April 12, 2011

Your Terrorist = My Freedom Fighter

[Cubana Airlines Flight 455 crashed off the coast of Barbados on Oct. 6, 1976, killing all 73 people aboard. Plastic explosives stuffed into a toothpaste tube ignited the plane.Implicated in the attack was a Cuban exile - a former C.I.A. operative and United States Army officer who has long sought to topple the government of Fidel Castro.Despite insistent calls from Cuba and Venezuela for his extradition, the administration has refused to send him to either country for trial. The Bush administration has stopped short of prosecuting him as a terrorist, however, even though the Justice Department described him as "an unrepentant criminal and admitted mastermind of terrorist plots and attacks on tourist sites."excerpt from 'If You Harbor Terrorists, You Are a Terrorist'.
Imagine for a moment, if you will, that either Cuba (the land of his birth) or Venezuela (the country of which he is a citizen) decides to dispatch a drone or a jet fighter to Miami (where he is now allowed to roam free) so as to exact justice for his terrorist activities. After all, like the Taliban in Afghanistan, successive governments stateside have steadfastly refused his extradition to face criminal charges in either territory. Let us assume further that this airstrike is executed with great precision, taking out both the terrorist and a few of his friends along with the family next door whose home is destroyed in the resulting explosion. Well we don't have to think too hard to imagine the level of retaliation that would be swiftly forthcoming from 'the land of the free' - or for that matter the level of indignation from those who now live there. Yet this as yethypothetical within the borders of modern-day Rome is a day-to-day reality for millions of humankind who must call elsewhere home.

Forgetting for the time being the level of righteous anger and resentment among those who live peacefully in other countries to this glaring double-standard, one is left to wonder at the reaction (or lack thereof) from those 21st-century 'Romans' who provide unqualified support to their elected rulers in chasing down terrorists elsewhere, regardless of the level of civilian casualties that may ensue. Indeed, a large number of supporters to this seemingly just cause proudly proclaim themselves to be followers of the Christ. For this claim I am prepared to afford them the benefit of the doubt, as there must have been several persons calling themselves by that name. However I feel it necessary to remind those who may have forgotten, that the Christ I know of - the Redeemer who offered up his life as a ransom sacrifice for all of Adam's offspring, left us this teaching: "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you". Assuming that every human life (not simply 'Roman') is precious, it is counsel that all who wish to avoid attracting the label of hypocrisy would do well to remember.

Some sites of interest:
US accused of 'terror hypocrisy'
Eli Stephens: Why Posada Carriles Matters
Luis Posada Carriles: Trial of the Terrorist Who Almost Killed Me

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