The other categories of literature relevant to this study are communications theory and the literature of terrorism. . The literature of terrorism itself falls into two broad categories. . Before proceeding to examine the literature on terrorism, it is worth noting an important gap in that literature. . Hanle (1989), in Terrorism: The Newest .
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The other categories of literature relevant to this study are communications theory and the literature of terrorism. . The literature of terrorism itself falls into four broad subcategories. . Before proceeding to examine the literature on terrorism, it is worth noting an important gap in that literature. . It is possible that this reflects the date .
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IntroductionInternational terrorism became American domestic news in 1993. . More generally, the bombing and threat of more bombings drew greater attention to the subject of terrorism as a whole. . Terrorism has made the United States and the Western world aware of his existence, and in some measure of his beliefs and his go.
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International terrorism became American domestic news in 1993. . More generally, the bombing and threat of more bombings drew greater attention to the subject of terrorism as a whole. . Terrorism has made the United States and the Western world aware of his existence, and in some measure of his beliefs and his goals. . In.
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The literature relevant to the study of terrorism as a form of communication may be divided into a number of categories, differing in emphasis and approach, and also in target audience. . The other categories of literature relevant to this study are communications theory and the literature of terrorism. . The literature of terrorism it.
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That makes sense in light of traditional ideas of terrorism as "the systematic use of terror or unpredictable violence against governments, publics, or individuals to attain a political objective" ("Terrorism"). . He locates the origin of modern terrorism in the French Revolution, although the Terror was identified with the government. . By the.
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He describes two opinions about Islamic terrorism: 1) that Islamic fundamentalism is a feature of the violent Middle East and Westerners are justifiably fearful, or 2) that Islamic terrorism emanates from isolated pockets of activity, that Islamism is factionalized, and that fundamentalist regimes may actually herald democratic reforms in the long term. . Terr.
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As a direct result of this, the damage caused by terrorism extends far beyond whatever body count one particular act of terror generates. . Other indirect victims of terrorism include the terrorists themselves. . That's the real terrorism; that's the real occupation" (Thomas). . Thus, we have seen that terrorism is more than one.
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The Culture of Terrorism. . The Age of Terrorism. . The Morality of Terrorism. . The Terror Network. . The Politics of Terrorism. .
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TerrorismThink Locally & Act GloballyOUTLINEThesis: Terrorism is transnational in nature and crosses state boundaries. . Multilateral organizations must be the vehicle for protecting states from terrorism on the global level.B. . Enlarging NATO's MAP: An Expanded Membership Action Plan and the War on Terrorism. . Anti-Terrorism Border Controls. .
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AbstractIn recent decades, political terrorism, particularly terrorism associated with Middle Eastern causes and issues, has had a political impact out of all proportion to the cost it has inflicted in lives and physical destruction. . The sum total cost of terrorism in this period is far less than that of even a minor war. . Why, at least&.
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Religion and TerrorThis research deals with the linkage between religion and terrorism and how terrorism as a phenomenon has evolved in the modern period, including an examination of the special case of the Irish Republican Army. . Equally as important, however, in the logical nexus of religion and terrorism is the kind of religion that is involved. .
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Terrorism is nearly as problematic to define as it is to predict and control. . Also, the terrorist and his victim are unlikely to agree on what constitutes terrorism. Be that as it may, one of the most comprehensive and widely used definitions of terrorism was formulated by George Bush's 1986 Vice Presidential Task Force on combating terrorism.
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It is the argument of this study that terrorism may be regarded as a form of warfare. . In our case, we are interested in the strategy of terrorism--specifically, its use as a means of conveying forceful political messages--rather than in the tactics of terrorism (e.g., the art of hijacking an airliner or planting a bomb. &.
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However, the major difference between much terrorism abroad and the kind of domestic terrorism exemplified by the Oklahoma City bombing is that foreign terrorism, as in the Middle East against Israel, for example, has more of a chance of affecting policy change. . In some cases of international terrorism, the political strategy is clear. . Stickney t.
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This research examines the impact of the war on terrorism on globalism. . Then came September 11, 2001, and suddenly global unilateralism was a thing of the American past, as Bush called for support from many nations for the US's war on terrorism. . Militarily, the late US war on terrorism, whatever else it is, has been a vivid p.
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The War on Terror is a legitimate war. . To do nothing is effectively to promote terrorism and to agree to it. . Many strategies are already being employed against terrorism. The United States has stopped trading with countries that fund terrorism. . Being discriminated against can lead to eventual violence and even terrorism, and the more&.
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We have seen that in the course of the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s, Middle Eastern terrorism (including terrorist acts carried out elsewhere by Middle Eastern groups inspired by Middle Eastern agendas) varied widely in its goals, its methods, and its effectiveness. . Now, in the shadowy world of state-sponsored terrorism, any or all of the.
