Is it fascism?
1-A political regime based on strong centralized government, suppressing through violence any criticism or opposition of the regime, and exalting nation, state, or religion above the individual
2-A system of strong autocracy.
Thank you wiktionary for the above definition.
There is a much used phrase these days.... islamofascist. It is catchy, and causes ill will to be directed at certain "terrorist organizations". The question does arise, are Al Queda, Hizbollah, and other independent armies fascist?
"A political regime based on strong centralized government". None of the currently recognized Terrorist organizations are in charge of a recognized government, with the arguable exception of Hamas. Of course, the strength of their government is a matter of question. Hamas does not seem to have the overwhelming control over its citizens that Mussolini or Hitler had over their countries.
One of the trademarks of WW2 style fascism is the fashions. The armies of Mussolini and Hitler were known for their dashing uniforms, which were worn by the leaders of the country as well. Does Al Queda have anything to match? Quick now, what does a Hizbollah uniform look like?
"suppressing through violence any criticism or opposition of the regime” The terror cells are not democracies. They do have leaders and followers. On this score, they may be fascist.
"exalting nation, state, or religion above the individual ". Here again, the terror groups are not the leaders of nations. In Lebanon, Hizbollah is working to undermine the regime in power. Al Queda is not a nation or state. In fact, in the case of the late al-Zirquawi, AQ is working to promote chaos and undermine the state.
Many of these groups do promote Islam, at least at face value. The question arises, is this an idealistic belief, or a means to an end?
Another thing to be considered here is the pejorative value of "fascist". The "F word" has a high negative connotation in this country, but few people really know what it means. As to whether Al Queda can be truly called fascist, when they do not control a state.... I leave that to the reader to decide.
Or, is it the war on terrorism, or the war of terrorism?