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Title: Terrorism  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
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Subject: 2001 in Afghanistan, August 2010, In the news/Candidates/August 2010, June 2011, In the news/Candidates/June 2011
Collection: Abuse, Fear, Organized Crime, Terrorism, Violent Crime, War on Terror
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United Airlines Flight 175, which had been taken over by hijackers, hits the South Tower of the former World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, in New York City, United States of America.

In the

  • A New Strategy for America's War on Terrorism
  • Terrorism and international humanitarian law, International Committee of the Red Cross
  • United Nations:Conventions on Terrorism
  • UNODC – United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime – Terrorism Prevention
  • Terrorism and international humanitarian law, International Committee of the Red Cross

External links

  • Edwin Bakker, (International Centre for Counter-Terrorism - The Hague, 2014)Forecasting the Unpredictable: A Review of Forecasts on Terrorism 2000 – 2012
  • Burleigh, Michael. Blood and rage : a cultural history of terrorism. Harper, 2009.
  • Chaliand, Gérard and Arnaud Blin, eds. The history of terrorism : from antiquity to al Qaeda. University of California Press, 2007.
  • Crenshaw, Martha, ed. Terrorism in context. Pennsylvania State University Press, 1995.
  • Land, Isaac, ed., Enemies of humanity : the nineteenth-century war on terrorism. Palgrave Macmillan, 2008.
  • Lutz, James and Brenda Lutz. Terrorism : origins and evolution. Palgrave Macmillan, 2005
  • Miller, Martin A. The foundations of modern terrorism : state, society and the dynamics of political violence. Cambridge University Press, 2013.
  • Stern, Jessica. The Ultimate Terrorists. First Harvard University Press Pbk. ed. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 2000, cop. 1995. 214 p. ISBN 0-674-00394-2
  • Terrorism, Law & Democracy: 10 years after 9/11, Canadian Institute for the Administration of Justice. ISBN 978-2-9809728-7-4.

