An Analysis of Terrorism

On September 11, 2001, every person was stunned with the earth shaking news that the World Trade Center (WTC), the highest building in the world was attacked by terrorist. This was done by hi-jacking two commercial airplanes which plowed the two famous sites. More than 5,000 American was feared dead. This was  the most recent and most devastating terrorist act that brought terrorism into the  timelight. Terrorism is a term of uncertain legal content. The term itself has no definition of illegality, except when terrorism  commits acts which do apply to common law.

Some of the acts that a terrorist commits are murder, bombing, kidnapping, hi-jacking, hostage taking and theft. All these acts have a law in the civil penal code that makes a terrorists activity a crime against society. Terrorism is also viewed as a political act against a government and its citizenry, secondly, it is viewed as a  coercive means to change some policy through the application of violence upon society . Finally terrorism  adheres             to the unlawfullness of acts as a mode of political change.

For the purpose of this study  terrorism is defined as a strategy whereby violence is used to produce certain effects in a group of people so an to attain some political end or ends. Terrorism can be traced back in Iran  since the 12th century. A group of Ismailis (Shiite  Muslim) known as the Assassins, attacked religious and political leaders of Sunni Islam. Up until the 18th century, the purpose of terrorist attacks was religious. In the 19th century terrorist became more political, with the idea of attacking governments. Anarchists, people who dont like the government, used terrorism in Spain and Italy.

Before the world War I began in 1914, Russian terrorist attacked members of the elite ruling class. After World War II, terrorism became much more frequent and intense. In the last half of 20th century, terrorists were driven by beliefs in fighting for particular nations(nationalists) or certain ideas (ideology). Terrorist networks grew with the help of better transportation, more television, better telephones, and more sophisticated  and deadly explosives. The conflicts between Israel and Arab countries after World War II  led to intense periods of terrorism. 70s and 1980s , terrorism spilled over into western Europe.

The Palestinians liberation has set up organizations in Germany, Italy and Japan. Another army, fighting for the liberation  of  Northern Ireland from Great Britain. Before the airplane hi-jackings and attacks at the world trade center and the pentagon, terrorist attacked U. S. had been mostly the work of individuals. These individuals tend to hate government and corporations. The worst attack  was in Oklahoma City in 1995 , when army veterans Timothy McVeigh and Terry McNicholas blew up the Federal Building killing 269 people.

The Unabomber, Theodore Kasynski mailed homemade bombs to corporations, professors and computer companies. He killed 3 and wounded 23 people before captured in 1995. One exception was an earlier bombing of the World Trade Center in 1993, which killed six people the core in 1993, which killed 6 people. Islamic  radicals were found to be behind the blast. International terrorist Osama Binladen, the main suspect in this  months attacks believed to have been behind that bombing as well. With all these facts on hand, the researchers felt disturbed and feel that their future is threatened.

In view of this,  the researchers decided to look into the national effects of terrorism not only in the Philippines but also in the world. Reasons for engaging in such terroristic would also be tackled in this paper. September 11, 2001, is the new day of infamy that may change forever the way Americans live their lives. A small band of men armed only with pocket knives did what no other global super power has been able to do to the United States. They struck terror in  our hearts by totally demolishing in a single hour an icon of American enterprise, the World Trade Center.

They went further in their daring attack by destroying a substantial section of the Pentagon, the symbol of our military might. They exploded horror and chaos into our collective lives in ways no one of us had ever before experienced, not even the most seasoned war veteran. Thousands of people were murdered, millions of lives were disrupted,  billions of dollars of business and income were lost. The nation and the world remain in shock at the unimaginable devastation that has become a defining moment for this generation. They are the new breed of terrorists, faceless people carefully programmed to destroy their enemy at all costs.

They are likely to be educated, well trained, blindly obedient to authority, totally dedicated to a religious-cultural ideology, living in a time zone of present fatalism, with few possessions and nothing to lose except sacrificing their lives for a higher cause. They embody creative evil at its worst, and in a form that could become most terrifying to democratic nations everywhere. The bully, in a moment, can smash the sand castle that a child took hours to build. A vandal, in a moment, can deface a statue that an artist took years to create.

