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The Terrorists and Freedom Fighters of Syria

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posted on May, 15 2013 @ 01:48 PM

“One Man’s Terrorist is Another Man’s Freedom Fighter”

Gerald Seymour, 1975

While this quote might be dated and not necessarily applicable to 21st century terrorism it is indeed applicable to what’s happening in Syria. This quote opens up a very difficult question that polarises many, what is the difference between a “terrorist” and a “freedom fighter”? Honestly I am not equipped to answer that question; we have no definition for either terrorist or freedom fighter so we cannot presume to know the difference. Yet it is this same conundrum that leads some to argue that the forces fighting against Assad’s forces in Syria are “freedom fighters” or “rebels” and others to declare them “terrorists”. It is an argument that raises its head all the time, are the west supporting “rebels” or “terrorists”?

There is no right answer to this question, nobody is ever going to win the debate as to whether or not the forces fighting Assad are legitimate freedom fighters or terrorists. This is because the answer to that question is very much dependent on one’s perspective.

If we first take the perspective of the international community, the big players who all oppose Assad, they will all argue that the forces fighting against Assad are “freedom fighters”. In their view these forces are a band of Syrians (and yes some other nationalities) who have come together to fight against the repression of a despot leader whose legitimacy to power has long gone. They see this as a nations fight against a corrupt leader for their right to self-determination.

However if we then look at the perspective of this “illegitimate leader”, Bashar al-Assad and his supporters, namely Russia and Iran we see these “freedom fighters” in a very different light. To Assad and his allies the forces who oppose him are the enemy, they seek to over though the legitimate head of state of the sovereign state of Syria and to do this they have adopted a crusade of violence and intimidation. As such to Assad and his allies they have been branded as “terrorists”.

This is a perspective that has been picked up by the Syria, Russian and Iranian press as well as many in the alternative media industry to promote an argument that anyone who aids the forces fighting against Assad is supporting “terrorists”.

So is this true?

Well again we reach the perplexing conundrum at the heart of this thread if you side with the “rebels”; no, those who support them are not supporting terrorists, they are supporting the freedom fighers, but if you’re a advocate of the Syrian regime then yes they are supporting terrorists. There is of course a third answer and that lies in the grey area amongst those who take no sides but for now let’s not complicate things.

Now I take some issue with the idea that the forces fighting Assad are terrorists, and it’s not because I disagree with that statement necessary but rather the connotations that go with it. When we hear people proclaim that “the west is supporting terrorists in Syria” there is an implication that these are the same terrorists we have just spent a decade fighting. That is simply not true and ironically the perception of Assad shows us this. You see we have spent the last decade fighting terrorists who have a religious ideology motivating their violence, for want of a better phase we have been fighting “Islamic terrorists”. Assad’s “terrorists” are not the same, they are not Islamic fundamentalists, they are mostly secular nationalists seeking to remove a leader they view as corrupt. You could think then of groups such as the FSA as being Assad’s IRA (kind of) and not his Al-Qa’ida.

The award for Syria’s “Al-Qa’ida” goes to groups like Al-Nusra, who “we”, the west are most definitely not supporting. Particularly America who has sent CIA agents out to vet groups that receive American aid to ensure they are not “the bad terrorists” and have designated them as a foreign terrorist organisation because of their very strong links to “the bad terrorists”, Al-Qa’ida.

For me personally that is the only problem I have with anyone who calls the groups who are fighting Assads forces “terrorists”, they do not differentiate between nationalist terrorists and Islamic terrorists, they use the word as a umbrella name for the entirety of the forces fighting Assad. This lack of any differentiation between these two groups has led to some very misleading articles and fuelled a perception amongst some that by the West supporting the Syrian National Council and their paramilitaries they would be supporting the same people they have been fighting against for the last decade.

Such a perception is not true while yes it is true that no one can ever answer the question are they freedom fighters or are they terrorists at the very least we can deduce what type of terrorists they are, they are, in their current form, a nationalist terrorist group in the eyes of Assad. That his who we in the West are backing, a nationalist terrorist group but not the same Islamic fundamentalists we have been at war with for over a decade.

edit on 15-5-2013 by OtherSideOfTheCoin because: (no reason given)

posted on May, 15 2013 @ 01:54 PM
I believe..."One man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter" is about the most accurate way this debate could be described ...and there might be something to be said about a George Carlin skit on the term Freedom Fighter and what Fighters Fight.

For some... Assad os one step short of the Anti-Christ himself and probably leaves little smoking footprints of charred earth, wherever he walks. To hear some, that's as deep as it's gotten.

For others... well... I've personally written threads on the war crimes of elements that form the FSA. Over a dozen elements, that form it. Some good....some, among the most radical and bloodthirsty within a region that already takes it's reputation by defining radical and bloodthirsty in battle.

So..indeed. To each, their own perception. I just wish my Government hadn't insisted on taking sides in a fight which predates our very inception as a nation ...for short term political points and strategic gain in the region. When one supports demons, to slay the Devil? It's still living in hell to be a part of it.

posted on May, 15 2013 @ 02:52 PM
reply to post by OtherSideOfTheCoin

I think when you read this you like myself will see it is American terror backed groups who need getting shut of.

posted on May, 15 2013 @ 03:25 PM
reply to post by OtherSideOfTheCoin

This quote opens up a very difficult question that polarises many, what is the difference between a “terrorist” and a “freedom fighter”? Honestly I am not equipped to answer that question

The answer to that question is very simple.