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Ayman al-ZawahiriDoctor of TerrorismThe world of terrorism most people associate with Osama bin Laden is actually a mixed world of terrorism based as much on the views and actions of an Egyptian physician, Ayman al-Zawahiri. . During this time Al-Zawahiri laid the groundwork for what would eventually become our contemporary War on Terrorism. .
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Introduction International terrorism became American domestic news in 1993. . More generally, the bombing and threat of more bombings drew greater attention to the subject of terrorism as a whole. . Terrorism has made the United States and the Western world aware of his existence, and in some measure of his beliefs and his goals. .
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In addition, a series of Parliamentary Acts were enacted in 1974, 1976, 1984 and 1989, currently the Prevention of Terrorism (Temporary Provisions) Act, 1996 (PTA), ch. 4 (eng.), to cope with terrorism in England and Wales. . Terrorism is defined under sec. 14 as "the use of violence for the purpose of putting the.
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IntroductionInternational terrorism became American domestic news in 1993. . More generally, the bombing and threat of more bombings drew greater attention to the subject of terrorism as a whole. . Terrorism has made the United States and the Western world aware of his existence, and, in some measure, of his beliefs and his goals. . Mor.
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Rail Security & Funding in Light of the Current Terrorism Threat Introduction Ever since September 11, 2011, increased terrorist action around the globe threatens the daily lives of American citizens abroad and at home. As Johnston and Nath explain: \"Terrorism has existed as a global .
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The threat of terrorism in the United States needs to be addressed both at the macro and the micro levels. . One of the PresidentÆs objectives in the war on terror is to undercut the funding of terrorism throughout the world. . The ACLU stated its objection as vague language: ôWhat do they mean by terrorism? What constitutes support.
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Above all, the Nazi system of state terror is distinguished for its arbitrary character. . Antistate terrorism is often both pretext and motivation for the application of state terror, yet antistate terrorism in Germany was minimal within Germany itself throughout the Nazi era. . The terror methodology of Nazi Germany was to be almost exclusively official&.
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The history of terrorism goes back to Sicarii Zealots — Jewish extremist group active in Iudaea Province at the beginning of the 1st century AD. After Zealotry rebellion in the 1st century AD, when some prominent collaborators with Roman rule were killed, according to contemporary historian Josephus, in 6 AD Judas of Galilee formed a small and more extreme offshoot of the Zealots, the Sicarii. Their terror also was directed against Jewish "collaborators", including temple priests, Sadducees, Herodians, and other wealthy elites.
Origin of Term
"Terrorism" comes from the French word terrorisme, and originally referred specifically to state terrorism as practiced by the French government during the Reign of terror. The French word terrorisme in turn derives from the Latin verb terreō meaning “I frighten”. The terror cimbricus was a panic and state of emergency in Rome in response to the approach of warriors of the Cimbri tribe in 105 BC.
* Studies have found over 100 definitions of “terrorism”.
* Terrorism is the systematic use of terror, often violent, especially as a means of coercion. In the international community
* violent acts which are intended to create fear (terror), are perpetrated for a religious, political or, ideological goal; and deliberately target or disregard the safety of non-combatants (civilians)
* "terror" by opponents of the state
Where is it practiced?
* Terrorism has been practiced by a broad array of political organizations for furthering their objective. It has been practiced by both right-wing and left-wing political parties, nationalistic groups, religious groups, revolutionaries, and ruling governments. An abiding characteristic is the indiscriminate use of violence against noncombatants for the purpose of gaining publicity for a group, cause, or individual.
Oct 19, 2009 Filed under:Terrorism free essay — admin @ 8:10 amDomestic Terrorism Essay
It is the unfortunate truth that the violent act of terrorism has become a very familiar concept to most Americans and undoubtedly throughout the world. Because of the magnitude of 911 it has become tempting for Americans to assume that most terrorists are international in origin. Americans have come to view the typical political terrorist as being a person of Middle-Eastern descent, one who is a dedicated disciple of Osama Bin Laden or some other Muslim militant, and one who seeks to destroy the United States in the interest of waging holy war, or Jihad, against Western culture, government or economics (Levin, 14).
This wrongful assumption made by Americans poses two distinct problems, one of which this paper will focus on. The first problem is that this assumption causes humiliation and alienation amongst all people who fit this profile, and surely they are not all terrorists. This humiliation and alienation at both the personal and national levels of these people allows the actual terrorist to use this as a major factor in their fight to make America a primary target (Stern, 62).
