Defining terrorism

· long story short

Jeff Jarvis of BuzzMachine has chided others, including Josh Marshall (I doubt he’s aware of this weblog), for making a PC landgrab of the term terrorism by arguing that some of the anti-coalition attacks in Iraq have been guerilla actions or insurgencies rather than terrorism. I made this same argument myself, noting that a military attack on soldiers is generally considered warfare and not terrorism.
However, when the enemy hides itself, doesn’t fight under a flag or in uniforms, and so on, it may be reasonable to call all of its actions terrorism. Jarvis quotes some definitions of terrorism from the warbloggers’ bête noire, the UN, to back up his point.
I think Jarvis makes some sense here, but I don’t think the insistence on clarity of language reflects “PC” concerns. Instead, I’m wary of a policy that creeps into defining any enemy of the US as a terrorist.
Again, for the record, I will not my loyalty to the United States and my belief the her enemies are my own. I just like to be careful about language.