14 January 2011

One man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter

The adage "one man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter" is being nicely illustrated by U.S. House of Representatives Peter King, new chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee. King says he intends to hold hearings on the radicalization of young Muslims in the United States.

The American Muslim community is not, to say the least, amused. Abed A. Ayoub, legal director for the American-Arab Anti-discrimination Committee, accused Mr. King of "bigoted intentions" while pointing out that Muslim leaders around the country have been working closely with law enforcement officials since 9/11.

The irony of King's crusade against Islamic extremism is that he was once a stalwart supporter of the IRA. Speaking at a pro-IRA rally in New York in 1982, he said, “We must pledge ourselves to support those brave men and women who this very moment are carrying forth the struggle against British imperialism in the streets of Belfast and Derry." At the time, he was involved with NORAID, an organization that the British, Irish and US governments accused of providing the IRA with weapons. The same man who complains that "no American Muslim leaders are co-operating in the war on terror" once refused to condemn IRA terrorist attacks in the UK.

Terrorism, it seems, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder.

1 comment:

  1. Well spoken, Bill.

    If you have not already read American Raj: Liberation or Domination by Eric Margolis, I would definitely recommend it. The book describes the double standards and the hypocrisies of the western powers, and especially that of the US, Britain and France, that had colonised the Muslim countries.

    The Taliban/Pashtuns were once freedom fighters according to Reagan when they were resisting the Soviets. They apparently became terrorists when they started to resist the US. Margolis documents even more examples.