Hate. Not Terror.

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Hate.

That—so far—is the semi-official motive for the shooting of six women by a Muslim man at a Seattle Jewish community center. One woman died in the attack.

"I'm a Muslim American; I'm angry at Israel," Naveed Afzal Haq, 30, is reported to have yelled before he started shooting.

The attack also came after the official federal anti-terror agency, the FBI, warned Jewish organizations nationwide that the most recent spate of violence in Middle East could prompt attacks on them.

Yet, like Mohammed Reza Taheri-azar's attack at UNC-Chapel Hill in March, there is great reluctance to label Haq's attack an act of terror. Why?

Is it because a terror attack would pre-empt Bush administration claims that its policies, like the PATRIOT Act, have kept America terror-free since 9/11? Is it an attempt to deny that violence in the Middle East does, the evidence indicates, motivate some to do violence in the U.S.? Or do we have some unspoken notion that terror can only result from a conspiracy of two or more persons? Or is it bodycount?

I don't get it.

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  1. My gut reaction was that this was not an act of terror, but I had to tease out the reason. The main thing that would keep me from defining this as terrorism is that the man was not part of, or acting on the behalf of, a goal-oriented organization whose methods include acts of illegal violence (insert snarky comment about how that sounds a bit like our government, doesn’t it? here). It’s actually a good thing that acts of terror are not generally defined so broadly as to include events like this, because that would increase the scope of the war on terror massively and give it an excuse to continue forever (insert more snark here if you wish.)

  2. “Terrorism” is defined by the FBI as “the unlawful use of force or violence against persons or property to intimidate or coerce a government, the civilian population, or any segment thereof, in furtherance of political or social objectives.”

    The shooting here doesn’t particularly fit that definition, as it’s not yet apparent that the killer was specifically acting “in furtherance of political or social objectives,” as opposed to being nuts. I would also agree that there is a reluctance to refer to the acts of lone individuals as “terrorism,” yet I think that is the correct approach unless that individual makes dramatic political statements in conjunction with the crime (see the Unabomber) that verify he has rationally plotted out the act. I don’t think a schizophrenic who walks into a building and begins shooting while screaming about black helicopters can be considered a “terrorist” even if his actions are seemingly driven by political considerations.

  3. An act of terror is intended to achieve political goals through violence. This guy was just angry and wanted to kill some Jews.

  4. I feel similarly as the above, with the caveat that those acts we uncontroversially describe as terrorist attacks are not necessarily as political as we think.

    Just because someone says they blew up X in order to free the people of Y doesn’t mean that they couldn’t have hated the people of X so much that they just decided “fuck it, I’m gonna blow a few up” and then came up with an ex-post-facto reason.

  5. One witness did say that Haq proclaimed that it was a “hostage situation” and he made a demand that the U.S. get our weapons out of Israel. While he may be a total freelancer, that would meet the threshold of trying to get a government to change its policies by threatening the lives of civilians. Now, if this fellow turns out to be deranged, that’s another thing, but I’d say he’s at least as much a “terrorist” as the mugs who used to hijack planes and demand they be flown to Cuba. They ususally didn’t have any real connections to an international terror network. The Beltway Snipers didn’t, either, did they?

    Kevin

  6. “Is it because a terror attack would pre-empt Bush administration claims that its policies, like the PATRIOT Act, have kept America terror-free since 9/11?”

    If that were the case, the Seattle Times would be all over the terrorism angle.

  7. “Is it because a terror attack would pre-empt Bush administration claims that its policies, like the PATRIOT Act, have kept America terror-free since 9/11?”

    No, it is because to call it terrorism would mean admitting that Muslims living in America are capable of committing terrorism and do it in the name of the “religion of peace”. We can’t have any of that. Nothing to see here. Move along.

    Since this guy was an immigrant, I think we can safely define anti-semetic terrorism as another job that Americans just won’t do.

  8. So Jeff, what’s to get? And to who are you framing you question to? The Seattle Times? The fact is a guy walked into a building and shot six women, killing one. He should be procecuted accordingly, regardless if it is an act of “hate” or an act of “terror.” I don’t read reason to get caught up in semantics.

  9. Not only do terrorist organizations attract sociopaths, but also provide them with justification/motivation/inspiration for such actions.

  10. Its interesting that nobody is calling it a terrorist attack, but I don’t think its any sort of political policy to make people feel safe, or protect the white houses credibility. Like an earlier commentary mentioned, in a city like Seattle the press would jump at the chance to blame Bush. When I heard about it yesterday evening it didn’t occur to me that it might be a terror attack, even after I found out the shooter was a muslim who was angry at Israel. It just seemed to me that it was another incident of weird violence in seattle this summer.

    I can’t think of a good reason why this shouldn’t be called a terrorist attack, but I think the reason people aren’t is because they’re applying a heuristic about what terrorism is and isn’t. If this involved explosives instead of guns, and involved more than one person, I’m sure people would jump up and declare this a terrorist attack, but since it was one lone shooter most people don’t notice the factors like hostage taking and political statements that could qualify this as terrorist.

