Post Number: 37
|Posted on Tuesday, September 09, 2003 - 02:07 pm: ||
My good friend, Dr. Ayyangar, from India, often posts to this forum. He is also featured in various newspapers within India and here he has posted his comments about terrorism in a Yahoo Discussion Group.
He kindly sent me a copy and I am pleased to respond.
First, to set the stage, I agree with President Bush that the world is now in a new international war -- whether it is called WW III or not.
Here is a news commentator:
The major problem we have in this war is that there are no "fronts" where soldiers of all kinds can fight "eyeball-to-eyeball." Islamic terrorists are in many different countries and are working, independently of each other, taking their direction from the top Islamic mullahs. Our enemy is the Islamic extremist who thinks anybody who doesn't believe the way he does is the enemy and is "fair game" to be murdered "in the name of Allah." One thread that goes through all the terrorist activity in the world (with the possible exception of that in Ireland) is Islam. More particularly, Wahabe Islam. The Wahabe sect of Islam is the most "far out there" bunch there is -- and their major base of operations is Saudi Arabia, where Wahabeism is the "national religion." (source)
This is clearly understood by many. What is NOT understood is the Nature of Terrorists. In this, Dr. Ayyangar has hit the nail on the head.
Terrorism is a criminal act. Criminals never have "reasons" but they always everywhere have only "justifications."
A "reason" by implication has "rationality" ingrained in it as the essential element. No logic whatsoever is rational for terrorism as it is patently "a threat to survival" of the civil society as a whole. (Ayyangar Source)
I agree with Dr. Ayyangar.
I also agree with his "solution" although I think his solution is incomplete.
There is only one way to tackle and stop terrorism -- "enhanced counter terrorism" -- that is to subject the terrorists and their families to the same, or, very much more intensity of pain & agony they cause to the innocent public by their actions. I include their families because they have failed in their social duty & responsibility to shape their children into rational human beings and hence will have to pay the price. No other humane method can ever be understood by the terrorists --- as they have learnt no other language -- and hence will not work.
It is a gross failure on the part of the society to think that "human rights" will have to be followed & applied while dealing with the terrorists. This is the most imprudent way, as this equates good & bad for identical treatment, instead of differentiating. (Ayyangar Source)
I agree with Dr. Ayyangar's solution, in part, and further validate it as a policy followed by the English Colonial Government in India and elsewhere. Some of the people in India, during Colonial rule, were, also, dealing with a "foe" (the British forces) that was so much stronger than they that they had to resort to terrorist methods. We don't much hear of those years, in India, because the British Rulers followed a very strict policy they had started in their home lands.
So what is hue and cry? I tracked it down to the statute of Winchester (1285) or even earlier. During Anglo-Saxon (500 to 1066 AD) times, communities were divided into groups of 10 families. Each group was called a tything and was headed by a “tythingman”. Each member of a tything was responsible for the collective good behaviour of the others in the group.
So if a member of a tything committed a crime, others had to catch the offender and bring him (or her) to court. Failure to do so resulted in a collective fine. And there was a responsibility of “hue and cry” if anyone actually witnessed a crime being committed. The “hue” part meant things like sounding horns. The “cry” part was verbal shouts. When a hue and cry was raised, everyone between the ages of 12 and 60 had to join in the chase to catch the criminal. The Normans (1066 to 1485 AD) retained this idea and the statute of Winchester was England’s first Police Act. Other than hue and cry, inhabitants of a region were also responsible for crimes committed within that region. (source)
So, there is precedent in political history for causing harm to the FAMILY of a terrorist (bomber or not!). This would certainly be the opposite of the incentive, even now being paid from Saudi Arabia, and others, to REWARD the family of a suicide bomber.
Next on the list was Iraq, where Saddam Hussein was actively helping them [terrorists] as well, as the intelligence will ultimately prove, whenever we are able to release it to the public. He did openly announce that he was going to give $25,000 (a "King's Ransom" to the poverty-stricken Arabs) to the family of each person who blew him/herself up and killed Israelis in Israel (Yes, Israel. The Palestinian terrorists are also Muslim). (Source)
This old English policy, indeed, would be visiting upon a terrorist more harm than his own death -- which he has already offered in exchange for martyrdom. If he thought that his wife and children would all be killed, because HE decided to kill himself, well he might have second thoughts.
If killing the wife and children were not enough, obviously we could go further -- and actually get what we now have -- we visit harm on those in the vicinity of some suspected INDIVIDUAL terrorist leader.
But, it would largely dry up the inventory of willing suicides to know that their death would bring death to their loved ones. The accidental death of a kid on a street? Probably this would not deter the bomber.
When and as the terrorist has NO loved ones, he might be beyond even this reach, but it would pretty much handle much of the larger problem of suicide bombers.
I think it would be morally better to kill the bomber's wife than some child who accidentally was standing near the target of an Israeli assassination attack.
Oh, true, we could not always find the family, but let's get the "easy ones" first, and then go looking if necessary!
Is this a hard-nosed attitude? Yes indeed. I think it is also moral because it satisfies the compelling moral criteria of "the greatest good for the greatest number."
The final note here is that Dr. Ayyangar has NOT mentioned the sine qua non of victory in war. The terrible truth is that force, in sufficient quantity, will quell any riot or group of terrorists. But, in the long term such force has always caused even worse harm to the victors.
The only way to win true victory is to use force AND intelligence. Neither one, by itself, brings any lasting peace. This planet has never properly applied both -- hence this planet has not had peace in our times or in early times.
Every "great civilization" on earth has perished!
India has an early history of pacifism.
Fortunately more and more Indians are beginning to see the need for applied force. I can only hope that India will further see the need of using intelligence to remove the original source of the criminal behavior.
For that I think there is a simple solution -- the level of morality on this planet stinks. We went through eight years of the worst possible role model of morality in the person of Bill Clinton.
That immorality has now become evident in much of America; look at the scandals on Wall Street and the drug scene in schools.
That is why THIS discussion forum can make a difference in the world -- it needs more people to read, to participate and help spread the common sense code of morals excerpted on the web site, Here.
Post Number: 9
|Posted on Tuesday, September 09, 2003 - 07:05 pm: ||
I am in complete agreement with Mr. Karl Loren. FEAR is the KEY to deal with terrorists at the beginning. Moral education is the second step to make the change in them permanent.
Post Number: 40
|Posted on Thursday, September 11, 2003 - 08:00 pm: ||
Well said, Dr. Ayyangar.
Fear would be lessened, unfortunately, when the foolish Democrats constantly talk of retreat -- pretending that the US has no resolve.
Bush will take us through -- I hope.