The horizon is not so far as we can see, but as far as we can imagine

The Word Terrorism

This word still means nothing except “violence committed by non-state actors.”

Multiple states routinely target weddings, funerals, and hospitals.

I remain unable to see the difference, except that state actors kill a lot more people.

Oh, and people’s suffering is not less real or worthy of sympathy if they have less or more melanin than you–or are from a different religion or a different culture.

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  1. Terror is a state action. It is in the thinking of the world …

  2. V. Arnold

    …still means nothing except “violence committed by non state actors”.
    Obviously that definition is not correct; the U.S. (as a state actor) being the foremost terrorist on the planet.
    Israel remains the pre-eminant teacher of terrorism starting in 1947; they wrote the book…

  3. The Stephen Miller Band

    Exactly, Ian.

    What incredible timing, you have to admit. As though it was Made to Order. Very curious.

    I disagree with Trump. Whoever does these things, whoever orders it and whoever carries it out, they are Monsters just as those who order and carry out the dropping of bombs on funerals and weddings and call it something other than Terrorism are Monsters.

    Therefore, Donald, as Bibi likes to call him rather than Mr. President, is The Monster In Chief. Afterall, he ordered The Yemen Strike that murdered hundreds of innocent women, children & men.

    Santa’s Little Helpers

  4. Mel

    There are two economies in U.S.America, therefore

    There are two nations in U.S.America, therefore

    There are two languages in U.S.America.

    Ian is talking about “terrorism” in the equestrian language, not the plebian.

  5. V. Arnold

    May 23, 2017
    Ian is talking about “terrorism” in the equestrian language, not the plebian.

    Thanks for that usage of equestrian; never heard that before (I looked it up and Wiki nailed it).
    And I agree…

  6. Matt

    There is a significance difference, and that is the presence of a high value military target.

    Targeting weddings and funerals is wrong. But they aren\’t targeted to strike terror into the heart of the enemy, they are targeted because they are the best shot at killing a high value target that rarely pops his head out.

    For this to be the same as Manchester, someone like James Clapper would have had to have been in that group of teenagers, and would have had to have been the target of the suicide bomber.

    If that were the case, the western media would be rightly questioning why he would put all those young girls at risk with his presence.

    It may be noble minded to say that \’we\’ are just as bad as the terrorists, but in reality it stops us from taking the measures necessary to protect our people. We are not the same as them.

  7. > …still means nothing except “violence committed by non-state actors”.

    Nonsense…. The key actors are modern state actors, not people. it will require a tremendous change to fix that. One could do it, but it’s not a small fix. to UN, for example, would need a complete revision.

    In the modern state theory, all people are assumed to be members of one state or another, and do not have the right to kill anyone, unless their state says so.

    In other words, this is not a small fix, but a rather large one – and most states will not take kindly to it. Think carefully before putting in a new system until you have thought out all of the consequences. There are enough problems with the modern state politics to accept a complete revision – and I am one of the people who has said so – but it’s not a trivial problem.

  8. A1

    You are pretty reliable Ian. Every atrocity like Manchester requires a justification on your part, an equivalency. Any suggestions for a solution instead of blaming the victims?

  9. Ian Welsh

    Don’t be a stupid ass. In fact, I don’t comment on every attack in the West, and I don’t say they are justified, I say that they are no worse than what Westerners do to brown people (and actually not nearly as bad), & forseeable consequences of bad policy and immoral acts. (As is the refugee crisis, our current economic malaise, and so on.)

    That is true whether it is the rise of right wing terrorism, or of “Islamic” terrorism.

    The solutions are obvious and I have in fact given them before, start by not bombing the shit out of people; not supporting those who do (like Saudi Arabia in Yemen right now), and not involving yourself militarily in the affairs of other countries who do not actually attack you. If you think that’s not realistic, get used to semi-regular attacks. (And at this point, expect that it will take some time for them to die down).

    How often do bombs go off in Iraq? How often did they go off before the US occupation and invasion; which Britain aided and abetted, and which they refuse to try the main war criminal, Tony Blair?

    But by all means, continue pretending that the actions of your countries have nothing to do with terrorism. Pretend that your far worse crimes are not crimes.