Further reading

  1. ^ a b Angus Martyn, The Right of Self-Defence under International Law-the Response to the Terrorist Attacks of 11 September, Australian Law and Bills Digest Group, Parliament of Australia Web Site, 12 February 2002.
  2. ^ Thalif Deen. "Politics: U.N. Member States Struggle to Define Terrorism", Inter Press Service, 25 July 2005.
  3. ^ Spring Fever: The Illusion of Islamic Democracy, Andrew C. McCarthy - 2013
  4. ^ African Politics: Beyond the Third Wave of Democratisation, Joelien Pretorius - 2008, page 7
  5. ^ Hoffman, Bruce (1998). Inside Terrorism. Columbia University Press. p. 32.  
  6. ^ Record, Jeffrey (December 2003). "Bounding the Global War on Terrorism".  
  7. ^ Schmid, Alex, and Jongman, Albert. Political Terrorism: A New Guide to Actors, Authors, Concepts, Data bases, Theories and Literature, Amsterdam ; New York : North-Holland ; New Brunswick: Transaction Books, 1988.
  8. ^ The IRA, for example, called its members "freedom fighters", while the British government categorized the IRA under its 2000 Terrorism Act
  9. ^ a b c Geoffrey Nunberg (October 28, 2001). "Head Games / It All Started with Robespierre / "Terrorism": The history of a very frightening word". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2010-01-11. For the next 150 years the word "terrorism" led a double life – a justifiable political strategy to some an abomination to others 
  10. ^ Elysa Gardner (2008-12-25). "Harold Pinter: Theater's singular voice falls silent". USA Today. Retrieved 2010-01-11. In 2004, he earned the prestigious Wilfred Owen prize for a series of poems opposing the war in Iraq. In his acceptance speech, Pinter described the war as "a bandit act, an act of blatant state terrorism, demonstrating absolute contempt for the concept of international law". 
  11. ^  
  12. ^
  13. ^ "Terrorism". Encyclopædia Britannica. p. 3. Retrieved 2006-08-11. 
  14. ^ Ruby, Charles L. (2002). "The Definition of Terrorism" (PDF). Retrieved 2010-02-22. 
  15. ^ a b "Online Etymology Dictionary". 1979-10-20. Retrieved 2009-08-10. 
  16. ^ Kim Campbell (September 27, 2001). "When is 'terrorist' a subjective term?". Christian Science Monitor. Retrieved 2010-01-11. New York Times columnist William Safire wrote that the word "terrorist" has its roots in the Latin terrere, which means "to frighten". 
  17. ^ |quote= The French were the first to coin the term, he says.
  18. ^ Geoffrey Nunberg (October 28, 2001). "Head Games / It All Started with Robespierre / "Terrorism": The history of a very frightening word". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2010-01-11. In 1792 the Jacobins came to power in France and initiated what we call the Reign of Terror and what the French call simply La Terreur. 
  19. ^ Robert Mackey (November 20, 2009). "Can Soldiers Be Victims of Terrorism?". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-01-11. Terrorism is the deliberate killing of innocent people, at random, in order to spread fear through a whole population and force the hand of its political leaders. 
  20. ^ Crenshaw, Martha, Terrorism in Context, p. 77.
  21. ^ Arnold, Kathleen R., ed. (September 23, 2011). Anti-Immigration in the United States: A Historical Encyclopedia II. ABC-CLIO, LLC. p. 461.  
  22. ^ "UN Reform". United Nations. 2005-03-21. Archived from the original on 2007-04-27. Retrieved 2008-07-11. The second part of the report, entitled "Freedom from Fear backs the definition of terrorism–an issue so divisive agreement on it has long eluded the world community–as any action "intended to cause death or serious bodily harm to civilians or non-combatants with the purpose of intimidating a population or compelling a government or an international organization to do or abstain from doing any act" 
  23. ^ Hoffman (1998), p. 32, See review in The New York Times Inside Terrorism.
  24. ^ Diaz-Paniagua (2008), Negotiating terrorism: The negotiation dynamics of four UN counter-terrorism treaties, 1997–2005, p. 47.
  25. ^ 1994 United Nations Declaration on Measures to Eliminate International Terrorism annex to UN General Assembly resolution 49/60, "Measures to Eliminate International Terrorism", of December 9, 1994, UN Doc. A/Res/60/49.
  26. ^ Bruce Hoffman, Inside Terrorism, 2 ed., Columbia University Press, 2006, p. 34.
  27. ^ Bruce Hoffman, Inside terrorism, 2 ed., Columbia University Press, 2006, p. 41.
  28. ^ Bockstette, Carsten (2008). "Jihadist Terrorist Use of Strategic Communication Management Techniques" (PDF). George C. Marshall Center Occasional Paper Series (20).  
  29. ^ Ronald Bailey (February 6, 2009). "Earth Liberation Front Terrorist Gets 22 Years in Prison for Anti-Biotech Arson". Reason Magazine. Retrieved 2010-01-11. Marie Mason decided to "elevate her grievances beyond the norms of civilized society" through fire and destruction, U.S. District Judge Paul Maloney said. The case, which was prosecuted as domestic terrorism ... 
  30. ^ Daniel Schorn (June 18, 2006). "Ed Bradley Reports On Extremists Now Deemed Biggest Domestic Terror Threat". 60 Minutes. Retrieved 2010-01-11. The biggest act of eco-terrorism in U.S. history was a fire ... Animal Liberation Front, whose masked members have been known to videotape themselves breaking into research labs, ... 
  31. ^ Bruce Hoffman (June 2003). "The Logic of Suicide Terrorism". The Atlantic. Retrieved 2010-01-11. ... terrorism is meant to produce psychological effects that reach far beyond the immediate victims of the attack. 
  32. ^ Rick Hampson (2009-07-06). "Statue of Liberty gets her view back". USA Today. Retrieved 2010-01-11. On Saturday, the statue, closed above its base since the terror attacks, will reopen to visitors — a relative few, in small groups, specially ticketed, carefully screened and escorted by a park ranger. 
  33. ^ Juergensmeyer, Mark (2000). Terror in the Mind of God.  
  34. ^ "Number of Terrorist Attacks, Fatalities". The Washington Post. June 12, 2009. Retrieved 2010-01-11. The nation's deadliest terrorist acts – attacks designed to achieve a political goal 
  35. ^ Juergensmeyer, Mark (2000). Terror in the Mind of God. University of California Press. 
  36. ^ Alexander Stille (May 31, 2003). "Historians Trace an Unholy Alliance; Religion as the Root Of Nationalist Feeling". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-01-11. Now the context in which we see nationalism has completely changed, he said. Faced with the threat of Islamic fundamentalism, the West is more open to looking at the role of religion in the formation of nationalism. 
  37. ^ Juergensmeyer, Mark (2000). Terror in the Mind of God. University of California Press. pp. 127–128. 
  38. ^ "Terrorism in the United States 1999" (PDF). Federal Bureau of Investigation. Archived from the original on 2008-07-09. Retrieved 2008-07-11. 
  39. ^ "/Iraq accuses US of state terrorism". BBC News. 2002-02-20. Retrieved 2010-01-11. Iraq has accused the United States of state terrorism amid signs that the war of words between the two countries is heating up. 
  40. ^ "AskOxford Search Results – terrorist". AskOxford. AskOxford. Retrieved 2008-07-11. 
  41. ^ "Cambridge International Dictionary of English". Retrieved 2009-08-10. 
  42. ^ "". 1979-10-20. Retrieved 2009-08-10. 
  43. ^ Khan, Ali (1987). "A Theory of International Terrorism" (PDF). Social Science Research Network. Retrieved 2008-07-11. 
  44. ^ Barak Mendelsohn (January 2005). "Sovereignty under attack: the international society meets the Al Qaeda network (abstract)". Cambridge Journals. Retrieved 2010-01-11. This article examines the complex relations between a violent non-state actor, the Al Qaeda network, and order in the international system. Al Qaeda poses a challenge to the sovereignty of specific states but it also challenges the international society as a whole. 
  45. ^ 'President Obama calls the Boston Marathon bombings 'an act of terror'' on Daily News website, viewed 2013-04-17
  46. ^ "Defining terrorism isn't so easy", by Jacob Gershman,
  47. ^ "Fact Check: 'Act of Terror' Not Same as 'Terrorism'", by John Sexton,
  48. ^ ABC: Insurance Payout May Depend on Whether Boston Bombing Was 'Terrorist Act'. April 26, 2013.
  49. ^ Bob Thompson (May 1, 2005). "Hollywood on Crusade". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2010-01-11. ... terrorism. He was widely chastised for using a word that carries major negative connotations ... 