Terrorists, in a moment, can destroy buildings that took years to erect, or end lives that took generations to nourish. Evil is the perversion of human perfection; it is the mind turned in on itself to hurt, harm, demean, and destroy other people, along with their possessions and their most valued symbols. If we take Good as the natural human condition, then Evil is its antithesis, and Heroism its opposing force. But that triad represents multiple facets of human nature. This terrorist attack on U. S. sovereignty represents a new level of creative evil in which human intellect serves the basest motives of violence and destruction.

Thus, it is imperative not to underestimate the power and catalytic force of this new enemy. It is a shadowy force without identifiable territorial boundaries, but one that has the charismatic power to unite disparate allies in many nations and to clone kindred warriors with its fervent ideological mission and focused hatred toward America and its allies. We have begun to appreciate the extent to which this complex, expertly choreographed terrorist attack was the end product of extensive planning, training, and professional expertise that required financial resources and networks of co-conspirators living among us.

This creatively evil enemy cannot be underestimated any longer. We have to change our perception of this attack as senseless violence, as has often been described. Of course, this tragic destruction of lives and property does not make sense to us because it is incomprehensible that any individual or group would engage in such evil deeds. But calling it senseless,mindless, insane, or the work of madmen is wrong for two reasons.

It fails to adopt the perspective of the perpetrators, as an act with a clearly defined purpose that we must understand in order to challenge it most effectively. And such negative labeling also lulls us into thinking it is random, not comparable to anything we do understand, and making us disrespectful of the high level of reasoned intellect behind these deeds, however distorted or diabolical it may be. Constructive efforts at preventing future similar acts of international violence best begin with attempts to understand not only the Who question, but the What question as well.

Our national leaders will seek out those who orchestrated this destructive attack against our nation and eventually bring them to justice. But even if the identifiable terrorist leaders were to be eliminated, would that stop future terrorism? It is unlikely, unless we know what are the root causes of the hatred against America; unless the ideological, political, and social bases of the mentalities of the next generation of potential terrorists are more fully appreciated and efforts to change them are engaged.

Evil has always existed in many forms and will continue to flourish in different ways in different places. Surely, there are individuals we acknowledge as embodying evil, just as Lucifer and Satan do — Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot, and other national tyrants. They are all dead, yet evil flourishes throughout the world with nameless conductors orchestrating ever new violence. It is well for us now to go beyond our tendency to focus on dispositional evil as a peculiar property or characteristic of despicable particular individuals.

Instead, we might consider focusing on the situational determinants of evil in order to recognize the generic forces of evil, to identify the breeding grounds that can seduce even good people to become perpetrators of evil. Even while acknowledging our individual and national need for retribution and punishment of the leaders of this terrorist attacks, we must realize that without altering the fundamental sources of anti-American and anti-democratic beliefs and values in other nations, new replacements will emerge for each tyrant leader we punish or kill.

Much psychological research reveals the ease with which ordinary people can be recruited to engage in harmful behaviors against their fellows. In one classic study by Stanley Milgram, the majority of ordinary American citizens who participated in it blindly obeyed an authority figure and administered what they believed were painful, even lethal shocks to a stranger. Albert Bandura showed that intelligent students were willing to be extremely aggressive toward other groups of students merely because they were characterized with the dehumanizing label of being just like animals.

In another demonstration from my own laboratory, normal college students recruited to role-play prison guards became their roles in a matter of days, behaving with escalating violence and sadism toward their prisoners– other college students. We know that a cult leader, Jim Jones, reverend of Peoples Temple, was able to program his followers to commit suicide, or to kill one another on his command, and more than 900 American citizens did so in the jungles of Guyana. Research by John Steiner (an Auschwitz survivor) indicates that most Nazi concentration camp guards were ordinary men before and following their years of perpetrating evil.

Many more examples could be culled to illustrate reasons why we should not demonize these terrorists as an alien breed. Instead, we should focus on a better understanding of the mind control tactics and strategies that might make even good people engage in evil deeds at some time in their lives, and that might recruit new generations of impoverished young people into lives of terrorism. We need also to acknowledge openly the dark side of religion in terms of how religiously-based value systems can be perverted to justify and reward the most horrendous of human deeds.

