrorist is someone who uses terror on the people to put pressure on a governemnt/military corps to do or stop to do something that their (the terrorist's) ideology is against.

I don't think that anybody now in Israel can get into a bus and not think about being bombed. That is terror. (Just an example of terror)

Please note that I've not opened a debate whether terrorism was right, wrong, or just in some cases right or wrong.



posted on Oct, 3 2004 @ 07:08 AM
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Terrorism is a product of social outrage or, more popular as of late, religious fanatacism.

Anyone with a dellusional cause that would kill or hurt innocent people in the pursuit of his or her own goals is a terrorist. Anyone can slip over the edge of sanity into this realm, an individual simply has to justify it infinitely to their conscience.



posted on Oct, 3 2004 @ 07:19 AM
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Techincaly, anyone who is apposed to the government can be classed as a terrorist.
Lets say your country got invaded and this invading force put a puppet gorvernment in charge. Now lets say you apposed this and decided to fight it. You would class yourself as a freedom fighter yet the new government would class you as a terrorist.



posted on Oct, 4 2004 @ 02:16 PM
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Originally posted by Britman
Techincaly, anyone who is apposed to the government can be classed as a terrorist.
Lets say your country got invaded and this invading force put a puppet gorvernment in charge. Now lets say you apposed this and decided to fight it. You would class yourself as a freedom fighter yet the new government would class you as a terrorist.


I was gonna say the same thing.
Also if they are against US and Israeli government, they are terrorists, if they are not, they are freedom fighters. Like Chechens, they have been called freedom fighters by CNN many times.



posted on Oct, 4 2004 @ 02:16 PM
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Originally posted by Britman
Techincaly, anyone who is apposed to the government can be classed as a terrorist.
Lets say your country got invaded and this invading force put a puppet gorvernment in charge. Now lets say you apposed this and decided to fight it. You would class yourself as a freedom fighter yet the new government would class you as a terrorist.


I was gonna say the same thing.
Also if they are against US and Israeli government, they are terrorists, if they are not, they are freedom fighters. Like Chechens, they have been called freedom fighters by CNN many times.



posted on Oct, 4 2004 @ 04:27 PM
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Given that it is an intolerant, oppressive and anti-social religion, Islam is the religion of choice for terrorists.

Ergo a definition of a terrorist is generally found among Islamic peoples



posted on Oct, 4 2004 @ 04:36 PM
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Originally posted by crossfire
Given that it is an intolerant, oppressive and anti-social religion, Islam is the religion of choice for terrorists.

Ergo a definition of a terrorist is generally found among Islamic peoples


Umm... the KKK ain't Islamic, last time I checked.

Timmy McVeigh didn't seem to be Muslim either.



posted on Oct, 4 2004 @ 05:30 PM
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Originally posted by crossfire
Given that it is an intolerant, oppressive and anti-social religion, Islam is the religion of choice for terrorists.

Ergo a definition of a terrorist is generally found among Islamic peoples


i could name some jewish terrorist groups that target arabs if you want



posted on Oct, 4 2004 @ 05:54 PM
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According to the new & improved patriot act , pretty much anyone who disagrees with the Government. Don't worry America, we have our own version as well. Have a look at this thread.

guess we'll just have to wait and see what happens.

Peace

-T-



posted on Oct, 5 2004 @ 07:39 AM
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It just seems all too convenient for the U.S. government that there is much public disagreement about who we are at war with. I really wish that we'd fully define our enemy and go get them. Whomever they may be.

Instead we're bogged down in Iraq dealing with a whole bunch of people who were not a danger to us until we made them so. About half the American people think they are our enemies.

What a lovely arrangement for fans of war and conflict.



posted on Oct, 5 2004 @ 07:59 AM
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I tried to define it as this: "terrorism is a act of violence committed by a group without an accepted mandate with the intent of instilling terror in those targeted. "

The only line that devides Army and paramilitary is the "officialness" they both willingly target civillains to induce terror in them so they don't differ on that front.



posted on Oct, 5 2004 @ 09:01 AM
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quote: Originally posted by Gazrok
While not the “dictionary” definition,

Terrorism (to me) is when one deliberately targets innocent civilians, in order to achieve a political goal, in lieu of diplomatic channels, or open combat (soldier to soldier).