The focus of this paper and the other major problem with Americans making this wrongful assumption is this distorted perception may cloud American's judgment as to the true nature of the terrorist threat that faces them. The FBI's Report on Terrorism in 2001 indicated that almost two-thirds of all acts of political terrorism in the United States between 1980 and 2001 were home-grown, left-wing, right-wing, or special interest. They originated not in Iran, Pakistan or Saudi Arabia, but in the anger and hostility of American citizens.
Americans makes false Assumption: Oklahoma City Bombing
A prime example of this misperception was carried out in April 1995 when the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City was bombed by Timothy McVeigh, and his accomplice Terry Nichols. This tragic terrorist event killed 168 people, including men, women and children. Initially many Americans thought this catastrophe was carried out by Middle Eastern terrorists, as the media initially reported after the bombing that the two men who were seen leaving the scene were Middle-Eastern-looking men with dark skin and beards (Anthony, 20). When McVeigh and Nichols were identified as light-skinned, clean-shaven men who were citizens of the United States, this left many Americans shocked because they had become convinced that all terrorist acts originated from foreign soil, mainly the Middle East. It was at this point when many Americans began to realize that a fellow citizen of their own country could perpetrate such a gruesome act.
Although there has been an enormous amount of publicity given to the 911 attack, the majority of terrorist attacks in the United States have actually been committed not by people from the Middle East, but instead by our fellow American citizens. Therefore while it is crucial that we bring intellectual understanding to the new threat of global terrorism that is now facing the world, we should also place equal emphasis on domestic terrorism as well. Many experts predict that domestic terrorism will become more dangerous in the future as groups adopt looser organizational structures, similar to that of the al-Qaeda network, therefore enabling them to plan larger attacks and consider turning to weapons of mass destruction (American Military Extremist, 2005).Defining Terrorism
In order to have a firm concept of the severity of domestic terrorism, one must understand the definition of terrorism itself. The term terrorism has no exact or widely accepted definition, and is hard to pin down. However, the lead federal agency dealing with domestic terrorism, the F.B.I. has defined it as “the unlawful use, or threatened use, of force or violence by a group or individual based and operating entirely within the United States or its territories without foreign direction committed against persons or property to intimidate or coerce a government, the civilian population, or any segment thereof, in furtherance of political or social objectives” (American Military Extremists, 2005). Terrorism can consist of acts that are considered to be classic examples of crime, such as arson, murder, or the use of explosives, but they remain very different because they are used with the “deliberate intention of causing panic, disorder and terror within an organized society” (Kegley, 16).Terrorism is not a new phenomenon:
Although terrorism has become a household word within the last century, it is not a new concept. Terrorism in response to some political ideology or power is not a new a phenomenon. While the concept has been around since almost the beginning of human history, the nature of it has changed over time, developing from localized and domestic activities to regional and, in recent years, international events.
The Sicarii terrorist organization originated in A.D. 66, and is recognized as one of the first terrorist organizations (Ross, 15). Some of the prominent features of this group include they were very much religious in character and they lasted longer, and were more destructive than the terrorist groups we recognize today (Ross, 14).Domestic Terrorism: Right Wing v. Left -Wing
In a sense domestic terrorism is a bit less complex than global terrorism, because unlike global terrorism, much of domestic terrorism can be linked to the organized left- or right-wing groups. Those who belong to these groups unite and plan terror events to carry out the political objectives of their radical belief. Most political ideologies, political parties and organizations want change or progress, but they fluctuate on the methods for achieving it and the rate at which it is achieved. Left-wing groups also are referred to as liberal, leftist, and the political left, and those considered to be right-wing groups are conservative, rightist, and the political right.Left-Wing Terrorism
The period between the 1960's and the mid 1980's are when left-wing terrorist groups were most prominent and posed the most serious domestic terrorist threat to the United States. Most of these political extremists were from Marxist-communists, militant minority groups, socialists, and Puerto Rican nationalists who supported revolution (Levin, 18). The Left-Wing terrorist groups tended to be young, well educated, upper-middle-class minorities from urban areas.
This group of terrorist generally professed a revolutionary socialist doctrine and viewed themselves as protectors of the people against the "dehumanizing effects" of capitalism and imperialism. They aim to bring about change in the United States through revolution rather than through the established political process (Freech, 2001).
The majority of their acts of terror were devised to bring attention to national policies that they considered to be immoral, and they wanted to bring change to it.
The Weather Underground
During the 1960's and 1970's, Left-wing terrorists found a large amount of support and encouragement from college students for their revolutionary activities that were based on things such as women's liberation, civil rights, and the anti-war movement. In the 1970's, one of the most prominent left-wing terrorist groups known as the Weather Underground declared war against the United States government. The Weather Underground started as a splinter faction of Students for a Democratic Society, and they held the belief that the need for change within the United States was so great that only violent action could bring it about (Ryan, 2004). This group was responsible for bombing the Capitol, the Pentagon, and police and prison buildings and many other familiar symbols of American freedom and democracy. Furthermore, they murdered many people while committing robberies.