  50. ^ B'Tselem Head of ISA defines a terrorist as any Palestinian killed by Israel.
  51. ^ a b Paul Reynolds, quoting David Hannay, Former UK ambassador (14 September 2005). "UN staggers on road to reform". BBC News. Retrieved 2010-01-11. This would end the argument that one man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter ... 
  52. ^ a b Rodin, David (2006). Terrorism. In E. Craig (Ed.), Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy. London: Routledge.
  53. ^ Peter Steinfels (March 1, 2003). "Beliefs; The just-war tradition, its last-resort criterion and the debate on an invasion of Iraq". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-01-11. For those like Professor Walzer who value the just-war tradition as a disciplined way to think about the morality of war ... 
  54. ^  
  55. ^  
  56. ^ Raymond Bonner (November 1, 1998). "Getting Attention: A scholar's historical and political survey of terrorism finds that it works". The New York Times: Books. Retrieved 2010-01-11. Inside Terrorism falls into the category of must read, at least for anyone who wants to understand how we can respond to international acts of terror. 
  57. ^ Malayan People's Anti-Japanese Army Britannica Concise.
  58. ^ Dr Chris Clark "Malayan Emergency, 16 June 1948". Archived from the original on 2007-06-08. , 16 June 2003.
  59. ^ Ronald Reagan, speech to National Conservative Political Action Conference 8 March 1985. On the Spartacus Educational web site.
  60. ^ "President Meets with Afghan Interim Authority Chairman". 2002-01-29. Retrieved 2009-08-10. 
  61. ^ President Discusses Progress in War on Terrorism to National Guard White House web site February 9, 2006.
  62. ^ "An unbiased look at terrorism in Afghanistan [in 2009] reveals that many of these 'terrorists' individuals or groups were once 'freedom fighters' struggling against the Soviets during the 1980s." (Chouvy, Pierre-Arnaud (2009). Opium: Uncovering the Politics of the Poppy (illustrated, reprint ed.). Harvard University Press. p. 119.  )
  63. ^ Sudha Ramachandran Death behind the wheel in Iraq Asian Times, November 12, 2004, "Insurgent groups that use suicide attacks therefore do not like their attacks to be described as suicide terrorism. They prefer to use terms like "martyrdom ..."
  64. ^ Alex Perry How Much to Tip the Terrorist? Time, September 26, 2005. "The Tamil Tigers would dispute that tag, of course. Like other guerrillas and suicide bombers, they prefer the term "freedom fighters".
  65. ^ Terrorism: concepts, causes, and conflict resolution Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution, Printed by the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, Fort Belvoir, Virginia, January 2003.
  66. ^ Humphreys, Adrian. "One official's 'refugee' is another's 'terrorist'", National Post, January 17, 2006.
  67. ^ Theodore P. Seto The Morality of Terrorism Includes a list in the Times published on July 23, 1946, which were described as Jewish terrorist actions, including those launched by Irgun, of which Begin was a leading member.
  68. ^ BBC News: Profiles: Menachem Begin BBC website "Under Begin's command, the underground terrorist group Irgun carried out numerous acts of violence."
  69. ^ Eqbal Ahmad "Straight talk on terrorism" Monthly Review, January, 2002. "including Menachem Begin, appearing in "Wanted" posters saying, "Terrorists, reward this much." The highest reward I have seen offered was 100,000 British pounds for the head of Menachem Begin".
  70. ^ Lord Desai Hansard, House of Lords 3 September 1998 : Column 72, "However, Jomo Kenyatta, Nelson Mandela and Menachem Begin—to give just three examples—were all denounced as terrorists but all proved to be successful political leaders of their countries and good friends of the United Kingdom."
  71. ^ BBC NEWS:World: Americas: UN reforms receive mixed response BBC website "Of all groups active in recent times, the ANC perhaps represents best the traditional dichotomous view of armed struggle. Once regarded by western governments as a terrorist group, it now forms the legitimate, elected government of South Africa, with Nelson Mandela one of the world's genuinely iconic figures."
  72. ^ BBC NEWS: World: Africa: Profile: Nelson Mandela BBC website "Nelson Mandela remains one of the world's most revered statesman".
  73. ^ Beckford, Martin (2010-11-30). "Hunt WikiLeaks founder like al-Qaeda and Taliban Leaders". London:  
  74. ^ MacAskill, Ewen (2010-12-19). "Julian Assange like a hi-tech terrorist". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 7 January 2011. 
  75. ^ "Quinn v. Robinson, 783 F2d. 776 (9th Cir. 1986)". web site of the United Settlement. Retrieved 23 November 2010. 
  76. ^ Zachary E. McCabe (25 August 2003). "Northern Ireland: The paramilitaries, Terrorism, and September 11th".  
  77. ^ "Guardian and Observer style guide: T". The Guardian (London). 2008-12-19. Retrieved 2014-04-09. 
  78. ^ "BBC Editorial Guidelines on Language when Reporting Terrorism". BBC. Retrieved 9 January 2011. 
  79. ^ a b "TE-SAT 2011 EU Terrorism Situation and Trend Report".  
  80. ^ "TE-SAT 2010 Terrorism Situation and Trend Report".  
  81. ^ "TE-SAT 2009 Terrorism Situation and Trend Report".  
  82. ^ Disorders and Terrorism, National Advisory Committee on Criminal Justice Standards and Goals (Washington D.C.:1976).
  83. ^ Hudson, Rex A. Who Becomes a Terrorist and Why: The 1999 Government Report on Profiling Terrorists, Federal Research Division, The Lyons Press, 2002.
  84. ^ Barry Scheider, Jim Davis, Avoiding the abyss: progress, shortfalls and the way ahead in combatting the WMD threat, Greenwood Publishing Group, 2009 p. 60.
  85. ^ Terrorism and homeland security: an introduction with applications, by Philip P. Purpura, Butterworth-Heinemann, 2007, ISBN 0-7506-7843-7, p. 16
  86. ^ a b Abrahms, Max (March 2008). "What Terrorists Really Want: Terrorist Motives and Counterterrorism Strategy" (PDF 1933  
  87. ^ "Freedom squelches terrorist violence: Harvard Gazette Archives". 
  88. ^ "Freedom squelches terrorist violence: Harvard Gazette Archives" (PDF). Retrieved 2008-12-28. 
  89. ^ "Poverty, Political Freedom, and the Roots of Terrorism" (PDF). 2004. Retrieved 2008-12-28. 
  90. ^ "Unemployment, Inequality and Terrorism: Another Look at the Relationship between Economics and Terrorism" (PDF). 2005. Archived from the original on August 3, 2008. Retrieved 2008-12-28. 
  91. ^ Bruce Hoffman (June 2003). "The Logic of Suicide Terrorism". The Atlantic. Retrieved 2010-01-11. The terrorists appear to be deliberately homing in on the few remaining places where Israelis thought they could socialize in peace. 
  92. ^ Pape, Robert A. "The Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism", American Political Science Review, 2003. 97 (3): pp. 1–19.
  93. ^ "Basque Terrorist Group Marks 50th Anniversary with New Attacks".  
  94. ^ Timothy Snyder. A fascist hero in democratic Kiev. NewYork Reviev of Books. 24 February 2010
  95. ^ Romero, Simon (March 18, 2009). "Shining Path". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-01-11. The Shining Path, a faction of Peruvian militants, has resurfaced in the remote corners of the Andes. The war against the group, which took nearly 70,000 lives, supposedly ended in 2000. ... In the 1980s, the rebels were infamous for atrocities like planting bombs on donkeys in crowded markets, assassinations and other terrorist tactics. 
  96. ^ "1983: Car bomb in South Africa kills 16". BBC. 2005-05-20. Retrieved 2010-01-11. The outlawed anti-apartheid group the African National Congress has been blamed for the attack ... He said the explosion was the "biggest and ugliest" terrorist incident since anti-government violence began in South Africa 20 years ago. 
  97. ^ Rick Young (May 16, 2007). "'"PBS Frontline: 'Spying on the Home Front. PBS: Frontline. Retrieved 2010-01-11. ... we and Frontline felt that it was important to look more comprehensively at the post-9/11 shift to prevention and the dilemma we all now face in balancing security and privacy. 
  98. ^ Yager, Jordy (July 25, 2010). "Former intel chief: Homegrown terrorism is a devil of a problem". 
