Sunday, March 14, 2010


Glenn Greenwald's blog features a fascinating discussion about the history of uses of the word “terrorism." Greenwald highlights the fact that there is no international consensus regarding the use of “terrorism.”

I'd like to suggest simple definitions for "terrorism” and a new term, “quasi-terrorism.” I'd welcome your feedback.

1. "Terrorism": the purposeful use of force against non-combatants to achieve political ends, broadly defined.

2. "Quasi-terrorism": the use of force against combatants to achieve political ends in a way that involves indiscriminate harm to non-combatants, with minimal effort to limit such harm.


Miko said...

I'd say it depends on how you're defining "(non)-combatants." E.g., where do the actions of Mick Collins fit on this scale?

Doc Ellis said...

A lot depends on who is defining the words.
I offer the following for your entertainment:
A terrorist is a supercriminal against whom others justify superpenalties; these penalties are then available to impose upon you-Doc Ellis 124

Thank you for writing this. I tweeted this to FaceBook, MySpace,and LinkedIn