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Jane Lake and Terrorist Bombs!

On Sunday morning, February 22, 1948 , in anticipation of Israel's independence, a triple truck bomb was detonated by Arab terrorists in what was then the Jewish section of Jerusalem . Fifty-four people were killed, and hundreds were wounded.

Terrorism isn't new and we don't live in a different world post 9/11.

What is new is that we now have more years of history that show that terrorism has never helped any terrorist's cause, has killed and injured ridiculous numbers of innocent people, and has brainwashed a generation of children that it is an inevitable part of our lives.

We urgently need to take a different tact, for the methods we have pursued have only resulted in more unfortunate deaths and continued terrorism. We need to look at terrorism like a disease and figure out how to cure it rather than treat the symptoms.

Education I believe should play a major part, and we as a world should be sending teachers into any country that breeds terrorism and educate their children before it is too late. There should be rewards offered to anyone in any country that uncovers terrorist activity. A world intelligence agency should be established that has access to every countries security databases to eradicate terrorism at its origins.

I don't have all of the answers, but I do know that unless activities like I am suggesting are implemented, we will be having the same conversation 50 years from now!

hmmm, a very interesting read and actually i agree that education does play a vital role....

However, I do think what culture has to do with it and with the non-existant of capitalism in the terrorist countries - there is nepotism, a huge concentration of wealth in very small circles and a plethora or religious advisers...

Terrorism is a symptom, not a disease. What is the disease, as the previous commenter said, Free Market Capitalism. Why are Jewish people hated around the world, because they are often wealthy. Why is Israel attacked, because it is a somewhat wealthy country and because its people are easily marginalized by the surrounding majority. Why is America hated around the world, 3 reasons. 1 We are all considered rich, even our poor are rich when compared with the poor of 3rd world countries. 2 We exploit other countries poor to manufacture products for our people and to keep the prices down on those products. 3 We interfere in the WORLD’s politics at almost every turn (usually for economic reasons).
Since I’ve identified the problem, dramatic economic disparity, how do we solve this problem? Investment in counties known to be terrorist breeding grounds. I also think education is important, however my focus is different. We should offer free public education in foreign countries such as Iran, Egypt Saudi Arabia, (pre war and post war) Iraq and Afghanistan. The education we provide them should be scientific, and secular. It should be better then the free education we currently get for free here, though it shouldn’t be better then the education we should get here.
The next thing I would do is impose a tariff on any products or services produced with foreign labor on any products produced under American minimum wage, and under American safety standards. This tariff would have to be harsh, at least every hour of production multiplied by 2 times the American standard wage plus 3 times the amount of money (per product) it would cost to upgrade the safety to American standards. Before you say it, yes many businesses will crumble, or complain about crumbling under their own economic strain. I would combat this problem with tax incentives as towards safety upgrades on foreign soil, and (re)building factories here. Obviously I would make the incentives for building here better then the ones for foreign soil, but not too much better. With these laws you would have an emerging global middle class. This middle class would be afraid of loosing what they have, and therefore would not resort to terrorism. Also through our free education they would learn that terrorism is not a very successful means of protest.

Have a great day

You know, terrorism is a tool used by the powerless as it is the only means to challenge a superior power. Ofcourse you may say that it has never helped the terrorist's cause but it has brought attention. Because of 9-11 Al Qaeda is a global player now. States pay attention to what they say and act accordingly. So if you look at from that perspective. They did get what they want. They got attention they never hadbefore.

While it would be nice to be able to change hearts and minds with education, how realistic is that? If it could be done, then could Nazi Germany have been brought down without the loss of American lives on the beaches of Normandy?
I for one, am getting to the point where I believe the only way to eradicate this problem is to break their spirit. The Germans and the Japanese didnt capitulate until their cities were turned to rubble. What would happen if Damascus was gone? Teheran gone? Do that and then ask who wants to be next? Might be a hardcore solution with the loss of many innocents lives......but in reality we are dealing with a hardcore enemy. Wahibbism was long ago referred to by many in the Arab world as literally "the darkness in the desert." I think it is time we banish it once again to the desert.
I've had enough.

Good article. Sometimes you have to treat the symptoms rather than cure then directly.

Come see us when you have the time, (click on the username) this is a great site.

Terrorism won't be solved by a show of force. There needs to be intense re-education as you point out.

Who knows, in 50 years, we should be able to selectively reprogram brains, make peace and live in a Utopia.

What country is going to let the do good police send in masses of teachers to educate their children? Never happen.

Even if it happened, they'd just go home and get filled with hatred and myths about the wonders of martyrdom.

Also I find it a bizarre concept that we would have world peace if only we weren't so wealthy.

Peace will come through victory. Delaying or stalling the victory results in more lives lost. Let's get it over with.

