Terrorist vs. Militant
What is Difference between Terrorist and Militant? Many people use the terms interchangeably, however, actually some are quite different. Even so, there is an intermediate place for overlap, such as terrorists who are shown as militants and militants who sometimes report to terrorism. The problem here is that no one sees himself as a terrorist or militant. In their eyes the members of these groups are just fighters fighting for all the right reasons. Generally, people on the other side label them as terrorists or as militants.
Difference between Terrorist and Militant
Another problem with this scenario is that for people on the other side even militants may appear to be terrorists, although terrorists always claim that they are militants at best. This has led to further confusion between already confused terms. In addition, terms are often used frankly and rarely accurately by people for political purposes and to influence voters. In this respect, here is the real difference between a terrorist and a militant.
Terrorist and Militant
In dictionaries, terrorist is described as “a person who uses illegal violence and intimidation, especially against civilians, in pursuit of political goals.” On the other hand, a militant is described as someone who “favors confrontational or violent methods in support of a social policy or cause.”
Now, the definitions may look very similar, however, there is an important difference here. The term militant refers originally to someone in the military. However, today the term has developed other connotations. Now, it is used to refer to someone who uses aggressive or confrontational tactics to fight for something in what they believe. This could be a political or social cause and may or may not use violence. In this context, the term has many diverse implications and can actually be used to refer to any Protestant and believe it to be aggressive in its approach.
However, many people who conform to this definition never really believe that they are militants. Others will not name them as such either. On the contrary, they would be called activists. Today, the term refers to people who use violence to fight for their beliefs. Therefore, this would refer to militant groups, revolutionaries and guerrillas who fight physically against the army or other forces of the people who are oppressing them.
Now, technically, this definition can also refer to many groups that are termed as terrorists. The moment these militant groups begin to oppress other people in their so-called struggle for justice, is when they become terrorists. A classic example here would be ISIS. They say that they are militants or revolutionaries who fight against external forces like the United States that are invading their lands and oppressing their people. However, the truth of the matter is that they are not the victims, well no more anyway. They now have consolidated power in certain regions and instead of freeing people there as they claim, they are oppressing them instead.
As can be seen, there is some overlap between the two definitions, which are too subjective. Therefore, the terms are actually intended to be misused, especially by people with political affiliations and especially the media, whose work seems to be just to scare the audience. The truth of the matter is that the only difference between a terrorist and a militantit is a question of perception. People who see themselves as militants may appear to be terrorists to others. While the terrorists will never admit that they are terrorists, they are always going to present themselves as victims who have taken us arms to fight for their rights. The will calls itself militants, or often as revolutionaries, but never as terrorists; mainly because nobody thinks they are wrong.