Sunday, January 11, 2015


The terrorist actions that took place last week in France should be condemned in absolute terms by everyone including political organizations across the political spectrum. But in a democratic society, people have the right to know all of the facts, in this case what were the political issues, if any, that inspired these actions. This facet of the topic has been virtually taboo for the U.S. corporate media in its coverage of terrorism, in spite of its voluminous output on the topic. In the New York Times article on the evolution in the life of one of the terrorists involved in last week’s killings titled “French Police Say Suspect in Attack Evolved from Petty Criminal to Terrorist” no mention at all is made of political issues (for examples, the use of drones, Israel's occupation of Palestinian territory, Jewish settlements in the West Bank, etc.) that may have explained motivations. In the only reference to politics, the article quotes one of the alleged terrorist as supporting the Palestinian cause because “The children of Palestine are the fighters of tomorrow.” In other words, the terrorist viewed the Palestinian problem as a vehicle to gain recruits, not as a tragedy to be repudiated. Only a nihilist would think along these lines.

Are the terrorists really nihilists, as the corporate media implies in all of its reporting? By presenting them as nihilists, may not the corporate media be justifying further U.S. military involvement? To get down to the point, if there is a correlation between U.S. military intervention and terrorist activity, may we not want to factor this relationship into the equation that determines our support for or opposition to Washington’s use of force throughout the world and in the Mid-East in particular? Critics of U.S. policy who claim that military actions to combat terrorism have been counterproductive are basically arguing the same point. In short, contrary to the cherry picking policy of the corporate media, the facts are necessary to determine policy. Isn’t that what democracy is all about: debating difficult issues regardless of where the conclusions may lead?


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