As to why those fighting in Iraq are labeled as “insurgents” or “terrorists”, it is because the majority are not true Iraqi military, but ex Saddam goon squads, etc., whereas there are also many foreign combatants (terrorists) who came into Iraq from elsewhere, just to “fight the infidels”. Because favored tactics of these foreign mercs have included deliberate targeting of civilians, they are correctly labeled as terrorists.




The irony, is they often target Iraqi civilians. The same people they are supposedly "defending"?!? Logical?


They are not "targeting" Iraqi civilians. Some do perish in collateral damage, but insane efforts are taken (more than any other force in history) to eliminate it. The only Iraqis targetted are those brandishing weapons and when they do so, they cease to be "civilians" and then become "combatants".


[edit on 5-10-2004 by Gazrok]



posted on Oct, 5 2004 @ 09:54 AM
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Originally posted by bodrul

i could name some jewish terrorist groups that target arabs if you want


The IDF or the whole Isreali state?

Go one drop a few names for us... I'd hate to think the Israelis were playing fair.


But seriously, the biggest single terror attack on britain was the king david hotel in Jerusalem 1948 or something (?) by Israeli terrorists... I believe Sharon (the pig-dog that he is) was involved in terror in this early stage. Funny the biggest attack on britain was not by the irish....


[edit on 5/10/2004 by Corinthas]



posted on Oct, 6 2004 @ 02:04 AM
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Sorry did I kill this topic? No comment on my definition of terrorism, or mentioning that isreal holds the british record for biggest terror attack. Are there really no comment or have the right-wing war lovers run out of insults?

Infact for a topic that purports to be about defining a terrorist there is a suspicious lack of definitions here.



posted on Oct, 6 2004 @ 02:15 AM
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Terrorism is a loose and subjective term who's definition varies from application to application as illustrated in this thread already. To say that Islam is the choice of terrorism is a racist statement and a pathetic assertion given the tactics of other more 'civilized' nations. To me, terrorism is a tactic of gorilla warfare. When militarily outweighed and strategically defunct, terrorism becomes a viable military alternative in a conflict of dire importance. That at least is one definition, another I think applies, is covert or sponsored acts of violence against a non-military entity for the purposes of getting a message to the opposition or the world community. There isn't a government in the world, or in the history of man kind that i am aware of that hasn't participated in some form of terrorism or another. For those of you twitching and getting ready to call me unamerican, get over it. The US is just as guilty of sponsoring terrorism as any other nation. Why commit atrocities when you can pay others to do it for you?



posted on Oct, 6 2004 @ 02:27 AM
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I believe we have a realist in twichy here



Cant really fault much in what you said... and there was an attempt to define terrorism, unreal!


What you said comes back to my comment on the "officialness" of the group comitting the violence. If the gruop is an officail "army" of one (recognized) country its called war, as soon as the "army" or country in question is not officially recognized they becom "paramilitary" and possible terrorists.

I'll say it again its all about the mandate.



posted on Oct, 6 2004 @ 02:59 AM
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Depending who you ask really...

A Terrorist is someone who causes terror to achieve a result... one who uses fear as a weapon to bring about an eventual outcome (freedom for palestinians, Expell US invaders from Iraq, keeping palestinian fighters under control, Bombing cities into submission)...

By my definition Everyone who gets into a fight and threatens to invade and/or bomb someone, is a terrorist... I dont think Hamas, Al-Qaeda, and the Iraqi insuregency are any more terrorists than Israel and the USA, its just the USA and Israel have the fact they are recognised states to back them...



posted on Oct, 6 2004 @ 03:20 AM
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I am against the policies of Bush and his administration. Therefore one with a certain disposition could assume that I am against America. Hence a terrorist.

And the whole time, the idea would have never entered their minds that it is Bush who is un-American.




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