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Terrorism: Theirs and Ours

Program #AHME008. Recorded in Boulder, CO on October 12, 1998.

Terrorism is the scourge of the era. It is a fearsome symbol conjuring up images of ferocious-looking, bearded men brandishing AK-47s. The media focus on the terrorism of official enemies like Saddam Hussein, bin Laden, and Zarqawi. After they were done away with, new demons appear to justify war and bloat the Pentagon budget. Be afraid of ISIS and Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula. Be afraid of Yemen and Somalia, Pakistan and Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria. Be afraid of all the jihadi groups that have mushroomed all over the Middle East. The notion that the U.S. and its allies engage in terrorism is simply not a topic for discussion. To scrutinize U.S. policy is verboten. The War on Terror is now the longest war in U.S. history. There is no end in sight. And that suits Washington just fine. 

This classic from the AR archives is as relevant today as when it was first recorded.

Speaker(s):

Eqbal Ahmad

Eqbal Ahmad was Professor Emeritus of International Relations and Middle Eastern Studies at Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts. He was born in Irki, Bihar, to an Indian Muslim landowning family. His father was murdered while parceling out the estate to landless peasants. Upon the partition of India in 1947 he went to Pakistan. He came to the U.S. to attend Princeton. For many years he was managing editor of the quarterly Race and Class. His articles and essays appeared in The Nation and other journals throughout the world. He wrote a weekly column for Dawn, Pakistan's oldest English newspaper. He was one of the the most original and influential anti-imperialist thinkers of his era. He was a leading figure in the anti-Vietnam War movement. He was a remarkable and persuasive orator. As a teacher, he was mentor and inspiration to many. He was a close ally of Edward Said, Noam Chomsky and Howard Zinn. Confronting Empire and Terrorism Theirs & Ours are the two books he did with David Barsamian. Eqbal Ahmad died in Islamabad on May 11, 1999.

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