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Ali Eteraz Headshot

US Supports Terrorists That are Also Not Terrorists

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The Bush administration is known for its two wars. There is one on a feeling - terror; and one upon a country - Iraq. In 2003, the war on terror was used to justify the war in Iraq. How ironic, then, that today the war in Iraq helps demonstrate the absurdity of the war on terror.
The evidence is found in an October 23rd New York Times article entitled, "In Iraq, Conflict Simmers on a 2nd Kurdish Front." The piece discusses Kurdish insurgents from the Party for Free Life in Kurdistan, or PJAK, who are proudly waging a guerrilla war against Iran. The PJAK is an offshoot of the Kurdistan Worker's Party, or PKK, who instead of on Iran, proudly wage a guerrilla war against Turkey.

Now, the absurdity of the situation lies in the fact that while the US classifies the PKK a terrorist organization, it doesn't classify the PJAK as terrorists, because of the fact that it wages war on Iran. In fact, as the article notes, PJAK commanders boast of having significant contacts and consultation with American military officials. Astonishingly, the leader of the PJAK, which it should be emphasized again, is an off-shoot of a terrorist group, was actually allowed to visit Washington last summer.

The "war on terror" has been a complete political failure. It has not increased the American fan-base. It has not convinced anti-American populations to show sympathy to the US. It has, if anything, shown the complete lack of common sense in the administration. For example, recently the US labeled members of the official Iranian military a terrorist organization. The act of referring to members of a government as terrorists implies that the US believes in such a thing as State Terrorism, leading one to ask: if being a terrorist is merely a matter of someone applying a label, how is the US to resist being referred to as a state terrorists itself?

At the least, the idea that the US supports terrorists while simultaneously holding that they are not terrorists, should cause the loyalists of the so called "War on Terror" to stop, take a step back, and question the entire ephemeral project. Yet, they fail to do so; probably, because to acknowledge the contradiction would mean acknowledging the complete meaninglessness of waging wars that have no tangible definition, duration, form, and sometimes even enemy.
Of course, the US wouldn't be accused of double-speak if it hadn't made a Dadaist term the linchpin of its anti-terrorist programme. If, in an act of now anachronistic American honesty, the US had simply said that terrorism is violence by those whom we disapprove of, it would actually arouse a great deal of appreciation, even from its critics.

Instead, hypocrisy on the part of the US stokes anti-Americanism across the world because explicit violations of one's own standards - like supporting terrorists when it suits us - is considered hypocritical in every country in the world. Then we ask why they hate us.