The world has had its fill of religion-inspired terrorists. But exactly who is a “terrorist”? In my book, a terrorist is someone who knowingly kills, maims or creates terror in innocent people for a political purpose. The political purpose might be to change a government (from secular to theocratic, from one economic system to another, from colonial rule to nation state, etc.) or change a policy (stop a war, stop abortion) or to take revenge. Most people only want to employ the term to those who kill, maim or create terror for reasons they disapprove of. I’m not in that camp. If you knowingly pursue policies that kill civilians by dropping a bomb from 15,000 feet (like John McCain) that’s not different from knowingly killing civilians by strapping a bomb to yourself to kill “enemy” policemen and also killing a bunch of innocent civilians along with them. I suppose I’d listen to an argument that a particular act of terrorism was justified, or at least understandable.
But it would still be terrorism. I guess that’s just me: