The U.S Presidential Campaign: 'Terrorism is Theatre?'
By Rebecca Theodore
The vigilant creation and manipulation of fear through violence in the quest of political change has now become a global phenomenon. Terrorism's challenge to craft power 'where there is none' and to merge 'power where there is little,' is now sweeping through the ranks of the presidential campaign across America.
And politicians are seeking to obtain their influence and power on the minds of the American citizenry through a 'theatre of terrorism.'
But it is important to note, that while national security must "protect the state and its citizens against all kind of national crises through a variety of power projections, such as political power, diplomacy, economic power, and military might," the issue of immigration reform and its challenging impact must not be lost in the narrative.
For immigration is inter-related with terrorism.
As a result, the bloodbaths in Paris, not only invoke pressing questions on the security of the United States and the civil liberties of its citizenry, but at the same time, it also shines the light on the puzzling problem of immigration reform as well.
Presidential candidate, Mike Huckabee's contention that "denying entry to travelers from countries with a strong presence of the Islamic State of Al Qaeda" is plausible. On the other hand, it must also be understood that if the xenophobic and far right policies of France could be thought of as being responsible for the attacks in Paris, then the arrows are also pointing inwards at America.
Maybe former Secretary of Homeland Security, Tom Ridge's contention that "the barbarians are no longer at the gate, they're inside," rings true, yet, if this statement is to be understood and examined long enough, it will be accepted that the barbarians have been living inside the gates for a very long time.
How easy would it then be to radicalize some of the 12 million illegal immigrants who are living their lives in the shadows, if Republicans continue to refuse to grant them a path to citizenship?
For this reason, it would be grim reasoning to suggest that matters of terrorism will empower the presidential candidates, because terrorism like immigration, cannot be contained by vitriol diatribes on the political stage alone.
Additionally, if terrorism is going to be the platform that eclipses the presidential campaign across America, then, it is imperative that other causative factors such as right wing terrorism, pathological terrorism, and narco terrorism be addressed as well.
Notwithstanding the fact, that state terrorism was also arguably used in the French Revolution of 1789 to control the population, using violence to terrorize others for sheer pleasure as witnessed in the constant shootings in American colleges and universities is a pathological form of terrorism that goes by unnoticed. Narco terrorism mirrors constant beheadings, mass burials, and other severe acts of violence by drug cartels on American soil, which are now referred to as cold case issues in the criminal justice system. The racism of right wing terrorism is still alive and well in an America that still boast as the leader in human rights and equality and justice for all.
Moreover, unemployment, income inequality and fascism are the destructive tools that are destroying the American economy. There is also a gross form of "capitalist terrorism" that must be addressed, for violence and murder are also pervasive to capitalism.
In view of this, if difference is to be sought in the way in which presidential candidates are using terrorism as theatre across the United States, then, the adaptation of French philosopher Michel Foucault becomes worthwhile in this domain. "Power represses, it censors, it abstracts, it masks, it conceals…. In fact, power produces its own reality. Power produces domains of objects and rituals of truth."
And it is here, that terrorism is producing its own quasi truths and rituals among presidential candidates, and it is accepted and believed by the masses and even intellectuals alike.
In this regards, it is important to understand the root causes of terrorism. It is also time for the presidential candidates to pay attention to the more than 12 million illegal immigrants trapped within the borders of America, and who yearn to breathe the fresh air of freedom. An increase in their economic imprisonment and poverty can also cause revolts among the population and possible social and political destabilization, forcing a new type of terrorism that America seems totally unprepared for.
Terrorism is not only about al-Qaeda or other Islamic extremists or the bloodbaths in Paris, Israel and beyond. Terrorism has far reaching psychological effects beyond its tabled object. It was America that created terrorism and its kind on its own soil and at the hands of its own experts. Terrorism is a complex phenomenon and understanding the concept of terrorism and crushing its multiple heads is an important step towards a more peaceful and desirous American society.
Thus, the problem of terrorism in America lies within. It is time to look beyond the veil.