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PP230 Final: What is Terrorism by Primoratz Reading Note

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Craig Beam

What is Terrorism Igor Primoratz Big Topic Primoratzs Aim His Definition The deliberate use of violence, or threat of its use, against innocent people, with the aim of intimidating them, or other people, into a course of action they otherwise would not take A Breakdown of his argument by elements of his Definition The deliberate use of violence, or threat of its use Must Terrorism Be Violent? Carl Wellman put forward a definition of terrorism: The use or attempted use of terror as a means of coercion Primoratz agrees with this definition, with the exception that violence, or threat of, must be used Otherwise would open up definition to other forms of coercion like blackmail Must coercion always be violent? To speak of nonviolent terrorism broadens the definition to greatly Primoratz devalues the three examples used by Wellman to argue nonviolent coercion is part of a definition of terrorism against innocent people Primoratz believes Terrorism is Indiscriminate in two ways: It is against those that are innocent It is unpredictable Innocence What is an innocent person? Must be careful not to too relative of a definition one persons terrorist is another persons political assassin Primoratz sees a terrorists classification of a citizen as a guilty party significantly too weak in terms of cause and effect That allows anyone to be guilty and no one innocent Primoratzs scope of Lost Innocence He uses this to distinguish the targets involved in terrorism from those involved in political assassinations and war If you fall into the following, you no longer become an innocent person but have some influencing (physical or political) ability within the targeted regime (government)
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