  11. That is the problem with the word “terrorism” is a mass murder terrorism or murders. Columbine did not have any explicit goals, was it a terrorist attack or 2 teens that lost it and went on a rampage. You could play the terror vs. mass murder game in a lot of cases and trying to choose the correct term for it seems sorta pedantic to me.

  12. “They ususally didn’t have any real connections to an international terror network. The Beltway Snipers didn’t, either, did they?”

    I wouldn’t call the Beltway Snipers “terrorists”; they were spree killers as evidenced by the fact that they shot people at random with no real effort to communicate a political message.

  13. No matter the semantics, it’s a tragedy. Victims of a metaphysical mind gone wild.

    Who knows the conversations that surrounded his dinner table?

  14. Terrorism” is defined by the FBI as “the unlawful use of force or violence against persons or property to intimidate or coerce a government, the civilian population, or any segment thereof, in furtherance of political or social objectives.”

    By that definition the acts on 9/11 were not terrorism. There were no demands made by the 9/11 hijackers. They did not demand a release of prisoners, nor did they demand that the U.S. remove troops from the middle-east, end the Iraqi embargo, etc.

  15. While wrong and tragic, I think we all need to acknowledge that this shows a kind of progress: The attacker was motivated by actual activities of actual Jews in Israel. It seems to me that’s a big improvement over attacks motivated by anti-Semitic myths and wacko conspiracy theories.

    So hurray for that.

    Now we just need to get everybody to move beyond guilt-by-association and punishing the innocent for the actions of distant unrelated people of the same religion or ethnicity.

  16. Is it because a terror attack would pre-empt Bush administration claims that its policies, like the PATRIOT Act, have kept America terror-free since 9/11?

    All of the demands that I saw to declare the UNC incident an act of terrorism came from rightwingers. I don’t know why someone would hesitate to call these things terrorism, but if you look at who’s calling them terrorism and who isn’t it’s clear that this isn’t the explanation.

  17. I don’t get it.

    It’s simple:

    1) Although this is a religiously motivated attack, its hardly something the administration can use to scare the American people with. If it was something splashed over CNN and Fox, with 24/7 coverage, then they can try to make political hey out of it.

    2) Despite the GOPs support for Israel to placate the Left Behind crowd, voting demographics indicate that most American Jews are are going to vote Democrat, so there is no need to suck up to them by proclaiming this an act of anti-jewish terrorism.

    Is it because a terror attack would pre-empt Bush administration claims that its policies, like the PATRIOT Act, have kept America terror-free since 9/11?

    Color me a cynic, but I don’t think that the American people would be smart enough to make the connection if another 9/11 scale terrorist attack would occur. As we’ve seen, when people are scare they go running to authority, even if it’s a corrupt dimwit like Dubbya. Yeah, you have the Dems screaming and belly aching over the obvious failure of Bush’s anti-terrorism policies, but notice that despite all the stupid things he’s done, he still have an approval rating of around 30-35% of fanatically loyal followers who think Dubbya can never do any wrong. (My dad being one of them.) That might sould abysmal, but it would take much to push it up to a level where the GOP could sustain their power. Scare enough people, scapegoat the liberals and ACLU of standing in the way of having the tough laws the government needed to fight “Islamo-fascism,” and I think those approval numbers will start to rise.

  18. [Since this guy was an immigrant, I think we can safely define anti-semetic terrorism as another job that Americans just won’t do.

    Comment by: John at July 29, 2006 03:28 PM]

    That’s ROFLMAO funny! Excuse me while I go clean the coffee out of my nose.

  19. Edit: That might sound abysmal…

  20. Since this guy was an immigrant, I think we can safely define anti-semetic terrorism as another job that Americans just won’t do.

    Muslim immigrants taking anti-semitism away from hard-working, white, American bigots? Boy, Pat Buchanan is really going going to be pissed!

  21. WorldNet Daily is calling it a terror attack.

    I saw their headline before this blog posting. I immediately disregarded it as the right-wing Christo-facsist overreaction (I only go to WND to remind myself why I don’t vote Republican and to read Walter Williams’ columns).

    It’s not a terrorist act. It may be a “hate crime” (whatever that is).

    mjs

  22. SR: I thought that John Allen Muhammad had professed motives for his shootings that were political: punishing the U.S. for dissing NoI head Louis Farrakhan, payback for slavery, etc. There was also supposed to be a ransom, which JAM would use to train more acolytes like Malvo. Perhaps this wasn’t played up at trial because there was so much physical evidence, but Malvo’s testimony made it plain that JAM presented himself as some kind of jihadi. I dunno, maybe it was all just an excuse to kill people for the power trip, and the radical Islamic talk was just frosting on the nutcake. It didn’t seem to me that JAM was anything but a self-starter, though.

    One of the MSM’s criticisms of the “War on Terror” model is that an outfit such as “Al Qaeda In Iraq” can just take that name without actually being in contact with Osama’s group. That doesn’t mean that they aren’t following a similar, if not identical, ideology. In fact, the very decentralized and imitative nature of such endeavors is actually a feature, not a bug, of the bin Laden strategy. Al Qaeda isn’t the Comintern.

    The first time an “international terror network” was declared to be attacking the decent people of the world was back in the 1970s. Journos like the Reader’s Digest‘s Claire Sterling mapped out the connections between various radical groups and state sponsors such as the Soviet Union. This model doesn’t map well onto the Islamist terror groups, though the case of Syria, Iran and Hezbollah in Lebanon might. The whole U.S. invasion of Iraq would have made more sense if it could have been sold to Americans as a way of taking down a regime that supported terrorist groups. That Saddam did some of that – promising bonuses to the families of Palestinian suicide bombers, frex – is public record, but nobody would put Iraq in the Oughts on a par with Taliban-led Afghanistan or 1970s Libya. IMNSHO the Bush administration had plenty of analysts expecting to find a terror network that was more like the 1970s version than the one we face today.

    Lone nuts may commit acts of terrorism, but that doesn’t necessarily make them part of a “terror network.” In the old Soviet days the KGB and/or GRU wouldn’t trust somebody like that.

    Kevin

  23. Edit: Boy, Pat Buchanan is really going to be pissed.

  24. Meanwhile, in California, another anti-Semitic attack occurs in Malibu, as rosary beads are mixed with alcohol:

    Mel Gibson (“F*ck*ng Jews!!!”)stars in
    CHRIST!! THE PASSION!!

  25. Governments cannot claim to be able to put an end to the anti-social, uncooperative tendencies of the human mind for the reason that governments derive their powers from precisely those tendencies. At the least, governments have a confllict of interest.
    In a way, the word, “terror,” itself incites violence, because it authorizes governments to declare war on something that doesn’t even affect some people. All during this latest War on Terror, I have not been terrorized. I have continued to go about my business. In fact, shouldn’t there be on a war on people who HAVE been terrorized, because they are not being patriotic? They have allowed the terrorists to win.
    It’s like declaring a war on gambling–another area causing ambivalent feelings about the proper role of government–because gambling causes losers.
    What about the winners it causes?
    I’m a “winner” of terrorism, but I sure do disapprove of the anti-social and uncooperative tendencies of the human mind, and I’ll fight my own, personal war, thank you, on those tendencies right here in the H&R Temple of the Vestals.

  26. This is an interesting conversation. It’s a tough question.

    I’ll throw out an irrational thought:

    If a Muslim strapped on a suicide bomb at a Jewish center instead of going in with a gun, I think the press would be going nuts, and few of us would question that it was a terrorist act. All other facts could be equal, except that he would be killed, too. But, the imagery of the suicide bomber would be an unavoidable mental trigger.

  27. I’m in general agreement with a good number of the above commentators that the missing agreement was instrumentality – the intent to achieve some goal greater than the act itself. I’d note, however, that this definition would still leave a good number of “hate crimes” classifiable as terrorism – for example, the recent campaigns by the Avenues gangs of east L.A. to maintain their neighborhoods’ hispanic character by assaulting a/o killing random local blacks, or the similar historic campaigns against neighborhood integration conducted by caucasian groups.

  28. Jon: “I think we all need to acknowledge that this shows a kind of progress: The attacker was motivated by actual activities of actual Jews in Israel.”

    Where did you get the “was motivated” part? I can’t imagine he went from a neutral bias, 3 weeks ago, to this extreme in the scenario you paint above.

    No, I don’t need to acknowledge this.

  29. “for example, the recent campaigns by the Avenues gangs of east L.A. to maintain their neighborhoods’ hispanic character by assaulting a/o killing random local blacks,”

    That’s terrible and it’s the first I’ve heard of such. If it were caucasians targeting hispanics, it would be all over the national headlines. If it were whites targeting blacks, the cities would be burning…. again.

  30. Since this guy was an immigrant, I think we can safely define anti-semetic terrorism as another job that Americans just won’t do.

    For the last damned time, Arabs are semitic peoples as much as Jews. Not that the term “semite,” being derived from the name of one of the sons of Noah, and applied to his supposed descendents, isn’t archaic and poorly aligned with linguistic and ethnic reality.

  31. Don writes: “Where did you get the “was motivated” part? I can’t imagine he went from a neutral bias, 3 weeks ago, to this extreme in the scenario you paint above.”

    Oh, I’m sure he didn’t go from neutral to shooting. I didn’t say he did. All that is required is that he be motivated to take his hatred to the next level, exceed the limits of civil behavior, and start shooting.

  32. “For the last damned time, Arabs are semitic peoples as much as Jews.”

    Some of us do know that. But in common usage the term “anti-semitic” has come to mean anti-Jew. You can rail against the incorrectness of that…but I think you’d be pushing a chain uphill.

  33. “I’m a Muslim American; I’m angry at Israel,”

    This illustrates one of the things that’s wrong with defenders of Israel making the ridiculous equation that to attack the policies of the Israeli government is to attack Jews. Monsters like Naveed Afzal Haq are all too ready to accept the erroneous equation: Israel=The Jews.

    What ever it’s called, this guy deserves no more liberty for the rest of his existence.

    Jeff:

    I don’t get it.

    Sounds to me like you get it very well cuz you see the contradictions. Another contradiction is blindness to the terrorism that governments, including governments who are “friends” of our government, commit. Governments are, by far, the worst terrorists.

  34. “Since this guy was an immigrant, I think we can safely define anti-semetic terrorism as another job that Americans just won’t do.”

    All my information says this was an American citizen.

