Radicalism and Terrorism, Introduction

               Many of us have the same question, what is causing the radicalization of so many young people? Why the need to hurt others for a religious belief? What kind of political statement are you making by bombing innocent people? Then after they commit an atrocity, they don’t seem to understand why people would hunt them down. Claiming we just go after them because of their religious beluefs, no people chase you down because of your actions. The man who killed the British soldier said, an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth. To hold anyone responsible for the actions of several hundred years ago is ludicrous.

I am going to do several pieces on Radicalization, the why, the how and can it be stopped. Hopefully it will be a window into a world where murdering innocents is praised. A sane person cannot understand this, but maybe we can find a way to keep their recruitment lower. I will focus on Islam, although other religions might nit produce terrorists, they do produce some things that are disturbing.

We need to truly understand what terrorism is, by definition. Wikipedia defines it as, the systematic use of terror, often violent, especially as a means of coercion. The International community does not have a legally binding, criminal law definition of terrorism. Another definition, the use of violence and intimidation in the pursiit of political aims. According to Laura Beth Nielsen, Associate Professor of Sociology and Director of Legal Studies at Northwestern University, said n a write up fo ALJAZEERA English. She said that the most obvious definition is that terrorism is meant to terrorize. All these definitions say basically the same thing, using force to make a political statement.

Where did terrorism begin? The concept of terrorism dates back to the days when Rome invaded Judea. In the first century zealots and Sicarii would break into the homes of the Roman soldiers and kill them in their sleep. The attacks were selective and occurred in heavily defended areas. It continued until the Sicarii committed mass suicide. During the 11th century the Hashshashin (assasin) an offshoot of Shia Muslims opposed Fatamid rule. They attacked various forts and were successful, but did not have a large enough force to attack directly. The greatest perpatrators of terrorism were the Thugi cult of India. The Thugi (Thugee) existed for centuries attacking anyone, at anytime, in any part of the land. Theur weapon of choice was the garrote. The total death count varies anywhere between 100, 000-200, 000 because the total number of Thugi was unknown, as was India’s population. In 1883 the British army killed of the Thugi cult.

Why do terrorists kill innocent people? Terrorists target people least prepared for an attack. In the terrorists eyes these people are not innocent as part of a community that is their enemy, therefore in the eyes of the terrorist they are the enemy. Hypocritical, I know, they do not want us to judge all Muslims, but they judge all others. The way terrorists view it, being innocent is impossible if you live in their enemies country. Why do they attack other Muslims? Easy answer, different offshoot of Islam. Their term Jihad, means broad struggle. If you do not agree with them, you are the enemy.

Why do they hate America? One answer is that after WWII, we sat down and drew borders for these countries without their input. We backed leaders, who were unpopular with their people, but friendly to us. We intervened in a lot of their affairs, creating dissent. Another reason is our support for Israel. After 9/11 Al Qaeda said they attacked because of the Pro-Israel and anti-Palestine foreign policy. Obviously there are many different and ddifficult reasons why we have become a focus of terrorism. But in the mind of the terrorist it makes perfect sense.

To me it is hogwash. None of these reasons are important enough to kill children and innocent people for. These terrorists are willing to provoke other countries but act as if they are persecuted for no reason other than religion. Any religion that rewards you for killing others must have been perverted. I cannot see how any God or cleric can condone that. But then again I am rational and not a zealot. I am writing this for insight for myself and anyone else who reads them. Not to humanize an animal who kills non military combatants puposely.

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