  99. ^ shabad, goldie and francisco jose llera ramo. "Political Violence in a Democratic State", Terrorism in Context. Ed. Martha Crenshaw. University Park: Pennsylvania State University, 1995. pp. 467.
  100. ^ "Pakistan: A failed state or a clever gambler?". BBC News. May 7, 2011.
  101. ^ Peter Rose (August 28, 2003). "Disciples of religious terrorism share one faith". Christian Science Monitor. Retrieved 2010-01-11. Almost everyone Stern interviewed said they were doing God's will, defending the faithful against the lies and evil deeds of their enemies. Such testimonials, she suggests, "often mask a deeper kind of angst and a deeper kind of fear – fear of a godless universe, of chaos, of loose rules, and of loneliness". 
  102. ^ Paula Nicolson. Domestic Violence and Psychology: A Critical Perspective. Taylor & Francis; 14 December 2010. ISBN 978-1-136-69861-3. p. 40.
  103. ^ Johnson, M. P.; Ferraro, K. J. (2000). "Research on Domestic Violence in the 1990s: Making Distinctions". Journal of Marriage and Family 62 (4): 948.  
  104. ^ LAROCHE Denis, Context and Consequences of Domestic Violence Against Men and Women in Canada in 2004 p.35. 2004
  105. ^ Jacobson, N. and J. Gottman (1998). When Men Batter Women: New Insights into Ending Abusive Relationships. Simon & Schuster.  
  106. ^ Hamberger, L. K.; Lohr, J. M.; Bonge, D.; Tolin, D. F. (1996). "A large sample empirical typology of male spouse abusers and its relationship to dimensions of abuse". Violence and victims 11 (4): 277–292.  
  107. ^ Holtzworth-Munroe, A.; Meehan, J. C.; Herron, K.; Rehman, U.; Stuart, G. L. (2000). "Testing the Holtzworth-Munroe and Stuart (1994) batterer typology". Journal of consulting and clinical psychology 68 (6): 1000–1019.  
  108. ^ Sageman, Mark (2004). Understanding Terror Networks. Philadelphia, PA: U. of Pennsylvania Press. pp. 166–67.  
  109. ^ Williams, Phil (2008). "Violent Non-State Actors and National and International Security". Retrieved 2009-02-14. 
  110. ^ Steven D. Levitt; Stephen J. Dubner (2009). Superfreakonomics: global cooling, patriotic prostitutes, and why suicide bombers should buy life insurance. William Morrow. pp. 62, 231.   citing Alan B. Krueger, What Makes a Terrorist (Princeton University Press 2007); Claude Berrebi, "Evidence About the Link Between Education, Poverty, and Terrorism among Palestinians", Princeton University Industrial Relations Section Working paper, 2003 and Krueger and Jita Maleckova, "Education, Poverty and Terrorism: Is There a Causal Connection?" Journal of Economic Perspectives 17 no. 4 (Fall 2003 / 63.
  111. ^ Sean Coughlan (21 August 2006). "Fear of the unknown". BBC News. Retrieved 2010-01-11. A passenger on the flight, Heath Schofield, explained the suspicions: "It was a return holiday flight, full of people in flip-flops and shorts. There were just two people in the whole crowd who looked like they didn't belong there." 
  112. ^ a b Library of Congress – Federal Research Division The Sociology and Psychology of Terrorism.
  113. ^ Endgame: Resistance, by Derrick Jensen, Seven Stories Press, 2006, ISBN 1-58322-730-X, p. IX.
  114. ^ "Pds Sso". Retrieved 2009-08-10. 
  115. ^ "Addressing Security Council, Secretary-General Calls On Counter-Terrorism Committee To Develop Long-Term Strategy To Defeat Terror". Retrieved 2009-08-10. 
  116. ^ Lind, Michael (2005-05-02). "The Legal Debate is Over: Terrorism is a War Crime | The New America Foundation". Retrieved 2009-08-10. 
  117. ^ "Press conference with Kofi Annan & FM Kamal Kharrazi". 2002-01-26. Retrieved 2009-08-10. 
  118. ^ Michael Stohl (April 1, 1984). "The Superpowers and International Terror". International Studies Association, Atlanta. 
  119. ^ a b Michael Stohl (1988). "Terrible beyond Endurance? The Foreign Policy of State Terrorism". International Studies Association, Atlanta. 
  120. ^ Michael Slackman (March 22, 2009). "New Status in Africa Empowers an Ever-Eccentric Qaddafi". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-01-11. Once vilified for promoting state terrorism, Colonel Qaddafi is now courted. 
  121. ^ "The "No Rent" Manifesto.; Text Of The Document Issued By The Land League". The New York Times. 2009-08-02. Retrieved 2009-08-10. 
  122. ^ Nicolas Werth, Karel Bartošek, Jean-Louis Panné, Jean-Louis Margolin, Andrzej Paczkowski, Stéphane Courtois, The Black Book of Communism: Crimes, Terror, Repression, Harvard University Press, 1999, hardcover, 858 pages, ISBN 0-674-07608-7
  123. ^ Kisangani, E.; Nafziger, E. Wayne (2007). "The Political Economy Of State Terror" (PDF). Defence and Peace Economics 18 (5): 405–414.  
  124. ^ Death by Government by R.J. Rummel New Brunswick, N.J.: Transaction Publishers, 1994. Online links: [1] [2] [3]
  125. ^ No Lessons Learned from the Holocaust?, Barbara Harff, 2003.
  126. ^ a b c d Detection of Terrorist Financing, U.S. National Credit Union Administration (NCUA), 2002.
  127. ^ Jeremy Lott (October 6, 2004). "Tripped Up". Reason Magazine. Retrieved 2010-01-11. and before the Soviet Union fell, terrorist organizations were funding themselves through subsidies from Communist governments 
  128. ^ "Aims and activities of the Stern Group in Palestine". Research and Analysis Branch (Washington: National Archives) 2717 (R & N). 1944-12-01. 
  129. ^ Nelson, Dean (2009-07-08). "Pakistani president Asif Zardari admits creating terrorist groups".  
  130. ^ Mujahideen guerrillas in the 1980's asking revolutionary tax from poppy farmers
  131. ^ Gerben Jan Gerbrandy claiming that terrorist networks hunt wildlife for funding themselves
  132. ^ "Syria's top Islamist and jihadist groups". France 24.
  133. ^ "Terrorist Financing". The Financial Action Task Force. Retrieved 7 January 2011. 
  134. ^ "Hackers warn high street chains". BBC News. 25 April 2008. Retrieved 2010-01-11. That's the beauty of asymmetric warfare. You don't need a lot of money, or an army of people. 
  135. ^ Suicide bombings are the most effective terrorist act in this regard. See the following works:
    • Ricolfi, Luca (2005). "Palestinians 1981–2003". In Gambetta, Diego. Making Sense of Suicide Missions (1st ed.). Oxford, UK:  
    Cited in  
  136. ^ Priest, Dana; Arkin, William (July 19, 2010). "A hidden world, growing beyond control". The Washington Post. 
  137. ^ The Media and Terrorism: A Reassessment Paul Wilkinson. Terrorism and Political Violence, Vol. 9, No. 2 (Summer 1997), pp. 51–64 Published by Frank Cass, London.
  138. ^ "Security Council Counter-Terrorism Committee". Retrieved 2009-06-17. 
  139. ^ Pastor, James F. (2009). Terrorism & Public Safety Policing: Implications of the Obama Presidency. New York, NY: Taylor & Francis.  
  140. ^ William Gibson's blog, October 31, 2004. Retrieved April 26, 2007.
  141. ^ Hoffman, Bruce. Inside Terrorism. New York: Columbia University Press, 1988. p. 83
  142. ^ Chaliand, Gerard. The History of Terrorism: From Antiquity to al Qaeda. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2007. p.56
  143. ^ Chaliand, Gerard. The History of Terrorism: From Antiquity to al Qaeda. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2007. p.68
  144. ^ Hoffman, Bruce. Inside Terrorism. New York: Columbia University Press, 1988. p. 167
  145. ^ Edmund Burke (1795). "Letter No. IV. To the Earl Fitzwilliam". Library of Economics and Liberty. pp. 308–76, 371. Retrieved 2010-01-11. Thousands of those Hell-hounds called Terrorists, whom they had shut up in Prison on their last Revolution, as the Satellites of Tyranny, are let loose on the people. 
  146. ^ a b c Crenshaw, Martha, Terrorism in Context, p. 38.
  147. ^ "Terrorism: From the Fenians to Al Qaeda". Retrieved 2012-12-17. 
  148. ^ Irish Freedom, by Richard English Publisher: Pan Books (2 November 2007), ISBN 0-330-42759-8 p179
  149. ^ Irish Freedom, by Richard English Publisher: Pan Books (2 November 2007), ISBN 0-330-42759-8 p. 180
  150. ^ Whelehan, Niall (2012). The Dynamiters: Irish Nationalism and Political Violence in the Wider World 1867-1900. Cambridge. 
  151. ^ "The Fenian Dynamite campaign 1881-85". Retrieved 2012-12-17. 
  152. ^ History of Terrorism article by Mark Burgess
  153. ^ Hoffman 1998, p. 5
  154. ^ A History of Terrorism’’, by Walter Laqueur, Transaction Publishers, 2000, ISBN 0-7658-0799-8, p. 92 [4]
  155. ^ Adam Roberts on new weapon technologies available to anarchists


