Who's a terrorist? AL site offers a distressingly broad definition

Who's a terrorist? AL site offers a distressingly broad definition

Summary: Who's a terrorist? Increasingly state governments and the Department of Homeland Security are attempting to tar all violent protesters with the brush of terrorism.

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TOPICS: Government US
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Who's a terrorist? Increasingly state governments and the Department of Homeland Security are attempting to tar all violent protesters with the brush of terrorism. An Alabama state website associated with DHS got into hot water recently when the site stated that domestic terrorists are found in many environmental, anti-abortion, gay rights, anti-war and other (left) movements, reports the Birmingham News.

The site garnered a flood of comments regarding the definition of the terrorist label, prompting the government to revise the site.

"In general, these terrorists claim that the U.S. government is infringing on their individual rights, and/or that the government's policies are criminal and immoral," the site stated. "Such groups may hold that the current government is violating the basic principles laid out by the U.S. Constitution and that a new world order is attempting to enslave humanity."

The Web site lumps hate groups and separatist groups, single-issue, environmental groups and anti-abortionists together. That's too broad a description, said critics.

"By the Web site's standards mentioned, opposition to gun control laws and excessive taxation makes one a terrorist. Insisting that we adhere to the Constitution makes one a terrorist," said Stephen P. Gordon, political director of the Libertarian National Committee.

Homeland Security Director Jim Walker didn't agree with the complaints, but defended the information on the site by saying it was borrowed with permission from an anti-terrorism site sponsored by the state of Pennsylvania.

"It's an idiot's guide to terrorism," Walker said. He said he disagreed with the critics because he thought the site differentiated terrorists from other people. The section on single-issue groups said terrorists were "willing to do anything for their cause."

"I thought it was fairly clear before," he said.

Topic: Government US

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  • All of this may be true, but...

    ...terrorism is a set of techniques designed to employ fear for political ends; the ends themselves are not part of the definition.

    Thus, you could have one set of terrorists killing people and destroy property in an attempt to discourage abortion, and an opposing set doing so in an effort to silence opposition to abortion. Both sets would be criminals and both should be punished.
    John L. Ries
  • Witch Hunt

    All I will say is it's Mcarthyism and Salem all over again.

    I dare not say anything else for fear of being painted as a terrorist.
    freedgr
    • You've let them win!...

      >I dare not say anything else for fear of being painted as a terrorist.<
      btljooz
  • Wishfull Thinking

    When I went to my first class in the Police Academy the prof. defined Law Enforcement as an entity that "Enforces The Political Will of the Governing Body.". i.e. One will be arrested and made an example of and the other will be arrested (If at all.) and given a stern warning to play nice.
    freedgr
  • An update of the definition

    Single issue groups could be on the list. The one key thing that seems to be missing from the article is the most important; if a group advocates the use of violence. Just because a group or organization feels very strongly about an issue doesn't make them terrorists or groups that need to be monitored; unless the accept or advocate violence. Or if they say that the use of violence is acceptable only then do they cross the line. Otherwise leave them alone.
    clif@...
  • I guess I could be "defined" as a "terrorist" because

    I beleive all of this to be true:

    >?In general, these terrorists claim that the U.S. government is infringing on their individual rights, and/or that the government?s policies are criminal and immoral,? the site stated. ?Such groups may hold that the current government is violating the basic principles laid out by the U.S. Constitution and that a new world order is attempting to enslave humanity.?

    ?By the Web site?s standards mentioned, opposition to gun control laws and excessive taxation makes one a terrorist. Insisting that we adhere to the Constitution makes one a terrorist,? said Stephen P. Gordon, political director of the Libertarian National Committee.<

    Now how is ONE person who is disabled and jobless due to discrimination of that disability (therefore, penniless) a [i]THREAT[/i]??????? Tell me THAT one, please?

    Can anyone say Dark Ages, Witch Hunts, McCarthyism, Soylent Green, Orwelian, 1984, New World Order, 2012?????????
    btljooz
  • Idiot's Guide to Terrorism

    Terrorist:

    1 any person who disagree's with any policy of George W. Bush.

    2 anyone who disagrees with a public law, regulation, or rule.

    3 anyone who disapproves of a current practice of government


    First of all, the U.S. Government has been infringing on individual rights as outlined in the Constitution for a long time. It's just more prevalent and noticeable these days. Okay, let's call it blatant.

    I'm probably labeled as a potential terrorist. I don't hate anybody. I'm not a separatist. And while I may be an environmentalist, I'm certainly not a single-issue sort. I do beleive that if the government of the United States of America becomes impossible to control by the use of the approved Constitutional forms by informed, popular, representative vote that we have the right to change that no longer functional government by any means necessary.

    Homeland Security personnel and managers at all levels are the wrong people to talk to about human rights. They exist only because of President Bush and will do or say anything to support him and keep their jobs.
    Dr_Zinj
  • Was Patrick Henry a "domestic terrorist? Were all the Founding Fathers?

