March 22, 2006

When terrorists deter terrorism.

BBC reports:
The Basque separatist group Eta has declared a permanent ceasefire.

Eta is blamed for killing more than 800 people in its four-decade fight for independence for the Basque region of northern Spain and south-west France....

Some analysts said its campaign became virtually untenable after the bomb attacks on Madrid in March 2004, blamed on Islamic extremists, that killed nearly 200 people.

Widespread revulsion at those attacks made deadly violence politically unthinkable for Eta, they said.
So great is the ugliness of Islamic extremist terrorism that it has destroyed the charm of terrorism to those who once believed in it.
In a statement released to Basque media, the group said its objective now was "to start a new democratic process in the Basque country".

59 comments:

AnechoicRoom said...

In another two or three hundred years, maybe the left in America will have its fill also? The next major domestic terror strike, will of course be found to be the fault of one George W. Bush. So you see, the two or three century estimate is being conservative :-)

Goesh said...

Basques basking in civility - what next? A kinder, gentler taliban? Stone but don't kill - flog but don't cripple. I hope it's true.

James R Ament said...

"Charm of terrorism?" Yikes! "Charm" is an interesting word choice; but I suppose there is a fairly substantial group of people that do find the terrorist ideal as romantic, attractive and charming.

PatCA said...

Well, the government has cracked down on them as well, so they were losing steam. Perhaps they realized they do not want to die in a shootout or in prison. The IRA has done the same thing. Let's hope it's more than hudna.

Elizabeth said...

In another two or three hundred years, maybe the left in America will have its fill also?>

This is about terrorism. What is your point about the American left? You realize, of course, that the domestic terror activity of the past decade has been from the right? Remember Oklahoma? Eric Rudolph?

I have to ask why the right-leaning commenters on this board just let crap like this go unremarked. I've seen enough remarks from you conservatives blasting leftist blogs for not weighing in anytime some wacko on the left says something outrageous. But here, you blithely ignore this idiocy. If you wonder why I think rightists are congenital hypocrites, here's your evidence.

ShadyCharacter said...

Elizabeth, if you would take off your blinders, you would gain some awareness of American left-wing terrorism. Look up ELF - and I don't mean those little Keebler guys.

As to the larger point, it is entirely true that lefties will often idealize and romanticize terrorist and insurgency movements, at least as long as they are anti-capitalist, anti-American or anti-Western generally.

Look at the Palestenian situation - Rachel Corrie, a proud martyr who dies to protect weapons smuggling tunnels - Left Wing Icon (her screaming visage comming soon to a college T-shirt vendor near you). Think of Hanoi Jane. Ponder on Che (probably already on a T-shirt in your closet, Elizabeth).

MadisonMan said...

if you would take off your blinders, you would gain some awareness of American left-wing terrorism. Look up ELF - and I don't mean those little Keebler guys.

This is pointless. For every ELF "the right" can pony up, "the left" can offer a Posse Comitatus (not the act of 1878, btw).

Members of both right and left wear blinders and are hypocrites.

ShadyCharacter said...

Give me an example of mainstream right wingers in America fellating the equivalent of a Palestenian terrorist or a Marxist butcher like Che and I'll concede your point.

BTW, "Christian Identity" thugs are "conservatives" only in the fervid imaginations of unhinged lefties. Why not bring up Fred Phelps while you're at it?

Are you claiming that your average Young Republican is as likely to wear a pro-CI T-shirt and applaud CI speakers as a campus progressive is to, I don't know, welcome a Taliban apologist and minister of disinformation onto campus?

Goesh said...

-let's not forget domestic terrorism visa-via spousal and child abuse coming from the Independents, since we all know Democrats and Republicans don't do such things...

INMA30 said...

Madison, you make it look so easy when Shady comes and proves your point so quickly.

Pogo said...

1. Maybe Yale admitted the Taliban minister just so it could civilize him away from the "charm" of terrorism.

2. It's pretty clear that the frustrated fringes of the right and left have each had their share seeking a violent path to achieve their putative ends.

