The news the other day that “insurgents” had killed two children in a bomb attack, fleeing their car as it exploded with the kids still in the back, reminded me how powerful words are in asymmetrical war. There it was again – the use of the romantic term “insurgents” for the psychopaths who performed this act, as if these freaks were the natural grandchildren of Pancho Villa or something, freedom fighters defending the down trodden.
Now to most of us they are fascists – either of the secular or the religious stripe – but it is perhaps too much to ask our sensitive media to use such a loaded word. So perhaps something like “anti-democratic forces” might be employed. Or is that also too much to ask? Maybe the NYT wants to be sure these child murderers are not “pro-democracy”. After all, you never know. Right?