Posted on February 16th, 2020

Dr. Daya Hewapathirane

There are a series of publications based on in-depth studies on USA involvement in State Terrorism. The following are highlights on the contents of two of the prominent publications:

1) State Terrorism and Neoliberalism (2009), by Dr. Ruth Blakeley, Professor (University of Kent)

2) State Terrorism and the United States: From Counter-insurgency to the War on Terrorism” (2004) by Frederick H. Gareau (Professor Florida State Univ.)

State Terrorism and Neoliberalism (2009)

Author: Dr. Ruth Blakeley (University of Kent)

This is a book that explores the direct and active involvement of the USA in state terrorism in other countries. The book explores state terrorism as used by USA and European imperialists to secure territory and to defeat national liberation movements. It enumerates the use of state terrorism by the US throughout the Cold War to defeat political movements that would threaten US elite interests. It assesses the deceitful and atrocious  practices of the USA and most European states in the ‘War on Terror’, showing that these so-called democracies, have been active in state terrorism, including through extraordinary rendition.

Several scholars have accused the United States of conducting state terrorism. According to them, state terrorism is used to protect the interest of capitalist elites, and the U.S. organized a neo-colonial system of client states, co-operating with regional elites to rule through terror. Western liberal democracies, as former imperial powers, frequently used terrorism in the invasions and occupations of their colonies.

This book shows how the international media tends to ignore this deplorable of USA and other so-called Northern democracies. Media appears to be focusing instead on terrorist threats to US and Northern interests from illiberal actors. The book accounts for the absence of USA and Northern state terrorism from many terrorism studies and popular media reports.

Given the fact that USA and its western allies have been active in supporting international terrorism, it is understandable why the USA accuses the government of Sri Lanka and its heroic armed forces, for successfully countering the three decades long menace of Tamil terrorism in Sri Lanka, and for eradicating terrorism for good, especially with the elimination of the ruthless Tamil terrorist leadership in 2009, despite, perhaps the direct but definitely the indirect support they received from USA and its allies including the misled so-called Tamil expatriates who sought refuge in the West. .

State Terrorism and the United States: From Counter-insurgency to the War on Terrorism” (2004)                    Author: Frederick H. Gareau (Professor: Florida State University.)

In this widely read book by Professor Frederick H. Gareau, what is highlighted is the continuous support that the USA government has given right-wing dictatorships that committed terrorism especially during the cold war and war on terrorism. Washington’s support for state terrorist regimes typically has taken the form of training their troops in counterinsurgency,” now counter-terrorism,” and by providing funds and loans, military equipment, and diplomatic backing. The study indicates that Washington helped the Saddam Hussein regime and the apartheid regimes in South Africa successfully develop weapons of mass destruction. The author rejects the narrow definition of terrorism insisted on by Washington that exempts terrorism committed by governments (state terrorism) from the definition, and for political reasons restricts the term solely to the private terrorism committed by private individuals or non-governmental organizations.

USA support for terrorists has been prominent in Latin America, the Middle-East, and Southern Africa. USA provided weapons, training, and extensive financial and logistical support to the Contra rebels in Nicaragua, who used terror tactics in their fight against the Nicaraguan government. USA provided training, arms, and funds to terrorists among the Cuban exiles. Among the reasons given to justify such support include destabilizing political movements that might have aligned with the Soviet Union during the Cold War, including popular democratic and socialist movements. Support was also geared toward ensuring a conducive environment for American corporate interests abroad, especially when these interests came under threat from democratic governments.

Other Selected Publications on USA involvement in international terrorism

1). The Darkest Sides of Politics, State Terrorism, Weapons of Mass Destruction and organized Crime (2017), by Jeffrey M. Bale

2)Contemporary State Terrorism – Theory and Practice (2009),   by Richard JacksonEamon MurphyScott Poynting

3)The Political Economy of Human Rights (1979),by Noam Chomsky and Edward S. Herman 

4)The Real Terror Network (1985) by Edward S.Herman 

5) State Violence and Genocide in Latin America, The Cold War Years(2009), by Marcia EsparzaHenry R. HuttenbachDaniel Feierstein

6) Counter-Terrorism and State Political Violence- The War on Terror (2012) by Scott PoyntingDavid Whyte

7) Evaluating Counter-terrorism Performance – A comparative Study (2011) by Beatrice de Graaf

8) Western State Terrorism (1991) by Alexander L. George

9) America’s Other War (2005) by Doug Stokes

Dr. Daya Hewapathirane

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