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Is Haron Monis a terrorist?

Written By: - Date published: 12:51 pm, December 16th, 2014 - 187 comments
Categories: International, john key - Tags: ,

Haron Monis was a dangerous criminal. If he was a white non-Muslim there’s no doubt that’s how he would be reported. But John Key is instead talking about this showing terrorism can happen here.

If we take it as that a lone gunman can kill innocent strangers – yes, Aramoana showed us that.  But those incidents aren’t normally called “terrorism”.

National are keen to justify their constant increases of the surveillance state – which doesn’t work against lone perpetrators.

It’s all somewhat reminiscent of John Key at the White House saying that Anders Breivik’s actions justified our presence in Afghanistan.  As Russel Norman tweeted at the time: “Key says we are in Afghanistan to fight Norwegian neo-nazis”

That was at the same tie as John Key was busy mishandling the Israeli spies in Christchurch – that international farce led to the amazing OIA of SIS documents to WhaleOil to undermine Phil Goff.  Can we expect something similar to hide Key’s embarrassment?

Key seems all too ready to jump in to “Islamic terrorism” mode.  I’m sure our Muslim community don’t appreciate it, and hopefully the public will start realising the leglessness of the hysteria which John Key hypes for more authoritarian laws.

187 comments on “Is Haron Monis a terrorist? ”

  1. Kevin 1

    Maybe Key is wearing his kippah headwear this week…

    I wonder if the Haron Monis had a plastic sword?

    • I spent a few years working in Israel and Palestine and got to know a wide variety of people over there.

      Unsurprisingly, the vast majority of Israeli citizens do not hate Muslims (though many are fearful of an inevitable reckoning), despite their government systematically oppressing the Palestinian people, violently as we see sometimes in the news, and the rest of the time relentless, systemic economic oppression which ensures the vast majority of the Palestinian population is kept in poverty.

      What I did find surprising was that the vast majority of Palestinians didn’t hate the Israeli people broadly (though mentioning some sections of Israeli society, such as The Jewish Home could provoke expressions of anger, frustration, and hate), while at the same time recognising that the the systemic oppression they suffered under was a result of Israel’s will as a nation.

      It’s the radicals at both populations who shout the loudest that get to frame the public discourse.
      And also, politics in Israel is very difficult if your party does not embrace Zionism, at least rhetorically anyway.
      Another feature of Israeli politics is that at various times it gets dominated by a siege mentality which politicians on the right stoke for all it’s worth – it’s effective, cause shit really does blow up some times over there.

      My point is, being Jewish doesn’t mean you automatically hate Muslims.

      edit: also, John Key seems pretty flexible when it comes to religion, he seems quite happy to be perceived as either Christian or Jewish.

      • Tracey 1.1.1

        …and the media drumming up the perception of hatred amongst all. I know people who lived and worked in Israel and were shocked at how friendly people were, both muslim and israeli, living side by side in many cases and finding both govts actions abhorrent. Strangely to many outside those countries, all they want is to live a peaceful live. BIZARRE!!!!

        99% of israelis and Palestines living happily together

        doesnt sell papers

    • Ian H 1.2

      “I wonder if the Haron Monis had a plastic sword?”

      He had a machete. It would have decapitated just as effectively.

      What is it with you people? He isn’t a terrorist because he didn’t have the right gear? The man did his best! His black flag resembled an IS flag closely enough to get the message across. And his machete was near enough to a sword that it would have made no difference to his victims. OK so his bomb was also fake. But as a threat it was credible enough. It is like you don’t think anyone can be a terrorist unless they can afford the proper equipment – the right banner, a real sword, and a real bomb.;

      • Tracey 1.2.1

        it also resembled the saudi flag and he called himself a sheik so by your logic he is an oil baron.

      • Tracey 1.2.2

        and a cause that resembles terrorism not self gratifying me_ism.

        why are you so desperate that he be a terrorist?

      • One Anonymous Bloke 1.2.3

        Bedwetters like you might be terrified of all sorts of things. The rest of us may profit from studying the symptoms, and that’s the extent of your utility.

      • Ennui 1.2.4

        How the man was equipped is immaterial to the question of whether the man is a terrorist. His modus operandi was that of a terrorist, he claimed to be doing it for a political reason. If he grabbed me I would regard him as a terrorist regardless of any bona fides.

        • One Anonymous Bloke

          So, that justifies unwarranted surveillance of anyone who might grab you?

          • Ennui

            Certainly not: we cant trust the watchers, equally we cant trust those who they claim to watch over us for. We are collateral damage in their cross fire.

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              No. Collateral damage feeds their fear and hatred and strengthens their cause: our blood is necessary, for both “terrorists” and wingnuts.

              In time, I suspect the links between right wing brain syndrome and terrorist ethics may become more obvious. On the other hand, they’ve probably been obvious for 60,000 years, so I may just be a victim of unwarranted optimism,

              • Ennui

                Yes, our blood is necessary for both terrorists and wingnuts. There is a strong vein of terror from the state (left and right…Pol Pot, Stalin, Hitler, Kissinger terrorists one and all). And they all butt up against their enemy “terrorists”. I have no optimism that this will ever change.

        • Tracey

          Can you point to his statement of intent with a link?

          • Ennui

            Dont be so naive Tracey, he forced people at gun point to hold up an Islamic flag. You and the rest of us saw it live on TV. I have no idea if he was “linked” to any organisation. Who knows and who cares. It was his sad excuse to kill. He committed an act of random terror.

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              Don’t be so naive. Are you oblivious to the political context of the “definition” (a movable feast if ever there was one) of ‘terrorism’?

            • Tracey

              I didnt see it live on tv, they were looping a lack of information so i just used occassional sydney newspaper updates..

              He committed an act of planned power and control and murdered two people and injured many others leaving some frightened people in his wake.

              See how it still works on the known facts without using the term terrorist or terror

            • Puddleglum

              He committed an act of random terror

              Every violent criminal can be said to do that. Are all such criminals therefore ‘terrorists’?

            • Sabine

              So the 12 year old that killed a Dairy owner in West Auckland is a terrorist by your definition.

  2. Bill 2

    John Key is only parroting what major news outlets are suggesting, are only suggesting what recognised authorities are claiming.

    The tsunami of shit stinks to high heaven.

  3. tinfoilhat 3

    Surely it depends how you define terrorism ?