The Weather Underground proved that their goal was to destroy the United States by executing terrorist acts at key landmarks-in the same manner that the 9/11 terrorists did just over give years ago. It was during their reign that Americans understood the physical and psychological damage this domestic terrorist network was capable of, and Americans feared the Weather Underground destroying the United States.
The Symbionese Liberation Army
This terrorist group also known as the SLA, was a 1970's multi-racial militant group with the broad slogan, "Death to the fascist insect that preys upon the life of the people." The group was founded in the Berkeley California area in 1973, by Donald DeFreeze, who escaped from San Quentin Prison in1973 (Paperless Archives). Although this terrorist group was relatively small, never having more than a dozen or so members, they were very successful in promoting fear in America by committing violent acts.
This group committed a number of murders and assaults, and perhaps what they were most notorious for was the kidnapping of 19-year-old Berkeley student and heiress Patricia Hearst. After being abducted by the group, she was tied up and blindfolded and put in a closet for almost two months. Ironically, she later became a member of the group, and was noted for railing against the “fascist establishment”. After being sentenced in court for the crimes she committed as part of the organization, Patty's argument was that she was brainwashed by this terrorist group (Brussell, 1974).JFK's Assassination
It was left-wing terrorism that resulted in the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, America's thirty fifth President. This assassination was executed on Novermber 22, 1963 by Lee Harvey Oswald, because he believd that the assasination would represent an opportunity to move the United States away from its fascist tendencies while advancing the Communist Cause (Levin, 19).The Independence Movement
Left-wing terrorism has evolved from individuals who are dedicated to securing independence for the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico. There are varying reasons as to the issues that these people hold against the United States regarding Puerto Rico, but some extremists of the group seek full and complete independence from the United States, and that is the motivation behind the group's terrorist activities. The FBI reported that the only left-wing domestic terrorist groups that are still alive in the United States are those of this particular group who are known as the Puerto Rican separatists, but even their activists have been scaled back (American Military Extremists, 2005).
A group called Puerto Rican National Liberation (FALN) was associated with this independent movement, and they were responsible for more than 100 bombings in Chicago and New York City, which resulted in 5 deaths, 83 injuries and more than 3 million dollars in property damage (Levin, 27). This group also provoked fear in the American people by trying to kill President Truman.
The majority of left-wing revolutionary groups present in America, with the exception of the Puerto Rican separatists no longer exist. Their reasons for non-existence vary, some of them were defeated by the authorities, others alienated their supporters with their choice of tactics and targets, and with their continuous doctrinal debates (Ross, 34).Right-Wing Terrorism
Americans who have committed acts of organized domestic terrorism since the mid 1980's have largely been from the right-wing extremist causes. The history of the American far right has shown a considerable degree of migration, cross-fertilization of ideas, overlap and cross-membership between the Patriot and racialist segments. The terrorist incidents from the right-wing groups often involve hatred towards the federal government, and/ or a belief that the white race is superior, also termed “white supremacy”, as well as extremist Christian groups. These right-wing terrorists can be best understood if they are regarded as vigilantes who are on a mission to maintain the current state of affairs as they believe it to be, or to retreat to what they consider an earlier, more secure period in history (Levin, 29). There is no specific number as to how many must be within in each group, because these terrorist groups can operate efficiently with small groups of people working in each cell, or alone, as well as large groups.
Ring-wing terrorism developed similiary to left-wing terrorism, in the sense that largely those who were involved with it were disturbed with governmentnal issues. The difference between the two was that the right-wing terrorists had entirely the opposite problems with the government that the left-wing terrorists did. The members of these groups despised a number of things including communists, United Nations, minorities, and were proponents of what they considered to be a “one-world-order” (Levin, 30).
Civilian militia groups greatly contributed to the rise of this right-wing terrorism movement. These militia groups appeared to some Americans to be similar to private armies. These groups would persuade others to join them by using arguments such as, communism was taking over America, and the soverignity of the United States was under attack, and they would also argue that revolution was going to happen soon (Levin, 30). These groups posed a large threat to America by stocking dangerous weapons, building shelters, and rehearsing for war against the federal government.
These militia groups were able to reach their peak of success in terms of recruitement during the middle of the 1990's, because of the economic recession that had been occuring throughout the 1980's. Many individuals, particularly those in rural areas, blamed their economic misfortune on the government, and were thus easily swayed by the anti-government militia rhetoric.
