I suppose those words are almost interchangeable now. The synonymity between any action taken in opposition to the United States of America by any self-proffessed muslim is accepted as terrorism, regardless of context or understanding. When Tsarnaev strapped an improvised explosive onto his back and left it in congress to the international stage of the Boston Marathon, there was categorical understanding that this was an action to cause inexorable devastation and hence a truly reprehensible act. What marked this event as unique, or perhaps not, was the pondering melodrama of whether this represented an attack by an organised Islamofascist group, perhaps Al-Qaeda? Subsequently, as the once Chechan origins of the brothers came to light, the world immediately sought deep inside for that word they had used with such cavalier fashion and labelled the act as one of terrorism; in one swift action revealing their embarrassing and bigoted political lexicon.
Let us be clear, America is a stormfront. The apparently serious “One nation under God…with liberty and justice” and “Have a nice day‘ attitude, stifle essentially what represents a disturbed society with aggressive and violent intentions towards one another and indeed the American opposition in general. Consider the following. In 2012, a gunman walked into a cinema in Aurora, Colorado and shot 12 people dead, injuring 58 others. In 2011, another 6 people were killed and 18 others injured in a shooting carried out in Tucson, Arizona. Again in 2012, 20 children and 6 adults no less, were shot dead in Sandy Hook Elementary School.
I am generally of sound and clear mind and correct me if I am wrong, but I cannot recall a single occasion where the word terrorism was offered, let alone used in the above contexts. The reason is clear – it was politically redundant. Americans are not terrorists by context of definition. What we are looking at is a word which is dangerously loaded with emotive capacity. Terrorism has come to mean any crime committed against the nation of America, when performed by a muslim. It is an ominously vague word which has achieved broad application both in politics and the press in making us feel a certain way about muslims. I should make clear that of course, a muslim can commit terrorism, but this does not hold connotation that this act is incontrovertibly associated to faith. It simply serves the American narrative and justifies savage and brutal overseas subjugations. Boston may yet prove to be a terrorist act but as confessed by one Phillip Mudd, CIA Deputy Director, the act has yet to demonstrate politically driven or funded extremism.
One of the greatest social commentators of our time, George Orwell made an observation on the term, fascism.
“It will be seen that, as used, the word ‘Fascism’ is almost entirely meaningless. In conversation, of course, it is used even more wildly than in print. I have heard it applied to farmers, shopkeepers, Social Credit, corporal punishment, fox-hunting, bull-fighting, the 1922 Committee, the 1941 Committee, Kipling, Gandhi, Chiang Kai-Shek, homosexuality, Priestley’s broadcasts, Youth Hostels, astrology, women, dogs and I do not know what else.”
We are of course in a similar zeitgeist. Terrorism is what Fascism was to Orwell. The original meaning has become so distorted, it is beyond recognition, rendering it perfect for indiscriminate use, wherever possible. It is not however entirely forthcoming and often tends to represent a very establishment agenda, conveniently escaping the truth.
What terrorism represents essentially is American discourse. It represents the justification of aggressive expansionist American foreign policies and repeated and un-opposed ignorance of international law. It represents the unsaid understanding of the western world to stand by whilst drones circle above the heads of children whilst they sleep in their bed at night. The act of bombing a marathon itself was terrifying, but that does not make it terrorism. Someone needs to tell Obama that however, since he feels:
“Any time bombs are used to target innocent civilians, it’s an act of terror.”
I won’t bother to correct his terrible English, but regarding the above statement, I guess he is the expert.