See also

The following terrorism databases are maintained in secrecy by the United State Government for intelligence and counter-terrorism purposes:

The following publicly available resource indexes electronic and bibliographic resources on the subject of terrorism:

The following terrorism databases are or were made publicly available for research purposes, and track specific acts of terrorism:


Another early terrorist organisation was [152][153] The group developed ideas—such as targeted killing of the 'leaders of oppression'—that were to become the hallmark of subsequent violence by small non-state groups, and they were convinced that the developing technologies of the age—such as the invention of dynamite, which they were the first anarchist group to make widespread use of[154]—enabled them to strike directly and with discrimination.[155] Modern terrorism had largely taken shape by the turn of the 20th century.

Arguably the first organization to utilize modern terrorist techniques was the Irish Republican Brotherhood,[147] founded in 1858 as a revolutionary Irish nationalist group[148] that carried out attacks in England.[149] The group initiated the Fenian dynamite campaign in 1881, one of the first modern terror campaigns.[150] Instead of earlier forms of terrorism based on political assassination, this campaign used modern, timed explosives with the express aim of sowing fear in the very heart of metropolitan Britain, in order to achieve political gains.[151]

In January 1858, Italian patriot Felice Orsini threw three bombs in an attempt to assassinate French Emperor Napoleon III.[146] Eight bystanders were killed and 142 injured.[146] The incident played a crucial role as an inspiration for the development of the early terrorist groups.[146]

The term "terrorism" itself was originally used to describe the actions of the Jacobin Club during the "Reign of Terror" in the French Revolution. "Terror is nothing other than justice, prompt, severe, inflexible," said Jacobin leader Maximilien Robespierre. In 1795, Edmund Burke denounced the Jacobins for letting "thousands of those hell-hounds called Terrorists ... loose on the people" of France.[145]

The history of terrorism goes back to the Sicarii Zealots, a Jewish extremist group active in Judaea 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,[141][142] according to contemporary historian Josephus, in 6 AD Judas of Galilee formed a small and more extreme offshoot of the Zealots, the Sicarii.[143] Their terror also was directed against Jewish "collaborators", including temple priests, Sadducees, Herodians, and other wealthy elites.[144]

The John Tenniel (1867).


There is always a point at which the terrorist ceases to manipulate the media gestalt. A point at which the violence may well escalate, but beyond which the terrorist has become symptomatic of the media gestalt itself. Terrorism as we ordinarily understand it is innately media-related.
—Novelist William Gibson[140]

The mass media will, on occasion, censor organizations involved in terrorism (through self-restraint or regulation) to discourage further terrorism. However, this may encourage organizations to perform more extreme acts of terrorism to be shown in the mass media. Conversely James F. Pastor explains the significant relationship between terrorism and the media, and the underlying benefit each receives from the other.[139]

The Internet has created a new channel for groups to spread their messages. This has created a cycle of measures and counter measures by groups in support of and in opposition to terrorist movements. The United Nations has created its own online counter-terrorism resource.[138]

Mass media exposure may be a primary goal of those carrying out terrorism, to expose issues that would otherwise be ignored by the media. Some consider this to be manipulation and exploitation of the media.[137]

Mass media

According to a report by Dana Priest and William M. Arkin in [136]

The term "counter-terrorism" has a narrower connotation, implying that it is directed at terrorist actors.

Specific types of responses include:

Responses to terrorism are broad in scope. They can include re-alignments of the political spectrum and reassessments of fundamental values.

X-ray backscatter technology (AIT) machine used by the TSA to screen passengers. According to the TSA, this is what the remote TSA agent would see on their screen.


Terrorist attacks are often targeted to maximize fear and publicity, usually using telecommunications, or through old-fashioned methods such as couriers.

A Tamil Tigers suicide bomb at the moment of detonation in 2009
  • Secession of a territory to form a new sovereign state or become part of a different state
  • Dominance of territory or resources by various ethnic groups
  • Imposition of a particular form of government
  • Economic deprivation of a population
  • Opposition to a domestic government or occupying army
  • Religious fanaticism

The context in which terrorist tactics are used is often a large-scale, unresolved political conflict. The type of conflict varies widely; historical examples include:

Terrorism is a form of asymmetric warfare, and is more common when direct conventional warfare will not be effective because forces vary greatly in power.[134]

The Wall Street bombing at noon on September 16, 1920 killed thirty-eight people and injured several hundred. The perpetrators were never caught.


The Financial Action Task Force is an inter-governmental body whose mandate, since October 2001, has included combatting terrorist financing.[133]

Other major sources of funding include kidnapping for ransoms, smuggling (including wildlife smuggling),[131] fraud, and robbery.[126] The Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant received funding "via private donations from the Gulf states".[132]

"Revolutionary tax" is another major form of funding, and essentially a euphemism for "protection money".[126] Revolutionary taxes are typically extorted from businesses (including farms cultivating illicit drugs (such as Papaver somniferum)[130] and they also "play a secondary role as one other means of intimidating the target population".[126]

Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine and some other terrorist groups were funded by the Soviet Union.[126][127] The Stern Gang received funding from Italian Fascist officers in Beirut to undermine the British Mandate for Palestine.[128] Pakistan has created and nurtured terrorist groups as policy for achieving tactical objectives against its neighbours, especially India.[129]


State terrorism has also been used to describe peacetime actions by governmental agents such as the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103.[120] Charles Stewart Parnell described William Ewart Gladstone's Irish Coercion Act as terrorism in his "no-Rent manifesto" in 1881, during the Irish Land War.[121] The concept is also used to describe political repressions by governments against their own civilian population with the purpose to incite fear. For example, taking and executing civilian hostages or extrajudicial elimination campaigns are commonly considered "terror" or terrorism, for example during the Red Terror or Great Terror.[122] Such actions are often also described as democide or genocide, which has been argued to be equivalent to state terrorism.[123] Empirical studies on this have found that democracies have little democide.[124][125]

St Paul's Cathedral after the German bombing of London, c. 1940.

State terrorism has been used to refer to terrorist acts by governmental agents or forces. This involves the use of state resources employed by a state's foreign policies, such as using its military to directly perform acts of terrorism. Professor of Political Science Michael Stohl cites the examples that include the German bombing of London, the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor, the British firebombing of Dresden, and the U.S. atomic bombing of Hiroshima during World War II. He argues that "the use of terror tactics is common in international relations and the state has been and remains a more likely employer of terrorism within the international system than insurgents." They also cite the First strike option as an example of the "terror of coercive diplomacy" as a form of this, which holds the world hostage with the implied threat of using nuclear weapons in "crisis management". They argue that the institutionalized form of terrorism has occurred as a result of changes that took place following World War II. In this analysis, state terrorism exhibited as a form of foreign policy was shaped by the presence and use of weapons of mass destruction, and that the legitimizing of such violent behavior led to an increasingly accepted form of this state behavior.[118][119][119]

USS Arizona (BB-39) burning during the Japanese surprise attack on Pearl Harbor, December 7, 1941.