However, many of these groups started to lose potential members after the bombing of Oklahoma City. As discussed earlier in this paper, Timothy McVeigh and his accomplice Terry Nichols felt compelled to strike out against the government in this horrific terrorist act, and their former supporters felt that it went too far. This event brought attention to the militia movement, and it was yet another reminder that right-wing domestic terrorism was a serious issue in America.
In 1996, America realized the severe threat right wing terrorism posed even in small numbers, when Eric Rudolph began his string of right wing terrorist events. Although Rudolph is known as the “Atlantic Olympics Bomber” he was involved in a number of other bombings in the U.S. including abortion clinics and gay nightclubs. He has been linked to the right-wing groups known as “Christian Identity” and “Army of God” among others (Stephen, Ebscohost).Biochemical Terror
One of the greatest threats to the peace and tranquility of America is the possibility of biochemical warfare, which will accumulate mass destruction and a high casualty number if carried out properly. Right-wing terrorism is often noted for having few people involved in their horrendous acts, and because the only requirements needed to execute this type of terrorism method is someone who has the money to purchase the material and knowledge in microbiology, this method is very appealing to many right-wing terrorism groups (Marty, 2006).
Anthrax is a serious infectious disease that is caused by the bacterium Bacillus anthracis, and if transmitted to human beings it can be fatal (Marty, 2006). In 2001, just after 911, anthrax spores, in powder form were sent through the mail in seven letters from New Jersey to two senators and five media outlets. This particular incident was aimed at killing the recipients, but instead killed 5 individuals (including 2 postal workers), and infected an additional 18, as well as forcing 35,000 people to take prophylactic doses of antibiotics (Levin, 36).
Although a massive investigation was put on by the FBI to identify the bioterrorist responsible for this anthrax attack, no one has been found. Again in this situation, assumptions were made that a foreign terrorist was responsible, but over time, most observers including the FBI believe that it was in fact a right-wing American terrorist, who had problems with the liberal senators and media personnel that these anthrax spores were intended to be delivered to.Solution to Right-Wing Problem
Right-wing terrorism may not currently threaten every member of America's population, but this type of terrorism enhanced by the huge coverage of modern media, represents mainly a political and pscychological danger to the stability of America, and all democratic societies. If the United States does not wish to see proliferation of a new, more powerful kind of right-wing terrorism, then our government must act quickly and forcefully against the individual perpretrators and also against the ideological and propaganda infrastructure which breeds the phenomena.
Finding a solution on how to end right-wing terrorism will pose some difficulty, due largely in part to legal reasons. The First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution gives Americans many protections regarding their civil liberties, and because of this the government does not officially have the authority to disband extremist groups or forbid extremist speech just because they may advocate unpopular ideas. Therefore, this allows right-wing terrorists the ability to coax others into joining their cause with relative ease with new technology advances such as the internet, and limited government intrusion.Conclusion
The future of America is unpredictable, and while most Americans who are dissatisfied with our national leadership and government instititutions would never commit a terrorist act, as history has shown it only takes a very small number of domestic terrorists to create a crisis. Federal agencies are becoming more aware of the threat of domestic terrorism, and need to become extra vigilant in their efforts to counteract terrorism. Furthermore, individual American citizens can help to minimize domestic terrorism themselves. Although most Americans often feel powerless regarding federal policy, the truth is that if we begin at the grassroots level in detecting domestic terrorism, we may be able to repair the credibility of our governmental institutions. Americans need to venture back into the mainstream, and realize that each individual person fighting domestic terrorism presents a great deal of help.
Although America may not have the capability of stopping terrorism at this point, a number of changes should be put into place to minimize the possibility of terrorism and reduce the amount of injuries, deaths and property damage when attacks do occur. Instead of waiting for another terrorist attack, America should invest the financial resources into more rigorous and sophisticated research into understanding domestic terrorism along with global terrorism.
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The Threat of Islamic Terrorism
With the collapse of the Soviet Union in the early 1990's and the cold war over, the international community seemed to be on the threshold of an era of unprecedented peace and prosperity. Instead, a new series of problems was created, like ethnic conflicts, weapons proliferation, environmental problems, population growth, drug trafficking, and terrorism. Terrorism, as defined by Title 22 of the United States code, section 2656f(d), is the "pre-meditated, politically motivated violence perpetrated against noncombatant targets by subnational groups or clandestine agents, usually intended to influence and audience." Islamic terrorism is a serious problem for the United States because of the threat to national security, the safety of innocent civilians, and the foundations of democratic societies throughout the world.