The left conveniently ignores much of its numerous forays into such violence, and has never disowned its perpetrators. Instead, they become heroes: Che, Marx, Castro, Mao, Baader-meinhof, ELF, PETA, some Greenpeace acts. (Stalin and Pol Pot are no longer as popular among the left as in the past, I see.) Their calls for violence, or actual acts, are not criticized, or accepted as warranted, just "chickens coming home to roost."

The right has its own crazies, though far fewer in number. Their media play has been writ large, but serial killers have been more active than these guys. And they are rabidly disowned by every party. Few college kids sport Posse Comitatus t-shirts, or spout Eric Rudolph sayings on the megaphone in the Quad, or shout out bad pro-dictatorship coffee house poetry .

In the 20th century, the left killed off 100 million or so people. The right? A few tens of thousands, perhaps. Not just apples and oranges, but apples and Wax Jambu. Not equivalent by any strectch.

tjl said...

The NY Times reported the other day on the emergence of Caracas as a sort of tourist mecca for lefties in search of revolutionary chic. Apparently, traveling moonbats have found the much-photographed embrace of Hugo Chavez and Cindy Sheehan to be a lure too powerful to resist.
One doesn't see anything comparable on the right. In fact, one couldn't imagine anything comparable on the right.

reader_iam said...

Elizabeth:

But here, you blithely ignore this idiocy. If you wonder why I think rightists are congenital hypocrites, here's your evidence.

Sheesh, Elizabeth, the day is young ... and yours is only the fifth comment down.

So "right-leaning" now equals "rightists"? Who are congenital hypocrites?

My original plan was to comment on that first comment--and to say that ultimately Terrorists are Extremists and of the far fringes, so we shouldn't paint with such a broad brush.

Now, forget it. A pox on both your houses. Flip side of the same damn coin, from where I sit.

ShadyCharacter said...

INMA30, would you care to explain the "logic" behind your comment?

Are you arguing that my post is an example of rightwing "terrorism" or of blindness to rightwing terrorist for pointing out that Madison's example of a "conservative" terrorist group is neither conservative nor admired by conservatives?

Either way, you appear to combine the intelligence of Kelly Pickler, the discernment of Paula Abdul and the tact of a Simon Cowell.

(Just to tie a couple of threads together...)

=)

PS, do you have a Che T-Shirt?

Jacob said...

Poor ETA. I think it's really a shame that Al Qaeda is ruining terrorism for the rest of us.

INMA30 said...

Shady--

My read of his point is that there are nutty extremists on both sides and that each side tends to overemphasize the nuttiness of the opposition's extremists while underemphasizing their own side's crazy aunts.

Then you followed up with (and I am paraphrasing): show me an example of a right-winger elevating a crazy person such as Che or Corrie, but exhibits A B or C are off limits because either 1) the person associating with the crazy isn't "really" a right-winger or 2) the crazy is too crazy.

I just thought it made his point really well with regard to how we distance ourselves or not from the extremes. The corollary is that we then take the extremes and apply to them to much less extreme situations (e.g, Bush=Hitler, Hillary=Commie Lesbian Harpy)in order to demonize our opponents.

No Che t-shirt, but I am pretty sure there is a Reagan one somwhere, so I have the toppling Latin American governments part of my shirt collection all set.

knoxgirl said...

so... Reagan is comparable to Che...

o-kay...

ShadyCharacter said...

inma30 - I think there is just a huge comprehension gap on your part. The back and forth is over the idea that the "charm of terrorism" has been tarnished by the Spanish bombings.

"Charm of terrorism" - which it has been argued on this board, is pretty much a left wing phenomenon.

To which some on the left (Elizabeth) responded - there's extremism on both sides. Well, great. But that's not responsive.

There is a difference between "extremism" [not at issue] and romanticizing terrorism/revolution.

The challenge for those who claim that the left is not more predisposed to make heroes of terrorists, murderers and the like (Che, Chavez, Mao, Stalin, Greenpeace, ELF, Palestenian terrorists generally, etc...) is to show that the right makes heroes of of similar people.