As with "terrorism" the concept of "state terrorism" is controversial.[114] The Chairman of the United Nations Counter-Terrorism Committee has stated that the Committee was conscious of 12 international Conventions on the subject, and none of them referred to State terrorism, which was not an international legal concept. If States abused their power, they should be judged against international conventions dealing with war crimes, international human rights law, and international humanitarian law.[115] Former United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan has said that it is "time to set aside debates on so-called 'state terrorism'. The use of force by states is already thoroughly regulated under international law".[116] However, he also made clear that, "regardless of the differences between governments on the question of definition of terrorism, what is clear and what we can all agree on is any deliberate attack on innocent civilians, regardless of one's cause, is unacceptable and fits into the definition of terrorism."[117]

Infant crying in Shanghai's South Station after the Japanese bombing, August 28, 1937.
Civilization is based on a clearly defined and widely accepted yet often unarticulated hierarchy. Violence done by those higher on the hierarchy to those lower is nearly always invisible, that is, unnoticed. When it is noticed, it is fully rationalized. Violence done by those lower on the hierarchy to those higher is unthinkable, and when it does occur is regarded with shock, horror, and the fetishization of the victims.
Derrick Jensen[113]

State terrorism

A state can sponsor terrorism by funding or harboring a terrorist organization. Opinions as to which acts of violence by states consist of state-sponsored terrorism vary widely. When states provide funding for groups considered by some to be terrorist, they rarely acknowledge them as such.

State sponsors

Groups not part of the state apparatus of in opposition to the state are most commonly referred to as a "terrorist" in the media.

Picture of the front of an addressed envelope to Senator Daschle.
There is speculation that anthrax mailed inside letters to U.S. politicians was the work of a lone wolf.

Non-state groups

To avoid detection, a terrorist will look, dress, and behave normally until executing the assigned mission. Some claim that attempts to profile terrorists based on personality, physical, or sociological traits are not useful.[111] The physical and behavioral description of the terrorist could describe almost any normal person.[112] However, the majority of terrorist attacks are carried out by military age men, aged 16–40.[112]

Over the years, many people have attempted to come up with a terrorist profile to attempt to explain these individuals' actions through their psychology and social circumstances. Others, like Roderick Hindery, have sought to discern profiles in the propaganda tactics used by terrorists. Some security organizations designate these groups as violent non-state actors.[109] A 2007 study by economist Alan B. Krueger found that terrorists were less likely to come from an impoverished background (28% vs. 33%) and more likely to have at least a high-school education (47% vs. 38%). Another analysis found only 16% of terrorists came from impoverished families, vs. 30% of male Palestinians, and over 60% had gone beyond high school, vs. 15% of the populace.[110]

The perpetrators of acts of terrorism can be individuals, groups, or states. According to some definitions, clandestine or semi-clandestine state actors may also carry out terrorist acts outside the framework of a state of war. However, the most common image of terrorism is that it is carried out by small and secretive cells, highly motivated to serve a particular cause and many of the most deadly operations in recent times, such as the September 11 attacks, the London underground bombing, 2008 Mumbai attacks and the 2002 Bali bombing were planned and carried out by a close clique, composed of close friends, family members and other strong social networks. These groups benefited from the free flow of information and efficient telecommunications to succeed where others had failed.[108]


Intimate terrorism (IT) may also involve emotional and psychological abuse. Intimate terrorism is one element in a general pattern of control by one partner over the other. Intimate terrorism is more likely to escalate over time, not as likely to be mutual, and more likely to involve serious injury.[102] IT batterers include two types: "Generally-violent-antisocial" and "dysphoric-borderline". The first type includes people with general psychopathic and violent tendencies. The second type are people who are emotionally dependent on the relationship.[103] Violence by a person against their intimate partner is often done as a way for controlling their partner, even if this kind of violence is not the most frequent.[104][105] Support for this typology has been found in subsequent evaluations.[106][107]

Intimate terrorism

Religious terrorism is terrorism performed by groups or individuals, the motivation of which is typically rooted in faith-based tenets. Terrorist acts throughout the centuries have been performed on religious grounds with the hope to either spread or enforce a system of belief, viewpoint or opinion.[101] Religious terrorism does not in itself necessarily define a specific religious standpoint or view, but instead usually defines an individual or a group view or interpretation of that belief system's teachings.

Islamabad Marriott Hotel bombing. Some 35,000 Pakistanis have died from terrorist attacks in recent years.[100]
Civilians trapped in a London Underground train after a bomb exploded further down the train at Russell Square Tube station on 7th July 2005

Religious terrorism

While a democratic nation espousing civil liberties may claim a sense of higher moral ground than other regimes, an act of terrorism within such a state may cause a dilemma: whether to maintain its civil liberties and thus risk being perceived as ineffective in dealing with the problem; or alternatively to restrict its civil liberties and thus risk delegitimizing its claim of supporting civil liberties.[97] For this reason, homegrown terrorism has started to be seen as a greater threat, as stated by former CIA Director Michael Hayden.[98] This dilemma, some social theorists would conclude, may very well play into the initial plans of the acting terrorist(s); namely, to delegitimize the state.[99]

Some examples of "terrorism" in non-democracies include Poland,[94] the Shining Path in Peru under Alberto Fujimori,[95] the Kurdistan Workers Party when Turkey was ruled by military leaders and the ANC in South Africa.[96] Democracies, such as the United Kingdom, United States, Israel, Indonesia, India, Spain and the Philippines, have also experienced domestic terrorism.

The relationship between domestic terrorism and democracy is very complex. Terrorism is most common in nations with intermediate political freedom, and is least common in the most democratic nations.[87][88][89][90] However, one study suggests that suicide terrorism may be an exception to this general rule. Evidence regarding this particular method of terrorism reveals that every modern suicide campaign has targeted a democracy–a state with a considerable degree of political freedom.[91] The study suggests that concessions awarded to terrorists during the 1980s and 1990s for suicide attacks increased their frequency.[92]

Demonstration in Madrid against ETA, January 2000. Roughly a million people met there.

Democracy and domestic terrorism

Some terrorists like Timothy McVeigh were motivated by revenge against a state for its actions.

Abrahm suggests that terrorist organizations do not select terrorism for its political effectiveness.[86] Individual terrorists tend to be motivated more by a desire for social solidarity with other members of their organization than by political platforms or strategic objectives, which are often murky and undefined.[86]

Attacks on high profile symbolic targets are used to incite counter-terrorism by the state to polarize the population. This strategy was used by Al Qaeda in its attacks on the United States in September 2001. These attacks are also used to draw international attention to struggles that are otherwise unreported, such as the Palestinian airplane hijackings in 1970 and the South Moluccan hostage crisis in the Netherlands in 1975.

Attacks on 'collaborators' are used to intimidate people from cooperating with the state in order to undermine state control. This strategy was used in Ireland, in Kenya, in Algeria and in Cyprus during their independence struggles.

