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Andy’s Travel Diary

Tuesday, 15 Aug 2006

Location: Malaysia


I had to have a full post on this. Jenn from Canada who i met in Oz left me a message on my last post with a gloriously ridiculous, racist and innaccurate headline from the Australian media (that bastion of good journalism - the international sections of their newspapers? Pathetic!)

Headline: “Terror’s new ‘white recruits.’

Terror is the preserve of the non-white races is it? Whoever wrote this headline should get try internalising some basic knowledge of history. Russian 19th century terrorists, French revolutionary terror, where the term and concept were originally conceived (supposedly), U.S state terror (terror is not the preserve of non-state actors), Ku Klux Klan, Irish terrorism of both republican and loyalist varieties, Basque terrorism et cetera, et cetera. The author would do well to take just a cursory glance at historical realities. He/she may learn something.

I could go on about the number of false assumptions in the headline but this is a travel blog, i will say one thing, the headline assumes terror is a unitary force, that terror is the same issue throughout the globe, supported by the same underlining factors and issues. A similar concept of terror was put forward by Haim Ramon, the Israeli Justice Minister when he stated that “Everyone understands that a victory for Hezbollah is a victory for world terror”. This is simply not true, how is a victory for Hezbollah a victory for ‘terrorists’ in say the Phillipines, or for ‘terrorists’ in Thailand or South America. Roger Cohen agrees in an article in the International Herald Tribune but alas its not available on the web.

Anyway, enough of that, i had to to comment on it, after all that was part of my masters course.

Jenn, thanks for reinforcing a somewhat derogatory view of much of the Australian news media.