So, who are the right-wing terrorists and politically motivated killers who are lauded on the right? The challenge isn't to find right wing extremists or bad guys, but to find such people that are broadly romanticized and admired or apologized for on the right.

Madisonman posited violent white supremecists - which doesn't pass the laugh test. So, do we have any other takers?

Oh, you have Reagan....

Bozo.

INMA30 said...

I was simply commenting on his comment then yours, which is why I referenced each without speaking more broadly about the overall topic. Sorry to confuse.

On the broader point, I guess it depends, as all of these debates tend to, on one's definition of "terrorist/extremist", "mainstream", "broadly", and "admired".

I doubt you would see John Kerry praising Mao and more than you would see George Bush praising Hitler. I think your entire premise is silly.

I think the more interesting question arising from Ann's post is whether or not ETA are linking the ceasefire to the Madrid attack. From the article, the link seems to only be speculation on the part of commentators.

MadisonMan said...

shady -- exactly who on "the left" (what does "the left" mean, by the way?) is lauding the exploits of Mao and Stalin?

How do they differ from people like the OK City bomber who laud the exploits of David Koresh? [for example]

ShadyCharacter said...

Well, I can picture Rachel Corrie demonstrating in support of Palestenian terrorists and I can picture thousands of campus lefties (and their professors) sporting the Che look.

I can see leftist academics, artists and hollywood types from the 30's on apologizing for or minimizing the crimes of Communism.

Wasn't there a movie not too long ago called "Motorcycle Diaries"? Well, give me an equivalent on the right!

Sticking your fingers in your ears and screaming "I know you are, but what am I" is not the same as giving concrete examples to back up you assertions.

So DO IT! Let's have your list of terrorists and political murderers applauded by broad swaths of the right.

ShadyCharacter said...

College students and their professors, artists, NY Times movie reviewers and the like romantacize Che. You won't get frowned at at a NY cocktail party for explaining how Palestenian terrorists really have no other option.

Who on the right does so for the OKC bombings? Well? Oh, wait, your example of mainstream right-wingers making heroes of terrorists is McVeigh (a terrorist himself) supposedly having a hard-on for David Koresh. What color is the sky on your planet? =)

Pogo said...

Re: "Kerry praising Mao vs. Bush praising Hitler"

Sorry, but I can't let this go. Hitler was not right-wing. His was the National Socialist German Workers’ Party. Hitler was a socialist by the standards of his day. It was Marx that originated the phrase, "The Jewish Question."

Couldn't let that pass. I know everyone wants to disown Hitler, but please. He was a socialist, not right-wing.

(P.S. Godwin's law is fascism!)

XWL said...

MadisonMan, the folks who organize most of the anti-war demonstrations that many in the left laud, if not embrace are Maoist, unequivocally, and unapologetically (as well as anti-Semetic, but that's another subject).

When you see someone wearing their tired cliche of a Che shirt, do you tell them they are mythologizing a murderous, totalitarian thug?

For examples of violence being embraced by the left, look at the reviews of the film V for Vendetta, a good example being this one the SF Chronicle.

The real story behind ETA giving up terror, isn't that terror no longer is attractive to them, it's that counterterrorism measures being used against Al Qaeda are indiscriminate and have made terror as a method more difficult for any and all groups. Rather than admitting that they can't terrorize as effectively as they once did ETA instead suggests (or apologists on their behalf) disgust at other terrorists to be their motivation for shunning past methods.

That's the real point of the GWOT. Not just Al Qaeda, but any group that imagines terror can advance political goals must be thwarted. It's long past time that all democratic nations (and nations that aspire to being more democratic) decide that terror as a political instrument is totally, entirely, and without hesitation unacceptable, intolerable, and cause for inordinant and violent resistance (and this can be done while maintaining and protecting civil liberties).

Any group that has political goals in democratic nations must avail themselves of democratic means to achieve them, end of story.

knoxgirl said...

