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Terrorist or freedom fighter, the same old story

 
 
Reply Tue 7 Jan, 2003 11:45 am
I reproduce this article from Encyclopeadia Brittannica without comment.

Stern Group, or Lehi, formally LoRame Serut YisraÆel (Hebrew - Fighters for the Freedom of Israel) Zionist terrorist organization in Palestine, founded in 1940 by Avraham Stern (1907-42) after a split in the right-wing underground movement, Irgun Zvai Leumi.

Fanatically anti-British, the group repeatedly attacked British personnel in Palestine and even invited aid from the Axis powers. The British police retaliated by killing Stern in his apartment in February 1942; many of the gang's leaders were subsequently arrested. The group's terrorist activities extended beyond Palestine: two members assassinated Lord Moyne, British minister of state in the Middle East, at Cairo (November 1944). Later, the Stern Gang attacked airfields, railway yards, and other strategic installations in Palestine, usually with success, though at heavy loss in members killed or captured. After the creation of Israel (1948), the group, which had always been condemned by moderate leaders of the Jewish community in Palestine, was suppressed, some of its units being incorporated in the Israeli defense forces. Unlike the Irgun Zvai Leumi, a precursor of the Serut ('Freedom') Party, the Stern Gang left no political party to carry on its political programs.
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timberlandko
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Jan, 2003 12:03 pm
I voted "Both". I am familiar with the Jewish Partisan Activities, and draw distinction in that while the attacks were Terrorist in nature, the were directed at Occupation Forces military and administrative personnel and infrastructure. Irgun did not blow up Department Stores, Restaurants, or Commuter Busses as a rule.



timber
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Steve 41oo
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Jan, 2003 12:07 pm
Thanks timber

er but if everyone votes both....and everyone has so far....i don't think it gets us very far!
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Craven de Kere
 
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Reply Tue 7 Jan, 2003 12:07 pm
I voted both as I would vote about most Palestinians but timber's distinction is very relevant. The Palestinians are shooting themselves in the foot with their target choices. Attacking civilians and targets outside their territory is counterproductive to their own cause.
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Craven de Kere
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Jan, 2003 12:09 pm
freedom fighting and terrorist activity aren't mutually exclusive. The cause doesn't necessarily justify the means but the means by themselves don't have to precluse the cause.
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Steve 41oo
 
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Reply Tue 7 Jan, 2003 12:18 pm
Well I voted that they were terrorists. The last line in the article is the clincher. The term 'Freedom Fighter' suggests a political objective, which could be summarised simply as 'freedom'.

As the Stern Gang left no political message, they must have been simply terrorists.
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Steve 41oo
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Jan, 2003 04:18 pm
Timber, would you please feed that bloody bird, its getting on my nerves (!)
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cicerone imposter
 
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Reply Tue 7 Jan, 2003 04:43 pm
I agree with Craven: the Palestinians are shooting themselves in the foot. That's a good way to continue the military control by Israel. Not enough Arab countries are speaking out against the Palestinian terrorist activities against civilians, but seem to have unlimited criticism for Israel. c.i.
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Walter Hinteler
 
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Reply Tue 7 Jan, 2003 04:44 pm
Timber

You really should do something, Steve seems to get nervous, indeed:

http://www.millan.net/anims/giffar/giffar2/britflag.gif
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Equus
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Jan, 2003 04:51 pm
Freedom fighters don't intentionally kill the innocent.
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cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Jan, 2003 05:41 pm
They're dead none-the-less. c.i.
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najmelliw
 
  1  
Reply Tue 7 Jan, 2003 06:48 pm
Depends on a point of view I guess. If people around you are tergeted and killed by a group of fighters that call themselves freedom fighters, and you are not aware you, or the persons that were attacked and killed, have anything to do with the cause these fighters are fighting against, you would label them 'terrorists'
If you are, however, in the shoes of people that feel oppression by another party, and feel this is unjust, and want it to end, you are liable to call yourselves freedom fighters. Even if you kill to achieve your goals.
Even if you kill civilians to achieve your goals (I'm not saying this is just behavior for any group of freedom fighters, mind you). An eye for an eye, right? If they oppress your citizens, you oppress or kill theirs...
Besides, any civilian working in a country pays taxes to it's government, funds it uses to fight the freedom fighters and oppress their country. If one kills enough, a state will cease to function eventually.

Still, most outsiders feel(justly as far as I'm concerned) that if they are attacking and killing innocents in order to fight for their freedom, you're wrong. For even if they manage to win their freedom in this way, does one think they will cease targeting innocents? They'll likely use the same brute force to oppress those in their own country who voice protests against them.
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