Most of the Islamic world view the West, especially the United States, as the foremost corrupting influence on the Islamic world today. The Hizballah have taken this further by labeling the Unites States as "the Great Satan."(22) This growing animosity the Islamic nations feel toward the Western world has been continually demonstrated by the increase in international terrorism. However, Muslims do not view their actions as acts of terrorism, but self defense and their religious duty. The Islamic radical movements main success or failure has been their ability to gain legitimacy from the general public or from the greater part of it in each Muslim country.(14) During the past two decades, they have had enormous success with their ability to present themselves to the Arab and Muslim world as the true bearers of Islam. They appeal to the lower class due to the shared resentment of wealthy westerners while the middle class and intellectuals are drawn toward these radical groups in order to expel imported ideologies and forms of government(*). Radical Islamic organizations have declared a holly war. Jihad, in order to bring the Arab world together and take their place as a world power. In order to accomplish these goals, these Islamic radicals have mainly used terrorism as their main instrument of persuasion.
The biggest and most active terrorist organizations are those which are state funded. These organizations act as both an overt and covert way of spreading the sponsor countries ideologies. The U.S. Secretary of State has designated seven governments as state sponsors of terrorism: Cuba, Iran, Iraq, Libya, North Korea, Sudan, and Syria.(13) These governments support international terrorism either by engaging in terrorist activity themselves or by providing arms, training, safe haven, diplomatic facilities, financial backing, logistic and/or support to terrorists.(13)
Iran is one of the most active state sponsors of terrorism, involving themselves in the planning and execution of terrorist acts by its own agents and by surrogates such as the Hizballah. Tehran conducted 13 assassinations in 1997, the majority of which were carried out in northern Iraq against the regime's main opposition groups. An example occurred in January 1997, when Iranian agents tried to attack the Baghdad headquarters of Mujahedin-e Khalq using a supermortar. Despite sanctions and foreign political pressure, Iran continues to provide support in the form of training, money, and weapons to a variety of terrorist groups, such as Hizballah, HAMAS, and the PIJ.(13)
Sudan is another large supporter of terrorist organizations. The Sudanese Government supports terrorists by providing paramilitary training, indoctrinization, money, travel documents, safe passage, and refuge. They also condone many of the objectionable activities of Iran, such as funneling assistance to terrorist and radical Islamic groups operating in and transiting through Sudan.(13) Since Sudan was placed on the United States' list of state sponsors of terrorism in 1993, the Sudanese Government still harbors members of the most violent international terrorists and radical Islamic groups.(13)
The countries of the middle east have found terrorism beneficial for many reasons. First, terrorism is an inexpensive alternative to fighting a war, while still spreading their ideology and advancing their political agenda. However, defending against terrorism is very expensive; the United States spends approximately five billion dollars annually to guard against terrorism.(11) Random terrorist acts cause a great amount of psychological damage to the target area. Even though terrorism kills relatively few people, the random nature by which innocent civilian are killed evokes a deep fear and insecurity upon the population. This form of terrorism was successfully used to target tourism and the economy of Egypt in 1997. Publicity is another benefit of terrorism. By involving acts which are designed to attract maximum publicity, terrorism can bring the smallest group to the forefront of attention.(22) All this is done while exposing the terrorist to minimal risk when compared to war.
By secretly funding terrorist organization, the patron state avoids the possibility of defeat and does not appear to be the aggressor. Modern technology has now made terrorism an efficient, convenient, and general discrete weapon for attacking state interests in the international realm. Furthermore, terrorism causes fear, unrest and hysteria among civilians of target countries which is the ideal setting to launch propaganda. Through propaganda patron states are able to organize revolts, coups, and even civil war.
Throughout history terrorism has only been successful in prolonging conflicts, as in Ireland. However, technology is constantly changing the nature of life-threatening hostilities by delivering more sophisticated devices that cause greater damage. No longer are terrorists restrained to simple car bombs and explosives; now nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons are becoming more readily available. The terrorist attack in Tokyo that injured 5,000 people is an example of this kind of terrorism. The latest threat is the cyber terrorist, who can corrupt a governments computer system, steal money, and/or classified information while never leaving his house. Changing methods and techniques that terrorists employ today make threat of attack worse than ever. First, terrorists operate at an international level, no longer concentrating on a particular region or a country. The dawn of the modern age of terrorism dates back to September 5, 1972, when the Palestinian terrorists attacked the Israeli Olympic team in Munich(*). Following this, there has been a period of hijacking of commercial airlines, which culminated in the destruction of Pan Am 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland.
Another new aspect of terrorism is the growing possibility of terrorists making use of weapons of mass destruction nuclear, biological and chemical. Also, the governments have to think seriously about the threat of chemical weapons and biological toxins. Both these types of weapons are easy to manufacture but have horrifying after-effects on the civilian population. The Sarin gas attack in the Tokyo subway in 1995 by Aum Shinrikyo, the apocalyptic Japanese sect, showed that the threat of chemical terrorism is now a reality(*).