    • Bob 3.1

      Exactly, according to Google, terrorism is “the unofficial or unauthorized use of violence and intimidation in the pursuit of political aims”.
      Due to one of the demands of Haron Monis being a call from a Politician (Tony Abbott), this could be classed as terrorism.
      The distinction that does need to be made however, is that this guy seemed to be working alone, so this doesn’t appear to be part of a terrorist group, so you could also state the Police just wiped out an entire Australian terrorist cell and there is no longer a threat from this cell, so nothing needs to change.

      Aramoana is a bad example as there were absolutely no political motivations, hence, by definition, not terrorism.

  4. Tom Gould 4

    Yes, he is a crazed terrorist. Just ask any of the hostages held in terror or the families of those slain in terror. Trying to spin some lefty liberal political advantage out of this abomination is itself an abomination. Shameful.

    • batweka 4.1

      So all situations where murder/aggravated violence happens but not instantly is terrorism? Or perhaps you would like to define terrorism for us succinctly so we all know what it is. thanks.

      • tinfoilhat 4.1.1

        One of the Guardian’s reporters has an interesting opinion..

        “There are multiple ways of defining terrorism, and all are subjective. Most define terrorism as “the use or threat of serious violence” to advance some kind of “cause”. Some state clearly the kinds of group (“sub-national”, “non-state”) or cause (political, ideological, religious) to which they refer. Others merely rely on the instinct of most people when confronted with innocent civilians being killed or maimed by men armed with explosives, firearms or other weapons. None is satisfactory, and grave problems with the use of the term persist. Terrorism is after all, a tactic. The term “war on terrorism” is thus effectively nonsensical. As there is no space here to explore this involved and difficult debate, my preference is, on the whole, for the less loaded term “Militancy”. This is not an attempt to condone such actions, merely to analyse them in a clearer way.”

      • gsays 4.1.2

        i am pretty sure it was michael franti who defined a terrorist as:
        someone with a bomb who doesn’t have an air force.

        hope this helps.

    • Bill 4.2

      I’m no ‘lefty liberal’ and am utterly sickened by what’s going on.

      Now, you wanna take that specious ‘lefty liberal’ slur and, insofar as I’m an intended target for it, stick it up your arse as far as your forearm will reach? Thankyou.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 4.2.1

        Bill, I’ll have you know I’m a Lefty Liberal and I condemn your anti-fister bigotry.

    • Tracey 4.3

      All we know for sure is he is

      1. a murderer of two people and injured many others;
      2. implicated in the setting alight and stabbing of his wife;
      3. charged with over 40 sexual offences.

      Those, Sir, are the only facts to date and you are spouting shrill emotion. Aren’t 1, 2 and 3 enough for you??

      • Sabine 4.3.1

        now now Tracey,

        1. terrorism
        2. is domestic violence which was probably the fault of his wife for not being enough of something or other
        3. sexual offences – are you sure the ladies did not ask for it? Or maybe they dd drink alcohol? Or wearing tight trousers or short skirts?

        sorry for being sarcastic. – but there is no way John Key and his minion would declare violence against women as terrorism. If they would they would have to change their attitude.

        as per his wikipedia

        Esmaeil Ahmadi-Moghaddam, Iran’s chief of police, told reporters that Monis had “a dark and long history of violent crime and fraud” in Iran and had run a travel agency in 1996, before fleeing to Malaysia and then Australia. “It lasted 4 years to collect evidence on Manteghi [Monis]’s identification documents and we reported this to the Australian police but since Australia has no extradition treaty with Iran, they didn’t extradite him to Iran”.[13] The London-based Persian TV channel Manoto 1 reported that Monis had been working as the managing director of a tourism agency in Iran, and had fled Iran after taking US$200,000 of his customers’ money. The same source reported that he was protected from extradition by his refugee status.[14]

        Iran’s official news agency, IRNA states that he was “under prosecution by the Interpol” and Iran provided information to the Australian government about his criminal record, mental and spiritual status. Despite this, he was granted asylum in Australia.[15] Iranian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Marzieh Afkham, publicly questioned the Australian government’s having taken his criminal status “completely clear”, after several discussions.[15]

        • Tracey

          So, if correct, he is an historic conman, sexual predator, possible wife burner and murderer

    • One Anonymous Bloke 4.4

      Yes, Tom, reasoned analysis is useless, just like terrorism. No, wait…

  5. shorts 5

    key is in sales mode (always), anything that helps him sell his wares will do (increased state powers)… bugger the consequences cause the only thing that matters at the end of the day is how this benefits key

  6. Ovid 6

    A terrorist act, for New Zealand purposes, is defined by section 5 of the Terrorism Suppression Act 2002. So we have to ask the following questions:

    1. Was Monis’ act carried out to advance an ideological, political, or religious cause?
    On balance, I think it was. The fact he waved a Shahada flag and compelled his hostages to make videos asking for an IS flag certainly leads us to make a very strong inference that his motives were religious and ideological. The shotgun and the flag point to premeditation rather than Monis just snapping.


    2 (a). Was it carried out with the intention to induce terror in a civilian population
    He did claim there were four bombs dotted around Sydney. The Opera House was evacuated.


    2 (b). Was it carried out to unduly compel or to force a government or an international organisation to do or abstain from doing any act?
    The previously mentioned videos he made his hostages make were a series of demands. Not especially serious in themselves, but it’s not a giant leap that if he wanted to talk to Abbott (which was one of the demands uploaded to YouTube) he would be making further demands.


    3. Did Monis’ act result in the death of, or other serious bodily injury to, 1 or more persons (aside from Monis himself)

    At present, I think it is appropriate to call Monis a terrorist, at least in law. But whether we need laws articulating what terrorism is rather than the standard criminal definitions of murder, kidnapping, aggravated assault etc is another debate. I, for one, think we do when it comes to conspiracy, preparation and training with a terrorist goal in mind (for example, it should be perfectly legal to learn how to fly an aircraft, but illegal to learn how to fly one with the intention of hijacking).

    • Tracey 6.1

      I think you are wrong. It is appropriate to call him a murderer, an implicated murderer and accused of over 40 sexual offences.

