Terrorism is the last act of the desperate organization, an appeal to chaos. If we ignore historical instruction that those who have mastered this foul art form provide, we will become the grave-digger of U.S. freedom and national survival. Trotsky taught that terrorism is a calculated, though misguided and misanthropic, approach to addressing the helplessness of the masses.
Defending against it is a permanent societal posture. The only historically effective short-term solution to terrorism is to deal with its symptoms terroristically. For the long term, state-sponsored, institutionalized terrorism must witness its breeding grounds defoliated by a process of expanding social and economic justice. When common people, in whose behalf the terrorist acts, renounce violence and dare to hope for a better future, terrorism withers away. In navigating a complex, interdependent, yet economically polarized world full of apocalyptic weapons, these are the only roads. MR
Combined Arms Center-May-June 2002 English Edition -Cashiering Freedom for Security: Lessons in Modern Terrorism -J. Michael Brower
This then is the counter-intuitive American policy adopted after 9/11. The irony is the use of Trotsky's analysis of Terrorism to justify America's 'War on Terror'. Which has resulted in Imperialist War in Iraq, and Afghanistan that has done nothing but exasperate and expand the now existing asymmetrical terror war plaguing Europe-not America.
The exortation is that somehow 'the common people' of the Middle East will 'renounce' terrorism, when it is inflicted on them by Osama Bin Laden Inc. on one side and U.S. Imperialism on the other.
Whether a terrorist attempt, even a 'successful' one throws the ruling class into confusion depends on the concrete political circumstances. In any case the confusion can only be shortlived; the capitalist state does not base itself on government ministers and cannot be eliminated with them. The classes it serves will always find new people; the mechanism remains intact and continues to function.
But the disarray introduced into the ranks of the working masses themselves by a terrorist attempt is much deeper. If it is enough to arm oneself with a pistol in order to achieve one's goal, why the efforts of the class struggle? If a thimbleful of gunpowder and a little chunk of lead is enough to shoot the enemy through the neck, what need is there for a class organisation? If it makes sense to terrify highly placed personages with the roar of explosions, where is the need for the party? Why meetings, mass agitation and elections if one can so easily take aim at the ministerial bench from the gallery of parliament?
In our eyes, individual terror is inadmissible precisely because it belittles the role of the masses in their own consciousness, reconciles them to their powerlessness, and turns their eyes and hopes towards a great avenger and liberator who some day will come and accomplish his mission.
The more 'effective' the terrorist acts, the greater their impact, the more they reduce the interest of the masses in self-organisation and self-education. But the smoke from the confusion clears away, the panic disappears, the successor of the murdered minister makes his appearance, life again settles into the old rut, the wheel of capitalist exploitation turns as before; only the police repression grows more savage and brazen. And as a result, in place of the kindled hopes and artificially aroused excitement comes disillusionment and apathy.
Leon Trotsky: 1923 -- Why Marxists oppose Individual Terrorism
As the peoples movment in Lebanon has shown the only way forward is a mass movement for democracy. It's greatest threat is not Osama Bin Laden Inc. but the State Terror of those who seek hegemony over the area and their Imperialist enablers. As we have seen in the brtual repression of the revolts of the 'common people' in Kyrgyztan and the other 'Stans that are now the authoritarian client states of US Imperialism in it's war against Osama Bin Laden Inc.
Osama Bin Laden Inc. is a corporation, a combination of banking and engineering enterprise one of the largest in the Middle East, after Bechtel and Halliburton.
Amid globalization, Al Qaeda looks a lot like GM