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Who's a terrorist? Terrorists and the Catholic Church

"Terrorist" is a nasty word. The FARC in Colombia says it will not deal with the government until it stops calling them terrorists. Some Americans claim that liberation theology has made the Catholic Church an accomplice of terrorists in places like Central America. It is claimed that in Croatia the Church supported the Ustachi in its terrorist campaign against Orthodox Serba. Bienvenido Macario reports on the situation in the Philippines:

"All of the persons representing the Communist Party of the Philippines and its armed wing the New People's Army (could one call an organization formed in 1969 still "new") are Catholic priests and seminarians. They claim to their credit the murder of Col. Rowe a US military advisor in the Philippines. They are now seeking the release of the very people who killed Col. Rowe. Reacting to the US move against terrorists, Fr. Luis Jalandoni, the chair of the communist peace panel, said the US had "no moral authority to brand various organizations as terrorists. The US government should be on top of that list," he said, citing the US atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and its "war of aggression" against Vietnam." Bienvenido says that, despite all the financial help the US has given the Philippines, the filipinos hate the US-

My comment: The first word "all" is clearly an overstatement. Accusing the US of committing terrorist acts is not the same as supporting terrorists. The US government strongly opposes freeing the killers of Col. Rowe. My guess is that the Church is on the spot. I was in Italy during the Abyssinian war under Mussolini. Postcards showed the Virgin Mary blessing an Italian soldier. Any priests who opposed the war shut up for fear of being shut up. I have seen no polls on the popularity of the US in the Philippines.

Ronald Hilton - 12/10/01