The Instigator
bigdave
Pro (for)
Winning
9 Points
The Contender
tahir.imanov
Con (against)
Losing
6 Points

Actions taken by legitimate national governments are not acts of terrorism

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 4 votes the winner is...
bigdave
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/6/2014 Category: Politics
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,804 times Debate No: 45366
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (45)
Votes (4)

 

bigdave

Pro

Actions taken by legitimate national governments are not acts of terrorism. An act of terrorism can only be taken by a terrorist organization. A terrorist organization is a group which causes terror while operating without official approval by a legitimate national government. Terrorists are not soldiers, but rather are criminals under all international law. Many people today are very confused about the hierarchy of legitimacy of actions on an international level. Illegitimate terrorist conduct campaigns of terror while legitimate governments in similar situations conduct warfare. When Israeli commandos killed Khalil al-Wazir in Tunisia, it was not terrorism as Israel freely admitted authorization. When Germans and Palestinians hijacked a plane and forced it to Uganda, that was terrorism (no legitimate authority). Israel's response was authorized ERGO not terrorism. Uganda could take Israel's action as a act of war, but not as terrorism. Now Tahir... display your ignorance.
tahir.imanov

Con



Reason of this debate is the posts by me and Pro at the comment section of poll "http://www.debate.org... . And it seems to me Pro tried too hard to pick a smart name for the topic, but he failed. Let's assume a national government sanctions a suicide bombing in foreign country, would it be a terrorist act, on objective level it is an act of terrorism.


According to http://www.fbi.gov... "International terrorism" means involve violent acts or acts dangerous to human life that violate federal or state law; appear to be intended to intimidate or coerce a civilian population; to influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion;


Nowhere this code talks about state sanction or anything like it. Does US involve in violent acts or acts dangerous to human life? And US is very good at coercing civilian population - drone attacks.


Please see my post on comment section.



Debate Round No. 1
bigdave

Pro

Get on the bus, because I am taking you to school!

Your assertion thus "Let's assume a national government sanctions a suicide bombing ... it (would)be a terrorist act," is false. This action is an act of war and as such is bound by several levels of international law. Per the International Committee of the Red Cross at http://www.icrc.org..., there are concepts of "Jus Ad Bellum" and "Jus In Bello" which put forth rules of warfare. To wit " the Covenant of the League of Nations and,the Treaty of Paris .... and the United Nations Charter which upholds the right to individual or collective self-defense." Among the items described is the term combatant, Briefly a combatant must be in uniform. Out of uniform, he (or she) is a criminal and subject to civil or military tribunal.

Please note too we are not debating terror but rather terrorism. Drones induce terror but are not terrorism; suicide bombings induce terror and are terrorism.
tahir.imanov

Con

The meaning of term is determined, and you can try to switch it, but the meaning will stay same. Terrorism is (1) the threat or use of violence; (2) a political objective (using 1); (3) the intention to spread fear by committing spectacular public acts; (4) the intentional targeting of civilians. So any organization (government or non-government) which falls under this definition is terrorist organization. The last point (4) distinguishes state terrorism from other form of state violence. Your argument shows that you are ignorant about "state terrorism" and "state sponsored terrorism" which shows you do not know what you are talking about.
"Drones induce terror but are not terrorism; suicide bombings induce terror and are terrorism," - Pro. In one case guilty guy dies, in other case guilty guy becomes a hero of nation of full of hypocrites and idiots. When did last time USA apologized for targeting civilians. Never, only once US commander in Afghan. apologized for wounding civilians.
Debate Round No. 2
bigdave

Pro

The term "terrorism" is defined more by international law than by mere dictionary definitions. (http://www.academia.edu...)

Or http://www.differencebetween.com....

Or http://www.state.gov...

To dispute "When did last time USA apologized for targeting civilians. Never, " one only need look at Iranian flight 655. To wit "in 1996, the United States and Iran reached "an agreement in full and final settlement of all disputes, differences, claims, counterclaims" relating to the incident at the International Court of Justice. The United States agreed to pay US$61.8 million, an average of $213,103.45 per passenger, in compensation to the families of the Iranian victims. (Source http://en.wikipedia.org....)

Kindly try to be more civil and less pejorative! Avoid use of "you are ignorant " or 'Idiot". Stick to the facts of the acts!
tahir.imanov

Con

Why didn't you posted next sentence from wikipedia, it says "However, the United States has never admitted responsibility, nor apologized to Iran." - http://en.wikipedia.org...
It seems to me Pro deliberetly misquoting desperatly to win. Stating the obvious is not equal to or equivalent to uncivility. Pro just shared the links, but cited nothing on last argument. But I have given links and cited definitions and compared it to actions of US Military. And the right to individual or collective self-defense in UN Charter does not give the right to kill or bomb civilians.
"Drones induce terror but are not terrorism; suicide bombings induce terror and are terrorism," - suicide bomber is not afraid of death, we cannot say same thing about guy behind drone.
Debate Round No. 3
bigdave

Pro

Allow me to simplify this debate for the benefit of CON. Person A goes into a bank, pulls out a gun, demands money, and leaves with $1,000. Person B goes into a bank, pulls out a withdrawal slip, demands money and leaves with $1,000. Person C goes into a bank, pulls out a gun, demands money in the name of the Mali Liberation Front, and leaves with $1,000. Person D goes into a bank, pulls out an order issued by a Federal Judge that the bank release funds to the bearer agent, demands money, and leaves with $1,000.

Person A is a criminal. Person B is not. Person C is a criminal. Person D is not.