For many years, it had been thought that weapons of mass destruction did not serve the purpose of terrorists, and it was not mass murder they wanted. But in the modern age of terrorism, one sees a wider use of powerful explosives that attack mostly the civilian population, and availability is the only thing that prevents the use of larger weapons. This trend towards larger attacks is represented by a 25-year low in international terrorism in 1996, with reported incidents down from a peak of 665 in 1987 to 296 in 1996, there was a drastic rise in the number of casualties (311 people killed and 2,652 wounded)(16).
The third aspect of terrorism that is new is cyber terror. It has become very easy to penetrate the telecommunications and computer systems of nations and also private organizations, and enter new computer codes that cause the system to shutdown or which make it accessible only to the intruder. Terrorists use computers, cellular phones, and encryption software to evade detection and they also have sophisticated means of forging passports and valuable documents. Similarly, they could even introduce "morphed" images and messages into a country's radio and television network, and spread lies that could incite violence. Technology advancement has made it possible to carry powerful explosive devices in a purse and explode these at the right place, at the right time.
Another recent trend in terrorism is suicide bombing. Suicide bombings have emerged as a tactic used particularly by radical Islamic terrorists. Even though Islam prohibits suicide, these suicide bombers believe that death in a holy struggle assures them a faithful place in heaven; thus, by committing this act of war, they feel they are guaranteed to go to heaven. This method of terrorism is almost impossible to defend against, that is why the terrorists must be prevented, not deterred.
Many radical Islamic terrorist organizations have developed in recent years, but the biggest organizations are the Islamic Jihad, Hamas, Al-Gama'a ai-Islamiyyah, and the Hizballah. These organizations all seek the elimination of western and Jewish influence, and will not hesitate to do anything to prevent this.
The Islamic Jihad Group. in Egypt, has been active since the late 70's, and currently includes two factions. The goal of these factions is to overthrow the Egyptian government and replace it with an Islamic state. To accomplish this, the Jihad operates in small underground cells and attacks high level government officials. Their most notorious acts of terrorism have been the 1981 assassination of President Anwar Sadat, the 1993 attempted assassination of Prime Minister Atef Sedky and the 1993 car bombing of the World Trade Center(19).
Al-Gama'a ai-Islamiyyah (The Islamic Group, IG) evolved from a phenomenon of Islamic prisoners in Egypt. After being released from prison in 1971, they began forming militant groups that operated separately but were loosely organized. These groups target police officers, liberal intellectuals, Coptic Christians, and tourism in order to hurt the economy and rid Egypt of Western influence. The IG's most recent attack was November 17, 1997, when 58 tourists were killed; this severely impacted Egyptian tourism for several months.(4)
Hamas is the Arab acronym for, "The Islamic Resistance Movement," and means courage and bravery(3). This organization has evolved from the Muslim Brotherhood and was active in the early stages of Intifada, operating in the Gaza strip and the West bank. The main objective of the Hamas is a "Holly War" for the liberation of Palestine and the establishment of an Islamic Palestine. A variety of non-governmental charitable organizations in the Gulf States, four central charity funds throughout the world, and Iran have enabled Hamas to become the second most powerful terrorist organization(3). During Intifada, Hamas claimed responsibility for 43 attacks that killed 46 Palestinians, and is believed to be responsible for another 40 deaths.(3)
Hizballah (Party of God) is an extremist political-religious movement based in Lebanon. The movement was created and sponsored by Iran in July 1982, initially as a form of resistance to the Israeli presence in Southern Lebanon. Hizballah followers are radical Shi'ite which adhere to Khomeinistic ideology.(5) The principle goals established by Khomeinism are the equality of all Lebanon's citizens, complete American and French withdrawal from Lebanon, the complete destruction of Israel, and the establishment of Islamic rule over Jerusalem(5). The Hizballah has tried to accomplish these goals through the use of terrorism, of which 704 attacks were committed from 1991 - 1995.(5) The scope and nature of Hizballah's terrorist campaign reflect its close dependency on Iranian support for both the ideological and financial levers. Iran donates fast amounts of money to Hizballah, which among other things funds the movement's health and education services(22). The funds received from Iran in the 1980's totaled $60-$80 million a year.
Because of the recent terrorist attacks at the World Trade Center and foreign embassies in Africa, the United States is aware of the danger that terrorism presents. Being a politically correct country, no United States official has specifically named the radical Islamic groups as our primary enemy. However, the Islamic groups are the only terrorists that specifically target Americans. The United States now has an official three part counter terrorism policy that has so far proven to be effective.