Unbridled evil has been carried out in the name of religion and condoned in the name of god over the centuries by most nations of the world, and still is. The efforts of our military forces in tracking down and destroying the terrorist leaders has a collateral risk. It models revenge and retaliation at a national level which can become a stimulus for individual hostility toward innocent citizens in our own country whose ethnicity, religion, or appearance might be similar to those of the terrorists.

Research by Dane Archer shows that homicide rates increase dramatically following all wars, the same for victor or loser nations, presumably because individuals learn to use violent means of conflict resolution as had been sanctioned by their national leaders. We cannot allow that transfer of hostility to develop, because it fuels the cycle of violence started by the terrorists. Terrorists create terror; terror creates fear and anger; fear and anger create aggression, and aggression against citizens of different ethnicity or religion creates racism and, in turn, new forms of terrorism.

The people of the world face personal and collective danger from the spread of terrorism. The acts of violence carried out by lone individuals or small, unrepresentative groups of people bring tragedy into other people’s lives. A number of causes for terrorism can be identified. In some ways, selfish, uncaring behaviour on the parts of groups of people mirror the adolescent stage of individuals, where personal concerns or grievances become out of proportion.

In the Bah’ view, humanity is nearing the stage of maturity, but has yet to understand the direction in which it will develop: The human race…. as passed through evolutionary stages…. of infancy and childhood,…. and is now in…. its turbulent adolescence approaching its long-awaited coming of age. ” Part of the background to current waves of terrorism is the lack of a proper balance between the liberty of the individual and the needs of society as a whole. The rights of an individual to act as he/she wishes can never be absolute. On this subject, Bah’u’llh, the Founder of the Bah’ Faith, wrote: “We find some men desiring liberty, and priding themselves therein. Such men are in the depths of ignorance.

Liberty must, in the end, lead to sedition, whose flames none can quench…. That which beseemeth man is submission unto such restraints as will protect him from his own ignorance, and guard him against the harm of the mischief-maker. Liberty causeth man to overstep the bounds of propriety, and to infringe on the dignity of his station. It debaseth him to the level of extreme depravity and wickedness. ” In many cases, the cause which the terrorist espouses is driven by a sense of injustice, as when a nation does not have independence in the family of nations, or where a minority feels that its rights are ignored.

The world must ensure that no situations of political injustice continue, thereby removing this kind of terrorist’s motivation, justification and support. Bah’u’llh emphasised the need for a universal conference at which the international frontiers will be fixed, and levels of national armaments reduced. Every minority would have its rights guaranteed. He expressed the desire that: “…. weapons of war throughout the world may be converted into instruments of reconstruction and that strife and conflict may be removed from the midst of men.

He spoke out against all violence, saying: There is no glory for him that committeth disorder in the earth after it hath been made so good. ” “Spread not disorder in the land, and shed not the blood of any one, and consume not the substance of others wrongfully. ” Religion is also frequently used by the terrorist as an excuse for his actions, despite the fact that every religion forbids murder, and demands that individuals love others. The golden rule, found in each religion, is that we should treat others as we wish to be treated. The moral codes of true religion have lost their impact.

According to the Bah’ Writings, when the light of religion is dimmed, the “perversion of human nature, the degradation of human conduct,…. reveal themselves, under such circumstances, in their worst and most revolting aspects. Human character is debased,…. the voice of human conscience is stilled, the sense of decency and shame is obscured…. ” Although the fundamental Bah’ view is that the ideal of world citizenship and the concept of the oneness of mankind should replace the narrower and more violent goals of the terrorist, there are also practical measures to be found in the Bah’ social teachings.

A world police force should be established, and this should be accompanied by world-wide laws. Terrorists use different states around the world as refuges from justice, and a number of countries harbour, supply, finance, train and sponsor terrorist groups for their own ends. Until some sort of world law is established, terrorism can never be completely eliminated: “The well-being of mankind, its peace and security, are unattainable unless and until its unity is firmly established. ” “The earth is but one country, and mankind its citizens.

