Love and Terror

The question is: “What would an effective progressive anti-terrorist policy look like?”
People frequently believe that acts of terror (war, aggression, etc) are the result of attitudes of hatred and intolerance. The most naive of us believe quite publicly that those who institute these horrific acts are simply evil people. Quite the contrary!
If you read the manifestos and statements publicized by terrorist groups (including, of course, the United States government during the Bush regime) then you’ll see very clearly that aggression is typically justified because of feelings of intense love. The motivating desire is not hatred of the other side, of the Other, but, rather, a profound love of oneself and one’s people. In either case, what I notice is that love and hate are indeed here the same emotion. It is the emotion of intensity. The desire for peace is the single most reliable indicator of the preparedness for war.
It is the same with leaders of ISIS. One such leader in southern Lebanon was quoted recently: “They call me sectarian, but what they do not understand is that they [Others; hezbollah, the alawites, etc] are the ones who are sectarian. What I want is a greater Muslim unity, but what they want is to split us into groups against one another.” The context is crucial: Islam, according to most readers of the Quran, is the religion that brings together all the religions of the book (e.g., the Abrahamic religions: Judaism, Christianity). Those who fight in the name of Islam are those who desire a greater unity, a greater community, of believers.
You can imagine this another way: why in cases of domestic violence do women often hear the man shout: “look at what you made me do!” or, rather, “I am doing this out of love!” What profound jealousy and aggression comes out of such a sweet and caring attitude! It is because of love that so much aggression against women occurs – not necessarily, as it were, out of hatred.

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