      Each of your scenarios can be explained other ways.

      he was an attention seeker, reportedly writing heaps of letters, not just to families of dead military personnel, regular caller to radio stations…

      he decided to MAKE people listen to him.

      he may have had an over inflated idea of his own importance, and the exposure of his fakery and shame by the Courts may have determined him to go out in a blaze of glory. The flag which included a statement also carried on the Saudi Flag, did the trick but that doesn’t make him a terrorist.

      Graham Capill abused children sexually while holding the title of Reverend, that fits with an act designed to carry out a religious cause, to share the love of God?

      Speculation in this case, imo, is very dangerous.

      I shudder that it is just not enough for some people at this stage to know he is a murderer, sexual predator and implicated in his wife’s murder. That certainly seems to be how the police were treating him yesterday.

      • Ennui 6.1.1


        Just add terrorist to the criminal list….he seems ideally suited to be a terrorist. He has already displayed willingness to commit vile crimes. Now he has killed people in an act of random terror. He claimed a “reason”. I am sure those other bigots and psychopaths in Islamic terror organisations will be keen to claim him as a “martyr”. And you can be equally sure that those other bigots and psychos among-st the political class and security organisations in the “West” will condemn this individual as a terrorist as well.

        • Tracey

          You are speculating.

          Bigots and psychopaths exist in big numbers outside terrorist organisations as well. Some even get elected to parliament (which i think you are acknowledging)

          willingness to commit “vile” crimes is not a prerequisite for labelling an act terrorism.

          How long will it be before these organisations claim him as one of theirs?

          I am struggling to follow your reasoning on the known facts to date.

          He might have got his idea for the flag following the reporting of the shooting of the 18 year old in September.

          • Ennui

            I am absolutely certain that if you or I were in that room with that man we would have regarded him as a terrorist. I don’t think we would have given a rats arse for whom or why but we would have recognised his modus operandi as terrorism. Is that so difficult to get your head around. And yes, I suspect it helps to be a criminal nutter to be able to do these things.

            • Tracey

              Your reasoning is a little tortured…

              Flag = terrorist
              Frightened people think its a terrorist = must be a terrorist

              Like many today your conclusion he is a terrorist is entirely assumption.

              You may turn out to be right but not on the basis you just outlined.

              • One Anonymous Bloke

                Terrorism requires terror, a goal it only ever achieves locally and temporarily on its own. It requires authoritarian assistance to enliven and extend its fear beyond local and temporal boundaries, assistance that wingnuts are only too happy to provide.

                • Tracey

                  My understanding is that an act of terror is implicitly designed to make a percentage of a population live in fear they will be next until the current political structure is dismantled and replaced by their particular ideology and through that fear understand the alleged oppression the perpetrators feel in which nation/s they align with… Other factors also help define the terrorist.

                  My inclination remains that this was all about this man, his sense of power and control not a greater cause per se.

                  I may be wrong, but that there is more than one possibile motivation is in most part cos there is a paucity of fact. Once the poor hostages start recalling and making statements more of the picture will unblur…

                  • One Anonymous Bloke

                    My understanding is that “terrorism” is a red herring, a false flag if you prefer. Not in Ev’s trite conspiracist terms: simply the wrong lens.

            • Sabine

              Will you also call robbers at a bank or dairy a terrorist?
              Will you also then call for terrorist laws to be strengthened and your civil rights to be taken away because some Methhead robbed a bank, or some twelve year old kills a Dairy Owner?

    • Personally, I think you are missing one key ingredient.

      – Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi
      – Osama Bin Laden
      – Haron Monis
      – Rose Lynch

      One of these things is not like the others,
      One of these things just doesn’t belong,
      Can you tell which thing is not like the others

      Can you tell which one?

    • One Anonymous Bloke 6.3

      He falls at the first hurdle: it is far more likely that his cause was his own, avoiding prison, not the bandwagon he recently boarded.

  7. Ian H 7

    This man thought of himself as a terrorist and wanted to be thought of by the world as a terrorist. He would have draped himself in a terrorist flag if he’d been able to get hold of one. His Islamist threats and rantings were well known in Australia. But the media there consistently chose to downplay the threat he represented by portraying him as an eccentric crank and a bit of a joke. In retrospect that may have been a mistake.

    Why wouldn’t he be a terrorist. He named himself one. He committed a terrorist act. People like him certainly terrify me! I find it terrifying that people like him who are clearly unhinged and dangerous are allowed to walk around on bail while waiting to be tried for crimes like murder and rape.

    • Tracey 7.1

      Can you provide the link to where he named himself a terrorist? Please dont use the extract from the Koran which also appears on the Saudi flag as your proof unless you also want to call him an oil sheik.

      • Ian H 7.1.1

        He wanted an IS flag and seems to have chosen the black one he used because it closely resembled it. What do you think the banner was for? He wasn’t holding a prayer meeting in that cafe. The headband he wore was the kind of thing a suicide bomber wears in those awful videos they make before they go and blow themselves up.

        As to a quote self-identifying as terrorist – I admit I overstepped a bit there. Very few terrorists actually call themselves terrorists as in “I am a terrorist”. They call themselves martyrs or jihadis or freedom fighters or whatnot. I suspect we’ll find in his rantings to his terrified hostages plenty of evidence of him using that kind of language.

        Actually I am more interested in why you seem so invested in proclaiming that this man was NOT a terrorist.

        • One Anonymous Bloke

          A violent man facing prison, having exhausted his legal options, may adopt whatever clothing he feels most appropriate to his cause, and still be nothing more than a violent man facing prison.

          Personally, I think terrorists, and people who worry about terrorism, and people who use terrorism as an excuse to attack human rights, are a bunch of bedwetters who have far more in common with one another than they do with sane people.

          What’s more, they seem to find such opinions terrifying 😆

        • Tracey

          of course you are because you dont get the difference between jumping to a convenient conclusion and waiting for the facts.

          what difference does it make to you whether he was

          a murderer, sexual predator and wife killer or a terrorist?.

        • Tracey

          if he had wanted a helicopter would that make him a pilot?

          • One Anonymous Bloke

            I want a big pile of cash. I’m a billionaire! Wee!

            [lprent: Please wee somewhere else. May I suggest the sewer, it seems to be common there… 😈 ]

        • Colonial Rawshark

          Ian H – I find it odd that you are desperate to give extra credence to every unwell attention seeker out there.

          Of course this means that you are part of the problem, as you are all too eager to label everything terrorism.