There is no danger in a rational level of patriotism, but what needs to be developed is a love of humanity as a whole. With this ideal as a goal, replacing the fierce nationalism that is used to justify acts of terror, a sense of world citizenship can be developed. Loving all the peoples of the world should include a love of one’s own country. All the human sciences – anthropology, physiology and psychology – agree that there is only one human species, although we differ endlessly in lesser ways. The Bah’ view is that the oneness of mankind should become a conscious goal of political, educational and religious life.

Aggressive forms of behaviour must give way to more gentle ideals: “Consort with all men, O people of Bah, in a spirit of friendliness and fellowship. ” “Beware lest ye offend the feelings of anyone, or sadden the heart of any person…. ” The Bah’ emphasis is on bringing about world unity. Every nation, race and tribe should have its rightful place in the family of mankind, but this will not be achieved through killing: “Fighting, and the employment of force, even for the right cause, will not bring about good results. The oppressed who have right on their side must not take that right by force; the evil would continue.

Hearts must be changed. ” Bah’s are forbidden by Bah’u’llh from carrying arms unless it is essential. They are also enjoined to obey a just government. It is justice, indeed, that Bah’s believe should be the goal of every law. Then every individual should willingly accept the law, and help to build a world where violence is forgotten: “The law must reign and not the individual; thus will the world become a place of beauty and true brotherhood will be realised. ” Terrorism is much misunderstood. Like any form of warfare it can have horrible results. But the behavior of terrorists is not inexplicable.

When a terrorist campaign is run well, there’s a purpose behind everything they do. Warfare itself is equally explicable, and also can be horrible. But wars don’t happen for no reason, and they don’t always happen because of insanity. Sane and moral men can start a war if they think that the alternative is even worse. A war is fought because one side in a conflict wants something and cannot get it by diplomacy. In the great aphorism attributed to Clausewitz, “War is diplomacy by other means. ” But there are many ways in which a war can be fought; they’re not all just armies maneuvering on a battlefield.

In particular, that kind of war is only really possible if the two sides are approximately comparable in military strength. To take on an opponent that way when he is vastly more powerful than you is just a fancy way to commit suicide. But with proper tactics, numerical inferiority doesn’t have to mean defeat. You can fight a guerrilla war, or a terrorist action. Terrorism is the lowest level of warfare, requiring the least resources for the inferior side. Terrorism is war on the cheap. And terrorists can win. “Terrorism” is actually misnamed, because the goal of it is not to sow terror (though that is a common tactic).

The goal of terrorism is to sow discord and disruption and to provoke reprisals from your much stronger opponent. One of the paradoxes of terrorism is that when your opponent commits a major act of violence against your people, you (the terrorist) win and you become stronger. A war is always fought for a reason, and there are only three ways a war can end, all of which come down to eliminating the reason. First, everyone on one side can be exterminated. Or the losing side can abandon the struggle either because they no longer think they can accomplish their goal with acceptable losses, or because they have actually accomplished their goal.

You can only win a war by appeasing your opponent, discouraging him, or exterminating him. The theory of terrorism was worked out in the middle of the 20th century. Terrorists can win in several ways: by making their opponent weary of the struggle and, even with superior strength, give up, or by increasing the power of the terrorist side through recruitment so that the campaign can be converted to more normal guerrilla action or outright military campaign, or by inducing outsiders to impose a peace more favorable to the terrorist’s side.

There are seven critical participants in a terrorist campaign (or in any war): our forces, our people, their forces, their people, our allies outside the zone of conflict, their allies, and the rest of the world. Our forces consist of all people who are actively participating in the struggle on our side. Our people consists of everyone who might possibly be a recruit for our side in the conflict, or who support our campaign through contributions or taxes. Their forces and their people are comparable.

Our allies are any groups or governments outside the zone of the conflict who might be feeding us material support or who might be able to bring diplomatic pressure to bear in our favor, and of course our opponents also have allies. And the rest of the world consists of people who might become involved on one side or the other or who might ultimately bring about a settlement diplomatically or by other means (including armed intervention). In our campaign as terrorists, our goal is to continually strengthen ourselves and to continually weaken our enemy, so as to redress the inequality of power between us.

