Yeah, it was a big blunder to condemn these guys. What’s a few wanton murders of innocent civilians among friends? From Qatar’s Peninsula On-line, with thanks to Twostellas:
DOHA: The US has made a big mistake by branding outfits like Hezbollah and Hamas as terrorists, which are in fact fighting for their national interests, according to Henry Laurens, a French expert on Middle East affairs, who is currently visiting Qatar.
Laurens, who is a professor at College de France, has written extensively on Middle East issues, especially Palestine. He has just published a book in French titled The Arab East at American time: From Gulf War to Iraq war.
“Hezbollah and Hamas are not terrorists but nationalists. Once you brand them as terrorists, then you can not talk with them. This is the mistake that America has made. In fact these groups are ready to talk, unlike Al Qaeda and similar groups,” Laurens said in an interview with The Peninsula yesterday.
They are also different from Al Qaeda in the sense that they are functioning within their own countries and are not launching any bomb attacks outside their territory, he noted.
Asked about the so called “terror attacks” that are taking place in Iraq and Palestine, Henry said: “Instead of using the word “˜terrorist” I would prefer to describe them just as attacks, kidnappings or murders.
“The word terrorism is very vague and misleading since it has been used by different groups in different meanings. The US bombings in Iraq and the Israeli attacks in Palestine can also described as terrorist acts in the same way that the anti-US attacks in Iraq are termed as terrorism,” he observed.
One might suggest to this gentleman that a key difference is that the US goes out of its way not to hit civilians targets (although the Iraqis, like Hamas and Hizballah, make that as difficult as possible by launching attacks from civilian areas, in order to capitalize on civilian deaths that result from the response. Those responsible for abuses like Abu Ghraib are punished in the US. Those responsible for suicide attacks against civilians are celebrated as heroes by these “nationalist” groups.