Suicide Bombers Versus Murder Bombers

Suicide Bombers Versus Murder Bombers

By Gonan Premfors


In my quest to contribute to a conversation that leads to real change and a better place for our children, I tackle topics that are hard and sometimes almost impossible to talk about. This is one of those difficult conversations.

I have been struggling with the term suicide bomber for a long time, and perhaps it has something to do with language. I don’t think I would have thought much about it if I hadn’t grown up speaking Turkish, a language in which the term suicide bomber doesn’t exist. In Turkish we refer to suicide bombers as “living bombs”.

What initially triggered me to write this article was the fact that my older brother, the general manager, for a business hotel in Istanbul was only a short distance away from the suicide bombing that killed 10 German tourists on January 12, 2016, and only days ago the Turkish capital Ankara was hit by another bomb that killed more than 28 people and injured scores more. Again, friends and family were close by and many heard and felt the explosion.

“The suicide bomb phenomena was not a part of my childhood news stream, the concept foreign to me and my family. It was only when I got older and traveled that I became aware of the concept.”

In my research for this article, I discovered that the origins of suicide bombings go back hundreds of years and was largely figuring in a military-on-military context. That changed towards the turn of the century with the suicide attack on the U.S. Marine Barracks in Beirut in 1983, followed by the Tamil Tiger’s fight against the government in Sri Lanka between 1983-2009 and of course with the attacks that changed the world on September 11, 2001. The bombers of today are mostly associated with ISIS, Al Qaeda and other groups hiding behind twisted views of Islam but it’s worth noting that suicide bombings have been used by many groups of various religious and political beliefs.

suicide bombers

ISIS claims that eleven-year-old, Abu Imara al Omri, blew himself up in Syria recently. CNN: How ISIS recruits children, then kills them

Unfortunately, both the frequency and geographic reach of these incidents have increased steadily. What used to be three global attacks per year in the 1980’s has now become a daily occurrence. Today suicide bombings are like popcorn, popping everywhere and seemingly uncontrollable all whilst diminishing the value of human life.

“Attacks can now happen in your favorite square in Paris or in a grocery store in Karachi. The frequency and reach are indicators that more and more people are being converted to a dark, deadly and poisonous cause.”

I now understand why I struggle with the term. Although, the perpetrators may be committing suicide and they are often young and sometimes mentally disabled, they are still murderers. When we call them suicide bombers we glorify them, acknowledging that they gave their life for a cause – making the heroes in the eyes of those who sympathize with their cause. They are murderers, plain and simple.

The instigators of the current un-Islamic “Jihad against the West” have among themselves, conveniently adjusted the interpretation of suicide, which is strictly forbidden in Islam according to the vast majority of Islamic scholars, to something loosely translated to “martyrdom operation.” To die defending your family, your people, village or town in the name of your faith is Shahada, strapping explosives to your body or driving a truck into a bus full of people – is murder. Based on available news footage and reliable media reports both ISIS and Al Qaeda are actively teaching children to seek “Shahada”, to prove their oneness and commitment to God, by becoming martyrs in the name of God.

At 17 this British boy was manipulated into committing murder in the name of faith. Vice News: Britain’s Youngest Suicide Bomber

My question is which God they serve when they get people to commit murder thinly disguised as an honorable act. In the year of 2016 we cannot allow people to murder in the name of God? How is that even possible? This article is my stand to take away the glorification of suicide bombing and remove the notion that the perpetrators are heroes in any form. At best they are mindless, easily manipulated victims (including the many children and the mentally ill often used in these acts). It’s the most cowardly form of murder as there is no responsibility, no facing the music, no justifying why you did it. It’s much easier to blow yourself up than watch people die in front of you.

“Ultimately, I’m not the first nor the last to suggest that we need to change the term suicide bomber to murder bomber (homicide murder has also been suggested) because it’s simply cold-blooded killing.”

In 2008 a teenager blew himself up outside a house not far from the U.S. embassy in Kabul. Six street kids, who thought they were simply trying to stop another street vendor from muscling in on their territory, were blown to shreds together with the landlord of the office that was the target. It was a company owned by my husband and I. If any of our employees, or my husband, would have been closer to the gate they would be dead too.

I can’t stop people from blowing themselves up, but I can be a part of a movement that removes the glory from murder. Perhaps, that conversation could lead to someone making a choice that is the difference between life and death.

So, please join me to start a #GozammLife movement to call the killing of innocent people murder #nomoresuicidebombers, #murderbombers, #vicenews, #cnn

Gonan Premfors

Gonan is the originator of the philosophies behind Gozamm, the home of the Parentology, Trust and Open Heart workshops. An industry thought-leader and a perennial innovator, Gonan is setting trends in the realms of families and business worldwide. Her eclectic background; being born in Turkey, married to a Swede, having lived in the Middle East for 25 years and now living in California, she truly brings a new dynamic perspective to an important field. -- view all articles