There are plenty of people on the right I wish would disappear or shut up because I find them embarassing. (Take Pat Robertson... please!)

But, well, pogo said it all:
"The left conveniently ignores much of its numerous forays into such violence, and has never disowned its perpetrators. Instead, they become heroes..."

I find extreme resistance among my liberal friends to admit that communism really was/is bad. The intentions were good, so somehow the body count just isn't so real... They are much more apt to make sneering references to McCarthyism--repugnant, but certainly the lesser of the two evils...

Pogo said...

knoxgirl's right.
Clooney's "Good Night, and Good Luck" found McCarthy to be the worst of the right, and I agree.

So let's compare body counts:
McCarthy Zero
Pinochet 4000
Duvalier (Haiti) 2,000 -60,000
Castro up to 97,000
Idi Amin 300,000
Pol Pot 0.5 to 3 million
Stalin 20 million
Mao 30-50 million

Jacob said...

Che, Chavez, Mao, Stalin, Greenpeace, ELF, Palestenian terrorists generally, etc...
What the heck are Greenpeace and ELF doing on that list? Now ELF at least I can see some argument for, but it's still a strench to include them on that list (Mao: Greatest Mass-murderer of all times, ELF: Defaced some SUVs). Again, they never killed anyone but someone could have died in one of their arson attacks so I guess it's vaguely defensivable.

But Greenpeace?! What in God's Green Earth is that organization doing on that list. Greenpeace has never committeed anything close to an act of terrorism. Period. They have had terrorism committed against them, viz.- the rainbow warrior sinking, but they have never reciprocated in kind.

ShadyCharacter said...

Re Greenpeace:

http://www.taemag.com/issues/articleID.17751/article_detail.asp

INMA30 said...

Pogo, I'm not sure that having Socialism in the name of the party de facto puts Hitler on the left, but at the extremes the two ends get pretty indistinguishable, at least in execution. So, pick the right wing dictator of your choice. My point remains the same that those in the "mainstream" tend not to self-identify with the crazies on the extremes.


xwl, you make an interesting point regarding the drivers of ETA's decision. To me it doesn't ring as true as the initial assertion that it is driven by reaction to the Madrid bombing. Likely some of both. If you are right, it would be an endorsement of the early days of the "GWOT" when we were actively pursuing Al Qaeda.

Johnny Nucleo said...

Inma30 said: "If you are right, it would be an endorsement of the early days of the "GWOT" when we were actively pursuing Al Qaeda."

When did we stop actively pursuing Al Qaeda? Where do you get this crap? Please provide a source.

knoxgirl said...

"My point remains the same that those in the "mainstream" tend not to self-identify with the crazies on the extremes."

But mainstream liberalism DOES tend to excuse the behavior of crazies/extremists...

Hence mainstream movies--that aren't critical!-- about Che actually have a market. And tee shirts bearing his face--not disapprovingly--do too.

Yes, right-wing dictators have existed on the planet, but there is no market for tee shirts with them on em.

Elizabeth said...

reader_iam,

Mea culpa; it was early and I might have waited on more than three comments to respond. But then along comes ShadyC and backs up my point with his assurities that I have a Che t-shirt in the closet. After all, the left is just a bunch of commies.

I've just lost my sense of humor over rightwing baiting. It's as if some, in fact too many, conservatives don't suppport the idea of multiparty democracy. The left is just something to vilify and slander. I'm getting sick of it. It's absurd to assert that America is under the grip of leftist terrorism, but the first comment to this topic does exactly that. It's as if people like anechoicroom can't trip over their own shoelaces without it being a leftist plot. And he'll always have ShadyC to egg on the idiocy. Bah. Enough of that.

Elizabeth said...

When you see someone wearing their tired cliche of a Che shirt, do you tell them they are mythologizing a murderous, totalitarian thug?

