Insane Anti-Terrorist Idea #32: Kill The Families

I need to preface this post with a cautionary statement. I’m not a particularly bloodthirsty guy, and right now I cannot agree with the very suggestion I am about to make. But the idea has occurred to me, and I wonder what many of you think. I’ll give the best argument I can give, but my heart really isn’t in this.

I’m having a little difficulty offering decent citations, but the news of the past two weeks has named two primary motivations behind suicidal terrorists of the Islamic fundamentalist stripe:

  • The Koran promises that “a martyr’s privileges are guaranteed by Allah.” –cite In other words, suicidal terrorists are promised an afterlife of luxury and ease.

  • The families of suicidal terrorists are well-kept after the incident. –cite

I’m not qualified to speak of the first motivator, so I’ll keep reasonably quiet about that.

That second citation is worth quoting more fully: “Recruits are reassured by their organisation that their families will be looked after materially until they die, and there are charitable organisations that exist for this purpose.”

So, one answer to the question “who benefits from the actions of suicidal terrorists?” is, the families of the terrorists themselves.

I argue that the families of terrorists are not, therefore, innocent bystanders. Instead, they are benefitting materially from the actions of these suicidal terrorists. I also argue that the impetus to set one’s family up financially could be a very, very powerful motivator, particularly among impoverished youths.

So I’ve got a hammer in my hand, and this problem is starting to look a whole lot like a nail.

Kill them. Kill the families of terrorists.

The families of suicidal terrorists are not innocent. If they accept financial aid, they are in fact participants in terrorism, complicit after the fact. They are part and parcel of the terrorist mechanism, and they are an integral part of that machinery.

There is, of course, an alternative, which would be to simply harass the families of terrorists–knock their houses over and the like, but we’ve seen the sort of public outcry that results from such actions. Instead, why not go all the way, and identify these people for what they are–guilty participants in a form of warfare that targets innocents.

Why not treat them as such? Kill them, imprison them, or force them into hiding, hunted and living in fear and poverty. It would turn a motivator into a barrier, and I believe it would severely reduce the number of recruits to terrorist organizations.

What do you think? Should I start taking my lithium again, or do I have a point, here?

Ignoring the immoral nature of this fix [I get the idea you are already aware of the depravity and amorality of it] it still will not work. A) You will have just created another slew of martyrs for the zealots to get excited over. And B) since the families come from all over the Arab world, including moderate and friendly states, you have now united them against us by attacking their citizens.

Containing the terrorist and buying ourselves time to cope with the larger problem will only come from disrupting their network. Freezing assets and arrests have already begun, and my hope is that a surgical military campaign is imminent. I use the term ‘surgical’ to distinguish it from the more genocidal ideas I have seen bandied about.

But we will always have terrorists to fight in this part of the world until something fundamental changes. The teaching of a corrupt variant of Islam is widespread, as is an irrational hatred of outsiders especially jews. Combine this virulent form of fanaticism and hate with a feeling that events are beyond their control, and the young and disillusioned will continue to be willing to engage in violence. It’s frightening, but the true eradication of terrorism in the Arab world will be the fruit of seeds of hope sewn from within, if it is to come about at all. There is little we in the west can do but offer support and stamp out terrorism as we see it sprout.

Didn’t the KGB do this to when dealing with anti-Soviet terrorists?

Previous discussion here.

Wouldn’t it be eaiser to go after those charitable organizations that help the families? Usually you don’t kill people for accepting money.

We would become terrorists ourselves if we were to do so.

The problem with this idea is shown in the following:

Read it several times if you need to.

I feel a non sequitur coming on…

Life insurance companies won’t pay off for suicide, so you can’t go insure yourself for a million bucks and then fly a plane into the World Trade Center, secure in the knowledge that your family will be provided for.

So, what does this tell us about the difference between Radical Islam and the American life insurance industry?

Me, I dunno, other than the fact that the Taliban doesn’t send me a birthday card every year with a big “State Farm Insurance” fuzzy sticker in it.

If the families accept money after the fact, then a strong case could be made that they are not innocent. I leave it to others to make this case.

IF these people are not innocent, then imprisoning them is a reasonable solution.

It is also possible that killing them is a reasonable solution in wartime. The rules are different in wartime.

Exhibit A: Hiroshima
“You’re dead. You’re all dead.” - Frank Sinatra

Let’s assume that you are starving, and your children are starving. Your oldest son goes off and joins a cult, kills others and himself, and someone from the cult gives you some bread and milk. Your children eat and drink. Should they be killed or imprisoned? What have they done?

No. We would become baby-killers. Litterally.

I can’t support killing the families. Doing something to them short of killing them…I don’t know. Even better would be Sterra’s idea:

I would expand on that to say, go after the entire financial infrastructure of these “charities” that support the families of suicide bombers. Do it visibly. If the effort is even halfway effective, it could be a credible deterrent to future suicide bombers, by putting doubt in their minds as to whether or not their families would really be taken care of.

My idea is better. Torture captured terrorists until they denounce their god, then kill them. Make it public knowledge that we do this. Who is going to aid a suicide bomber when doing so can lead to months of torture in this world and then an infinity in Hell?

Just force-feed them pork

You certainly employ a different definition of “better” than the one I’m used to.

S. Norman

I’m sure that Islam has some of the same exceptions that Judaism has for these kinds of situations, probably wouldn’t work.

There are definitely very very sick people out there. It’s somewhat depressing…

Kill? No, but imprison for aiding and abetting, and confiscate their property. Degrade the family, shame the family, publicly humiliate the family.

There’s no way to punish a person who is willing to suicide for his cause. What, you’re gonna use the comfy chair? Our whole system of law and justice rely on the assumption that people do not want to be punished (killed or imprisoned.) If you’re dealing with someone who wants to die, the system does not offer an deterrent.

However, Arabic culture is different from US culture. In US and most western culture, the family is not as important as the individual. Children move away from home when they are old enough. In Middle Eastern (and most Asian) cultures, this is not the case. The family, family honour, the family name, is more important than the individual. Children do NOT tend to move away from their parents’ homes.

Thus, one way to stop suicidal terrorists is by letting them know that their families will be disgraced, imprisoned, made to suffer.

The families of these terrorists probably don’t get huge amounts of money (it’s not like insurance), but they do get some, and they get the honour, the glory, the praise of all their friends. This is what needs to be stopped.

I do not believe these terrorists would thrive if they did not have the encouragement and support of their families. Bush has stated, we will not only go after the terrorists, we will go after those who aid and abet them. That’s the families. And I hope Bush has the courage to do that, recognizing that it’s inconsistent with the American notion that each individual is accountable for his/her own actions.

Punishing someone for the fault of someone else, be it by killing his son of beating his best mate’s dog is totally against the most basic principles of western law and human rights. Would you propose to publicly humiliate or imprison the family of the Oklahoma’s bomber, or is this idea only good for brown skinned people living in some remote foreign country?

I guess the mere concepts of democracy and human rights would soon be forgotten if people like the supporters of the bright idea proposed in this thread were in charge.

Well the mob does this to the people that talk or steal from them and you know what not to many talk or steal from them. It is a tragic idea but what they do to us isn’t much different other than they started it.

I am not saying I agree with this idea but if they are even considering using bioligical weapons on us we should consider it. It would be a hell of a deterent.