Suicide bombers should not be honored

I don’t know which makes me angrier; suicide bombings or people who support them as a valid tactic. I keep seeing people on the news and in newspapers, including this one, attempting to legitimize the practice of strapping a bomb to yourself and trying to kill as many people as possible in the ensuing explosion.

Maybe it’s my cultural ignorance, but where is the logic in killing yourself because the Israelis are killing your people? “If Israel kills another Palestinian, a Palestinian will strap a bomb to his body (or, lately, her body) and kill himself and hopefully take some Israelis with him.” Brilliant.

In what is perhaps the most entertaining method of praise for the walking dead, Saudi diplomat Ghazi Algosaibi published a poem titled, “The Martyrs,” in a London-based Arabic newspaper. The poem specifically praises the actions of Ayat Akhras, the 18-year-old girl who scattered her body parts in a market on March 29. I was unable to find a copy of the poem in its entirety. In it, Akhras is referred to as “a bride of loftiness.” If I was the one writing the poem, I would have said “bride of craziness,” but I think “girl with the malleable mind” works even better.

Algosaibi says that the Palestinians commit virtual suicide by living the way they do. Herein lies my problem with these types of suicide bombings. People like Algosaibi (the diplomat) call for these types of actions but leave the dying part to foolish, little kids like Akhras. Although I suppose if Algosaibi did blow himself up, the world would lose a nearly average poet.

We don’t see guys like Osama bin Laden or Yasser Arafat blowing themselves up or flying planes into buildings. That’s because they’re able to convince simpler people to do that kind of thing. Arafat’s wife Soha said that there isn’t any greater honor than being a suicide bomber. She was asked if she would want her son to carry one out. Her response, according to Fox News, was telling: “Do you expect me and my children to be less patriotic and more eager to live than the sons of my people and their father and president who is seeking martyrdom?”

I think Arafat is seeking martyrdom in the same way that I’m seeking a large, jagged kidney stone. If Arafat wanted to be killed in the name of his people, he’s had plenty of opportunities recently.

In addition to being stupid, suicide bombings are indefensible. They take credibility away from the Palestinian cause. They kill innocent civilians. And besides all that, they defy basic logic. Killing yourself because people are dying? It just does not make sense. I wouldn’t think that you could achieve martyrdom with suicide; it’s like shooting yourself and expecting to get a Purple Heart.

Without a doubt, the worst part of a suicide bombing is the puppet masters who recruit young people caught up in a combination of religious fervor and poor impulse control to do their dirty work. I wonder how long it will take for the leaders to realize that these bombings are ineffective and for the kamikazes to realize they’re being used.

Chris Ricketts is a sophomore majoring in