victims killed by ISIL in Tikrit-- June 2014
(image by youtube) DMCA
Is ISIS/ISIL a terrorist organization? Or is it being labeled as one so Obama and congress can avoid constitutional and legal requirements to authorize war?
In a statement today, President Obama called ISIL "barbaric terrorists," as he described the air onslaught and ground materials support being provided to defend Mosul, Iraq.
In the international community, terrorism has no legally binding, criminal law definition. Common definitions of terrorism refer only to those violent acts that are intended to create fear (terror); are perpetrated for a religious, political, or ideological goal; and deliberately target or disregard the safety of non-combatants (e.g., neutral military personnel or civilians). Some definitions now include acts of unlawful violence and war. The use of similar tactics by criminal organizations for protection rackets or to enforce a code of silence is usually not labeled terrorism, though these same actions may be labeled terrorism when done by a politically motivated group. Usage of the term has also been criticized for its frequent undue equating with Islamism or jihadism, while ignoring non-Islamic organizations or individuals.
The word "terrorism" is politically loaded and emotionally charged, and this greatly compounds the difficulty of providing a precise definition. Studies have found over 100 definitions of "terrorism". In some cases, the same group may be described as "freedom fighters" by its supporters and considered to be terrorists by its opponents. The concept of terrorism may be controversial as it is often used by state authorities (and individuals with access to state support) to delegitimize political or other opponents, and potentially legitimize the state's own use of armed force against opponents (such use of force may be described as "terror" by opponents of the state). At the same time, the reverse may also take place when states perpetrate or are accused of perpetrating state terrorism. The usage of the term has a controversial history, with individuals such as ANC leader Nelson Mandela at one point also branded a terrorist.
"In its self-proclaimed status as a caliphate, it claims religious authority over all Muslims across the world and aspires to bring much of the Muslim-inhabited regions of the world under its direct political control,beginning with territory in the Levant region, which includes Jordan, Israel, Palestine, Lebanon, Cyprus, and an area in southern Turkey that includes Hatay. The group has been officially designated as a foreign terrorist organization by the United Nations Security Council, the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, Indonesia and Saudi Arabia, and has been widely described as a terrorist group by Western and other media sources.