Motivation of terrorists

  • Damage of transport, communication, water supply, warehouses and other buildings or state and communal property
  • Terrorist acts against representatives of Soviet power or of workers and peasants organisations
  • Counter-revolutionary sabotage
  • Counter-revolutionary action is any action aimed at overthrowing, undermining or weakening of the power of workers' and peasants' Soviets
  • Armed uprising or intervention with the goal to seize the power
  • Undermining of state industry, transport, monetary circulation or credit system, as well as of cooperative societies and organizations

Article 58 (RSFSR Penal Code) was the base of putting people in Russian Gulags. It contained terms like:

Russia in the Stalin Era

Several sources[83][84][85] have further defined the typology of terrorism:

  • Civil disorder – A form of collective violence interfering with the peace, security, and normal functioning of the community.
  • Political terrorismViolent criminal behaviour designed primarily to generate fear in the community, or substantial segment of it, for political purposes.
  • Limited political terrorism – Genuine political terrorism is characterized by a revolutionary approach; limited political terrorism refers to "acts of terrorism which are committed for ideological or political motives but which are not part of a concerted campaign to capture control of the state.
  • Official or state terrorism – "referring to nations whose rule is based upon fear and oppression that reach similar to terrorism or such proportions". It may also be referred to as Structural Terrorism defined broadly as terrorist acts carried out by governments in pursuit of political objectives, often as part of their foreign policy.

In early 1975, the Law Enforcement Assistant Administration in the United States formed the National Advisory Committee on Criminal Justice Standards and Goals. One of the five volumes that the committee wrote was titled Disorders and Terrorism, produced by the Task Force on Disorders and Terrorism under the direction of H. H. A. Cooper, Director of the Task Force staff.[82] The Task Force classified terrorism into six categories.

Sbarro pizza restaurant bombing in Jerusalem, in which 15 Israeli civilians were killed and 130 were wounded by a Hamas suicide bomber.
A view of damages to the U.S. Embassy in Beirut caused by a terrorist bomb attack, April 1983
King David Hotel after being bombed by the Zionist terrorist group Irgun, July 1946
Number of failed, foiled or successful terrorist attacks by year and type within the European Union. Source: Europol.[79][80][81] 1 person died in terrorist attacks from separatist groups in 2010.[79]

Depending on the country, the political system, and the time in history, the types of terrorism is varying.


For these and other reasons, media outlets wishing to preserve a reputation for impartiality try to be careful in their use of the term.[77][78]

Sometimes, states that are close allies, for reasons of history, culture and politics, can disagree over whether or not members of a certain organization are terrorists. For instance, for many years, some branches of the United States government refused to label members of the Provisional Irish Republican Army (IRA) as terrorists while the IRA was using methods against one of the United States' closest allies (the United Kingdom) that the UK branded as terrorism. This was highlighted by the Quinn v. Robinson case.[75][76]

Some groups, when involved in a "liberation" struggle, have been called "terrorists" by the Western governments or media. Later, these same persons, as leaders of the liberated nations, are called "statesmen" by similar organizations. Two examples of this phenomenon are the Nobel Peace Prize laureates Menachem Begin and Nelson Mandela.[67][68][69][70][71][72] WikiLeaks editor Julian Assange has been called a "terrorist" by Sarah Palin and Joe Biden.[73][74]

There is the famous statement: 'One man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter.' But that is grossly misleading. It assesses the validity of the cause when terrorism is an act. One can have a perfectly beautiful cause and yet if one commits terrorist acts, it is terrorism regardless.[66]

, defines "terrorist acts" as attacks against civilians for political or other ideological goals, and said: Carleton University Leading terrorism researcher Professor Martin Rudner, director of the Canadian Centre of Intelligence and Security Studies at Ottawa's [65][64][63] Groups accused of terrorism understandably prefer terms reflecting legitimate military or ideological action.[62][61][60] The pejorative connotations of the word can be summed up in the

President Reagan meeting with Afghan Mujahideen leaders in the Oval Office in 1983
On one point, at least, everyone agrees: terrorism is a pejorative term. It is a word with intrinsically negative connotations that is generally applied to one's enemies and opponents, or to those with whom one disagrees and would otherwise prefer to ignore. 'What is called terrorism,' Brian Jenkins has written, 'thus seems to depend on one's point of view. Use of the term implies a moral judgment; and if one party can successfully attach the label terrorist to its opponent, then it has indirectly persuaded others to adopt its moral viewpoint.' Hence the decision to call someone or label some organization terrorist becomes almost unavoidably subjective, depending largely on whether one sympathizes with or opposes the person/group/cause concerned. If one identifies with the victim of the violence, for example, then the act is terrorism. If, however, one identifies with the perpetrator, the violent act is regarded in a more sympathetic, if not positive (or, at the worst, an ambivalent) light; and it is not terrorism.[54][55][56]

In his book Inside Terrorism Bruce Hoffman offered an explanation of why the term terrorism becomes distorted:

On the question of whether particular terrorist acts, such as killing civilians, can be justified as the lesser evil in a particular circumstance, philosophers have expressed different views: while, according to David Rodin, utilitarian philosophers can (in theory) conceive of cases in which the evil of terrorism is outweighed by the good that could not be achieved in a less morally costly way, in practice the "harmful effects of undermining the convention of non-combatant immunity is thought to outweigh the goods that may be achieved by particular acts of terrorism".[52] Among the non-utilitarian philosophers, Michael Walzer argued that terrorism can be morally justified in only one specific case: when "a nation or community faces the extreme threat of complete destruction and the only way it can preserve itself is by intentionally targeting non-combatants, then it is morally entitled to do so".[52][53]

The terms "terrorism" and "terrorist" (someone who engages in terrorism) carry strong negative connotations.[49] These terms are often used as political labels, to condemn violence or the threat of violence by certain actors as immoral, indiscriminate, unjustified or to condemn an entire segment of a population.[50] Those labeled "terrorists" by their opponents rarely identify themselves as such, and typically use other terms or terms specific to their situation, such as separatist, freedom fighter, liberator, revolutionary, vigilante, militant, paramilitary, guerrilla, rebel, patriot, or any similar-meaning word in other languages and cultures. Jihadi, mujaheddin, and fedayeen are similar Arabic words that have entered the English lexicon. It is common for both parties in a conflict to describe each other as terrorists.[51]

Pejorative use

Barack Obama, commenting on the Boston Marathon bombings of April 2013, declared "Anytime bombs are used to target innocent civilians, it is an act of terror."[45] Various commentators have pointed out the distinction between "act of terror" and "terrorism", particularly when used by the White House.[46][47][48]

An associated, and arguably more easily definable, but not equivalent term is violent non-state actor.[44] The semantic scope of this term includes not only "terrorists", but while excluding some individuals or groups who have previously been described as "terrorists", and also explicitly excludes state terrorism.

