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Christian terrorism

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


url http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christian_terrorism
Christian terrorism is terrorism by those whose motivations and aims have a predominant
Christian character or influence[1]; to be considered religious terrorism the perpetrators must use
religious scriptures to justify or explain their violent acts or to gain recruits and there must be
some sort of clerical figures involved in some leadership roles. [2] "Although religion is not a
single, simple causal factor in terrorist violence, religious elements often feature strongly in the
belief systems associated with terrorist violence, and can also feature in other important fostering
factors for terrorist violence, such as the use of rhetoric."[3]
In recent periods, examples of Christian terrorism are overwhelmingly tied to individuals and
small groups, drawing condemnation from various institutional church bodies.[4] Ambassador
Sheehan who headed an office that develops, coordinates and implements U.S. counterterrorism
policy stated in a review covering the threat of terrorism stated in 2000 "A number of terrorist
groups have portrayed their causes in religious and cultural terms. This is often a transparent
tactic designed to conceal political goals, generate popular support and silence opposition."[5]

Contents
• 1 Inter-religious violence in Poso, Indonesia

• 2 Christian terrorist organizations

o 2.1 National Liberation Front of Tripura

o 2.2 Freedomites

o 2.3 Christian Identity, White Supremacy, and the ARA

o 2.4 Christian Patriots

• 3 "Christian Terrorism": Pejorative or Descriptive Term?

• 4 Anti-abortion

• 5 See also

• 6 References

Inter-religious violence in Poso, Indonesia


On July 26, 2007, 17 Christians were convicted of religion-inspired terrorism under Indonesian
law. A Christian mob attacked, murdered, and beheaded two Muslim fishermen in September
2006, reportedly as retaliation for the execution in 2006 of three Christian farmers, who were
convicted of leading a militant group which killed hundreds of Muslims in Poso in 2000, an
execution that attracted a plea for clemency from the pope, and accusations from Amnesty
International that the trial was unfair.[6][4]
The convictions come in the context of seven years of violence between Christian and Muslim
groups in the province, including the beheading of three Christian schoolgirls on the way to
school [5] and the deaths of hundreds of Muslims and Christians, and campaigns of religious
cleansing on each side. As part of the conflict numerous individual acts of terror have been
perpetrated by both sides.

Christian terrorist organizations


National Liberation Front of Tripura
The National Liberation Front of Tripura is a Fundamentalist Christian militant group in India,
demanding a separate Christian state. Allegedly funded by the Baptist Church of Tripura, it is
accused of ethnic cleansing[7] and bombings that have killed hundreds, as well as forcing
gunpoint conversions. They were declared a terrorist organization under the Prevention of
Terrorism Act in 2002.[8]

Freedomites
Freedomites (also Svobodniki or Sons of Freedom, Canada, 1902-present)[9]

Christian Identity, White Supremacy, and the ARA


Peter Kevin McGregor Langan and Richard "Wild Bill" Guthrie, founders of the Aryan
Republican Army (ARA) and their paramilitary gang have been connected to hate fueled terrorist
attacks involving train derailments, assassinations, bombings and a string of professionally
executed armed bank robberies planned to finance an overthrow of the US Federal government.
Similar social, cultural, and personal motivations have linked the ARA to a loose network of
extreme radical right paramilitary cells including the White Supremacy movement and Christian
Identity, a theology that supports a racist cause.[10]
Brothers Jacob Albert Laskey, age 25, and Gabriel Doyle Laskey, age 21, both self-avowed white
supremacists, pleaded guilty in United States District Court in a Federal hate crime case to
charges of conspiracy to deprive individuals of their civil rights and intentionally damaging
religious property for an attack on October 25, 2002 in which a group of men threw stones
etched with swastikas through a Jewish synagogue's windows during religious services in
Eugene, Oregon. Defendants admitted to intent to commit acts of violence and destruction
against Jews, African-Americans, and members of other ethnic and racial groups. Jacob Laskey
also pled guilty to solicitation to murder witnesses, soliciting a bomb threat against a federal
courthouse, two counts of obstruction of justice, and being a felon in possession of a firearm and
ammunition.[11]

Christian Patriots
The anti-federalist, extremist tax-resistance movements, seditious beliefs, religious and racial
hatred of the American militia movement and other contemporary white supremacist
organizations in association with the broader Christian Patriot movement actively incorporate
Christian scripture and biblical liturgy to justify and support violent activities.[12] Timothy
McVeigh who, along with his accomplice Terry L. Nichols, was involved in the Oklahoma City
terrorist attack on April 19, 1995, has admitted to a belief in Christian Patriotism and
involvement in Patriot activities.[13]

"Christian Terrorism": Pejorative or Descriptive Term?


Syndicated journalist and radio talk show host Lowell Ponte has stated: "Watch closely and see
how the Leftist media raises up the image of [Eric] Rudolph as a 'Christian terrorist' as its latest
tactic to damage and discredit Christianity." Press)ISBN 0231114699</ref>; to be considered
religious terrorism the perpetrators must use religious scriptures to justify or explain their violent
acts or to gain recruits and there must be some sort of clerical figures involved in some
leadership roles. [14]
In recent periods, examples of Christian terrorism are overwhelmingly tied to individuals and
small groups, drawing condemnation from various institutional church bodies.[15]
Many contemporary allegations of Christian terrorism are closely tied to American Protestant
white supremacy organizations, such as the Ku Klux Klan[citation needed]. Other groups, such as the
Christian Identity movement bridge the gap between racism and religious theology by targeting
racial and religious minorities, immigrants, gays and lesbians, and women. White supremacists
in America often believe that the United States is a "Christian" nation as they define it.[16][17][18]