          The Australian authorities (and you) should not have jumped on the bandwagon of Islamic Terrorism when this incident started. Reacting to it as an anti-terrorist operation was a disaster.

          You, and the authorities should have reacted to this as a typical armed hostage taking. Which is far far far more likely to be due to someone seeking attention, a domestic dispute, someone who is stressed out or mentally unwell.

          The label “terrorist” that you keep using is dumb.

          In your heart of course, you know that if western countries continue to supply death and destruction into villages, towns and cities in the middle east it will eventually come back to us. Seems to me like your conscience is simply waiting for that to happen.

    • Draco T Bastard 7.2

      I find it terrifying that people like him who are clearly unhinged and dangerous are allowed to walk around on bail while waiting to be tried for crimes like murder and rape.

      And in NZ The Slater legally owns a gun.

      • Ian H 7.2.1

        I was unaware that Slater was on bail awaiting trial for murder and rape. Why isn’t this more widely known?

        • Tracey

          you know he demanded to speak to the PM and one poster here says that puts you half way to being a terrorist?

        • Draco T Bastard

          He’s not but that, of course, is typical RWNJ everything must be exactly the same for the analogy to work. The fact of the matter is that Slater’s writing show him as being unstable and he owns guns and has broken the law.

          • Tracey

            and demanded the PMs phone number

          • TheContrarian

            To be fair though (though I’m not defending Slater), breaching name suppression orders isn’t really the sort of crime that should require someone to be banned from owning a gun.

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              How about advocating harm to political opponents and celebrating accidental death?

              • Tracey

                and supplying an address to someone who wanted to harm the resident…

                it isnt about slater tho its about idiotic dot joining.

              • TheContrarian

                Until Slater actually talks about using his guns to cause harm to others then there is no reason to ban him from having a firearms license. Being convicted of a non-violence offence is no reason to ban someones license.

                • anker

                  But mental health issues are a reason to ban someone’s gun license.

                  • Dex

                    If you took the license from everyone suffering depression, pretty soon all farmers and gun owners would be hiding it with more catastrophic consequences. The fact that this loon was only able to source a shotgun minimizing any potential deaths is probably a fortunate consequence of Australia’s gun laws.

    • Ennui 7.3

      I am in agreement with you Ian, I cant quite understand why people don’t understand that this was an act of terror. If you look at the historic record there are lot of acts of terror perpetrated by and carried out by people not directly associated with a cause. This guy associated himself with a cause, and expressed this association by capturing hostages and killing two people. Nutter or not he took it into his hands to perpetrate an act of terror and associate with a cause.

      What concerns me the most is how we respond. Our governments have not and will not serve us (the citizenry) well. They will use this as an excuse to inflict more terror on us (by way of legislation denying our freedoms) and by force against “our enemies” aka ISIS, Al Quaeda, Putin, the IRA, Vietcong, etc etc etc

      Ultimately two people will not go home to their loved ones because one person decided to act homicidally to make a dubious point for an equally dubious cause. It could have been you and me. Can we trust Key, Abbott or Obama to “protect” us. I think not.

      • Tracey 7.3.1

        Because all the facts are not yet known.

      • One Anonymous Bloke 7.3.2

        Again, you’re missing the obvious. Was the goal of this hostage taker political, or personal? Violent men who lose in court are Titfords, not terrorists.

        • Ennui

          I have missed no point: you are in denial that this was an act of terror. If you or I decided to go down to our local coffee bar with a gun, hold people hostage, hold up the flag of the Peoples Republic of the Aro Valley, then shoot a couple of people would that not be an act of terror?

          • Tracey

            No. The flag doesnt make it terror anymore than it makes him saudi arabian because it carried the same reference, or an oil sheik.

            Some of us are open to him being a terrorist, but equally open to him not and being a murderer, sexual predator and alleged wife murderer, and needing more facts before joining the PMs, your and others hysteria drive.

            • Ennui

              Tracey, go look in the mirror: you are displaying hysterical denial. Just because you object to how the PM portrays the event is no reason to brand others who see this man as a terrorist as being on the PMs side. As for facts there are more than enough.

              • Colonial Rawshark

                Sorry mate but terror is an emotion. People are terrified of lots of different things. Lots of different kinds of criminal activities cause terror. From serial murderers and rapists through to white collar crims who strip away the savings and homes of retirees leaving them destitute.

                Did this man generate terror? Yes he did. Of course he did. He was a guy with a shotgun pointing it at random people, depriving them of their freedom and eventually of their life. Plenty of terror to go around there.

                But once you label this incident “an act of terror” you are placing it squarely in the context of the west’s self proclaimed (and bullshit) “global war on terrorism.” You are also placing this incident squarely in the context of the power elite’s creation of a security and surveillance state to bind all of us within.

                Is this what you really want to do? Do you really believe that the west’s “global war on terrorism” is the way that this incident could have been stopped? Well I think that different social, health and criminal justice interventions earlier on could have stopped this guy. But not predator drones and warrantless surveillance.

                Maybe someone should also ask – how come Australia’s new intrusive and civil liberties destroying security state legislation, passed in Sept, didn’t spot what this known criminal was planning to do?

      • anker 7.3.3

        Ennui @ 7.3 100+

    • Murray Rawshark 7.4

      He did not think of himself as a terrorist. He thought of himself as something like a prophet, a holy man working for peace. He did not call himself a terrorist. Why are you making stuff up?

      • Colonial Rawshark 7.4.1

        Smart lefties and intellectuals are too often amongst the first to get drawn into the drumbeat of war and the security/surveillance state.

        • Murray Rawshark

          I immodestly think of myself as both a smart lefty and an intellectual. I’m immune to most drumbeats apart from the Cook Island drums at Warriors’ home games.

  8. Skinny 8

    Posing as an outspoken cleric/religious leader gives me the impression this individual was a ticking time-bomb, more of a delusional wannabe cleric than a terrorist. I’d classify him in a Jim Jones or Brian Tamati mould. At 50 years of age a bit old to be starting out as a terrorist, well not your run of the mill one, who are usually way younger. However to Abbott, Cameron, Obama and our very own John Key, he will be framed nicely as a ISIS extremist/terrorist of the worst kind. Anyone remotely connected ( happen to be captured by cctv footage walking the same street as him) will suffer dawn raids and detention.

