Terrorism Essay Research Paper TerrorismOver the past

Terrorism Essay, Research Paper


Over the past Century, terrorism has evolved from random killings to massive plans for

terrorist groups. To understand terrorism you must first describe it. There have been

many different definitions of terrorism. The one that truly describes it is; Terrorism can

not specifically describe terrorism because people will interpret it differently. Many

experts believe that terrorism is an abstract concept with no essence, a single

definition cannot account for all the possible uses of the term, many different

definitions share common elements, the meaning of terrorism derives from the victim of

target. Even with no definite conclusion terrorism can be divided into 5 categories:

Simple Violence or threatened violence intended to produce fear or change. Legal

Criminal violence violating legal codes and punishable by the state. Analytical Specific

political and social factors behind individual terrorist acts. State-sponsored Terrorist

groups used by small states and the Communist bloc to attack western interests. State

Power of the government used to terrorize its people into submission. With the

definitions described one can now put a terrorist organization into a specific group. The

Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) is an analytical terrorist group, even though

they can be part of each. The PLO was created in 1964 during a meeting known as the

Palestinian Congress. This was an effort to give a voice to the many Palestinians that

were located in refugee camps in Lebanon. The leader of the group is one of the most

recognized terrorists in the world, Yasser Arafat. It did not take long for sub-divisions

to break off of the PLO. Most of these groups felt they could better achieve Palestinian

liberation. The most notable of these groups were the Popular Front for the Liberation

of Palestine, Popular Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine, Popular

Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine – General Command, and al-Fatah. The

PLO changed its main theory to the destruction of the state of Israel in 1967. This

caused massive terrorist acts against Israel, which resulted in hundreds of casualties

on both sides. In 1974 the PLO changed into not just a terrorist group to a group which

included political elements. Some members of the PLO did not like this idea and founded

another sub-division called the Rejectionist Front. At this time Arafat took over all

control of the PLO. Arafat provided support for highjacking a major cruise ship. With

help from the PLF they took the passengers hostage. In cowardly act members shot to

death a wheelchair-bound Jewish man named Leon Klinghoffer. This formed a new

meaning to the world terrorist. After many years of terrorism, Arafat ceased all terrorist

acts by the PLO on September 9, 1993. This was the end of the PLO and all their

sub-divisions. Another major terrorist organization is the Provisional Irish Republican

Army (PIRA). This group was founded in 1969 under the armed wing of Sinn Fein. “Sinn

Fein is a legal political movement dedicated to removing British forces from Northern

Ireland and unifying Ireland. Activities that the PIRA carried out were bombings,

assassinations, kidnappings, extortion, and robberies. Before its 1994 cease-fire,

targets included senior British Government officials, British military and police in

Northern Ireland, and Northern Irish Loyalist paramilitary groups. Since breaking its

cease-fire in February 1996, IRA’s operations have included bombing campaigns against

train and subway stations and shopping areas on mainland Britain, British military and

Royal Ulster Constabulary targets in Northern Ireland, and a British military facility on

the European Continent.” The PIRA had a few different names, the Provo’s and the IRA.

They, the Catholics, wanted Britain out of Northern Ireland and were going to anything

to achieve their goal. Here is the group structure for many if not all terrorist

organizations: I. Command II. Active cadre III. Active supporters IV. Passive

Supporters I. Command – the leadership, makes policy and plans while provides general

direction. II. Active cadre – the terrorists, responsible for carrying out the mission of

the organization. III. Active supporters – largest internal group and most important.

They keep terrorists in the field by providing safe houses, intelligence, logistical needs,

and maintain communications channels. IV. Passive supporters – difficult to identify and

characterize, represent a favorable element of the political climate. Most people think

that most terrorist acts are taking people hostage. This is not the case. Only 2 % of all

terrorist acts are hostage situations. The most acts terrorists participate in are

bombings; they account for 46% of terrorist acts. The rest of the numbers are like this;

attacking – 24%, assassinations – 10, highjacking – 12, kidnapping – 6. These figures

were accumulated from 1963-1993. Some may ask, what do people do to stop

terrorism. The most recognized form of counter-terrorism is the; The Naval Special

Warfare Development Group, formerly known as SEAL Team SIX and based in Dam Neck,

Virginia. They are responsible for US counter-terrorist operations in the maritime

environment. The NSWDG trains in both military and civilian facilities, their motto was

“Train as you Fight, Fight as you Train.” The members of NSWDG are trained hard in

every aspect one can take. They know how and what to do before they do it and their

training takes after their motto. In the past terrorist acts were mainly just bombings,

highjackings or attackings of some sort. As we move toward the millennium, we face a

technological era. All most every main city in the world is controlled and depends on

computers and linked information. The terrorist age will change to adapt to what we

are most vulnerable to. If a terrorist can threaten us by shutting down electronically

dependent devices which we need to survive. They will not assassinate or bomb as

much because the public will have a better understanding of how to prevent it.

Terrorism in the past years has been politically motivated, in the future; it will be

religiously motivated. This might cause a major problem in the future because each year

more and more people create or advance a religion to suit their liking. They now will

have a sense of what is supposed to be right and will do anything to get that across.

Terrorism will never end; it is up to the human race to be better educated in the

subject and to make the right decisions.



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