Terrorism is a major cause of fear, anxiety, and destruction all over the world, in countries like India, Pakistan, USA, UK, France, China, and Spain. The current approaches are failing. Is there another solution to terrorism?
Terrorism is a major cause of fear, anxiety and destruction all over the world, in countries like India, Pakistan, USA, UK, France, China or Spain.
Can anyone ever get used to terrorism? No, terrorism is always a traumatic event for the people involved.
Image by Brave New Films via Flickr
A survey, funded by the National Center for Food Protection and Defense, conducted over the Internet by TNS-NFO 2005 among 4,260 U.S. residents over the age of sixteen found that 98 percent of U.S. residents believed there will be another terrorist attack during their lifetime.
What is Terrorism?
There is no universally valid common definition of terrorism. Terrorism is commonly understood as a systematic use of terror for ideological goals, especially targeted at civilians (non-combatants). If anyone uses terror for making profits or snatching other people’s possessions, it’s robbery, piracy etc and not terrorism.
The United Nations Security Council Resolution 1373, in response to 9/11 attacks on the USA unanimously imposed on all members that all members shall not finance, support terrorists or provide safe havens for them. Most countries, especially those that have suffered from terrorism, have some form of legislation specifically authorizing anti-terrorism measures.
Criticism of Terrorism Definitions
There is much debate about the definition of terrorism and what is considered lawful response. Historically, the main argument against terrorism is the unlawful use of violence. Depending on the point of view, unlawful violence has been used for centuries by many nation states to further their own commercial, political ends and further their hegemony ambitions as well as destabilize or delegitimize political opponents. Thus, nation states themselves can be seen as becoming guilty of practising the same crimes they accuse the terrorists of doing.
Further, the response to terrorist attacks seldom addresses issues that produced terrorism in the first place. Significantly, the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1373 does not require nation state members to investigate the reasons, which produce these horrendous acts of violence.
Most of the known terrorists today are networks. Some are home grown inside nation states, with or without support from powerful groups inside that nation state or with external support even from other nation states. Many are loose international movements functioning as autonomous cells with sophisticated support and functional systems.