    Key has already starting spinning crap that this sorry saga had nothing to do with Australian troops on the ground in the Middle East and more to do with the long evil tentacles of terrorist cells Down Under. Really… but hang on what’s all this tv footage of Monis and his outspoken rants opposing Ozzie troops in the ME?

  9. Mike 9

    His demands included:

    1. ISIL flag
    2. To speak to the Prime Minister.

    I think the terrorist label is appropriate in this case.

    • Tracey 9.1

      Slater has done half of those things. May have an ISIS flag too for all I know.

      • Mike 9.1.1

        Haha, well I’m sure if he bails people up with a shot gun in a cafe and gets them to hold up copies of Dirty Politics, there won’t be many arguing here he’s not a terrorist 🙂

        • felix

          Well he does have guns.

          And he does direct violent language toward his political opponents, vowing to destroy his enemies etc.

          And he does claim that there is a conspiracy of people planning to kill him, and that he knows who they are.

          And he does claim to live by a mantra of “giving back double”.

          So yeah, I’m not convinced it’s a laughing matter, Mike.

          • Colonial Rawshark

            Slater isn’t considered a terrorist because he’s “our kind of guy.”

            Just like the US allied operatives and contractors who kidnapped Muslim civilians in the dead of night and then held and tortured them for years without charge, aren’t terrorists. Because they too are “our kind of guys.”

            But if you’re not our kind of torturer and kidnapper of civilians, then of course you are a terrorist.

  10. Draco T Bastard 10

    But John Key is instead talking about this showing terrorism can happen here.

    Yep and even some in the MSM are calling it what it is: Political opportunism

    • Mike 10.1

      @ Draco,

      I can understand people wanting to down play this down and divorce it from any broader context. But be reasonable, this kind of thing freaks people out. Do you really expect politicians to not discuss in the context of terrorism?

      • Skinny 10.1.1

        No we expect our Prime Minister not to try more crap on us by an attempt to leverage political gain out of a sorry situation.

        • Ian H

          The public may not have much patience with attempts to play left wing semantic games of “lets redefine the word” in an attempt to avoid calling this terrorism. Are you really sure this is the road you want to go down?

          • Tracey

            are we being reported to the public?

          • One Anonymous Bloke

            Fuck off, fearmonger.

          • Draco T Bastard

            The definition of terrorism has been changing quite a bit recently. It used to be that the US government and, IMO, our present government would easily have fit under the old definition.


            • One Anonymous Bloke

              Spanner, meet works 😀

            • One Anonymous Bloke

              From Hoffman’s conclusion:

              All terrorist acts involve violence or the threat of violence. Terrorism is specifically designed to have far-reaching psychological effects beyond the immediate victim(s) or object of the terrorist attack. It is meant to instill fear within, and thereby intimidate, a wider `target audience’ that might include a rival ethnic or religious group, an entire country, a national government or political party, or public opinion in general. Terrorism is designed to create power where there is none or to consolidate power where there is very little.

              My bold.

              So, not so different from foreign policy as practiced by certain quintocular allies who shall remain nameless then.

              Belated warning: this comment may contain “subversive” opinions, exposure to which can affect ones credit rating 😈

              • Tracey

                so some media yesterday qualify…

                “… It is meant to instill fear within, and thereby intimidate, a wider `target audience …”

          • framu

            why are you and the pm so keen to give this man the label you claim he sought?

            If he is a terrorist, hes a spectacularly bad one as he wasnt operating in secret, was acting out in plain sight and was acting alone – ie; thats a dumb way to do a large group of hostages over a long time frame.

            Yet terrorists seek goals dont they – the main one is instilling fear – which you, the PM and every single other person who is so keen to ramp it up as much as possible, is helping him do.

            your making him MORE successful – even when hes dead

      • One Anonymous Bloke 10.1.2


        I expect my politicians to reject the entire notion of terrorism, and give no ground whatsoever to fearmongers under any circumstances.

      • Tracey 10.1.3

        yes, if they are rational and able to think for themselves and wait out the hysterics for the facts

      • framu 10.1.4

        ” But be reasonable, this kind of thing freaks people out.”

        yeah thats the point mike – it freaks people out, so shouldnt our leaders be exercising some restraint instead of leaping from the blocks in order to instill more fear?

  11. Ad 11

    Far too early to make pronouncements like this Bunji.

    In the subsequent investigations they will be going through his emails, cellphone calls, personal contacts, texts, persons he associated with and their SIS profiles, etc etc.
    Who knows what evidence they will find of terrorist association. Or not.

    This case isn’t like you could just color him black and call it another Ferguson.

    I agree with you Key is using it – hell in his position I probably would too. But it’s pretty dark. Any human being here with relatives there would be entitled to feel a chill of anxiety.

    But hold back on the defense a little until more facts are in.

    • Molly 11.1

      Already feeling a “chill of anxiety” because of the increasing collusion with US military. I have friends in the NZ Army, and have kept up to date with the atrocities that the US has been committing in the Middle East.

      “I agree with you Key is using it – hell in his position I probably would too.”
      John Key is in the position of head statesman of NZ. He doesn’t have to give in to immediate emotional reactions. (Not that I think he did, I think his response is pure politics).

    • anker 11.2

      Ad @ 11 100+

    • Colonial Rawshark 11.3

      The failure is in social services, health services and the criminal justice system ad. They can try and link him up to whatever terrorist activity (they are very good at doing that, even planting and fabricating evidence online and digital evidence) but the actual things which would have prevented this incident are the very things that are being pushed aside in the “war on terror” drum beat.

  12. Penny Bright 13

    Seems a LOT of Muslims HAVE ‘spoken out’ against ISIS / ISIL?

    This may be useful to combat some of the ‘spin’ out there ….

    Global Condemnations of ISIS/ISIL

    A common criticism of Muslims globally is that they remain silent, and therefore are essentially complicit, in the face of violence, extremism, and terrorism in the name of Islam. But this is not the case at all. Often the loudest critics of extremism are the co-religionists themselves, not content to let the voices of hate dominate the discourse.

    Although large news networks seldom carry these Muslim voices of peace, a simple search will turn up all manner of condemnations of those whose actions tarnish the image and teachings of Islam. Below, we offer only the tip of the iceberg of Muslims worldwide speaking out against violence and extremism. We also share the reflections of Christians who refuse to allow the religion of Islam be conflated with terrorists who proclaim the faith.

