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TOPIC: Palestine's Nakba and terrorism.

Palestine's Nakba and terrorism. 15 May 2016 12:26 #9785

  • Sarah.H
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May 15, 2016: 68 years since Palestine's Nakba. Truth is, it started long before 1948 and it doesn't seem to be nearing its end.
It's time we stopped believing that those with power actually want peace. Our politicians are afraid of peace. Power flourishes in times of conflict. Conflict wins you elections or gives you an excuse not to hold them. It allows you to restrict rights and freedoms under the guise of security and necessity. They don't want peace because peace for us means less power for them. Atrocity is opportunity.

Some more genius from Conor Gearty on the language of 'terrorism': Even a cursory glance at the current situation in the Middle-East quickly shows that there is indiscriminate terror against civilians on both sides, but especially (because they are better equipped for it) the Israeli side. Regarding subversive violence as the only kind of terrorism in the region leads inevitably to moral condemnation only of the Palestinian actions. This trick with the truth is only possible because of the way in which the idea of the terrorist has come to be seen as a category of person rather than the purveyor of a type of conduct. We have stopped looking at what happens, and look instead at who is doing it. If the killer has a uniform on he or she is a ‘counter-terrorist’, a brave moral soul. If the victim has no army or government, then he or she must be an indiscriminate killer for political ends, a ‘terrorist’.
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Palestine's Nakba and terrorism. 15 May 2016 23:17 #9827

  • brianna.m
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In political science, one theory about power describes how a sovereign state maintains power by disallowing smaller states to unite or by encouraging the partition of groups and seeking consistent imbalance for said sates. For this viewpoint, power flourishing in times of conflict is absolutely correct. Through both Bush administrations, and also Reagan and Nixon, offensive foreign policy and unilateral decision making to disrupt other states in the name of searching for nuclear weapons and the like benefits the disruption of the opposing state, and subsequently perpetuates the power the oppressing state holds. Thankfully, when Obama was elected, significantly more diplomatic measures were pursued because the idea that America will always maintain its hegemonic position in the world is unrealistic.

Even so, terrorism, no doubt partially a product of American intervening in rogue states or failed states, is still very real. I'm not quite sure what you mean by not looking at what happens and instead looking at who's doing it because generally the public accurately equates terrorism with its goal, which is to inflict harm or death on innocents in pursuit of political gain. Counter-terrorism seeks to eliminate the act of killing innocents for political gain, but often the means are just as destructive of the act which catalyzed intervening to begin with. Across the board, populations and governments must realize that terrorism and counter-terrorism both generate violence. There needs to be an encouragement on non-violent means to counter terrorism, because clearly it perpetuates an unstable state. For Presidential administrations which prefer this unstability in other parts of the world, this can be viewed as favorable. Personally, I am rooting for the administration that recognizes the meaning of life in other nations and acts for the good of all, and not for self-gain.
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