Is Bill Keller a Terrorist?
If you haven't already done so, I recommend you read Michelle Malkin's and Bummer Dietz's great posts about the NYT disclosing troop movements and armament shipments on page 1.
But there's another piece I think is also relevant reading: Steven Den Beste's seminal piece, Theory and Practice of Terrorism. I really think it helps elucidate the why behind the New York Times recent (and seemingly treason-definitional) disclosures of national security secrets.
Den Beste writes:
Terrorism is much misunderstood. Like any form of warfare it can have horrible results. But the behavior of terrorists is not inexplicable. When a terrorist campaign is run well, there's a purpose behind everything they do...
"Terrorism" is actually misnamed, because the goal of it is not to sow terror (though that is a common tactic). The goal of terrorism is to sow discord and disruption and to provoke reprisals from your much stronger opponent. One of the paradoxes of terrorism is that when your opponent commits a major act of violence against your people, you (the terrorist) win and you become stronger.
In our campaign as terrorists, our goal is to continually strengthen ourselves and to continually weaken our enemy, so as to redress the inequality of power between us. We want to recruit our people into our forces. We want to recruit international neutrals to become allies. We want to convince powerful neutrals that it is in their best interests to impose a solution on our enemies. These are all desirable and efforts will continue on all of these simultaneously, as long as the struggle continues. All of these require propaganda, and a successful terrorist campaign will always involve a cagey relationship with the international press. The ultimate and essential weapon of terrorism is publicity...
...When we commit a terrorist act, our goal is to invite violent reprisals from our opponent's forces. But since they don't know who we are, they will make their reprisals against our people -- which will increase the will of our people to resist, and make them more open to joining our forces. Thus each time we successfully inspire a major reprisal, our recruitment will become more successful and our forces will grow.
Think about this for a moment in respect to Keller and the NYT. Is his goal to "invite violent reprisal" from Bush? Why would he want to do such a thing?
Well, what better way to show the evil Rethuglikkkan fascistic theocracy for what it really is than to force Chimpy to show his true colors by arresting the editor of the New York Times and charging him with treason? And what better way to show your own nobility, and your side's moral superiority, than jutting out your chin and shouting, "Innocent!" as you are dragged in shackles into the courtroom? Oh, think of all the things you could yell...
"See?! They are stifling dissent! They are trampling on the First Amendment! Everything we've said about the Bush Administration is true! Martyrdom is ours! Ellsberg Akbar!"
Makes a certain amount of sense, doesn't it?
Do you think they grow annoyed that each time they commit treason, that each time they publish the words of government employees who are committing treason, that each time they dare BushCo to arrest them that nothing ever seems to happen?
No reprisal. No response. No grist for the propaganda mill. No proof of right-wing Evil. It's enough to make a terror-journalist cry. Or try harder next time.