    Ok. folks, this is going much too far now!!!
    Now, "Homeland Security" (really sounds like something out of Nazi Propaganda) is calling those who stood up against the oppression and terrorism of the late, great British Empire "domestic terrorists" because they espoused violent means of protesting Taxation without representation. How about those "single-cause domestic terrorists" who destroyed all that fancy English tea sitting in Boston harbor?

    I will point the readers to the REAL "domestic terrorists": they live at 1600 Pennslynannia Blvd, Washington, District of Columbia(named after the late, great "domestic terrorist", Mr. Geo. Washington, our First U.S. President).

    How about that fomenter of "domestic terrorism", Mr. Thomas
    Jefferson, who enshrined the RIGHT (and not just the "right", but also the RESPONSIBILITY) of citizens to engage in "violent means" to overthrow those governments which usurp their natural human rights under Heaven in the Declaration of Independence.

    "Up the People!!!"
    "Don't Tread on Me!"
    zarathustra2010
    • Hear! Hear! n/t

      n/t
      btljooz
  • Who is a terrorist? Look in the mirror!

    By the standards of these clowns, who apparently have no standards beyond "either you are with us or you are against us" I guess we are all terrorists. Do we spout off about the IRS? Terrorist! Do we ever laugh at the joke "I'm from the government, and I'm here to help."? Terrorist! Do we complain because the government did too much to help Katrina victims? Terrorist! Do we complain because the government did not do enough to help Katrina victims? Terrorist!

    Resign yourself to the fact that whenever you look into a mirror, you see a terrorist!
    bob@...
  • Babylon 5

    Anyone remember "nightwatch" on B-5? It feels like we're just about there.
    projectorsrule
  • Nobody seems to remember...

    Nobody seems to remember WHY you have "the right to bear arms".

    No, Goofy, it wasn't to knock-off 7-11's or teach your neighbor a lesson... It was so that you had the ABILITY to overthrow an opressive government.

    Seems like a lot of people are against the Bush government, but don't even THINK about doing anything to get in their way -- or you'll be whisked off to a "rendition camp" faster than you can whistle dixie.

    Look at some of the new weapons the government has prepared for use against DOMESTIC problems like rioters -- or more likely -- unwanted protestors. Here's a quote, "Non-lethal weapons such as high-power microwave devices should be used on American citizens in crowd-control situations before being used on the battlefield, the Air Force secretary said Tuesday.
    The object is basically public relations. Domestic use would make it easier to avoid questions from others about possible safety considerations, said Secretary Michael Wynne."

    All the AK-47's you have in the basement is no match for getting microwaved from a safe distance.

    And for those of you who missed it -- the term "domestic use" MEANS YOU!
    Marty R. Milette
  • A good quote from Lincoln

    We should remember these quotes from Abe Lincoln, a real American President.
    1. "Our safety, our liberty, depends upon preserving the Constitution of the United States as our fathers made it inviolate. The people of the United States are the rightful masters of both Congress and the courts, not to overthrow the Constitution, but to overthrow the men who pervert the Constitution."

    2."This country, with its institutions, belongs to the people who inhabit it. Whenever they shall grow weary of the existing government, they can exercise their constitutional right of amending it, or exercise their revolutionary right to overthrow it."

    The problem today is that the extreme right seems to have taken control over here, thus the battle against science, and the labelling of all those Americans who do no follow in step as terrorists (sounds a bit like Nazi Germany). In other countries, the extreme right has led to the Islamic terrorism that is spreading globally.

    I fully expect the U.S. to become a Christian-Fascist nation if we don't do something about it. I believe that now is the time to form a viable third party that will support the people of the United States, rather than Corporate America and the extreme religious right. Failing that, we will need to remove those state officials who support this administration, until our leaders realize that the only way to survive politically will be to oppose the administration and its followers. Maybe I am an optimist, maybe I am a fool, but I believe that Americans can rise above the current fascist-religious leaders and return to their former glory without a revolution. The extreme right has thrust upon us the Spanish Inquisition and the Salem Witch Trials, and we overcame those. I believe we shall overcome these narrow-minded twits as well.

    Lest I forget, we always have that old American tradition of tarring and feathering our leaders to fall back on.
    jonnjonnzdnet
    • Unfortunately, those days are long gone...

      In the days where the US is run by lawers, the even mention of tarring-and-feathering someone would probably have you slapped in jail.

      The days when the people have any recourse against any of the leaders are long gone. Sure, you can vote, but that gives you a choice of Evil A or Evil B. To actually get some dick-head OUT of office and away from where they can do any further harm seems impossible.

      Look at Cheney who has earned a personal fortune in excess of $100M thanks to the war in Iraq through his ownership of Haliburton. Everyone just looks the other way and goes about their business.

      Nobody seems to be making any effort to purge the whitehouse of any of that rubbish.

