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Terrorism is terrorism

Jan 26,2015 - Last updated at Jan 26,2015

The world needs to clarify terms like freedom and democracy, amongst others, as they are used and interpreted for the convenience of some.

What happened in France, Belgium and other European countries in the past few weeks makes it even more imperative.

It was sad to see people killed by extremists in Paris and heartening to see millions marching against it.

Also, we were proud that Arab leaders were leading the march. We, Jordanians, were proud to see Their Majesties King Abdullah and Queen Rania at the forefront of this march.

But Charlie Hebdo’s surviving issue was put on the stands with an anti-Islamic content.

Worse was to see people rushing to purchase it, showing in a way that racism is still around.

And worst was when the editor-in-chief defended the publication with absurd statements like “every time we draw cartoons of Mohammad or other prophets, or cartoons of God, we defend the freedom of religion.”

What kind of freedom are these ignorant people referring to?

Even the French president defended the magazine, saying: “It’s freedom of expression, and not doing so would be yielding to terrorism.”

I beg to differ, as to me, this is verbal terrorism that instigates unstable, immature extremists; and the dreadful cycle continues.

Both leaders and people have the power to change this perverted cycle of violence, carried out in the name of religion.

Each person has to act responsibly, unprejudiced and with full maturity.

I do not remember terms like terrorism or Islamic fundamentalism as a child. Where and how have they appeared?

Maybe from our own distorted world, with misgivings and atrocities towards minorities, mainly in the West.

Human beings have to start respecting each other, irrespective of race, gender or creed.

Each individual has a role to play to get things right. Only when we do will we be truly free and democratic, and able to live in peace and harmony.

The incident in Paris has been the reason for more deaths and destruction around the world. Is it worth it?

Barbara Burgan,
Amman

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