We want to recruit our people into our forces. We want to recruit international neutrals to become allies. We want to convince powerful neutrals that it is in their best interests to impose a solution on our enemies. These are all desirable and efforts will continue on all of these simultaneously, as long as the struggle continues. All of these require propaganda, and a successful terrorist campaign will always involve a cagey relationship with the international press. The ultimate and essential weapon of terrorism is publicity. If we are terrorists then we are weak and few.

We must hide, probably using a cell structure. Our weapon of choice is terrorist acts. We appear out of nowhere, commit an act which disrupts the normal flow of events, then vanish again. When we are not actively campaigning, we appear to simply be no different than any of the rest of our people. When we commit a terrorist act, our goal is to invite violent reprisals from our opponent’s forces. But since they don’t know who we are, they will make their reprisals against our people — which will increase the will of our people to resist, and make them more open to joining our forces.

Thus each time we successfully inspire a major reprisal, our recruitment will become more successful and our forces will grow. Unlike us, our enemy’s forces are not hidden. They are public and well known, and though they cannot target our forces, we can target theirs. In some cases we might decide to target their people, but often we’ll try to target their forces. Another effect of this is to cause fatigue and loss of moral will among their people, leading to a loss of political will. It may even lead to our victory without a conversion to standard warfare; they may give up and leave without a full scale war.

Or we may deliberately and directly target our enemy’s allies, hoping to cause them to decide that the price they pay for the alliance is too high. They may abandon our enemy, or they may pressure them to end our disruption on terms favorable to us. But this leaves our enemy in a bind; increased reprisals do not end our struggle as long as even one of us continues to resist, so they may end up being forced to grant us concessions — which may be sufficient to achieve our goal. Of course, our enemy’s reprisals will likely cost the lives of many of our people.

But war is an unpretty business, and when we embarked on it we knew we were going to lose people, but we decided it was worth it anyway. (And sometimes our goals are worth losing people over. ) Our forces are not weakened when our people are killed; and indeed our forces can be strengthened through increased recruitment and support from our people. Also, as our enemies retaliate against us violently, this can cause moral outrage among our allies (causing them to support us more directly, possibly even logistically) and may cause international neutrals to come onto our side.

It can even cause moral outrage among their allies, decreasing their support both materially and politically. Of course, all of this requires that we are in tune with the general feelings of our people. If we aren’t, then we won’t gain recruits even if there is a violent response. The extreme example of this would be a lunatic like Ted Kaczinski (the “Unabomber”), a lone terrorist who never did gain any allies during his fifteen year campaign. Once he was captured, his terrorist movement ended. But for fifteen years he was an army of one. And had he actually been in tune with his people, those sympathetic to his cause might have joined him.

Let us examine four classic terrorist campaigns from history: the Maquis, the liberation of India, the American Civil Rights movement, and the Palestinian struggle against Israel. Right off, your reaction is to wonder why it is that I consider Gandhi and King to be terrorists. After all, they were upstanding and moral men who are honored by history. But terrorism doesn’t require violence, and if you go back and reread my description of the strategy you’ll notice that I never once said that our side had to commit violence in our terrorist campaign. We commit disruption but we do not have to be violent doing so.

Our goal is to make our opponent be violent, and often being violent ourselves will cause that. But depending on our situation, a non-violent terrorism may be the best way to accomplish our goal. But first, a classic violent terrorist campaign: the Maquis. This was the French resistance against the German occupation during WWII. They operated in a cell structure, using arms which were stolen or smuggled in from the UK. They targeted militarily useful infrastructure, and enemy forces, and collaborators. The German response was orchestrated by their Army and in particular by the Gestapo and was particularly brutal.

The casualty rate among the Maquis was appalling (I’ve seen estimates that the average survival time after joining was ten months) and the fate of those who were captured was terrible, because they were routinely tortured for information. On the other hand, the response by the Germans was quite broad-brush, leading to many innocent French being killed and tortured at the same time as captured members of the Maquis were. This inflamed the hatred of the French, already high anyway after the military catastrophe of 1940, leading to a steady stream of new recruits.

