Terror or terrorism?

Norway has suffered the worst violence since World War II with at least seven people killed in an explosion at a government building and many more shot dead at a youth camp.

These are acts of terror although it is not yet known if they were acts of terrorism.

Regardless of who was responsible, it is a reminder of how vulnerable we all are.

When we were in New York earlier this month we had to pass through x-rays at the entrance to places like the Statue of Liberty and Empire State Building. But there were many other places with no obvious signs of security where someone determined to unleash terror could have done so.

Today’s attacks in Norway show it is impossible to guard everyone everywhere and no-one should  try to. Just as the British people learned to live with the threat of IRA bombings in the 1970s and 80s, we must accept sensible precautions but not let them curtail our freedom.

19 Responses to Terror or terrorism?

  1. robertguyton says:

    “Regardless of who was responsible, it is a reminder of how vulnerable we all are.”

    Spread the fear Ele.
    No matter that it’s on the other side of the world.

    Like

  2. homepaddock says:

    If you take the vulnerable in context with my final sentence Robert, I’m not spreading fear, just acknowledging risk and accepting we should get on with life in spite of it.

    Like

  3. gravedodger says:

    An interesting comment I read recently from one who endured the terror employed by the IRA during the “troubles”.
    A combination of ignoring and acceptance of what by its very randomness and statistical rarity allowed the rational and strong to just carry on and not give the bastards any satisfaction.

    I guess coining the term “troubles” rather than terror was an indication of that.

    Like

  4. robertguyton says:

    “The bombing and shootings in Norway overshadowed Key’s meeting with Obama. But he was quick to exploit Norway’s tragedy for political gain saying: “I think what it shows is no country large or small is immune from risk [of ‘global’ terrorism] and that’s why New Zealand plays its part in Afghanistan.” Truth is, the attacker was a rightwing Norwegian.”

    The threat comes from Right Wingers from your own country!

    There’s a scary thought Ele!

    Like

  5. Richard says:

    “Terror or Terrorism? ” -could be either but in my view terrorism is the most likely and the use of terror. Spent approx 4 years in total in Northern Ireland with the British Army in the late 60’s and 70’s. It was interesting how it developed. The IRA had a traditional ideological stand for many years. The criminal elements quickly joined under a catholic ticket as did those on the protestant side- UDF-etc. There was no military solution although it took years for politicians to recognize this. What was eventually sort was a political solution, underpinned by a sophisticated intelligence service to “wear” down the terrorists- so that they gave up, their numbers were diminished and recognized that a political solution was in their best interest.
    The same solution could come to Afghanistan.

    Everyone needs to accept that increased intelligence, often an unwelcome intrusion, is a cost for better security and a foil for terrorism.

    Like

  6. homepaddock says:

    Thanks for that insight Richard.

    “The threat comes from Right Wingers from your own country!

    There’s a scary thought Ele!”

    Yes, Robert – idiotz, zealots and worse to the left and right of us.

    Like

  7. gravedodger says:

    Update Ele, they have discovered significantly more victims of the shooting, around 80 on one news outlet.

    Like

  8. homepaddock says:

    I just read that tragic news too, GD.

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  9. Richard says:

    Robert, I am sure there is a caring side to your character but I do not see it in your remarks:
    “The bombing and shootings in Norway overshadowed Key’s meeting with Obama. But he was quick to exploit Norway’s tragedy for political gain saying: “I think what it shows is no country large or small is immune from risk [of ‘global’ terrorism] and that’s why New Zealand plays its part in Afghanistan.” Truth is, the attacker was a rightwing Norwegian.”

    What a stupid, insensitive remark. You are are quite prepared exploit a tragic event – still unfolding, to make a cheap shot for your political beliefs. Do you know what families are going through in Norway at this time? I doubt it. I think I do.

    I will give you a choice Robert.
    a. Retract your statement on this blog and apologize
    OR
    b. I will write to the Editor of “The Southland Times” and publish your remarks and let readers decide

    Up to you Robert- clearly there is a much darker side to you than I thought.

    Like

  10. robertguyton says:

    Richard – you’ve jumped the gun here. The comment isn’t mine. I surrounded it with quotation marks, standard practice when quoting from another source, though this time neglected to attribute it to it’s author, thinking that most blog readers would already have seen it. It’s from The Standard and if you’d like to send it to the Southland Times, feel free. Do be sure to attribute it correctly. I’m interested, naturally, in your threat to send the comment through to my local newspaper to ‘let readers decide’. It’s not often that kind of heavy-handed threatening behaviour surfaces on a blog, in fact, I don’t think I’ve ever seen it before.
    Now that you’ve made the threat Richard, I’m in limbo. I can hardly apologise for something that I’ve not said, or are you saying that quoting from another source is reason enough to be condemned for the words contained therein? That would put you in the difficult position of having ‘said’ it yourself, given that the very words are contained within your comment, just as they were mine. Should I counter-threaten to send the quote into the Southland Times and attribute it to you? (Of course not!)
    Clarification from you would be appreciated.
    As to ‘a much darker side’ – go with your original perception Richard. There’s nothing ‘dark’ about my world-view.

    Like

  11. robertguyton says:

    But having watched the coverage on TV of the massacre, I unreservedly apoligize for any offence I may have carelessly caused.

    Like

  12. robertguyton says:

    I meant apologise and I meant it.

    Like

  13. Richard says:

    Thanks Robert,
    “z’ and “s” are problem with Ele’s dictionary – or Word Press?

    Like

  14. Andrei says:

    This great evil.
    Where’s it come from?
    How’d it steal into the world?
    What seed, what root did it grow from?
    Who’s doing this?
    Who’s killing us?
    Robbing us of life and light.
    Mocking us with the sight of what we might have known.
    Does our ruin benefit the Earth?
    Does it help the grass to grow or the sun to shine?
    ls this darkness in you, too?
    Have you passed through this night?

    Terence Malik

    Like

  15. Ross says:

    Andrei, Thank you for sharing that poem. I think is sums up what has happened today in Norway very well.

    It will be of little comfort to those who are grieving in Norway tonight, but following the deep darkness of the night that must be passed through, there is light and growth. Evil can never extinguish good, and darkness can never overcome light.

    Like

  16. Inventory2 says:

    Are you going to apologise for the offence you caused elsewhere Robert?

    Like

  17. Inventory2 says:

    @ Richard; A similar pattern emerged here:

    http://keepingstock.blogspot.com/2011/07/sickening-opportunism-goes-both-ways.html

    It will be interesting to see whether Robert regrets his comments in the cold hard light of day.

    Like

  18. homepaddock says:

    Andrei’s poem sums it up. This is a tragic act of madness. It is evil at work not politics.

    Like

  19. Cadwallader says:

    Thank you for the poem Andrei (and Ele.)

    Like

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