    When you find news items of courageous voices leading the charge to oppose extremist ideologies, please share them with us at mail@ing.org.

    Islam’s theology of life is stronger than ISIS’ cult of death

    Don’t blame religion for rise of ISIS

    Rebranding the ‘Islamic State’

    ISIS Is Not Just Un-Islamic, It Is Anti-Islamic

    Saudi Arabia’s top clerics speak out against Islamist militancy

    German Muslims invite all faiths to day of prayer against Islamic State

    Cambridge mosque calls ISIS barbaric, uncivilized

    Imams call for National Day of Prayer in memory of murdered aid workers

    San Francisco Interfaith Council and Religious Leaders Speak Out Against ISIS Religious Persecution

    Local Muslims Organize Interfaith Discussion on ISIS, Islam

    Interfaith speakers stress tolerance, decry Islamic State violence

    Fethullah Gülen condemns ISIL atrocities in ads in leading newspapers

    Faithline Protestants Reframing Our View of Religious Terrorism

    #NotInMyName: Young British Muslims stand up to ISIS online

    Australian Grand Mufti tells young Muslims to avoid ‘Sheik YouTube’

    US Muslim leaders denounce ISIS, pledge to dissuade youth from joining

    The Key to Defeating ISIS Is Islam

    Open letter to IS leader al-Baghdadi from 100+ global Muslim scholars

    German Muslims Turn Out In Force For Nationwide Protest Against Islamic State

    #MakingAStand: British Muslim women launch anti-ISIS culture drive

    Is ISIS Islamic? Is it a state?

    Prominent Muslim Sheik Issues Fatwa Against ISIS Violence

    Muslims Around The World Rally Against Extremist Antics Of Islamic State

    Why the Islamic State Is Not Really Islamic

    This Cleric Thinks ISIS Can Be Defeated With More Religion

    ISIS is the antithesis of Hajj, the holy pilgrimage

    #MuslimApologies Highlights The Absurdity Of Blaming An Entire Religion For Actions Of Few

    Milwaukee’s Muslim Community Trying to Combat ISIS Influence

    Is All Morality Gone? Condeming ISIS and Beyond, In A World of Suffering

    U.S. Trying to Counter ISIS Efforts to Lure Alienated Young Muslims

    Somali American fights militant Islamist recruiters in U.S. heartland

    Kosovo is fully behind American’s fight against ISIS

    British Muslims vent anger at death of aid worker

    Local Muslims condemn terrorist acts

    Islamic State ignores Prophet’s example

    Islamic scholar says ISIS perverts Islam



    Kind regards

    Penny Bright

    • Chooky 13.1

      +100 thanks Penny

    • Murray Rawshark 13.2

      By way of contrast, how many Christian leaders were harassed into apologising for Anders Breivik and swearing that not all Christians are like him? Key would have expected some Imam or other to get on their knees and beg forgiveness for what Breivik did.

  13. Rawsharkosaurus 14

    He’s a murdering scumbag who got his kicks from sending sick messages to the families of dead soldiers. If that makes him a terrorist, then that also makes terrorists of Darren Wilson and Shirley Phelps-Roper.

    No great loss if it does.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 14.1

      There is great loss associated with ascribing purpose to the actions of violent criminals.

      Not least of these losses is the ammunition they (you?) provide to authoritarians. The insane conjunction of incoherent rage and right wing brain syndrome.

      • Rawsharkosaurus 14.1.1

        I’ll save my sympathy for the families of the girls murdered by Haron Monis, the family of the boy murdered by Darren Wilson, the families harassed by Haron Monis and the families harassed by Shirley Phelps-Roper. If that makes me an authoritarian, then I’m sure I’ll at least be in good company.

        (and possibly once you find out who Darren Wilson is you might see the point I’m trying to make. Hint: not the same person as the similarly named musician)

        • McFlock

          I love it when people play hard-to-get with the points they try to make. /sarc

          It’s almost as if they confuse obscurity with profundity.

        • One Anonymous Bloke

          Empty words. Tumbleweed. Vacuity. Say something, bloodsack.

  14. Paul 15

    Interesting article in the Guardian.

    ‘By acknowledging Monis as a terrorist and as an actor for Isis, we give him exactly what he wanted: recognition, renown and the attention of the world media. We also feed into any possible claims by Isis that this attack is a demonstration of their ability to cause terror in Australia.’


    • miravox 15.1

      Even Tony Abbot has toned down calling him a terrorist, acknowledging criminal and mental health issues were in play.

      Yes, I found that an interesting piece and I agree that Haron Monis was a criminal, attention-seeker, probably deranged.

      So what differentiates a terrorist actor from a madman with a gun? Terrorism, by definition, is violence carried out for a cause in order to create fear and terror – and coerce governments into meeting demands. The motivations for a terrorist act are attached to an ideological, political or social cause. Terrorist actors believe the violence they perpetrate is furthering that cause. Monis’s case is different.

      While it may appear that he was acting on behalf of the global jihadi movement, his prior actions and his history tell us otherwise. This was a man who was desperate for attention. His motives were egotistical. He was a self-proclaimed cleric, though he had no formal qualifications or any evidence to support his claims. On his website, sheikhharon.com, since been taken down, he posted letters to the prime minister as well as political opinions. Rather than being a follower, this is evidence that he was a wannabe leader driven by a desire for notoriety.

      Sadly we have an immediate example of what terrorists really are, for those who are struggling with the distinction


      Up to 84 children have been killed in a Taliban attack on an army-run school in the Pakistani city of Peshawar, the regional chief minister has said.

      The attack – claimed by the Pakistani Taliban – was led by militants wearing army uniform on the school, which teaches the children of military personnel and civilians. Hundreds of children were thought to be in the school when the attack began….

      The Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) claimed responsibility for the attack.

      It comes as the Pakistani military wages a major offensive against Taliban and other militants in the tribal area of North Waziristan. The Pakistani Taliban, who are fighting to topple the government and set up a strict Islamic state, have vowed to step up attacks against Pakistani targets in response.

  15. One Anonymous Bloke 16

    One of these watchlists is not like the other one.

    Or, alternatively, the Right Honourable John Key, Prime Minister, is lying, again, as though he’s a mendacious wretch or something.