      Truth be told, NOTHING is going to happen, because it is too late. Anyone daring to raise their voice will be thrown into jail either internally, or sent to a rendition camp well outside the pseudo-protections offered within the country.

      Think the people are going to overthrow anyone? The sheep are being herded and corralled and not putting up any kind of fight. By the time they hit the slaughter house, it is far too late.

      Of course, some people will call me a conspiracy theorist -- and all is well -- go about your business...
      Marty R. Milette
  • ...Home of the Brave?

    A terrorist is anyone who is able to incite terror. Since we are the Free (fearless) people of the United States, terrorists do not affect us. "The land of the free and the home of the brave..." Nice theory, or the way it was, before we got whimpy, gay and scared of anything or anyoene who wasn't whimpy, gay and scared. When experienced, halloween horror nights will have a tendancy to make one jump. To real Americans, terrorists are less of a threat than some goblin at a theme park. C'mon people, can we get Real? ...Too many Meds. "No Fear" is how we as Americans used to Live(Free). As a bold, beautiful, and rich people, we shocked the world into submission for over two hundred years. Now that other people attempt the same tactics we call them terrorists. Freedom is not defined as a "Free-for-All" for all you freeballers. Fearfulness is the fuel used by terrorist. Someone cannot Incite terror over anyone who is fearless. Violence has become relative to the point of weather forecasters using it... Is it really true... Are we only a land of infidels... What happenned to the "Defense of Fort McHenry?" That would be in 1814 for you non-patriots, and why not more responses on this topic from the rest of us Americans. Enough from the woosies, already.
    HMBJR1956
  • Terrorists Identified

    Homeland Security Director Jim Walker said ... he thought the site differentiated terrorists from other people. The section on single-issue groups said terrorists were ?willing to do anything for their cause.?

    Just as I thought: Neocons and Evangelicals fit the above definition better than any other groups I know.
    WiccaBear@...
  • Out of context

    The tin foil hat crowd will love the microwave part, but here's the whole story:
    http://www.theabsurdreport.com/2006/you-decide/
    billjacobus1
    • Government really needs it...

      Do 'thinking' Americans really belive that such systems are 'harmless' and only the 'tin foil hat' crowd need be worried?

      Does the US government really NEED to have more weapons of ANY kind to use against its own citizens? (Let alone other people.)

      It isn't enough that America has the largest stockpile of nuclear, chemical AND biological weapons in the world -- they have to create even more methods of subjugating the people?

      Americans have been brainwashed into believing that terrorists are hiding behind every tree -- and that ANY measures, weapons and countermeasures the US Government uses MUST be for the benefit of the people?

      SO, WHERE ARE all these terrorists?

      Have these terrorists actually DONE anything?

      Have water supplies for major cities been poisoned?

      Have snipers started picking off people?

      Have any major transit systems been attacked?

      Hase even ONE SINGLE PERSON been arrested on US soil in the act of committing or having commited even the SMALLEST true terrorist act since 9/11?

      The problem with Americans is that they have been told so many times that any and all measures are NECESSARY FOR YOUR PROTECTION that people will allow the government to do whatever the hell they like -- even to the point of sending innocent people to countries like Syria for "offshore outsourced" torture and murder.

      If terrorists in the US actually existed -- wouldn't they walk down to the hardware store or local bar and buy some guns and start sniping? Wouldn't they brew up some home-made explosives or poisons and start blowing up things or poisoning people?

      Right now, the WORLD views Americans as the terrorists. Gee -- wonder why?
      Marty R. Milette
  • AL Makes Christians Terrorists

    I thought that the AL web site was quite eloquent in voicing the Revelatory Knowledge of most Christians when it states, "Such groups may hold that the current government is violating the basic principles laid out by the U.S. Constitution and that a new world order is attempting to enslave humanity.?

    There is no *may* about it... The Liberal Wing of our government *is* actively working to infringe the rights of Grass Roots Organizations to Lobby them.

    And, this is, according to the Book of Revelation, going to usher in a New World Order headed by the Anti-Christ...

    This makes, especially when codified and used in the wrong hands, every Believer a Terrorist!

    At least their intentions are admitted now!

    Mike Sr.
    madrucke@...
  • Definition of Terror

    In order to understand what terror and trerrorism are, we must look at two things: history and the dictionary. I believe the word terrorism comes from "The Reign of Terror", the terrible violence and political lynchings during the French Revolution. During World War II, when Germany bombed London, it was called terrorism because it had no military purpose. Its purpose was intimidation and fear, to scare the population. Later, the Brits and the Americans paid back the Germans by inflicting a little terror of their own by demolishing through bombing many German cities (they did it to us first, so why not do it back to them? - but that's another issue). Read about terror and terrorism at Dictionary.com at http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/terror and http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/terrorism

    I hope everyone understands what terror is and we can put this issue to bed.
    jpgeorgia