  10. Peter

    It’s good to see someone challenger Ian’s use of relativism on this mass murder The story, as yet unexplored, is the breakdown of the UK’s counterterrorism system.

  11. Willy

    When the victims don’t understand that the freedom bombs have been blessed by Jesus, they’re just being ignorant. And if they’re on the side of “the other”, well, that makes them downright evil, especially when it’s our oil in their ground.

  12. The Stephen Miller Band

    The operative word in Peter’s reply is “story.”

    So many stories, so little time.

    Story as in Fable.

    Story as in Myth.

    Story as in Propaganda.

    Story as in Fiction.

    Story as in BULLSHIT!!

  13. highrpm

    terroism. [so far] this century’s product to sell news entertainment. and now MSM is workng madly to resurrect its cold war product genre. my entire life its been the scare du jour: cold war, air-raid drills at school – get under your desks, vietnam, south american rogue dictators, kissmyassinger’s never-ending peace talks, and finally the BIG payer, middle eastern terrorists. all played as a fugue above the anchoring theme of the state religion of cultural marxism. now terrorism’s getting a bit tired, pushing MSM masters to introduce a the cold war theme. ah, lovely background music to live life against. fuk using arts/ entertainment to sell advertising.

  14. StewartM


    especially when it’s our oil in their ground

    Well, after a decade or so of tiptoeing around things, our new Prez now comes out and openly and forthrightly declares that those brown people have no right to our oil. Plus, maybe we’re going to move our embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, just because.

    Any subsequent acts of violence committed by generic ‘jihadists’ in Western countries will be totally unrelated to these two things, or to our dropping Freedom(TM) Bombs and sending Liberty(TM) Drones.

  15. bruce wilder

    Any suggestions for a solution instead of blaming the victims

    Britain has an object lesson available in the treatment of Corbyn for his support of Irish independence. For the British media and many voters, the violence of various groups claiming the mantle of the IRA is a reason to take no responsibility at all for the destructive and violent role of the British state in Ireland thru four or five centuries down to the present.

    This kind of know nothing politics is being reproduced in relation to the British role in the Middle East. The Right bullies anyone who calls attention to the irresponsible and authoritarian klepto mentality driving British foreign policy for more than a century.

    I have a wild and crazy idea: blame a perp. Hang Tony Blair, if you are feeling righteous. No? Cannot think why Blair should be hanged or in prison? You have not been paying attention. So few have.

    Some crimes just cannot be retained in the public mind long enough to prosecute. And, the result is the distorted idea of seemingly inexplicable and one-sided violence. Except it is rarely one-sided in reality.

  16. Jib Halyard

    Ian, are there any problems in the world that are not the sole fault of the West? Just asking…

  17. A1

    Wilder – so killing a bunch of teeny boppers is okay because you disagree with Tony Blair? Sure. Sounds good to me. For such a long winded blowhard you have no solutions. Just like Ian Welsh.

    Let me ask Ian again – what would you do? I mean stop involvement in other peoples wars is a good first step but it will not solve the problem in the short to medium run.

    They always play John Lennon “Imagine” at times like this but guys like you and Wilder should petition to have Oasis “Roll With It” because that is what you want us to do.

  18. Willy

    Maybe we should invade their countries, kill their leaders, and convert them to Christianity?

  19. Ian Welsh


    did your Mom drop you on the head one time too many? Or is it genetics?

  20. V. Arnold

    May 23, 2017

    You are a genuine whack job; Wilder said no such thing.
    Troll much?

  21. Tom W Harris

    @ V. Arnold

    Israel remains the pre-eminant teacher of terrorism starting in 1947; they wrote the book…

    Seek help for your moral dyslexia.

  22. V. Arnold

    Tom W Harris
    May 23, 2017

    Study history much? Of course you don’t…

  23. Tom W Harris

    Guerilla war isn’t terrorism. Just in case you didn’t know.

  24. V. Arnold

    Tom W Harris
    May 24, 2017

    But, blowing up an entire British hotel is most assuedly terrorism.
    Killing the whole village in the late 40’s is also an act of terrorism.
    Israel’s history, starting in the late 40’s, is indefensable by all standards of internatioal law.
    You can protest until the cows come home; it won’t change the genuine history of Israel’s actions.

  25. Tom W Harris

    “But, blowing up an entire British hotel is most assuedly terrorism.”

