Countries are at war, and some of the biggest wars happening in many countries happen internally.
Lives have been lost, civilian lives were affected by terrorist attacks as they live for their cause.
While it is true, that one group's terrorist is another group's freedom fighters. And it is true that perhaps they have a very noble cause at hand for their own people, killing innocent people cancels out the nobility of their act.
We have set examples of great men and women over time who were able to attain their cause through peace. It has happened, and it can still happen. We have put Gandhi, Martin Luther King, and many others on the pedestal for pushing the idea of non-violence as a way to get the message across. We have seen people boycott, turn to civil disobedience, and perhaps stage a massive rally to be heard.
In the Philippines as well, peaceful protests, massive peaceful protests were able to depose leaders and change society.
Why does terrorism become an option to get what they want?
In an example of separatist states, the biggest issue they have is they do not have opportunities. People resort to blaming religion or others who are prosperous because they are helpless in their plight. As they blame others, they do have a choice though. Do they just sit and complain, or do they take action?
Taking action gets things done. But what action should they take? If they have the numbers, they can overthrow their own government who is not doing their job by voting for another person.
We live in the era of social media. People can present their plight to the rest of humanity and humiliate governments for their lack of action to the community in need. Do leaders want that? Not in a democracy.
When peace is used, no one can see fault in the nobility of your cause, for nobility requires that we respect humanity too. When a group with noble intentions for their society resorts to violence against civilians, then they have disregarded humanity, and in doing so, have lost the validity of their cause.
Their cause is lost the moment they cause harm, the moment they resort to extortion, and threats. Their cause is lost if they resort to the same actions we all despise in the politicians we want to get rid in the first place, because they won't be any different.
Guns are powerful tools in negotiation indeed. But guns are there for our defense. You never use a gun as a threat, but as a deterrent. Terrorists are called terrorists simply because they have resorted to tactics that causes harm to the community.
We have seen groups who succeed, and groups who are still fighting a war. Countries with dignity do not bow down to threats of violence. It is their task to instill this attitude of not negotiating to terrorists because there is no regard to humanity, and it causes a prelude for others to follow. If others can succeed through violence, the rest can see this as an opportunity to get what they want.
Everything can be attained through peace and dialog. Our world has become better because we have the world listening, and the good news is, there is enough of humanity to force change peacefully and help those who need help.
Image: (Left) Sajida al-Rishawi (Right) Lieutenant Muadh al-Kasasbeh