All four did the same basic activity (went in a bank and demanded money). All left with the same amount of money. The differences is how they did what they did. B and D were authorized and traceable. A and C were illegitimate and non traceable. A and C were subject to retaliation by agents duly authorized and armed with guns to seek them out and stop them from further crimes.
tahir.imanov

Con

It is very fallacious example. Actions of persons A and C are illegitimate and unlawfull, and actions of person B and D are legitimate and lawfull. Killing civilians is illegitimate and unlawfull, and violation of human rights and international law and even US laws. I do not know wht Pro tries to say with this example by comparing mass murder with bank robbery. It is morally ....... .
Debate Round No. 4
bigdave

Pro

Attorney General Eric Holder said that the government is "confident that we're (conducting drone strikes) in a way that is consistent with federal and international law." http://www.foxnews.com...

From U.S. Code Title 22, Ch.38, Para. 2656f(d) (d) the term "terrorism" means premeditated, politically motivated violence perpetrated against noncombatant targets by subnational groups or clandestine agents.

CIA and Department of Defense are not subnational groups ERGO their actions are not terrorism (even if they are murder) . Hezbollah, IRA , Al Queda are subnational ERGO their actions are terrorism (may also be murder), Hamas might fall in between.

Al Queda is like person C in round #4. Drone strikes are like person D. CON has already agreed that "actions of person D (is ) legitimate and lawful." ERGO CON concedes PRO is victorious. VOTE PRO. Support a sane world free of terrorists.
tahir.imanov

Con

Knowing that, Attorney General Holder defends execution without charges, which makes him least trusthworthy on these issues. ( http://www.salon.com...;)

The term is defined by linguists, so it does not matter how DoD defines it, to suit their actions.

Ask to the innocent people who died as a result of actions of US, in Japan, Vietnam, Iraq, Sudan, Yemen, Afghanistan, and other placers, if it is terrorism or not. But you need a mass resurrection.
Debate Round No. 5
45 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by bigdave 3 years ago
bigdave
I have to vamoose. Shirley Temple Black and I are going to pick up Anita Bryant and her wife. After we pick up Adam and Steve,it's off to St. Paul for lunch with Prince.
Posted by tahir.imanov 3 years ago
tahir.imanov
this web site does not support some characters.
Here is the list http://www.travel-images.com...
Posted by bigdave 3 years ago
bigdave
Knot uzing Azeri keyboard?
Posted by tahir.imanov 3 years ago
tahir.imanov
Your statement in Azerbaijani does not make any sense, in any shape or form. I just assumed you did translation on Google. That is why I made the claim Google's translation is inaccurate, assuming you used Google translation.
Posted by bigdave 3 years ago
bigdave
Okee doughkey. I must of imaged it dat you said "If you wanted to say "I am still waiting for evidence" it is "Hələ də s"but g"zləyirəm""

Then ladder ewe said "Google does not give accurate translation."

obbiously somethin is amissus.
Posted by tahir.imanov 3 years ago
tahir.imanov
I dont use google, it was you who used it. and you translation was inaccurate.
Posted by bigdave 3 years ago
bigdave
And yet you use Google to translate.
Posted by tahir.imanov 3 years ago
tahir.imanov
@bigdave - I speak 3+1 languages (English, Russian, Turkish and Azerbaijani).
Posted by bigdave 3 years ago
bigdave
Cat says to mouse..... Gothcha!
Posted by tahir.imanov 3 years ago
tahir.imanov
Google does not give accurate translation.
4 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Vote Placed by RoyLatham 3 years ago
RoyLatham
bigdavetahir.imanovTied
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Total points awarded:40 
Reasons for voting decision: The tangled semantics make this debate difficult to judge. During the course of the debate it became clear that Con was attempting to equate warfare in which any civilians were killed with terrorism in which civilians were killed as a means to achieve political goals. Had Con stuck with hypotheticals under the definition he offered, he could have won, but he lost because he redefined "terrorism" to include unintended casualties of legitimate warfare. Both sides were condescending to the point of bad conduct, but Con was worse. When one side starts bad conduct, it's best not to reply in kind and just collect the conduct point.
Vote Placed by whiteflame 3 years ago
whiteflame
bigdavetahir.imanovTied
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Total points awarded:13 
Reasons for voting decision: I vote this way because I don't think Pro fulfilled his burden. I don't see proof in his arguments that one can be called terrorism and one not. Both sides argue utilizing mostly unwarranted, unsourced argumentation to prove their points, and while I don't find Con's argument the slightest bit convincing, it's Pro's burden to prove the resolution true, and he simply hasn't done that. The only argument that comes close is this point about accountability, but he draws a very vague line, stating that non state actors operating under a state that sanctions their activities are terrorists, while the state sanctioning those activities is not, no matter how much they may participate. An act of war isn't mutually exclusive from an act of terrorism. Also, I never see who these countries are accountable to. Is it their people? Is it an international organization? Is it some form of self-accountability? This point remains too vague and uncertain. Pro gets conduct for ad hom from Con.
Vote Placed by ararmer1919 3 years ago
ararmer1919
bigdavetahir.imanovTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Sources and grammar tied. Con to pro because of the several Ad Hominem attacks. Arguments to pro because he showed that there is a distinction between a "technical" terrorist and state sponsored acts of what would be perceived of as "terror". The most important point that he brought up and biggest support of his argument winning is accountability. Con clung to the oversimplified use of the word terrorism as it is found in various dictionaries which is grossly vague and leaves huge amounts of room for interpretation. By his argument a police officer pulling a drunk driver over is am act of terrorism. Or a teacher scolding a disruptive student in their class. This over simplification of the word terrorism is cons downfall.
Vote Placed by janetsanders733 3 years ago
janetsanders733
bigdavetahir.imanovTied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Good job to both debaters, but I think Con did a little bit better by showing how an act of terrorism is when someone's life is threatened, and this would include the government as well.