    Not when it’s being used as military HQ.

    “Killing the whole village in the late 40’s is also an act of terrorism.”

    They weren’t killed, they were deserted to give Arab armies a clean shot at the Jews.

    As for a website named jewterror1, that says all anyone needs to know about you. Fuck off and die, Nazi filth.

  26. V. Arnold

    Tom W Harris
    May 24, 2017

    Coming from an Israeli appologist is futher affirmation of your bias.
    Thank you so much; ah, bracing, it is…

  27. The Stephen Miller Band

    Maybe we should invade their countries, kill their leaders, and convert them to Christianity?

    With the exception of one off-ramp to preclude this. They purchase weapons from America totaling at least $100 billion or more. Then they’re free to engage in any sort of terror they like up to and including flying planes into the Twin Towers and The Pentagon.

    Money may not buy love, but it sure does buy hate.

    Take note at how swiftly “Justice” is delivered when it’s officially labeled an act of Terrorism. Three have already been arrested and the bomber was kind enough to leave his identification in his pocket even though he was unrecognizable otherwise.

    Compare this rapid response to “Justice” in another case, quite dated actually but effectively Terrorism nonetheless, involving the murder of Sister Cathy Cesnik. An excellent documentary about it can be found on Netflix entitled The Keepers.

    The murder of Sister Cathy Cesnik involves a cover-up so vast and deep it boggles the mind. True Evil. Terrorism. At the highest levels. It’s pertinent considering Trump’s Vatican visit. Both Trump & The Vatican are tied to this “Mystery” that involves the preying upon and feasting upon The Innocent — in this case young high school girls by the entire Establishment.

    The Pope and Trump have a lot in common in this regard and no doubt if Trump knew Maskell and Maskell’s friends in high places, Donald would be friends with them too. Jeffrey Epstein, anyone? The ties that bind.

    Before we do anything more about Brown Terrorism, if the Manchester Bombing is indeed Brown Terrorism, let’s focus on and eradicate White Terrorism, or more specifically Rich Terrorism against The Poor. An argument can be made all Terrorism is, in effect if not in fact, Rich Terrorism against The Poor. A strong argument. An irrefutable argument.

    The Keepers

  28. karenjj2

    Lionel has a good, rambling discourse on “terrorism”

    His best lines are about the ISIS proclamation “taking responsibility for the attack”

  29. different clue

    I have always understood a working functional definition of terrorism to be . . . doing something to a targetload of people to get the rest of the same-type-of-people as the people in the target-area . . . to scare them or enrage them into doing something which you are not brute-force strong enough to MAKE them do. Something which you WANT them to do because the effects of their doing it will be down-stream good for advancing your cause or agenda.

    So whoever was involved in the 9/11 attacks did it to scare and enrage the US public to accept domestic police-state-strengthening legislation and rules/regs and to support regime-change invasions into various Middle Eastern countries. Osama and the bin Laddies were not strong enough to FORCE America to pass and sign the Patriot Act at home and invade Iraq overseas. But they were symbolically effective enough to SCARE and ENRAGE America into accepting these things.

    And whichever DC FedRegime people together with foreign intelligence people worked with or around the bin Laddies to help the 9/11 attacks succeed was also practicing terrorism against the American public. And whichever DC FedRegime-connected figures used that military-grade anthrax spore powder to deepen the fear and spread the terror was also part of that DC FedRegime/ bin Laddie/ Kingdom of Saudi Arabia/ Government(ISI) of Pakistan coalition of terrorist partners to get American society more Police State Policed and get the American military out onto the futile forever-war battlefield.

    So we can say that terrorism is a method for scaring/enraging a soft-target public-loadfull of people into doing something the terror-user wants that public to do, but is not strong enough to make that public do.

  30. different clue

    Hmmm. . . . I should think that a post called The Word Terrorism would be worth more than 30 comments. Perhaps my comment was so boring that everyone else got tired and left.

  31. realitychecker

    @ dc

    The DNI types arrested everyone who commented after you. Apparently, “terrorism” happened to be one of their key words. Who coulda knowed?

    I hope they don’t come after me for telling yo . . .

  32. different clue


    Well then, I hope they don’t come after me for having read your comment.

    Okay, who’s next?

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