  16. Matthew Hooton 17

    I think he was a terrorist but not A Terrorist, if you know what I mean. He certainly terrorised people for a few hours throughout Sydney but he has no ability to do so from beyond the grave. Mohamed Ata was the real evil deal: he created terror that distorted the foreign policy of major powers for years after his death. Which means, I guess, that whether someone is a terrorist rather than A Terrorist is less about them than about how people choose to respond to them. The Australians are sensible to treat him as the former rather than the latter: don’t let it change you. It’s only when you change that a terrorist becomes A Terrorist.

    • Paul 17.1

      Matthew this is what a real political analyst with some expertise thinks…
      As opposed to your pr spinning.

      Paul Buchanan – Sydney Siege 16th December 2014 on ZB.


    • felix 17.2

      Matthew just redefined “a terrorist” to mean “a violent criminal”.

      So now our jails are full of terrorists. Shouldn’t we be torturing them?

      • Paul 17.2.1

        He talks utter drivel.
        Much more interesting to listen to Paul Buchanan.
        Far more educational than listening to Hooton who knows very little about the subject.

        • felix

          Surely all that matters is the perception that Matthew knows about the subject.

          After all, he’s on tv all the time talking about all sorts of things he knows nothing about.

          Isn’t that just as good as actual information?

          • One Anonymous Bloke

            Um, that’s not quite it, though, Felix.

            It isn’t so much the ignorance as the crafted-for-profit mendacity. If he were simply a purveyor of meaningless gobshite he’d be relatively benign.

      • Matthew Hooton 17.2.2

        Well that’s right. David Gray certainly terrorised the people of Aramoana. I don’t think the term should be limited to people with political or religious motives. That lets Gray and Monis off the hook in a sense. And also gives Ata and his mates a special status they craved. Anyway, in a sense its word play. As someone in Aiatralia said to me on Twitter, what’s wrong with “fuckwit” to describe him? (Although that doesn’t seem strong enough to me. I use it too liberally.)

        • One Anonymous Bloke

          First expand the powers, then expand the definition of behaviour to which those powers apply.

      • batweka 17.2.3

        “Matthew just redefined “a terrorist” to mean “a violent criminal”.

        So now our jails are full of terrorists. Shouldn’t we be torturing them?”

        Just to put that in perspective, this is the man that recently called Giovanni Tiso and others fascist because they criticised the SST for giving Collins a weekly column. Where people called the SST decision completely unethical, Hooton called the critics ‘vicious’.

        Tiso has a post on it (worth reading even just for the proof that Hooton is a pathetic fool).


        I’m not sure who exactly actually takes Hooton’s words seriously, but it strikes me he is a fully fledged part of the crew that is taking the piss and running with more and more outrageous and ridiculous lines (cue Key from earlier today), simply because they can get away from it. Big kudos to the likes of Vance, de Boni etc for attempting to counter that and for working in a profession that is largely a fucking disgrace.

      • Matthew Hooton 17.2.4

        Thinking about it a bit more, I don’t think any violent criminal is a terrorist. If someone kills someone in a rage or even targets people specifically for pre-meditated violence they may not be terrorists in the sense of trying to terrorise third parties. That’s what makes terrorism distinct and so awful – you are killing or threatening these people, and treating them as mere means, in order to terrorist there other people. I don’t know if that is what Monis was trying to do. Could be he was just sick and evil rather than being concious of using the people inside the cafe to terrorise all the people in the CDB. Although reports he claimed there were bombs elsewhere in the city suggests his interests extended beyond his immediate surroundings. Anyway, an interesting question posed by Bunji that got me thinking.

        • felix

          I don’t see any evidence that it got you thinking.

          • Matthew Hooton

            Do you think he’s a terrorist? How would you define a terrorist?

            • McFlock

              have you considered buying a dictionary, or would it get in the way of your word-twisting?

              • Matthew Hooton

                He meets some of the dictionary definitions of terrorist – although not usually the first one given.

                • McFlock

                  such as?

                  • Matthew Hooton

                    Like you say, look up the dictionary yourself

                    • felix

                      Not really a conversation then.

                    • Ad

                      To me the test of distinction between domestic “nut job” and ‘A Terrorist” is in motive: are they seeking to overthrow the state, or not.

                      So I would class the Sydney guy as “nut job”.

                      I would hope that the NSW Police Prosecutor sees it the same way.

                      Mind you if they really want throw away the key, the Australian courts could always class him as “refugee”, and he would be truly fucked.

                    • batweka

                      “Not really a conversation then.”

                      Spookily, he was starting to sound like Pete George.

                    • McFlock

                      googling “meaning of ‘terrorist'” gives a whole bunch of different definitions, pretty much all of them involving the use of terror for political objectives.
                      I doubt very much that HM had any coherent political objectives.
                      His lack of contacts means that he was not being used by anyone else to fulfil their political objectives.

                      Yes, it would be a reasonable assumption that everybody in the cafe felt terror. But that’s just like saying that a physics phd is a “doctor”. Very true, but if someone in a theatre urgently asks if there is a doctor in the house, being able to design a tokamak reactor is probably not in the desired skillset. As a squirrely wordsmith, you’d know that context is king when it comes to which definition of a word is being used.

            • les

              a terrorist is anyone the U.S or their sycophants say is a terrorist.

        • emergency mike

          Thanks for the ‘gee I dont really know what a terrorist is now that I think about it’ gems Matthew. I hope you had a good time on da TV.

      • Tracey 17.2.5

        Hooton frightens me. So I am going to call him A Frightener from now on.

    • One Anonymous Bloke 17.3

      On Earth, “terrorist” groups are identified by the UN, in a very political process.

      Hooton’s semantics may be interesting as debating points: they’re irrelevant to the law. I think he’s terrified by the prospect of not being able to afford alcohol.

      • Matthew Hooton 17.3.1

        The UN defines who terrorists are? I don’t think so. And not for me anyway. Also, that would imply there were no terrorists before 1945.

        • batweka

          Yes, why take an internationally developed understanding of what terrorism is, when you can just make up your own definition.

          “Also, that would imply there were no terrorists before 1945.”

          Ok, even you are not that stupid, so do us a favour and at least try and come across as genuine.

          • felix

            The parliament defines who murderers are? I don’t think so. And not for me anyway. Also, that would imply there were no murderers before 1852.

            • Matthew Hooton

              But parliament does define who murderers are. And before that the British parliament. The UN does not define who terrorists are.