First, the US will make no concession to terrorists and strike no deals. If the US were to give in to terrorists' demands, it would inspire every other terrorist to commit violent crimes. An example of this plan is the hostage situation in Peru, where 72 hostages were taken and four months later a successful rescue took place. The second US policy is that all terrorist will be held accountable for their crimes in a court of law. In recent years many international terrorists have been convicted and sent to prison. The third, and most important policy is to isolate and apply pressure on states that sponsor and support terrorism and force them to change their behavior. UN sanctions and the use of military force are now actively used to force host countries to change their views on terrorism.
Radical Islamic terrorist organizations have the ability and desire to threaten the United states. Sanctions and diplomatic bargaining will not solve the problem of Islamic terrorism, yet military force will only make the problem worse. There will be no resolution to this problem in the near future, meanwhile the gap between the Western world and the Arab nations will continue to grow. Without constant monitoring a careful planning, this could soon turn into WW III.
1. al-Thawriyyah, Fatah al-Qiyadah. Fatah - Revolutionary Council. Available: http://www.ict.org.il/inter_ter/orgdet.ctm?orgid=2. March 22, 1999
2. Coordinator for Counterterrorism of the State department. Fact Sheet: Usama bin Ladin. Http://www.state.gov/www/regions/africa. March 22, 1999
3. Al-Islamiyya, Harakat. HAMAS(Islamic Resistance Movement). Http://www.ict.org.il/inter_ter/orgdet.ctm?ogid=13 March 22, 1999
4. Al-Gama'a al-Islamiyya( The Islamic Group, IG). International Counterterrorism website. Available: Http://www.ict.org.il/inter_ter/orgdet.ctm?ogid=12 March 22, 1999
5. Information division. Israel foreign Ministry - Jerusalem. Hizballah. Available:
Http://www.ict.org.il/inter_ter/orgdet.ctm?ogid=15 March 22, 1999
6. US State Department. "Armed Islamic Group." Patterns of Global Terrorism. Available: Http://www.ict.org.il/inter_ter/orgdet.ctm?ogid=7 March 22, 1999
7. Erlich, Dr. Reuven. The Beginning of an Internal Dispute in Iran and Lebanon over the fate of Hizballah in the wake of the implementation of Resolution 425. ICT Research Fellow. Available: http://www.ict.org.il/articles/articledet.ctm?articleid=20 March 22, 1999
8. State Department. Anti-US Attacks, 1997. Available: http://www.state.gov/www/global/terrorism/1997Report/ March 22, 1999
9. State Department. Casualties of Anti-US Attacks 1992-1997. Available: http://www.state.gov/www/global/terrorism/1997Report/ March 22, 1999
10. Albright, Madeleine K. "Interview on ABC-TV This Week'with Cokie Roberts and George Will." State Department. August 23, 1998. Available: http://secretary.state.gov/www/statements/1998/980823.htm March 22, 1999
11. Wilcox Jr. Philip C. "International Terrorism" September 12, 1996. Available: http://www.state.gov/www/global/terrorism
12. "State-Sponsored Terrorism." Available: Http://www.ict.org.il/inter_ter/st_terror/State_t.htm. March 22, 1999
13. State Department. "Over of State-Sponsored Terrorism" Available: http://www.state.gov/www/global/terrorism/1997Report/. March 22, 1999.
14. Paz, Reuven. "Is There an Islamic Terrorism.'" September 7, 1998. Available: Http://www.ict.org.il/articles/isl_terr.htm. March 22, 1999.
15. Schweitzer, Yoram. "Resonding to Terrorism the American Dilemma." September 2, 1998. Available: Http://www.ict.org.il/articles/articledet.ctm?articleid=44. March 22, 1999.
16. "1997 Global Terrorism." Available: http://www.state.gov/www/global/terroeism/1997report/. March 22, 1999.
17. "Electronic Sources: MLA Style of Citation." Available: http://www.uvm.edu/ xli/reterence/mla.html. March 22, 1999.
18. "1997 Global Terrorism-definitions." Available: http://www.state.gov/www/global/terroeism/1997report/. March 22, 1999.
19. "Jihad Group." Available: Http://www.ict.org.il/inter_ter/orgdet.ctm?ogid=18.
20. Sinha, P.B. "Pakistan The Chief Patron-Promoter of Islamic Militancy and Terrorism." Available: http://www.idsa-india.org/an-oct-5.html. March 22, 1999.
21. Sinha, P.B. "Threat of Islamic Terrorism Egypt." Available: http://www.idsa-india.org/an-nov8-6.html. March 22, 1999.
22. Rajeswari, P.R. "U.S. Policy on Terrorism." Available: http://www.idsa-india.org/an-nov8-7.html. March 22, 1999
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