Suicide Bombers: why? How do we stop them?
We'll use some unlikely sources for this blog: The American Conservative Magazine and Pat Buchanan. We all "know" that suicide bombers are religious fanatics who have been after us from way back when, right? Well, maybe not. In a recent article, Why Are They Killing Us, Pat Buchanan writes:
"Islamic fundamentalism is not as closely associated with suicide terrorism as many people think," Pape tells the American Conservative in its July 18 issue (titled: The Logic of Suicide Terrorism) Indeed, the world's leader in suicide terror was the Tamil Tigers of Sri Lanka. This secular Marxist group "invented the famous suicide vest for their suicide assassination of Rajiv Ghandi in May 1991. The Palestinians got the idea of the vest from the Tamil Tigers."
But if the aim of suicide bombers is not to advance Islamism in a war of civilizations, what is its purpose? Pape's conclusion: [S]uicide-terrorist attacks are not so much driven by religion as by a clear strategic objective: to compel modern democracies to withdraw military forces from the territory that the terrorists view as their homeland. From Lebanon to Sri Lanka to Chechnya to Kashmir to the West Bank, every major suicide terrorist campaign – over 95 percent of all incidents – has had as its central objective to compel a democratic state to withdraw. "