              • Paul

                This is not an area you claim to be an expert on.
                Maybe a touch of modesty?

                • Matthew Hooton

                  I didn’t release you had to be an expert to comment on a blog! This is a conversation while I wait for an 11pm tv thing

              • Skinny

                By the UN not sanctioning the American & allies intervention in the Syrian conflict says alot, similar to takes one too know one.

                You never mentioned the disappointment of the year, ACT barely registering in the party vote stakes. Very annoyed with that boy racer Act mp who killed my sisters cat speeding down her road. My stays will not be the same I loved that greedy fat cat, wait till I catch up with him.

          • Matthew Hooton

            But there isn’t an internationally developed understanding of what terrorism is. That’s just the point. Certainly the UN doesn’t have one as far as I know.

            • Ad

              Terrorists use people as instruments against the state.
              To me that is the measure.
              What do you think.

            • Tracey

              and so people, espesh govts and their mouthpieces can make it whatever they need it to be for their game playing purposes.

        • felix

          But Matthew, you just defined “terrorist” as “any violent criminal”.

          So I don’t think it matters a blind fuck what you think about the definition.

        • RedLogix

          Or maybe the term ‘terrorist’ (big or little T) was just a piece of mendacious bullshit in the first place?

          Would go a long way towards explaining why no-one here seems to agree on what it means.

        • Paul

          Have you listened to Paul Buchanan yet?

        • framu

          thats like saying gravity didnt exist untill someone figured out why things fall to the ground

          • vto

            Most every definition of “terrorist” picks up the actions of the US government especially their drones.


            Not to mention their torture crimes against humanity.

    • McFlock 17.4

      so if someone is worried about their biopsy results, does that make their doctor a “terrorist”? 🙄

      • felix 17.4.1

        Ooh I hope so. Then we can spy on doctors, and maybe even torture them.

        Joking of course. NZ personnel don’t engage in torture.

        Unless they’re directed to by U.S. personnel, of course.

    • AsleepWhileWalking 17.5

      I like your take on things MH.

    • les 17.6

      lucky Mohammed Attas passport was found intact in the rubble of the twin towers…a stroke of luck that quickly allowed investigators to identify the culprits.

  17. The Murphey 18

    Q. How many Haron Monis does it take to control a group of hostages?

    • Matthew Hooton 18.1

      At least two

      • The Murphey 18.1.1

        Q. Why is it not being spoken about?

        • McFlock

          Q. What are you talking about?

          • The Murphey


            • McFlock

              Ratios? Like the number of comments you’ll make versus the number of comments where you actually make a point?

              • The Murphey

                Q. Was Mathew Hooton offering an opinion a guess or a piece of information in response to the question?

                • McFlock

                  I doubt even he knows.

                  Allow me to speculate as to what your original point might have been, given that you refuse to spell it out:
                  Are you suggesting that one person with a firearm is not really in a position to control dozens of unarmed people without, e.g., a few people managing to take an opportunity to escape?

                  Reports suggest you might be correct. Good for you.

                  • Matthew Hooton

                    Yes, I thought it was a joke in the genre “how many lawyers does it take to change a lightbulb?” etc.
                    The answer has to be “at least two” because Monis’ hostages kept escaping.
                    That is all.
                    But is there already a “he didn’t act alone” conspiracy theory? If not, it won’t be long.

                    • Colonial Rawshark

                      A joke? How appropriately humorous and droll, given the circumstances.

                    • The Murphey

                      The questions which are not being asked are the questions which most need asking.

                      This is no joke.

                    • tricledrown

                      Claims nutjob hostage taker was a narcissistic always wanting to be in the limelight always wanting to be on television sounds like John Key.

                    • McFlock

                      jhc on a rollercoaster, murphey, make a fucking point.

                      Matthew – yeah I didn’t know which way TM was going with that, either.

  18. Sydney siege, the day after:

    A thoughtful piece from Jeff Sparrow, editor of the Australian literary journal Overland.


  19. mac1 21

    It is the propaganda machine at work. Vilify your enemies, dehumanise them so that we can hate them and go to war with them, and kill them. Both sides.

    A speech from a NZ play “King and Country” setting WW1.

    “Mother and I take the tram to Brooklyn and buy lemonade from some school girls. All proceeds to those poor Belgian children who have been driven from their homes by a cruel enemy, boiled down, and turned into soap.”

    Do we not learn from our history?

  20. Sabine 22

    so many frightened little people calling for big daddy to save them from the terrorists.

    We have had so many dairies robbed at knife/gun point. No one called for big daddy then. We have had banks robbed, and women raped in the streets. Nothing.

    But some lone nutter, with a history of criminal activity (that should clearly have been in prison for the murder of his wife, and well maybe see his wikipedia…should have been extradited to Iran – they wanted him aswell) and all the grown man are in hysterics and want big John Dear Leader to go take away their civil rights in the name of safety.
    Next they wanna go all nekkid to the airport before boarding a plane lest someone comes with a bomb…oh, sorry, maybe some rectal feeding first to make sure nothing is in there?

    If people want to give up rights and freedoms in the name of safety they deserve neither.

    Who would have thought that NZ is full of cowards.

    • Murray Rawshark 22.1

      As a whole, we’re only cowards in very specific circumstances, such as those drummed up by governing regimes (both of them), squirrel organisations, and the media to incite an overwhelming fear of the unknown amongst us. Most of us can be very brave against things we know about, even in a hopeless situation like trying to tackle Manu Vatuvei. But throw in the dreaded unknown and our knees start shaking.

      Key and his handlers know this, which is why they use the feared unknown to enhance their iron grip on society. Rapes and dairy robberies just wouldn’t work because they’re the sort of things we think of as happening to other people, probably women and Indians. The bastards know how to get us shitting ourselves. They play us very well.

      • Sabine 22.1.1

        not shitting myself. I have a shop and i expect to get robbed, just like the dairy lady next to me expect to get shot.

        no it is the fear of the bogey man, and a lot of racism that the the PM is selling. The worst terrorist in NZ that we have seen lately came in the guise of a banker wearing an expensive suit.

        Oh but that terrorist looks like all those little middle managers in this country…so he must be a good sort.

        • Murray Rawshark

          In your case, dairy robbery was a bad example, but we’re saying the same thing.

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