A terrorist murders innocent people using terror tactics and weapons such as hidden bombs and explosives, planted in cars and other vehicles, in shopping centers and markets and other locations where unsuspecting and usually quite ordinary civilians will be...then they detonate those explosives killing and maiming the innocent people.

A Freedom fighter...doesn't. Unless they mean freedom as in freeing the people from life and not oppression.

The so-called Syrian 'rebels' and 'freedom fighters' have so far indulged themselves in orgies of the repeated instances of kidnapping UN personnel, murder of captive Syrian regular soldiers and police, deliberate targeting and mass murder of people belonging to traditional tribal rivals, and multiple car bombs killing innocent civilians and bystanders, mutilating fallen Human corpses and engaging in the Cannibalism of their flesh. And so on.

You're right, the Terrorist or Freedom Fighter quote isn't as relevant today as it might once have we have far more information, far faster than ever before and can see exactly which catagory, judged upon their actions alone, they fit into.

Deliberately commiting any or all of the above mentioned crimes against Humanity and the accepted rules of war, doesn't make anyone a freedom fighter, it makes them a murdering Terrorist.

Best not to judge people so much on what they say they want or will do, but more on what they do.

posted on May, 15 2013 @ 05:13 PM
FSA = terrorists, thugs, thieves, rapists, and criminals

maybe we can find 1 good guy out of 200 rebels, but that means nothing when we are dealing with such large numbers.

Syria under Assad was prospering, and becoming an economically stable country, with most of her debt paid off and a process of reform and infrastructural development already in process.

then comes along the Arab spring, false revolution in Tunisia and Egypt, only faces change, the dictatoral regime is the same.

then Libya, the most developed country in Africa is couped and destroyed.

Now Syria is being attacked by the same gang of savages that perpetrated 9/11. Saudi/US/Israel

while Bahrain, a true majority uprise, peaceful, not picked a single gun, was being pushed aside and ignored.

Now the terrorists in Syria are killing, looting, raping, burning, blowing up, destroying, humiliating, and tearing apart the Syrian nation and her people. whos next? Iraq or Lebanon?

posted on May, 15 2013 @ 05:30 PM
Freedom fighters and terrorists attack civilians who are probably so far removed from what is going on, it's criminal. Civilians pay the price ultimately and for what?

Growing up in the U.K in the 1970's and 80's the IRA were the freedom fighters. However, they used terror against innocent civilians, some sympathetic to their situation. I was told by a teacher, thank goodness they're Catholics, if they were Muslims we would be seeing suicide bombers.

I was shocked by this statement, from a teacher who was so enlightening in the subject he taught (Biology), yet all of sudden was enlightening us on the state of the world. He later went on to explain the reasons why Russia invaded Afghanistan and declared that they would be defeated (Something I couldn't fathom at the time, but subsequently could see quite clearly why).

The Syrian situation is being manipulated by the West, particularly Israel and her puppets (U.S & E.U). We have witnessed atrocities from both sides and claims of Sarin being utilised, initially by the Government troops, subsequently by the rebels.

All the while it's the civilians who suffer, who are caught up and pay the ultimate price.

Freedom fighters, what freedom will they deliver?

posted on May, 15 2013 @ 06:13 PM
Who writes this stuff. "Terrorists, freedom fighters", third option "a grey area" where people take no sides and that's it?

No mention then of those who have been destroyed by deliberate acts of mayhem on both sides, each killing 'their own' and blaming it on the 'other side' and it's not unique to Syria it is war games conducted by those who are in the real 'grey area'.
Soldiers in regional wars have political masters somewhere, and sometimes the head buck cat soldier gets to play politics in the next regime. They used to call it revolution, out with the bad in with the good, now it is 'spring this and 'spring that and how much of a joke is that on those who did nothing and died.
It's all about power and control, not romantic ideals and you can be sure that both elevated natives and outsiders have got their nebs in for the spoils.
edit on 15-5-2013 by smurfy because: Text.

posted on May, 16 2013 @ 05:16 AM
reply to post by smurfy

Who writes this stuff. "Terrorists, freedom fighters", third option "a grey area" where people take no sides and that's it?

Yup that is exactly it the grey area belongs to those who don’t exactly take sides, people like me. I am trying, although admittedly not always succeeding to look at the Syrian civil war from a neutral stand point. That’s why I included that part about the “grey area” the ambiguous spot between the Freedom fighters and the terrorists, I am the guy who would probably say they’re “it’s a bit of both”.

posted on May, 21 2013 @ 04:06 PM
reply to post by Wrabbit2000

dude, thanks for responding it was actually in a response to you that i came up with the idea of writing this thread.

posted on Aug, 29 2013 @ 01:59 AM
I have just been reading this thread again in the light of recent developments

its unfortunate i think that we didn't get more discusion around this issue as now it has became very important.


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