XWL--yes, in fact I do. I also tell them about how well queers are treated by Castro's Cuba.

knoxgirl, among my circle of friends, and my academic coworkers, only one romanticizes Marxism, and I continually rag on her about it. No one else, not one, among even my most leftist friends romanticizes tyranny. Several have spent time in Eastern Europe post-Cold War and understand very well the damage the USSR did there.

Alan said...

Penn & Teller's show "Bullshit!" on Showtime took Greenpeace and their stance on genetically modified food to task. Evidently Greenpeace persuaded some African countries to reject food donated to them because the crops were genetically modified. The scare tactic based on Greenpeace's idiocy puts blood on their hands. Yeah, its just awful to eat genetically modified food when you're starving.

ShadyCharacter said...

Elizabeth, pointing out your cluelessness does not equal "conservatives don't suppport the idea of multiparty democracy."

If someone says your hair looks silly, does that mean martians don't like Spring?

So you only have one aquaintance who thinks 100 million killed by communism is acceptable...

I bet you've never even seen a Che t-shirt. In your world, motorcycle diaries is a show on discovery where they build custom hogs... Never heard anyone excuse palestenian terrorism...

Your dream world sounds like fun!

PS, I'm not demonizing you. I'm mocking you for substituting your shallow emotionalism for critical thinking and then whining about being called on it. I even support your right to participate in multi-party democracy. Even Nader needs a vote or two so his feelings don't get hurt!

ShadyCharacter said...

One more thing: "among my circle of friends, and my academic coworkers, only one romanticizes Marxism, and I continually rag on her about it."

Elizabeth, if one of my co-workers excused Nazism, I wouldn't "rag on her about it", I'd shun her.

You've basically conceded the argument - average lefties such as yourself are not outraged by leftist atrocities. NO ENEMIES TO THE LEFT!!!

ShadyCharacter said...

Can I assume you teach at the college level, Elizabeth? So, only one marxist, huh?

Why would you make such an obviously untrue statement? I bet Abilene Christian Universty has at least a handful!

And so dreadfully earnest...

Elizabeth said...

Shady, mock on, and demonize all you want. You make a wonderful poster boy for all that's repellent about conservative ideologues. I especially enjoy the rigorous logic of your visualization exercises. What was it again? Thousands of Rachel Corries marching on campus with little Che beards while Cindy Sheehan burns her bra? Yes, you can visualize professors in Che shirts, so, the left MUST be evil. You can see it, just like it's right there in front of you!

Elizabeth said...

Shady, have you empirical evidence of the number of Marxists on specific college campuses? Or is this another visualization thing? You've got a rich inner life going on, but you seem to confuse fantasy with facts. You're also lousy with parsing a sentence. Do you think I know every academic on my campus? I spoke, specifically, about the people with whom I am acquainted. That was clear from my statement. Don't distort my words.

INMA30 said...

Elizabeth--

Don't forget the NY Times film reviewers. They're, like, despots biggest fans. You know how they pass the hat in the newsroom to make large payments to dictators around the globe. Sometimes they even use funds from their illegal film trade to buy arms for their comrades. They are a real danger. I mean, talk about emboldening the enemy, did you see the review of Crash?

Jacob said...

Shady,
Your link was... unconvincing to put it mildly. Two activists climbing on board a ship carrying illegally cut wood is completely different then mixing in nails to an explosive-belt so more people will be maimed when you blow up civillians. To say nothing to exterminating millions of people.

The other examples of "terrorism" are similarly lame. Here's a hint, if no one gets hurt and no one was intended to be hurt and it would be insanely difficult for anyone to be hurt because of it then it's probably not terrorism.

Alan,
So now opposition to GMOs makes one a terorist?! IIRC the African Country's decision was less to do with Greenpeace and more to due with anxiety about loosing access to the European market if their food was contaminated by GMOs.

Bottom line: Greenpeace ≠ Terrorist organization

INMA30 said...

"Two activists climbing on board a ship carrying illegally cut wood is completely different then mixing in nails to an explosive-belt so more people will be maimed when you blow up civillians."

More importantly, were they wearing Che shirts when they boarded the ship? CHE SHIRTS!

MadisonMan said...

