Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Terrorist are Common Criminals

U.S. Senator Joe Lieberman (I-CN) is expanding the legal fight to attain information on the Fort Hood shootings in November of last year. He is issuing a subpoena to obtain information that Lieberman claims the Obama administration is holding. The Homeland Security panel is investigating the shootings because it has been described as an act of terrorism. It is believed that Major Nidal Hasan had been in contact with Islamic clerics and may have acted out of opposition to the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.

This is legitimate power that the congress holds and the Obama administration should cooperate with the panel in its investigation. Hopefully, the panel is aware that some of the information should not be released because it will weaken the case against Hasan. But, the senate has not only the right but the responsibility to investigate this tragic crime in an open forum.

It appears though, that the senator is proceeding with the investigation because of the contact with the Islamic clerics. He has been quoted discussing this issue many times. Since 9/11, any act of violence that is connected with Islam is automatically characterized as terrorism. Even in this case when Hasan is a United State citizen and a US military officer.

It must be asked if the Homeland Security panel of the senate will also investigate the Hutaree Militia. Their plan according to the FBI was to force a revolt in the country by killing police officers. The revolt was necessary because of what they believe is the government’s illegal involvement in the lives of everyday citizens. It isn’t connected to Islam but was connected to a Christian church in Michigan.

The use of violence is wrong. It doesn’t matter what the religion is. To have a senate level investigation into a an act of violence by a United State citizen in the Fort Hood shootings just because the shooter talked with a Islamic cleric is one thing. But to not also investigate other acts of “terrorism” because it was a Christian right wing group is wrong.

The people that commit these acts are criminals, killers that need to be dealt with like any other criminal. To raise their status to “terrorist” just because they talked with clerics of any religion is to dignify their crimes in a way that encourages more violence.

Don’t give these killers honor by giving them a higher status.

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