Terrorism is treason. When we speak of terrorism, we speak of acts of violence committed by one group against another: more often than not for ideological reasons. From the Gunpowder Plot to 9/11, terrorism manifests itself in many guises. Although, is this dissimilar to treason? After all, treason is an act of violence by one group against another. Only — in this case — against the whole of society: the state.
so let us decide for ourselves whether terrorism should be seen as part of treason, or whether it is a crime worthy to stand on its own two feet.
On the one hand, certain individuals would argue that terrorism is a crime of its own merits: far from our understanding of treason. Whilst terrorism harms all in society, as the 7/7 attacks shook fear across the realm, it was, in fact, an isolated attack. An attack which killed few — in the grand scheme of things — and that was carried out for ideological causes instead of a deliberate attempt to overthrow our country’s legitimate sovereignty. It would be silly to call these attacks an act of rebellion… In this light, terrorism is a crime quite different from treason and that should be kept away from the soul slicing connotations that come with the very word of treason.
On the other hand, terrorism is more similar to treason than first examined. Ultimately, terrorism is a breach of the peace. The very security of society is under threat. One group attacks another, and with this surplus of power, what is to stop them from attacking another group, and then another, and another? Understanding terrorism from these eyes opens an often neglected but hard truth about terrorism: that it is, in short, treason. As burglary is a form of theft, so too is terrorism a form of treason. Terrorism not only harms a group, or the people of our country, it harms the very state itself. It is an attack on our sovereignty. And so terrorism is a form of treason.
Whilst on the surface terrorism is an isolated ideological attack, fundamentally terrorism’s aim is to take the power of any group that stands in its way to serve its own purposes. With greater power comes greater freedom of choice. Terrorism may seem like a kind smirk against the grimace of treason, but it is to this grimace that terrorism’s smirk is ever drooping. By viewing terrorists as traitors, a more appropriate punishment can be served on them. Without this, terrorism will continue to hold its novel charm that has become the taboo of our times. Accept terrorism is treason, teach others this truth and make the world a better place for all.
Written by: Christian Pitt
OULS News Reporter