Shady, I'm asking how people on the left who laud Mao and Stalin are different from McVeigh lauding Koresh. That intent of my question apparently wasn't clear. And really, your descriptions of "the left" would carry more water if it wasn't largely made up of rebelling-from-mommy college students and east coast hoi polloi. Midwesterners allow such types to make fools of themselves. I do agree, however, that Christianists are not conservative by any stretch of the imagination. Why, look what their fiscal policies have done in Washington!

I must be the only one who chuckles at the irony when seeing a Che shirt -- that a militant leftist is being exploited after death by capitalists for a buck.

AnechoicRoom said...

Woe is me ...... I giss it aginn the law to paint witt da biggur brushes. Those that stuck up for me, Thank You. Those that daily give me thanks, that I am left no more? Keep on keeping on.

For me personally, it is a very simple equation. Nothing wrong with peace, or idealism. But that doesn't mean that everyone else on the planet, shares the wide eyed dreamy existence of America's educated middle class. Militant radical Islam kills. In twenty years it will still be the same. In thirty.

Ignoring it. Decorating it with gold leaf. Begging others to be more sensitive to the plight of the poor misunderstood beheader. Will bring derision and laughter from from me. So, I suppose I could apologize for laughing a little to loud? But I won't.

Today, when persons in Cairo are wearing shirts emblazoned with large swastika, as fashion, I choose not to see it as something quirky, artsy, hip, or cool. Merely another example of the brain rot that is, militant radical Islam. Its handmaiden terror, takes lives in the most despicable way. Masking it in politic, shooing it away in partisanship, pathetic.

I resisted for many a year, watching a beheading video. And, I don't recommend anyone else watch one. Evil is. It is here, it is here now. I will not embrace it, I will not defend it. I will not call it by any other name. And I will not stand with those who do.

ShadyCharacter said...

Madison, Elizabeth, Inma, it's all well and good that you don't want to address the central point here. I understand why you don't - you have no argument.

The debate is - are broad swaths of lefties in America more prone to romanticize terrorists and violent political action than conservatives in America. Several people on this board have pointed out many such cases and examples of regular old leftists excusing or minimizing atrocities committed by other leftists and even making folk heroes out of absolutely vicious people - Che, Mao, Castro, Chavez, Arafat, Stalin (thankfully many, though not all, now seek to distance themselves from this guy at least - but it was a different story a few decades ago, when well respected lefties in America were still singing his praises - and leftist professors like Elizabeth and many journalists still get their jollies celebrating the "bravery" of people like Frieda Kahlo - a brave and unrepentent Stalinist).

So ask yourselves, why does the right dissassociate itself from people who flirt with murder, mayhem and other murderous ideologies while those on the Left will simply overlook atrocities to the Left (though not atrocities generally - no celebration of Pinochet, right?)

In response, the three bozos I identify above respond - ShadyCharacter is really really mean which shows how mean those conservatives are!

Yep, you guys have a really persuasive argument on the topic at hand! Better retreat back into your liberal bubbles where such "arguments" will win you accolades from you peers.

MadisonMan said...

In response, the three bozos I identify above respond - ShadyCharacter is really really mean which shows how mean those conservatives are!

Where have I said that?

ShadyCharacter said...

Sorry, Madison, you are right. You did not say that. My apologies!

INMA30 said...

"why does the right dissassociate itself from people who flirt with murder, mayhem and other murderous ideologies "

Now where is that photo of Rumsfeld loving up to Saddam, is it here behind John Ashcroft's interview in the White Supremicist magazine or behind the cancelled check made out to Pinochet. Nope, perhaps hiding under the Pope's photo-op with Randall Terry.

Why, indeed.

I don't recall ever calling you mean, or in fact calling you names at all.

ShadyCharacter said...

You got me, LMAO, Rumsfeld and the Pope...

Your forgot to say Bushhitler...

LMAO

Elizabeth said...

