Monday, June 01, 2009


Terrorism on American soil

Many think we’ve been safe from terrorism thanks to, or perhaps in spite of, the efforts of the Department of Homeland Security and the War on Terror. After all, there have been no terrorist attacks since the fall of 2001.

Not so!

We have had bombings and murders by religious-fanatic terrorists a number of times since then. The attacks continue. The problem is that they’re treated as isolated incidents, not as the terrorism that they represent. The latest one happened on Sunday morning.

These vile fanatics need to be rounded up, every one of them. The authorities must be aggressive in making sure that they can kill no more, that they can damage and destroy no more, that they can intimidate and frighten and terrorize no more. But that’s not happening, and it won’t.

It won’t, because these terrorists pray to Jesus, not to Allah. And that frightens the authorities more than their terrorism does.

They worship the Prince of Peace, and yet they’re willing to bomb medical facilities. They kill, because they believe that every life is sacred. They twist the law with their own hands because they believe in the values of the community that enacted those very laws.

They are, of course, the right-wing, doctor-killing, clinic-bombing anti-abortion lunatic fringe. They will not go to Guantánamo to be held without trial as too dangerous to be allowed to stay free. Yet they’ve caused more death and destruction than nearly everyone who is interned there.

And on Sunday morning, they killed Dr George Tiller in Wichita, Kansas, while he was attending church. The irony in that is glaring.

Dr Tiller was shot before, in 1993, and was prosecuted a number of times, always unsuccessfully. The law, it seems, is on his side. But, not satisfied with the application of the law, not happy with Dr Tiller’s acquittals, most recently, in March, the terrorists attacked.

The leaders of the movement, of course, denounce the terrorism, while at the same time supporting it with a wink. Their hands are legally clean, and they put on a public face of being sorry for the families of the terrorism victims. Their back rooms, meanwhile, are places for congratulations on a job well done.

How about it, DHS: will you treat this as the terrorism that it is?


scouter573 said...

Please, it's not terrorism. It's murder, plain and simple. Is this comparable to the attack on the Murrah Building? No. Did he cause a blast in a marketplace? No. Do you, a random citizen, feel more threatened as a result of Roeder's vile act? Highly doubtful. There's a crime here, but it is not terrorism.

Barry Leiba said...

I don't think that something has to terrorize everyone equally in order to qualify as terrorism. It can be targeted, and this is. The lunatic fringe of the movement is, by attacking doctors and staff, by bombing facilities, by harassing and threatening patients, trying to exert control through fear.

They are terrorizing doctors, who fear they might be crippled or killed. They are terrorizing people who work at medical facilities, who fear being blown up. They are terrorizing the women who need the services, who fear for the safety of themselves and their families when they're followed home and threatened.

This individual act is a single murder. The pattern of behaviour surrounding it, through the network that supports it... is, indeed, terrorism.

You're right that I, personally, do not feel directly threatened by these people: I am not a doctor, I do not work at a medical facility, and I will never need these particular services. But I do feel threatened by the fact that these organizations can continue their tactics of harassment, violence, and terror. That individual incidents are prosecuted as though they were truly individual. That they have support from the media for what they do.

Yes, that scares me.