So while casualties among the Maquis were high, recruitment more than made that good and as the war progressed their numbers and strength increased. This also served as a propaganda victory in the West, helping in particular to convince the American people to support an invasion of France. The American leaders always were willing, but it was necessary to convince the American people that the losses and expense in American lives and treasure was worthwhile. (I think history has shown that it was. ) The payoff came in 1944.

On a radio signal from London, the Maquis converted from terrorism to guerrilla action and mobilized its strength. Its military goal was limited but critical: interdiction. Maquis forces met Canadian and British and American army forces and gave them help (sometimes armed but more often in the form of fresh information, which was often critical), but more important was that they operated in strength behind German lines and attacked railroads and bridges and highways and convoys and communications, the goal being to impede the German ability to move forces and supplies to Normandy to fight the invasion.

Of course, the Maquis were spectacularly successful overall, achieving everything they could possibly have hoped for. The Germans were kicked out, the Americans and British and Canadians turned out to be that most rare of historical artifacts: an “Army of Liberation” which really did liberate — and then left afterwards. The Maquis paid dearly for its victory, but its victory was complete. Gandhi’s Congress Party used a much different kind of terrorist campaign against the British in order to gain India’s liberation.

This shows how tactics and strategy must always be adapted to the current political situation, for the situation in India was far different than in France. A non-violent campaign in France would have failed, but a violent campaign in India would also have failed. First, violence was morally repugnant to the majority of Indians for religious reasons, and a violent terrorist campaign would have lost the support of the Indian people. Second,  the British public entertained the fantasy that they were actually serving the Indians even as they ruled them, and indeed British rule did help the Indians in many ways.

British rule was far from benign, but it was not vicious either. The British people, therefore, believed that it was in both the interest of the UK and of India that the British continue to rule, and Gandhi’s goal was to convince them that this was not true. So he adopted non-violent public terrorism. Instead of hiding, he made himself and his top leaders clear and obvious targets. Instead of bringing reprisals onto his people, he accepted them himself, knowing that the British were too decent to simply take him out and shoot him without trial (the way the Gestapo would have).

And the ultimate result was to set him up as clearly being morally superior to his British opponents in the eyes of the British people. If such an outstanding and moral man thinks that we, the British, are harming India and if he wants us to leave, then how can we stay? Gandhi won his war when the British people began to ask themselves that question. And when the British saw their own people being violent and cruel to the Indians, who did not respond in kind, then the British self-image of decency was damaged.

Gandhi in fact did use violence — but it was violence to self. Instead of murder, he threatened suicide. He didn’t invent the hunger strike, but he perfected it. However, the hunger strike is only effective under very special circumstances. Usually it is a failure. Martin Luther King Jr. used public non-violent terrorism in the American South in the 1960’s, but with somewhat different goals. Again, he adapted his campaign to the local political situation, to take advantage of the significant political division among American whites.

He did not expect to convince the Southern Whites to voluntarily end the apartheid system; his goal was to bring the Northern and Western Whites into the struggle on his side so that they would use their might to force the Southern Whites to end apartheid. Like Gandhi, the best way to achieve this was to force his opponents to make themselves look despicable, so as to gain the sympathy of outsiders. King was jailed many times and each time he emerged from jail more powerful. Every time southern police beat non-violent black demonstrators (filmed and broadcast on the national news), King’s movement was strengthened.

And like Gandhi, he knew that he was unlikely to be killed by his captors when he himself was arrested. His non-violent terrorist acts (in the form of sit-ins and demonstrations and boycotts) became larger and more disruptive as recruitment brought more people into his forces. But he knew he’d won when Northern Whites began to travel to the South to join his forces in numbers. Then it was only a matter of time. Ultimately he inspired the more moral white political majority of the US to use legislative power to force the Southern states to grant him what he wanted.

This included the threat of using armed force by the Federal Government. Before he began his struggle, this had actually already happened in Arkansas, where the US Army was used by Eisenhower to force integration of the schools after a Supreme Court decision. So he knew Federal military force was possible, and so did his opponents. With the passage of the Voting Rights act and the Civil Rights Act of 1964, it became a matter of implementation, with the full power of the US behind King’s movement. The struggle continued, and the walls fell slowly, but the lot of the Negro (hi

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