    He declared a political agenda, began shooting, called the police himself, said he had hostages, then gave himself up. I am gonna bet he wants to use his trial as a way to make political points.

    He was a loner.
    IHMO, this was an act of politically motivated terrorism.

    The more interesting case in Seattle was the recent capitol hill massacre where the killer acted to stop what he perceived as the depraved sex acts and immoral behavior of the Seattle rave crowd (much higher body count). Does his act count as terrorism? Or does the fact that he killed himself at the end make him just a psycho? Doesn’t involve any of the groups in our current war on terror, but it seemed like a particularly violent shot in the culture war we hear about.

  35. How long until Haq’s job at Hanford Nuclear Facility leads someone to talk about the possibility he was handing radioactive materials to the terrorists?

  36. “There was also supposed to be a ransom, which JAM would use to train more acolytes like Malvo.”

    True, there was the ransom demand, but if you’ve heard the tape it sounds almost like a comedy routine of an inept crook who’s suddenly found himself way over his head trying to do a scene from a movie after he’s become a much bigger celebrity than he had planned on. Also, the racial angle comes across more as an after-the-fact justification when you consider that the snipers also killed several black people and that they apparently had no knowledge of their victim’s identities in almost all instances.

  37. jw,
    “If it were caucasians targeting hispanics, it would be all over the national headlines. If it were whites targeting blacks, the cities would be burning…. again.”

    Here are the most up to date number readily available…

    [In 2000, there were 933 hate crimes reported in LA County, an increase from previous years. Of the 933 crimes reported in 2000, 562 were racially based, 218 involved sexual orientation, 148 were motivated by religion, three related to gender and two involved disability. There was a 22.7% increase in racially motivated crimes from the previous year.
    – LA County Commission on Human Relations, 2002

    Hate crime offenders in 2000 were overwhelmingly male: 89% of the suspects were under the age of 25.]

    It would only make the news if these trends have shifted significantly (I don’t know that these crimes are unusual enough in LA to garner lots of attention). But you are right about it being terrible if true (even if only part of a continuing trend). I don’t think the lack of reaction to this nationwide rises to the level of reverse discrimination, however.

    ps. I won’t expect a response.

  38. “A law-enforcement source said Haq had a licence to carry a concealed weapon.”

    Paging Mediageek. Paging Mediageek.

    ;~)

  39. “Hate crime offenders in 2000 were overwhelmingly male: 89% of the suspects were under the age of 25”

    Isn’t this the profile of street-corner drug dealers?
    Should government declare war on all “misunderstood yoofs”?
    It already has?
    Which is really incapable of understanding? Government or male yoofs?
    Bof?

  40. Ruthless,

    Yep.
    Of course it is also the profile of most violent criminals, drug dealers or not.

    Of note, Haq was well outside this age range and profile. His neighbors say he liked to talk about politics and guns.

  41. This illustrates one of the things that’s wrong with defenders of Israel making the ridiculous equation that to attack the policies of the Israeli government is to attack Jews. Monsters like Naveed Afzal Haq are all too ready to accept the erroneous equation: Israel=The Jews.

    I think that needs repeating, just in case John missed it the first time.

  42. A strong disclaimer here.

    I think Haq is a murderous bastard whose actions are indefensible and I agree that we should emphasize the Israel does not equal Jew (or more generally governments of a country do not equal people of that nationality)

    But there is often more context to these things than people believe. His choice of targets was not random. He did not pick just any ol’ Jewish target, but a specific one that had recently stated an opinion on the political/current events that seem to have motivated him. More reason to call this political terror rather than simple hate, IMO. Doesn’t justify his actions. But it is much easier to dismiss the complexity of the issue if you assume he is just an idiot who didn’t think about what he was doing.

    From Seattle Jewish Federation (the target)
    “In support of our Mission, we believe that:

    * The continuity of Jewish faith is paramount.
    * The centrality of Israel in Jewish life is essential.”

    ?Despite our variety of perspectives, the vast majority of us do share a visceral connection to Israel and the Israeli people,? said Robin Boehler, Board Chair of the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle. ?Because of that vital connection, we came together Sunday around three crucial points: First, that Israel has the right to protect herself and to defend herself and her citizens; second, that the international community must not be silent; and third, that we long for peace and enduring security for everyone in the Middle East.?

    http://www.jewishinseattle.org/jf/default.asp

    Haq missed the third point, obviously.
    Really sad.

  43. “Of note, Haq was well outside this age range and profile. His neighbors say he liked to talk about politics and guns.”

    In that case, he fit the H&R profile, eh?
    It’s a damn good thing we check firearms at the cyber door here in the Temple of the Vestals.

  44. But Ruthless,
    How’d’ya deal with those concealed-carry folks? You just have to trust ’em I guess. Unless there’s some fancy cyber gun detector that works through cyber clothing.

  45. It’s not terror, it’s just stupid. Dumbasses with guns have made it a very grim year in Seattle.

  46. ?Despite our variety of perspectives, the vast majority of us do share a visceral connection to Israel and the Israeli people,? said Robin Boehler, Board Chair of the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle.
    …….