I don't say you're mean, Shady, I say you're meaningless. You depend on unsupported accusations then add "and leftist professors like Elizabeth" as if you've actually got a clue what I teach or value. You don't. You're battling strawmen, which is why you don't get a response that satisfies you. Your imaginings of hordes of commie college instructors is just silly. This thread began with some hyperventilating from anechoicroom equating leftists with terrorists, with his messy broad brush. You've bent in pretzel shape to try to defend that, and failed.

If you prefer to imagine yourself as a big, mean, scary force from which commie bozos cringe, go ahead. Got a T-shirt? Put it on Cafe Press.

ShadyCharacter said...

Again, Elizabeth, you have the reading comprehension skills of a baboon... =)

Pointing out that lefties such as yourself have a soft spot in their hearts for romantic terrorists like Che is not the same as calling you a terrorist.

Let me guess, you're a Drama professor...

Elizabeth said...

Shady, no surprise that you're guessing. And visualizing.

I am an individual, not simply some undifferentiated "leftist"; I have no soft spot for Che. When you say things like "leftists such as yourself" you show yourself to be an idiot, who just makes stuff up. That is exactly what I have consistently complained about in this discussion, the belief that one can simply tar and feather every one who isn't on your side of the political fence with sweeping accusations. Your evidence? You can "see" college professors in Che shirts. Your fantasies and misperceptions aren't reality.

We on the left are not obligated to ritually apologize for extremism from any and every leftist dating back to the 18th century, no more than you on the right are required to do so for all the wackos you welcome into your big tent.

Abraham said...

This thread began with some hyperventilating from anechoicroom equating leftists with terrorists, with his messy broad brush.

Elizabeth, how did you read that in his comment? You talk about projection, but you seem to have read what you wanted to read. In fact, the point he was pretty clearly making is that leftists are more tolerant of terrorism or radical violence, and that their politics reflects as much.

Elizabeth said...

Fine, Abraham. Change that to associating the American left with terrorists. Either way, it's bullshit, and the kind of hyperbolic anti-liberalism that automatically shuts down any hope of a thoughtful discussion of how the tide may be turning against Islamist terror tactics. When it begins with a slandar against a substantial portion of the population, there's not much of anywhere to go from there. It's like hanging a "conservatives only" sign on the discussion; after all, everyone knows liberals sympathize with terrorists. I don't apologize for labelling that as lousy, divisive, lying rhetoric.

Abraham said...

I don't apologize for labelling that as lousy, divisive, lying rhetoric.

I think you would discover that you would be more convincing if you did more polite arguing and less labeling.

dave said...

(please read carefully the two uses of the word 'fascism'/Fascism here, otherwise it gets confusing. thanks.)

terrorism, like 'fascism' in a broader sense, is a question of means. I assume we'd identify Fascism as a 'rightist' ideology, but neutral as a method (the methods of ruling being the broader sense referred to above). narrow Fascism would be Hitler, Mussolini, Pinochet, etc; broader 'fascism' would obviously include Pol Pot, Stalin, the Taliban, etc.

we're mostly americans/westerners with a strong prejudice toward individual liberty. any 'fascist' government impinges on our liberty in a way that is decidedly anti-Marx. in the 20th Century MANY supposed 'left' ideologies used authoritarian methods. regardless of the justifications, authoritarian power structures only encourage their own consolidation and make further inroads to 'fascism'.

confusing the state 'fascism' of Stalin with Communism or, even further removed, Marxism is to confuse ideals (or, for the cynical, rhetoric) with the means of the exertion of power. _Means are not ideals_, and that distinction is why ETA has renounced violence; what was justifiable under the state oppression of Franco (both Fascism and 'fascism') withered during the years of democracy, but only now has a logical approach to the root ideals overtaken the natural attachment to the means (ie terror).

saoirse said...

may I quote this statement in a newspaper article for jurnalo? I simply love it!

"So great is the ugliness of Islamic extremist terrorism that it has destroyed the charm of terrorism to those who once believed in it."

Ann Althouse said...

You can quote this or anything else on the blog you want.

saoirse said...

thanks!