According to Ali Khan, the distinction lies ultimately in a political judgment.[43]

Some official, governmental definitions of terrorism use the criterion of the illegitimacy or unlawfulness of the act.[38] to distinguish between actions authorized by a government (and thus "lawful") and those of other actors, including individuals and small groups. For example, firebombing a city, which is designed to affect civilian support for a cause, would not be considered terrorism if it were authorized by a government. This criterion is inherently problematic and is not universally accepted, because: it denies the existence of state terrorism;[39] the same act may or may not be classed as terrorism depending on whether its sponsorship is traced to a "legitimate" government; "legitimacy" and "lawfulness" are subjective, depending on the perspective of one government or another; and it diverges from the historically accepted meaning and origin of the term.[15][40][41][42]

A collection of photographs of those killed during the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001.

Their suffering accomplishes the terrorists' goals of instilling fear, getting their message out to an audience or otherwise satisfying the demands of their often radical religious and political agendas.[37]

Terrorist acts frequently have a political purpose.[34] This is often where the inter-relationship between terrorism and religion occurs. When a political struggle is integrated into the framework of a religious or "cosmic"[35] struggle, such as over the control of an ancestral homeland or holy site such as Israel and Jerusalem, failing in the political goal (nationalism) becomes equated with spiritual failure, which, for the highly committed, is worse than their own death or the deaths of innocent civilians.[36]

ideology behind a terrorist act.[33]

Oslo, Norway immediately after the 2011 terrorist attack in Norway perpetrated by Anders Behring Breivik.
Terrorism is defined as political violence in an asymmetrical conflict that is designed to induce terror and psychic fear (sometimes indiscriminate) through the violent victimization and destruction of noncombatant targets (sometimes iconic symbols). Such acts are meant to send a message from an illicit clandestine organization. The purpose of terrorism is to exploit the media in order to achieve maximum attainable publicity as an amplifying force multiplier in order to influence the targeted audience(s) in order to reach short- and midterm political goals and/or desired long-term end states.[28]

A definition proposed by Carsten Bockstette at the George C. Marshall Center for European Security Studies, underlines the psychological and tactical aspects of terrorism:

By distinguishing terrorists from other types of criminals and terrorism from other forms of crime, we come to appreciate that terrorism is :
  • ineluctably political in aims and motives
  • violent – or, equally important, threatens violence
  • designed to have far-reaching psychological repercussions beyond the immediate victim or target
  • conducted by an organization with an identifiable chain of command or conspiratorial cell structure (whose members wear no uniform or identifying insignia) and
  • perpetrated by a subnational group or non-state entity.[27]
The Baghdad bus station was the scene of a triple car bombing in August 2005 that killed 43 people.

Hoffman believes it is possible to identify some key characteristics of terrorism. He proposes that:

It is not only individual agencies within the same governmental apparatus that cannot agree on a single definition of terrorism. Experts and other long-established scholars in the field are equally incapable of reaching a consensus. In the first edition of his magisterial survey, 'Political Terrorism: A Research Guide,' Alex Schmid devoted more than a hundred pages to examining more than a hundred different definitions of terrorism in an effort to discover a broadly acceptable, reasonably comprehensive explication of the word. Four years and a second edition later, Schmid was no closer to the goal of his quest, conceding in the first sentence of the revised volume that the "search for an adequate definition is still on". Walter Laqueur despaired of defining terrorism in both editions of his monumental work on the subject, maintaining that it is neither possible to do so nor worthwhile to make the attempt.[26]

Bruce Hoffman, a scholar, has noted:

Criminal acts intended or calculated to provoke a state of terror in the general public, a group of persons or particular persons for political purposes are in any circumstance unjustifiable, whatever the considerations of a political, philosophical, ideological, racial, ethnic, religious or any other nature that may be invoked to justify them.[25]

Since 1994, the United Nations General Assembly has repeatedly condemned terrorist acts using the following political description of terrorism:

These divergences have made it impossible for the United Nations to conclude a Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism that incorporates a single, all-encompassing, legally binding, criminal law definition of terrorism.[24] The international community has adopted a series of sectoral conventions that define and criminalize various types of terrorist activities.

The international community has never succeeded in developing an accepted comprehensive definition of terrorism. During the 1970s and 1980s, the United Nations attempts to define the term floundered mainly due to differences of opinion between various members about the use of violence in the context of conflicts over national liberation and self-determination.[1]

The definition of terrorism has proved controversial. Various legal systems and government agencies use different definitions of terrorism in their national legislation. Moreover, the international community has been slow to formulate a universally agreed, legally binding definition of this crime. These difficulties arise from the fact that the term "terrorism" is politically and emotionally charged.[23] In this regard, Angus Martyn, briefing the Australian Parliament, stated,

Attack at the Bologna railway station on 2 August 1980 by the neo-fascist group Nuclei Armati Rivoluzionari. With 85 deaths, it is the deadliest massacre in the history of Italy as a Republic.


In November 2004, a [22]

"Terrorism" comes from the French word terrorisme,[15] and originally referred specifically to state terrorism as practiced by the French government during the 1793–1794 Reign of terror. The French word terrorisme in turn derives from the Latin verb terreō meaning "I frighten".[16] 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. The Jacobins cited this precedent when imposing a Reign of Terror during the French Revolution.[17][18] After the Jacobins lost power, the word "terrorist" became a term of abuse.[9] Although "terrorism" originally referred to acts committed by a government, currently it usually refers to the killing of innocent people[19] for political purposes in such a way as to create a media spectacle. This meaning can be traced back to Sergey Nechayev, who described himself as a "terrorist".[20] Nechayev founded the Russian terrorist group "People's Retribution" (Народная расправа) in 1869.[21]

Mass killings in the Vendée during the Reign of Terror in France, 1793

Origin of term


  • Origin of term 1
  • Definition 2
  • Pejorative use 3
  • Types 4
    • Russia in the Stalin Era 4.1
  • Motivation of terrorists 5
  • Democracy and domestic terrorism 6
  • Religious terrorism 7
  • Intimate terrorism 8
  • Perpetrators 9
    • Non-state groups 9.1
    • State sponsors 9.2
    • State terrorism 9.3
  • Funding 10
  • Tactics 11
  • Responses 12
  • Mass media 13
  • History 14
  • Databases 15
  • See also 16
  • References 17
  • Further reading 18
  • External links 19

Terrorism has been practiced by a broad array of political organizations to further their objectives. It has been practiced by both right-wing and left-wing political parties, nationalistic groups, religious groups, revolutionaries, and ruling governments.[13] The symbolism of terrorism can exploit human fear to help achieve these goals.[14]

The word "terrorism" is politically loaded and emotionally charged,[5] and this greatly compounds the difficulty of providing a precise definition. A study on political terrorism examining over 100 definitions of "terrorism" found 22 separate definitional elements (e.g. Violence, force, fear, threat, victim-target differentiation).[6][7] In some cases, the same group may be described as "freedom fighters" by its supporters and considered to be terrorists by its opponents.[8] The concept of terrorism may be controversial as it is often used by state authorities (and individuals with access to state support) to delegitimize political or other opponents,[9] and potentially legitimize the state's own use of armed force against opponents (such use of force may be described as "terror" by opponents of the state).[9][10] At the same time, the reverse may also take place when states perpetrate or are accused of perpetrating state terrorism.[11] The usage of the term has a controversial history, with individuals such as ANC leader Nelson Mandela at one point also branded a terrorist.[12]


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