Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Blood and Rage: criminal, not warrior

Writing recently about the phrase "war on terror", I argued that this upgraded terrorist criminals to warriors.

I just read a relevant section from Michael Burleigh's Blood & Rage: A Cultural History of Terrorism that confirms this view:

At that time, Washington took no cognisance of the fact that its European NATO allies regarded terrorism as a crime, rather than an act of war amenable to military solutions. Use of the word war inadvertently lifted groups of criminals on to another moral plane where civilised societies also have rules.

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