    It pains me to say this, but a similar Jewish organization here in Sinincincinnati (Blue Ash community to be precise) recently held a demonstration in support of Israel that did nothing but incite violence.
    We were lucky here there was no violence. Not yet anyway.
    Whose bright idea–to hold pro-Israel rallies– is this anyhow?
    Makes PETA, with their nudity, seem like rocket scientists by comparison.

  47. This illustrates one of the things that’s wrong with defenders of Israel making the ridiculous equation that to attack the policies of the Israeli government is to attack Jews. Monsters like Naveed Afzal Haq are all too ready to accept the erroneous equation: Israel=The Jews.

    I think that needs repeating, just in case John missed it the first time.

    Comment by: AML at July 29, 2006 07:17 PM

    AML,
    Where is that posted? I know that I’ve read it sometime today, but I’ve been up and down this thread five times and haven’t found it yet.

  48. “Unless there’s some fancy cyber gun detector that works through cyber clothing.”

    I’ve long wondered about exactly how to have “cyber-sex.”
    Wait.
    Why am I axing MainStreamMan?

    smaaaaacky!

  49. It pains me to say this, but a similar Jewish organization here in Sinincincinnati (Blue Ash community to be precise) recently held a demonstration in support of Israel that did nothing but incite violence.
    We were lucky here there was no violence. Not yet anyway.
    Whose bright idea–to hold pro-Israel rallies– is this anyhow?
    Makes PETA, with their nudity, seem like rocket scientists by comparison.”

    Perhaps that whole first amendment thingydo? Have we really gotten to the point that we will have to tell Jews to stop having community centers and demostrations in support of Israel for fear of Muslim thugs? Screw that.

    What is so scary about this guy is not that he is part of Al Quada. It is that he was not part of any group at all. He just seems to be your ordinary devout Muslim nutcase who decided it was his duty to start killing people. If it Al Quada, the answer is simple; hunt down and kill everyone associated with Al Quada. If it is just a random Muslim and this becomes common, then what do you do? You can’t hunt down and kill every Muslim. What do you do if say .1% of the Muslims in this country decide to become freelance terrorists?

  50. I hate to say it, but when I first heard about the shooting, I thought it might be a deranged Sonics fan upset with Howard Schultz (“a friend of Israel”, according to the Seattle PI) for selling the team to Oklahoma.

    Hey, it could happen!

  51. Bago,
    Too true.
    It reminds me of summers in my home town where gun play is an all too common form of entertainment.

    But I disagree that Haq was most likely just an idiot with a gun… He chose his target based on his view of their actions as direct supporters of the IDF. I am sure if you hold Israel in low enough regard to want to kill people due to its actions statements like these get under your skin.

    “Volunteers in Service for Israel helps send volunteers from the Pacific Northwest on a two-or-three week program working in non-combat bases with the IDF and at hospitals….Volunteers will work alongside or under the direction of soldiers and perform duties such as packing food rations or medical kits, changing spare parts, gardening, painting, or cleaning. Work clothing (exchanged or laundered at Sar-El’s facilities) as well as work boots are provided and are appropriate to the tasks assigned.
    Although sometimes the work may seem menial, your efforts provide the additional man-hours to allow soldiers and other professional staff to focus their time where their skills are needed [Haq will read this as freeing up solders to they can get to killing Arabs]. It can be highly rewarding to know that you are helping Israel in this way.”

    And an idiot like Haq finds the justification he needs. Israel kills anyone who supports Hezb, therefore I can kill anyone who supports the IDF. Tit for tat never solves conflicts. Israel needs to find a better response, or this thing never ends. The Arabs need to find a better response or this thing never ends. The US needs to find a better response or this thing never ends…

  52. “Perhaps that whole first amendment thingydo?”

    John,
    It’s about the difference between laws and manners. The Bill of Rights and common sense.

    It’s a jungle out there.
    Why do you think the Vestals needed a temple of refuge?

  53. [It’s not terror, it’s just stupid. Dumbasses with guns have made it a very grim year in Seattle.]

    There’s lots of dumbasses out in Seattle and assorted looney tunes all along the Left Coast. Many of them don’t even like guns.

  54. Answer the terror/hate question this way: if they had caught him a week ago, would they have billed it as an “act of terror prevented” or not? I think the answer is an obvious “yes.”


  55. Where is that posted? I know that I’ve read it sometime today, but I’ve been up and down this thread five times and haven’t found it yet.

    Rick Barton at July 29, 2006 06:15 PM

  56. What do you do if say .1% of the Muslims in this country decide to become freelance terrorists?

    I think that we can prevent this menace by working harder to teach Darwinism in our public schools.

  57. AML,
    Thanks, I see it now. Don’t know how I missed it. I’ve been reading this screen for hours and hours the last few days. My eye hurts, too, so I think I probably need a break.

  58. “recently held a demonstration in support of Israel that did nothing but incite violence.
    We were lucky here there was no violence.”

    If the demonstration did nothing but incite violence, how was there no violence?

  59. “What do you do if say .1% of the Muslims in this country decide to become freelance terrorists?”

    Uh, the same thing you do when .1% of the Christians in this country decide to become freelance terrorists. See McVeigh, Timothy. I don’t think we rounded up all of the white trash in America to prevent future attacks, did we?