Anti-abortion
One of the most widely-reported Christian terrorists is Eric Robert Rudolph,[19] an American who
committed a series of bombings across the southern United States in the 1990s, killing three
people and injuring at least 150 others, because he violently opposed abortion and homosexuality
as contrary to Christian doctrine.[20] He has been associated with the Christian Identity movement
by many and the movement may have influenced his actions,[21] though he has specifically stated
that he is not a member of this group. Rudolph stated: "They (Christians) have been so nice I
would hate to break it to them that I really prefer Nietzsche to the Bible."[22] Idaho State
University sociology professor James A. Aho has said: "I would prefer to say that Rudolph is a
religiously inspired terrorist, because most mainstream Christians consider Christian Identity to
be a heresy."[23]

See also
• Vigilantes

• Anti-abortion violence

• Christian patriot

• Domestic terrorism in the United States

• Hate groups
• Islamic terrorism

• Religious terrorism

• KKK

• Totalitarianism

• Racism

• Army of God

References
1. ^ Hoffman, Bruce Inside Terrorism p. 90 (1999 Columbia University Press)ISBN
0231114699
2. ^ [http://www.religioscope.com/info/articles/003_Hoffman_terrorism.htm RELIGION
AND TERRORISM Interview with Dr. Bruce Hoffman] Religioscope 22 Feb. 2002
3. ^ The role of religious fundamentalism in terrorist violence: a social psychological
analysis; Rogers MB, Loewenthal KM, Lewis CA, Amlôt R, Cinnirella M, Ansari H. [1]
4. ^ On Crusades: Tyerman 2006; On small networks tied to Christian anti-abortion
terrorism: Mason 2002; On Christian terrorism and violence: Juergensmeyer 2000; On
small, marginal, fragmented nature of Christian Identity: Barkun 1994, pp. viii-xi; On
condemnation of Christian Identity and terrorism by National Council of Churches:
Zeskind 1987; On Inquisition: Lea 1961.
5. ^ Falk Auditorium The Brookings Institution 1775 Massachusetts Ave., NW Washington,
DC 20036. "A Foreign Policy Event Terrorism: The Current Threat" Thursday, February
10, 2000. http://www.brookings.edu/events/2000/0210terrorism.aspx
6. ^
http://www.reuters.com/article/worldNews/idUSJAK25548520070726?pageNumber=2&
sp=true
7. ^ http://www.stephen-knapp.com/christian_terrorists_kill_44.htm
8. ^ http://www.satp.org/satporgtp/countries/india/states/tripura/terrorist_outfits/nlft.htm
9. ^ http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,842462-1,00.html
10. ^ In Bad Company: America's Terrorist Underground, By Mark S. Hamm [2]
11. ^ Guilty Pleas In Federal Hate Crime Case White supremacists guilty of attacking a
Jewish synagogue [3]
12. ^ Inside Terrorism; B. Hoffman; pp. 105–120
13. ^ “The Oklahoma suspect awaits day of reckoning,” The Sunday Times (London), Tim
Kelsey, April 21, 1996
14. ^ [http://www.religioscope.com/info/articles/003_Hoffman_terrorism.htm RELIGION
AND TERRORISM Interview with Dr. Bruce Hoffman] Religioscope 22 Feb. 2002
15. ^ On Crusades: Tyerman 2006; On small networks tied to Christian anti-abortion
terrorism: Mason 2002; On Christian terrorism and violence: Juergensmeyer 2000; On
small, marginal, fragmented nature of Christian Identity: Barkun 1994, pp. viii-xi; On
condemnation of Christian Identity and terrorism by National Council of Churches:
Zeskind 1987; On Inquisition: Lea 1961.
16. ^ http://www.publiceye.org/eyes/whitsup.html
17. ^ Barkun, Michael (1996). Religion and the Racist Right: The Origins of the Christian
Identity Movement. University of N. Carolina Press. ISBN 978-0807846384.
18. ^ Berlet, Chip (2004). A New Face for Racism & Fascism. White Supremacist,
Antisemitic, and Race Hate Groups in the U.S.: A Geneaology. Political Research
Associates. Retrieved on 2007-02-18.
19. ^ Christian Terrorism? By Lowell Ponte, FrontPageMagazine.com, June 4, 2003
20. ^ http://www.washingtonpost.com/ac2/wp-dyn/A1196-2003Jun1?language=printer
21. ^ http://www.washingtonpost.com/ac2/wp-dyn/A1196-2003Jun1?language=printer
22. ^ http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2005-07-05-rudolph-cover-
partone_x.htm?POE=NEWISVA
23. ^ Is Terrorism Tied To Christian Sect? By Alan Cooperman, Washington Post, June 2,
2003
• Barkun, Michael. 1994. Religion and the Racist Right: The Origins of the Christian
Identity Movement, revised. Chapel Hill, N.C.: University of North Carolina Press.
• Hedges, Chris. 2007. American Fascists: The Christian Right and the War on America.
Free Press.
• Juergensmeyer, Mark. 2000. Terror in the Mind of God: The Global Rise of Religious
Violence. Berkeley: University of California.
Lea, Henry Charles. 1961. The Inquisition of the Middle Ages. Abridged. New York: Macmillan.
• Mason, Carol. 2002. Killing for Life: The Apocalyptic Narrative of Pro-Life Politics.
Ithaca: Cornell University Press.
• Tyerman, Christopher. 2006. God's War: A New History of the Crusades. Cambridge,
MA: Harvard University Press, Belknap.
• Zeskind, Leonard. 1987. The ‘Christian Identity’ Movement, [booklet]. Atlanta, Georgia:
Center for Democratic Renewal/Division of Church and Society, National Council of
Churches.