I agree, Jane, that the international response to terrorism up to this point has been utterly impotent, and even counter-productive. I also resonate with your symptom/disease analogy, but I must be frank. I find your suggested solutions as well as those from some other responders to be disturbingly Orwellian.

Pat is correct to notice that economics is a motivator in this war and should therefore be part of the solution, but I think it is only a minor player. Economic disparity better characterizes relationship strains between the North and South, whereas the “War on Terror” is an East-West conflict (recent terror suspects come from the middle class; Osama bin-Laden is filthy rich). By including education as part of the solution, Jane does put her finger on the nature of this world’s disease. Education indoctrinates a mode of thinking, and we are engaged in a battle of ideologies that pits Western secularism vs. radical Islam. The “War on Terror” is merely a red herring distracting us from the true nature of this conflict, a band-aide remedy for cancer.

Violence is not and can never be the solution to ideological warfare. An anonymous war-advocate points out that American military prowess and catastrophically deadly force cowed Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan to surrender and therefore is the best logical (by his logic) means to subdue our present enemy. What he fails to recognize is the different nature of these battles. WWII was spurred by nationalist and expansionist endeavors that pitted one unified nation vs. another. The Allied nations warred against the Axis powers. This is not the case today. While American nationalist pride may be on the line, we are not combating a nationalist foe. Our battle is against the violent ideology of radicalized Islam. This is an idea, a worldview carried by a minority of individuals living throughout the world, not just in specific countries. The most recent plot featured Britons as the primary perpetrators. Our task must be to eliminate the impetus for young Muslims (or anyone else) to radicalize. Bombing Baghdad, Damascus, Tehran, or Karachi to rubble increases rather than decreases this impetus. History teaches us that violent suppression of an idea or philosophy only energizes a movement (i.e. early Christianity).

Unfortunately, the education proposal is just as offensive. It represents more of the Western culture bombing that has been running rampant due to capitalistic globalization. It is this culture bombing that is partly responsible for terroristic radicalization. Think of the message the West would be sending to the East if we sent an army of teachers to their countries. It would say, “We [the West] have everything figured out and we know what is best for you. Our culture, customs, and perspectives are superior to yours, but out of the goodness and pity in our hearts we are willing to teach your ignorant, misguided children.” What an outrageous insult! Furthermore, indoctrination easily becomes subjugation.

You should notice the trend that more and more terrorists are “home-grown.” Anti-terrorism education must therefore begin at home. How do we do this? We must teach tolerance and acceptance of alternative worldviews and skin tones. Youth that feel marginalized and unconnected to their society are the ones that will adopt radical ideas and resort to radical behaviors to make their mark on society. This is evident through events like the Columbine shootings and this week’s foiled plot. There is nothing wrong with Islam or Arab/Eastern culture. In fact, these worldviews have a lot to offer the West, should we choose to be inquisitive instead of intolerant. The West must recognize that while the way we do things is successful for us, it may not be the best policy for everyone else. It is amazing how cultural differences can affect the form and structure of a functional and just society.

I believe the cessation of violent Western aggression in the Middle-East would be a huge step toward the reduction of terrorism. An international push to decrease rabid nationalism (which marginalizes foreign sub-cultures) and to increase ideological tolerance would reduce the pressure to become radical while promoting constructive international discussion on the problems all members of humanity share. After all, we are more alike than we think.


Interesting article.

I grew up with terrorists throwing petrol bombs through our windows and then later bombs going off in our shopping centers.

Those same people are now referred to as Freedom Fighters. They were also given the countries in Africa to rule with Independence given by the UK and other European countries.

Some have become good leaders and some have become dictators. The World turns a blind eye to the dictators.

I was about to reply to annon 5:22 when Josh did. Josh did a good job but I feel I should still say something to put the nail in the coffin. Anon 5:22 Germany and Japan were single nations and were easily separated from other nations. Back then Japanese didn’t consider themselves to be asian just like the Chinese or Korean, just as the Chinese and Korean would be upset with an association with the Japanese. He same thing is mostly true of Germany, except four Austria and Britain, they considered themselves to be ethnically superior to all Europeans. The only way to (maybe) end Islamic terrorism by means of force is to kill all of them. Which is just not possible, are we going to destroy every country in the middle east? Are we going to attack India an Pakistan, the two newest countries to get atomic weapons and two of the most populous countries in the world? Are we going to attack south east asian and European muslims? And certainly American muslims, no freaking way could we ever do that. And lets for the moment pretend we could, then who is next? We would already be Hitler for doing so, but who is next would we round up all the black people, all the Asians? All the gays? Catholics?
The Muslims aren’t 1 or 2 nations like Germany, Austria, Italy and Japan. Muslims are the largest religion on the planet, and if you start attacking them indiscriminately, as we have done in Iraq, it will fuel Islamic terrorism. However I will again point out that Islamic terrorism isn’t the only kind of terrorism.

