POL208Y1 Lecture Notes - Dirty Bomb, Rieti, Wisconsin National Guard
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State terror is one of the first phenomenons of international terrorism
Left wing; ideology tend to attack democracies
Right wing; form of fascism, one of the bloodiest attacks on US soil
The essence of terror is to achieve fear; to target limited but symbolic. Limited
violence because with limited casualties they keep their support
Common feature is limited use of violence; what they wanted was a few ppl dead but lots
Separatist group; political agenda consists mostly of trying to achieve independence of some
First type can be defined loosely as religious; considered as new type of terrorism -looking to
inflict mass casualties. Also this group has global reach -active in every region of the world.
Infiltrate these countries to get a base. They have a global ideology-they target the west for
what it is, not what it is doing. They profit from globalization use sophisticated ways to
communicate and use it to recruit sympathizers. They profit from globalization by acquiring
weapons of mass destruction. Biggest fear after 911 was that Al Qaeda would get nuclear
weapons. The chance of that is small though. But this chance drove the entire retaliation policy
of the US after 911. it became the top item on their agenda. Its one of the main reasons why
they decided to invade Iraq. There were other fears; a dirty bomb -a devise that triggers
radioactive materials-targets small amount of ppl so not really what terrorists want.
Another element taken into account is the religious element. Changed the terms of terrorism.
The necessity of fighting either Muslim countries that have compromised their purity by
agreements with the west. This is all because the ideologies of one person -a leader -do not
coincide with the activities of a country. They want to replace a political order. Religion also
brings a culture of martyrdom. Brings the supreme justification for killing innocent ppl. Creates
a clash of civilization. Ex suicide terrorism; it is so scary because a small group of ppl can be so
committed to their cause to kill so many ppl by killing themselves. This is however not a new
tactic. Nearly impossible to deter.
Explains partly why suicide terrorist become such:
Disaffected individual; may be socially isolated, poverty, Israeli have tried to achieve an average
profile for a suicide terrorist but failed because no one can come up with a single profile. Crisis
of integration. They never feel accepted fully. Also crisis of identity; loss of feeling of belonging
to their original group. Their roots were not enough to give them a sense of identity. They don't
belong where they live nor do they belong where they came from so they feel at a loss.
Supportive community; may benefit financially. Someone may get some higher status if their
family member commits terrorist suicide. Group is adopting extreme tactics to be recognized-
including suicide terror. Political reasons; suicide terror is the tactic of choice for foreign
occupation. Very efficient way of attacking foreign occupation.
Explain partly suicide terrorists
In Europe, they have a significant Muslim minority. So these groups represent a specificity that
is not the same as the US or Canada. The change since 911 is the following; before in Europe
theses immigrants had strong relationship with country of origin. If there was some grievance
against their country it was about a specific problem in a region of their country. Their link was
to a specific pol prob. The change is that these groups are responding to a general conflict
instead of a specific one. These groups are appealing to a general and an abstract ideology
instead of a specific instance. They are now home grown cells claiming the legitimacy of the
name Al Qaeda but their actions are not legitimately from the organization.
3 types of terrorism:
The war in Iraq has upped the number of insurgency.
Terrorism and globalization
weekly topics Page 1
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