Freedom fighter

Freedom fighter is a term to describe those that engage in a struggle to achieve freedom for themselves or to free others in some matter. Though the literal meaning of the words could include "anyone who fights for the cause of freedom", in common use it is restricted to those who are actively involved in an armed rebellion, rather than those who campaign for freedom by peaceful means (though they may use the title in its literal sense). However the a person who is campaigning for freedom through peaceful means may still be classed as a freedom fighter, though in common usage they are called political activists.

The term is also popular among libertarian thinkers. Pete Eyre, who works for Bureaucrash, lists his occupation on his income tax form as "freedom fighter." [cite web|url=http://libertyismyhomie.blogspot.com/2008/09/freedom-fighting-goes-mainstream.html |title=Liberty Is My Homie: Freedom Fighting Goes Mainstream |accessdate=2008-10-11]

Terminology

People who describe themselves (or are described by their supporters) as "freedom fighters" tend to be called assassins, rebels, or terrorists by others. This leads to the aphorism "One man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter". During the Cold War, the term "freedom fighter" was used by the United States and other Western Bloc countries to describe rebels in countries controlled by communist states or otherwise under the influence of the Soviet Union, including rebels in Hungary, the anti-communist Contras in Nicaragua, UNITA in Angola and the multi-factional mujahideen in Afghanistan, as well as rebels in Indian Kashmir.

Although the label freedom fighter is associated with specific groups, freedom fighters are seen as people who are using physical force in order to cause a change in the political and or social order. This is done in response to oppression or perceived oppression by a internal or external body.

A freedom fighter is different from a mercenary as they gain no direct material benefit from being involved in a conflict, though they may have no personal reason for being involved. Thus they are not considered mercenaries under the Geneva Convention and thus are protected by it (Mercenaries are not protected under the genva convention and can be tried as criminals).

Media reporting

Many major media agencies, notably the BBC [cite web|url=http://www.bbc.co.uk/guidelines/editorialguidelines/advice/terrorismlanguage/ |title=BBC - More Guidance - Terrorism - Introduction |accessdate=2008-10-11] and Reuters, except in attributed quotes, avoid the phrase "terrorist" or "freedom fighter", in favor of neutral terms such as "militant", "guerrilla","assassin", "insurgent", "paramilitary" or "militia" to avoid the editorializing implicit in the use of such words. However, this was not the case during the Troubles when the mainstream British media, including the BBC, used the term "terrorist." [cite web|url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/hi/english/static/northern_ireland/understanding/parties_paramilitaries/ira.stm |title=BBC News ! Northern Ireland ! Understanding Northern Ireland |accessdate=2008-10-11]

ee also

*Anarchism
*Guerrilla Warfare
*Insurrectionary anarchism
*Assassin
*Doublespeak
*Irregular military
*Resistance movement

References

External links

* [http://social.chass.ncsu.edu/jouvert/v613/sri.htm News Coverage of Freedom Fighters and Rebels]
* [http://www.whereincity.com/india/great-indians/freedom-fighters/ Freedom Fighters of India]
* [http://www.webbangladesh.com/1971/freedom.htm Bangladeshi freedom fighters against the Pakistan army (1971)]


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Look at other dictionaries:

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  • freedom fighter — freedom fighters N COUNT (approval) If you refer to someone as a freedom fighter, you mean that they belong to a group that is trying to change the government of their country using violent methods, and you agree with or approve of this …   English dictionary

  • freedom fighter — freedom .fighter n someone who fights in a war against an unfair or dishonest government, army etc →↑guerrilla, terrorist ↑terrorist …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • freedom fighter — freedom ,fighter noun count someone who opposes a cruel or unfair government by fighting against it using weapons, usually as part of an organized group. This word is used by people who support these actions …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • freedom fighter — ► NOUN ▪ a person who takes part in a revolutionary struggle …   English terms dictionary

  • freedom fighter — UK / US noun [countable] Word forms freedom fighter : singular freedom fighter plural freedom fighters someone who opposes a cruel or unfair government by fighting against it using weapons, usually as part of an organized group. This word is used …   English dictionary

  • freedom fighter — noun a person who takes part in an armed rebellion against the constituted authority (especially in the hope of improving conditions) • Syn: ↑insurgent, ↑insurrectionist, ↑rebel • Derivationally related forms: ↑rebel (for: ↑rebel), ↑ …   Useful english dictionary

  • freedom fighter — a fighter for freedom, esp. a person who battles against established forces of tyranny and dictatorship. [1940 45] * * * …   Universalium

  • Freedom Fighter — former name of the Northrup Tiger II or F 5 tactical fighter plane …   Eponyms, nicknames, and geographical games

  • freedom fighter — terrorist, guerrilla; one fighting for the cause of freedom …   English contemporary dictionary

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