The only way to fight terrorism is to make terrorism not profitable, former U.S. leaders have said “we won’t negotiate with terrorist” under the theory that negotiating with terrorists will encourage more people to commit acts of terror. This is not completely off-base but as a people we should investigate why they are committing these acts. Does anyone know why 911 happened? There was an investigation as to how, but never why. 911, and every other terrorist act is a political demonstration, an evil kind but it is still a political demonstration. So how do we stop terrorism? We make everyone who would become a terrorist think that they have a voice in how the world is run without resorting to killing others, and themselves. The terrorists have political agendas but feel disenfranchised and therefore strike out. They wouldn’t strike out if they felt they had real political power. So here is what we do, we give it to them. We set up a world wide organization that represents nations according to population size. We have the representative for that country be democratically elected, and then the people of Afgahnistan would feel individually as powerful as Americans. They will still be poor ( for a time) but will feel empowered to make changes. All current world government organizations seem to ignore population in regards to national power so this would be a revolutionary system.

My previously mentioned solution was education. Yes it does imply that we, and they, think that our education system is better then theirs. But clearly don’t we? So why pretend we don’t. Another question is do they think it is better? By and large every middle eastern that can tries to get into American or European schools… I also did mention that these would be VERY GOOD SCHOOLS, not like the ones the average American now has, but like the ones they should have. If you didn’t notice I also paired economic investment into these countries infrastructure and manufacturing. Ecconomy can not be over looked. Osama bin laden may have some money, he may even be rich, but clearly he is not as rich as he wants to be. He thinks the cost of a barrel of oil should be at least 100$. As I’ve said before Terrorists attack because they feel they have no political power to change the system. Osama is attacking in protest of the west “steeling” his people’s wealth. He believes that oil is vastly under priced and that his people will be hurt by it. These are economic disputes.

The only way to make everyone not want to kill anyone is to give them enough money to be afraid to loose it. As always I’ve presented global socialism as a means to do that.
have a nice day

Jane, great job. The site looks fabulous! And I did take the pop-unders out..... Thanks for the quick note.

Terrorism has benefited many causes.

It was "terrorism" that helped to bring down the apartheid state in South Africa. It was "terrorism" that contributed to the defeat of Nazi Germany in WW2. It was "terrorism" that legitimized the cause of independence movements around the world that later resulted in politcal solutions to fundamental problems.

These groups would get no attention to their cause if they were simple political activists. In the developed world, I think in general it is tough to justify terrorism. In the third world world where power often extends from the barrel of a gun, terrorism is the only method to induce change.

When the change is moral and just, it begs the question of ends justifying means. History has proven that in many cases, we are prepared to answer yes to that question.

I think what you so easily forget is that history is written by the winners. Terrorism has historically played a vital role in the formation of almost every country in the world... however it's easier to sleep at night looking at it through the lens of patriotism or nationalism. You mentioned the 1948 bombing in Jerusalem, but you neglect to the mention the Zionist terrorist attacks against Arabs and Brits in the '30s and '40s. Then they were "terrorists," today they are "freedom fighters." Don't get me wrong, I don't support terrorism, but I do acknowledge that it is as effective a means of war as any, regardless of whether you agree with the motivations of those conducting the war.

Truly, do you believe America's hands are clean of terrorism? The first and only time we used nuclear weapons was absolutely unnecessary and simply for political gain... Japan was preparing to surrender to Russia, but in order to establish ourselves as a superpower, we had to bring them to their knees and have them surrender to us. That is as best an example of state-sponsored terrorism as I can find from any reputable source.

The disease you are really pointing at is fundamentalism, which itself is just a symptom of poverty and lack of education.

Oh, and in response to the anonymous poster to said Jews are hated because they are often wealthy... this is not the case, just a stereotype that helps perpetuate the antisemitism. The true reason Jews are hated all over the world is because they are Jewish before they are anything else. Throughout history, Jewish people have clung to their religious identity above all, to the point of not assimilating in any society outside of their own. Even today, the term "Jewish" isn't just a religion... it's a cultural identity, an ethnicity, a race. I'm not saying this is a bad thing - on the contrary, it's good to have that kind of identity - however, this has historically created a lot of suspicion and mistrust. Imagine asking someone what their ethnic background is and they say "I am Christian" or "I am Muslim" - it's nonsensical to our current view of the world, but "I am Jewish" is a perfectly reasonable response, even for Ashkenazi Jews who are ethnically not related to "Palestinian" Jews. According to certain interpretations of Jewish laws, you could practice a completely different religion and still "be a Jew."

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