Thu | Dec 3, 2020

Terrorism different from accidents

Published:Sunday | August 27, 2017 | 12:00 AM


There was an article in your newspaper just recently that proposed that there was no difference, or that there was a similarity between terrorism and ordinary everyday accidents.

This was what the writer wrote: "You can get killed by a vehicle driven by a non-terrorist, or by falling down the stairs, or even by drowning in the bath."

So the implication here was that one should not make a big deal about terrorism.

I was shocked at this notion. So I felt it necessary to say how terrorism is different from other types of accidents and violent crime.

Terrorism is a different species of injury or violence inflicted on people than other types of accidents or disasters.


One man's terrorist ...


It is said that "one man's terrorist is another's freedom fighter." So, when for instance, Nelson Mandela authorised attacks against the apartheid South African regime they called Mandela, and the ANC, terrorists.

But those seeking justice and freedom from oppression would not call it such. Violence it was of course, but it was a justifiable, selective and contingent violence to counter a greater violence.

However, the kind of violence we are seeing today in many parts of the world, where the ideology behind it seems to have nothing more to support than the lust for destruction and death,, is indeed terrorism.

Terrorism, then, is a unique type of violence. It is intended to cause terror.

Terrorism is indiscriminate, and it is likely to strike anyone at any time without warning. Terrorism is motivated by the desire on the part of the perpetrators to make the individual, and the community, cower in fear.

Terrorism is intended to break the will and psyche of the

people, while at the same time empower the terrorists. It gives terrorists a perverse sense of power.

Terrorism is a malady, it is both national and transnational in scope and it needs to stop.

George S. Garwood