Saturday, July 17, 2010

Terrorist vs Insurgent/militant

The media has a problem with telling us the difference between an insurgent and a terrorist hence the adage one man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter. So we can get this straight a terrorism and insurgency can occur at the same time and be conducted by the same group. Terrorism is loosely defined as attacks against civilians used to intimidate or coerce (civilians is the key). Insurgency is attacks against a government and it military forces in over to force a government to change policies or even over throw it.

So for example when the Taliban, Hamas, Hezbollah, the Communists in the Philippines attack and military patrol that is insurgency. When these groups send someone to blow up a bus full of civilians that is terrorism. What the media fails to recognize is it is the target that matters not the group and the same group(s) can be conducting both type of activities at the same time.

Very interesting article out of Pakistan the money quote being "Jihad is a means, not an end. It does not permit self-destruction and it does not legitimise killing civilians." Read the rest I hope this guy lives somewhere secure and people do not know what he looks like because he is going to make a lot of people very angry.

1 comment:

Kevin said...

Rick, Thanks for clearing this up. Seriously, we tend to think in terms of groups and not targets.

This implies though that coming to a rapproachement with insurgents but not terrorists and that would be OK?