It takes a nation to protect the nation
1. The Problem
This comment "One man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter" is like a bad penny which keeps coming back. Once and for all, I will try and deal with it, but knowing the limited attention span of the average fascist leftist, I don't hold out much.
The Norwegian doctor Mads Gilbert, who regularly travels to Gaza to help the Palestinians, was interviewed on Danish TV. In the Norwegian press he is always portrayed as a hero and an expert on the Gaza conflict.
During the interview Gibert argues:
That he believes that the Palestinians have the same right to armed resistance to the Israeli occupation as the European resistance had 1939-45 to the Nazis.
He emphasizes the high child and civilian death toll in Gaza.
“I regard Israel to be a terrorist state that conducts state-terror against the Palestinian people. Israel systematically exterminates the Palestinian folk with their massive military onslaught. There are over 10,000 killed over the past 3 weeks. And it is systematic, I mean that it is genocide”.
Krasnik asks why Gilbert supports the Palestinians and gives Israel blame for the conflict.
Krasnik- ”On the one side you say that you are against terrorist attacks on civilians but you refuse to call Hamas a terrorist organisation, that is double-morality”.
Krasnik had listed up Hamas attacks on Israeli civilians.
Gilbert- “There is no double-morality, they are oppressed and fight against occupation, it is wrong to call them terrorists. One man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter”.
Yes, Gilbert is one of the neo-fascists, that happily distorts language to his own purposes. I find this process very frustrating.
2. Separate Value Judgements from Noun Definitions
Surely, everyone can see that vocabulary has to be as judgement neutral as possible, otherwise we simply cannot communicate? The intent of language should be to communicate meaning, so we have to agree on the terms. Those terms should not implicitly encode the value judgement. The value judgement should be encoded in EXPLICIT statements of judgement, using several words and expressions.
For example, I like dogs and don't like cats. So I can say:
"Cats are no good as pets because they are unfaithful"
and you all know what I mean, and can argue about that statement, whether you agree with it or not. There is no doubt about the meaning of the statement, there is only doubt about its truth, so we can still discuss meaningfully together.
But Alinsky's fascist left come along, and try encode their value judgments into the vocabulary. They would try change the meaning of 'cat' to include the senses of 'unfaithful' and 'no good'. Its a form of circular reason, like the fallacy of Begging the Question. Then in simply talking about cats, they hope to have established that they are despicable creatures already.
To give an example in the political realm, that's what they've done with the term 'anti-immigration' or 'anti-immigrationist'. To be against immigration does not imply anything about race - for sure, since you can be against immigration of even your own ethnic kind - yet the fascist left have managed to get that term to encode and imply the quality 'racism'. Its a total non-sequitur, yet as with many of their ruses, they keep at it over decades till eventually people have even forgotten its origin.
Philip calls Gilbert infantile, and I agree: but actually its this whole modern approach to vocabulary that is infantile; a childish dead end. Once we allow our basic vocabulary to be distorted by value judgements, we can no longer discuss anything.
There is nothing wrong with value judgements; and there is nothing wrong with negative qualities per se; what's wrong is mixing them up. You can have adjectives like 'racist', 'evil', 'selfish', and you can have nouns like 'caucasian' and 'Muslim'. Then you can make statements like
"All Caucasions are racist" and
"All Muslims are selfish"
and there is no confusion or problem. Those statements can still be discussed. But once you start to make definitions like:
"A Muslim is defined as someone who follows Mohammed and is an evil person",
you are in trouble because the definition includes a value judgement, and therefore it is not possible for everyone to agree on it, therefore it is not possible to communicate with that term any more. For communication to work, we all have to be using the same terms! In computer terms, it would be like intermixing COBOL and JAVA code. God this is so infantile.
If Noam Chomsky had been doing his job in linguistics properly, we would by now have formal structures for analysing, processing and controlling this chaos. But no, instead he chose to dabble as an amateur political activist, then bask in the adoration of his acolytes.
3. So What is Terrorism?
So, back to the original example. We need a value judgement free definition of 'terrorist'. You can either do this based on the type of acts, or on the authorising agent, or perhaps both. The purpose of the definition is so we can argue about legitimacy. If you base the definition on acts, it becomes difficult to discuss legitimacy because acts are just acts. For example, breaking someone's arm is a violent act, but if a policeman breaks a mass murderers arm while arresting him in a struggle, we view that differently. So I prefer a definition based on the authority. Then we have:
In contrast, let me add this:
To further clarify:
[You may observer a host of problems brewing around these definitions. Like I said, Chomsky failed to do his job, there's a few decades of work needs doing here, so you'll have to make do with my sticking plaster approach for now.]
The 9/11 bombing was a terrorist attack because the Saudi government disowned its citizens, and arrested them were possible. All the depredations of Boko Haram are terrorist acts. The Turkish invasion of Cyprus was an act of war. In the Vietnam war, actions by the NVA (North Vietnamese Army) were acts of war. Since North Vietnam funded and armed the Vietcong, theirs were also acts of war. The actions of ISIS are terrorist acts because their so-called state or caliphate, has not been recognised by any of the official bodies.
4. Finally, is Israel the Terrorist, or Hamas in Gaza?
We can now decide about Hamas's rockets fired into Israel. Yes, they look like terrorists acts, but they are not. Hamas is the official government of Gaza, and it appears to be authorising those rocket launches. (They are only terrorist acts if the Hamas government says they are illegitimate and tries to stop them). In fact, those rocket launches are an act of war by the government of Gaza against the state of Israel. But acts of Hamas outside Gaza, and acts of Hizbullah in the West Bank, are clear acts of terrorism, because they are not officially sanctioned acts of a recognised state body.
Similarly, Israel's responses are not terrorist acts, since they are official actions of the Israeli state. So the answer to the question is "Neither (are terrorists)".
Really it would be better if Israel had officially declared a state of war with Gaza, in order to make things clear.
Excuse me for stating the glaringly obvious, but do leftists etc seriously think that people like Hamas et al are actually fighting for Freedom (as distinct from authoritarianism ?).
Yes they do. They think they are helping the pooor likle Palestimians for fweedom from Israeli oppression.
I mean, the Israelis built a wall! They stayed on the other side of the wall! How provocative and oppressive! That obviously justifies sending thousands of rockets to kill and maim, and digging terror tunnels for mass killings and kidnappings.
Of course, what's really going on, is that the Fascist Left know subconsciously that the greatest threat to them personally is from Islamists. So in their typical cowardly style, they side with the bully, because its safer for them.