  60. …or that fat, white slob who set off the bomb in Olympic Stadium in Atlanta ’cause he didn’t like abortion. Was that terrorism?

    I hope they don’t start rounding up slobby, fat conservative leaning white guys. Myself and perhaps a majority of HnR would have to go underground….

  61. “If the demonstration did nothing but incite violence, how was there no violence?”

    Because it was cyber-violence?

    Seriously, how many times do you need to flick your bic?
    Are you not trying to incite the flame?

  62. “There’s lots of dumbasses out in Seattle and assorted looney tunes all along the Left Coast. Many of them don’t even like guns.”

    I’ll take the naked-bike-riding-don’t-like-guns dumbasses over the gun-toting kind any day.

    Note: the above is not intended to disrespect the gun-toting non-dumbasses…

  63. Jon H: “Oh, I’m sure he didn’t go from neutral to shooting. I didn’t say he did. All that is required is that he be motivated to take his hatred to the next level, exceed the limits of civil behavior, and start shooting.”

    So civil behavior can be defined as “a level of hate just before you murder/mame others”?

    Nope, I don’t need to understand that either.

  64. Again, I think it is pointless to argue whether this is a hate crime or an act of terrorism. It obscures the fact that six people were shot, one killed. Instead it focuses attention on things that shouldn’t be at issue, like the ethnicity of the victims and the suspect.

  65. ?This post has me scratching my head?

    Is Jeff trying to get in Michele Malkin’s pants? Because he’s sure working hard to agree with her on this one.

  66. Jason: “Instead it focuses attention on things that shouldn’t be at issue, like the ethnicity of the victims and the suspect.”

    If you remove that there would be no victims or murderer.

  67. So Ruthless, you are against the right to assemble, and freedom of speech. It isn’t sad that people use their first amendment rights, what is sad is that people react with violence.

  68. I agree with Mo, who said:
    That is the problem with the word “terrorism” is a mass murder terrorism or murders. Columbine did not have any explicit goals, was it a terrorist attack or 2 teens that lost it and went on a rampage. You could play the terror vs. mass murder game in a lot of cases and trying to choose the correct term for it seems sorta pedantic to me.

    I also agree with Larry Edelstein, who said:
    Just because someone says they blew up X in order to free the people of Y doesn’t mean that they couldn’t have hated the people of X so much that they just decided “fuck it, I’m gonna blow a few up” and then came up with an ex-post-facto reason.

    There’s a fuzzy line between the guy who kills people because he’s crazy and hateful, and the crazy hateful guy who kills people to intimidate the population into a particular response.

    I’m perfectly content to call them all murderers, put them in prison, and also go after anybody who helped them.

  69. Rick Barton:

    Surely you include the U.S. government as a terrorist organization, far worse than Hesbollah, Hamas, or smaller, less powerful governments. So Timothy McVeigh was simply resisting a terrorist organization. Unless you’re not paying your taxes, you are complicit in a terrorist organization and a legitimate traget for anybody resisting the terrorism of the organization you support. What’s your address?

  70. It’s “terrorism” if the government can use it as a reason to carpet-bomb…oops…”restore order to” and occupy…dammit…”bring freedom to” a territory. They’ve already got Washington state…

  71. Rick Barton-

    Attacking the policies of Israel is obviously not the same as attacking Jews, so stop belabouring the obvious. What does cosntitute an attack on Jews is making Israel out to be an evil Nazi-like regime that is the center of a world-wide conspiracy that involves craftily tricking the U.S. into attacking Iraq, possibibly, just possibly, by engineering 9/11–at the very least by having prior knowledge of 9/11 that it kept quiet, just hoping that thousands of American would be killed to advance Israel’s interests. That’s you and David Duke, buddy. Stop trying to hide your anti-Semitic sewage behind legitimate criticism of Israel’s policies. You do a great disservice to many courageous Israelis and Jews who do criticize Israel’s policies.

  72. “What is so scary about this guy is not that he is part of Al Quada. It is that he was not part of any group at all. He just seems to be your ordinary devout Muslim nutcase who decided it was his duty to start killing people. If it Al Quada, the answer is simple; hunt down and kill everyone associated with Al Quada.”

    Yeah, but at this point, it seems like anyone who wants to join Al Qaeda can, simply by stating it. No dues, registration, or initiation fee. Which is going to make it mighty tough to hunt down the membership.

    As to whether or not this constitutes an act of terrorism or not…well, it’s all a game of semantics. Whichever classification the government feels will make it appear competent and/or in control.

  73. Attacking the policies of Israel is obviously not the same as attacking Jews, so stop belabouring the obvious. What does cosntitute an attack on Jews is making Israel out to be an evil Nazi-like regime that is the center of a world-wide conspiracy that involves craftily tricking the U.S. into attacking Iraq, possibibly, just possibly, by engineering 9/11–at the very least by having prior knowledge of 9/11 that it kept quiet, just hoping that thousands of American would be killed to advance Israel’s interests. That’s you and David Duke, buddy. Stop trying to hide your anti-Semitic sewage behind legitimate criticism of Israel’s policies. You do a great disservice to many courageous Israelis and Jews who do criticize Israel’s policies.

