The Goal of Terrorism

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The goal of terrorism is not military victory. That is the goal of armies and nations. The goal of terrorism is to provoke such a heinous overreaction on the part of those terrorized and their leaders, that those terrorized become terrorists, anarchists, and murderers themselves, causing dissent, civil strife, and chaos in the populations being terrorized. In other words, the goal of terrorists is to cause their enemy's leaders to fall upon their own swords, so to speak, in the eyes of the people.

Terrorist acts are barbarian and uncivilized. If those who are terrorized respond in barbaric and uncivilized ways, the terrorists win a major battle by creating competition for the hearts and minds of the people. For the terrorists will turn the evidence of barbaric and uncivilized acts of their opponents to their advantage to increase their ranks and rationale for existing as terrorists in the first place. In other words, if the civilized world responds in an uncivilized way, the civilized world lends legitimacy to the terrorists cause.

President George W. Bush and our military won the first battle in deposing the Taliban from power in Afghanistan. However, the 2nd and 3rd battles were given to the terrorists by invading Iraq without securing evidence to support the reasons for invasion, and by use of torture: our refusal to comply with Geneva Conventions in dealing with suspects and prisoners.

The terrorists are now losing the fourth battle; Islamic society sympathy. The media is winning this battle with its coverage of innocent women and children appearing as targets of the terrorists. As long as the Islamic societies perceive that the terrorists are targeting innocent women and children instead of Coalition forces and Iraqi government troops, the terrorists will continue to lose support amongst their Islamic non-terrorist brethren.

So far, that is 2 battles won by the terrorists, and 2 lost to their opponents. There are a great many more battles to take place, and the faces and geography of future battles in this war with terrorists will change frequently. In the end, the terrorists will lose IF the world can keep its civility and adherence to the principles which made them civilized. But every failure in that regard, is a battle won by the terrorists, and prolongs their existence and replaces suicide recruits to continue their fight against civilized western and Middle Eastern societies.

Conversely, the terrorists are not counting on winning through force. They are counting on winning more battles by our surrender. If civilized society continues to surrender those laws and principles which made them civilized and free, they lose battles to the terrorists.

Fear dictates its own behavior and observes no principles. Fear seeks to either flee, or become more frightening than that which it fears. If civilized nations and their leaders act out of fear, they will lose to the terrorists. Terrorists are provoking civilized society to act afraid. They are provoking nations leaders to either cower, or counter with such violence and horror as to exceed that of the terrorists themselves. And in so doing, terrorists hope to show the world's people that the so called civilized nations are no better than the terrorists themselves. If they are allowed to show the world this, they succeed in creating a power struggle for the hearts and minds of the world's people.

The hearts and minds of people are the true objective of terrorists. Terrorist's greatest fear is no one to replace them or honor them for their sacrifice. The battlefield is not Iraq or Afghanistan. The battlefield is any population willing to surrender its civilization to combat its fear. To remain civilized in the face of fear is the true test of courage and heroism in this war. Though there will be many casualties, the war against terrorism can only be won by the courageous and heroic peoples of civilized nations who absolutely refuse to surrender their civilized principles and freedom to live in a civilized manner, and to be governed by civilized leaders.

Rule of law, not emotion; ardent commitment to freedom, not control; and an unwaivering observance of that most civilized of all rules, do unto others as you would have them do unto you, will bring victory in the end to civilized peoples. Civilized people will starve terrorist leaders of their following, and indict, prosecute, and punish the remaining leaders as the heinous thugs and criminals they are according to the rules of a civilized people. There can be no victory for terrorists against civilization as long as its leaders remain civilized in their pursuit of victory over terrorism.


There is an excellent debate and discussion of this article going on over at WatchBlog.

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This page contains a single entry by David R. Remer published on July 16, 2005 10:15 AM.

Floodgates of Political Corruption About to Open was the previous entry in this blog.

Judge Roberts: Tempest in a Teapot? is the next entry in this blog.

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