    I’ve never heard Rick made a comment about a grand Jewish conspiracy behind 9-11. Though it is legitmate to question whether our involvement in Iraq is in part due to nudging from our ally in that region. It wouldn’t be the first time in American history that we went to war at the behest of an ally (see: Vietnam/France, WWI/European allies, etc.).

    Are some opponents of Israel racist against Jews? Sure. Just like some supporters of Israel are racist against Arabs, some opponents of affirmative action are racist against blacks and some opponents of gay marriage are homophobes. The knee-jerk reaction of calling opponents of Israeli policy anti-Semetic is just as tiresome as when opponents of affirmative action are called racist without addressing the substance of the arguement.

    Not to mention, there are supporters of Israel that make the exact same mistake of comflating Jews with Israel, such as when they lament why American Jews don’t support Republicans even though the Republican party is the more pro-Israel party. However, if the political alignments were different and someone said that American Jews only vote for Republicans due to Republican support of Israel, they’d be called anti-Semetic so fast it would make your head spin.

  74. Mel Gibson has found some form of alcohol that makes you angry at Jews. It also makes you drive recklessly. Mel’s apology.

    Mel Gibson may have the answer. We only need to find out what he was drinking so we can ban it.

  75. Would that be “Madaschevitz” or Mogen David’s 20/20 aka “Mad Dog”? 🙂

    Kevin

  76. Mel’s apology is actually here.

    Kevin

  77. A distinction without a difference.

    Hate crimes, terrorism, political violence – they’re one and the same, and should be covered by the same statute.

  78. kevrob: “Would that be “Madaschevitz” or Mogen David’s 20/20 aka “Mad Dog”? :)”

    Those need banned no matter:(. They have caused more headaches and babies to be conceived than love (which includes headaches).

    Thanks for the link correction.

    I find it interesting that Mel Gibson did not specifically address his comments directed at Jews. Such are his rights, such is freedom, such are/will be consequences.

  79. “So civil behavior can be defined as “a level of hate just before you murder/mame others”?

    Nope, I don’t need to understand that either.”

    We don’t have thought police here. There’s nothing *illegal* about anti-Semititic thoughts, no matter how irrational and distasteful they are.

    Same for any other bigotry – homophobia, etc.

  80. Jon H said “We don’t have thought police here. There’s nothing *illegal* about anti-Semititic thoughts, no matter how irrational and distasteful they are.”

    Posting is not thinking. It is post thinking;-)

  81. It doesn’t seem like terrorism to me. I mean, who’s terrorized? It just firms up everybody’s resolve.

    Take him as an ununiformed combatant and shoot him, is the right reaction.

    But you don’t need to wonder if it’s terrorism or not. It isn’t.

    Generically it’s more like an enforcer from organized crime. Do it our way or die. That’s defeated by shooting the guy and anybody like him.

  82. “So Ruthless, you are against the right to assemble, and freedom of speech.”

    Jason,
    What I’m saying is: Isn’t it a little silly to rally in support of Israel concurrent with Israel having killed many times more innocent civilians than Hezbollah, and in view of the fact that the US is already Israel’s ally?
    A rally of Jews in Lebanon or Jordan or Syria would make some sense, but not in the US.

  83. When you get hate in your mind it clouds any reasonable or rational thoughts associated with what one hates. It leaves little room for other possibilities.

    Sadam and Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah had/have their images, pictures and statutes always posted so people never get them, nor their purpose, out of their minds. It steels them.
    This is obvious mind control. Or there may be another purpose?

    Why one would want to defend this dominating, void of our first amendment rights, atmosphere is confusing, especially by those that vehemently defend self freedom.

    You must weed the garden so the flowers can bloom.

  84. Ruthless: “A rally of Jews in Lebanon or Jordan or Syria would make some sense, but not in the US.”

    That would be like obese people rallying in front of cannibals.

  85. Hate or Terror?

    I don’t know Jeff, who’s the person that gave the “semi-official” classification of “Hate”? it seems like a local cop or somebody would be making such a distinction right now. Does your question imply that somehow Rove called up and made sure that the local authorities didn’t give it the wrong label? It seems to imply a conspiracy.

    Ahh, Hit and Run continues down some weird path I can’t figure out.

    Personally, i don’t believe in thought crimes so I’ve never supported the “hate crime” labels.

  86. Joe:
    Surely you include the U.S. government as a terrorist organization,…

    Our government has indeed been guilty of terrorism as it has engaged in the violent victimization of innocent civilians. It also supports, with our tax money, other governments that engage in terrorism. The Israeli government is certainly guilty and gets the largest chunk of our foreign aid tax money.

    But there are other sad examples of our government supporting the victimization of innocent civilians that may come back to haunt us. Recall how our government’s support of the Israeli government’s brutal occupation motivated the 9/11 attacks. Well, it could be that the seeds of another terror attack against us are being planted, this time in Uzbekistan where our government is using our tax dollars to support the savage, soviet style dictatorship of Islam Karimov, the former head of the Uzbek Communist party. As the carnage that his regime inflicts on its own people mounts, so surely does the resentment that Uzbekis harbor toward Americans. And our government uses that pretext of “fighting terrorism” to justify its support of Islam Karimov’s torturing regime! Things would be so much better if we followed the wisdom of the founders of our republic and could prevail upon our government to pursue a more non-interventionist approach.

    So Timothy McVeigh was simply resisting a terrorist organization. Unless you’re not paying your taxes, you are complicit in a terrorist organization

    Come on, Joe, apply some logic here. One: Timothy McVeigh was a terrorist. Two: When people are forced to take an action, such as paying taxes, that action is obviously not evidence of their complicity.

  87. While I agree with Joe,

    “A distinction without a difference…
    Hate crimes, terrorism, political violence – they’re one and the same, and should be covered by the same statute.”

    I think Mediageek’s point gets to the reason the distinction matters.

    “As to whether or not this constitutes an act of terrorism or not…well, it’s all a game of semantics. Whichever classification the government feels will make it appear competent and/or in control.”

    There will be statements in the future supporting a policy that justify said policy based on the “acts of terror” it prevented (like the knuckleheads in Florida), and this succussful terrorist act will be ignored. If we were to classify it as terrorism,on the other hand, then a policy aimed at addressing terrorism would need to consider factors like the lone gunman without an organizational structure behind him. People like Haq are harder to stop and present a greater challenge to policy.

  88. Bob:

    What does cosntitute an attack on Jews is making Israel out to be an evil Nazi-like regime that is the center of a world-wide conspiracy that involves craftily tricking the U.S. into attacking Iraq, possibibly, just possibly, by engineering 9/11–at the very least by having prior knowledge of 9/11…

    Obviously those critiques are of the Israeli government and not Jews in general. Your comment is not only nonsensical; it plays right into the hands of anti-Semites.

    As I said before; One of the things that’s wrong with defenders of Israel making the ridiculous equation that to attack the policies of the Israeli government is to attack Jews is that anti-Jewish racists are all too ready to accept the erroneous equation:.

    Stop trying to hide your anti-Semitic sewage …

    You have no call or evidence to say that. In fact, I’ve confronted anti-Jewish racists on these threads. For an example, see:

    https://www.reason.com/hitandrun/2004/05/zionists_ate_my.shtml

    (Start at the comment by: Chet at May 8, 2004 08:37 AM)

    f you harbor any honor, you’ll apologize. Unfounded accusations of racism are as unethical as racism.

  89. …Make that: “*If* you harbor any honor, you’ll apologize. Unfounded accusations of racism are as unethical as racism.”

  90. Rick – somehow I doubt that “Bob” et al will have the balls to apologize. They appear to be mere simpletons whose own racist views taint their view of the world. They’re so worried about appearing racist, they loudly misdirect and project their prejudicisms on others.

    As you observe, “Your comment is not only nonsensical; it plays right into the hands of anti-Semites.” – perhaps Bob is playing into his own hands there.

    Sewage like “Bob” has no Honor.

    Comfort and condolonces to the victims, families, friends, and loved ones.

  91. I’m a Muslim American; I’m angry at Israel

    Typical extremism. Take out “Muslim” and “Israel” and you have an insanity defense for any number of miscreants.

    “I’m a ___________; I’m angry at ___________.”

  92. “I’m mad as hell and I’m not gonna take it anymore”!!

    Something like that, perhaps?

  93. That would be like obese people rallying in front of cannibals.
    ????

  94. Rick Barton:

    You’re either a moron or an anti-Semite if you can’t distinguish between criticizing specific Israeli policies and the demonization of Israel that parallels the traditional demonization of the Jews. Okay, I’m convinced that you’re moron, which lets you off the hook. I apologize.

  95. Bob – did you follow the link that Rick provided for you…it was very enlightening as to Rick’s true feelings.

    But I suspect you’re just trolling, so I should probably ignore you.

  96. Bob,

    The fact that some of the really hideous things that the Israeli government has done parallel some accusations of anti-Jewish racists doesn’t absolve the Israeli government any more than those acts implicate Jews in general.

    Now Bob, how many times must we explain this to you? Curious that you mentioned the word “moron”…

  97. It’s simple.

    It’s “terrorism” if it’s thwarted, that way you can show you’re doing a good job. If the act actually takes place, you have to call it “hate” otherwise people might think you’re not doing a good job in the war on terror.

  98. It’s simple.

    It’s “terrorism” if it’s thwarted, that way you can show you’re doing a good job. If the act actually takes place, you have to call it “hate” otherwise people might think you’re not doing a good job in the war on terror.

  99. Lowdog –

    It isn’t about criticizing Israel. It’s about taking the old time-honored anti-Semitic conspiracy theories and replacing “Jews” with “Israel.” It’s a neat trick. It’s a way of peddling the same vicious garbage while protesting that you would never harm a hair on a Jew’s head. Of course, it’s true that Israel and the Jews are not the same thing, but the scum that peddle the conspiracy nonsense know very well that the dimwitted paranoids that will buy their “evidence” will make the linkage. Most American Jews support Israel to some degree. If Israel is craftily controlling everything from American foreign policy to Al Qaeda, why do Jews support it? Aren’t they supposed to be smart? Are they disloyal? Whoa, hold on, don’t be racist! Israel is evil, but that doesn’t mean Jews are evil. Still, why do most Jews support Israel? See what I mean?

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