What is terrorism:Understanding the act of terrorism
Terrorism is the use of violence especially as means of cruelty to a group of people. It is creating a feeling of fear the victims and has no legal binding what -so -ever. This act of violence is intended to inflict pain to the civilians and military officer by causing death and creating insecure environment mainly to cripple the economy and to compel governments of the people for the people and by the people against their will.
How to stop terrorism ? To stop terrorism then find its causes.No democratically elected government has ever supported terrorism either by funding or recruiting followers. The act of terrorism has defied the core value of humanity and many have associated it with religions. It is the true act of terrorism is done with religious, political and Ideological intentions. Act of criminality need to be condemned by everyone in the International community.
Act of Terrorism is a violation of human right. Every person has a right to life and to own property. Terrorism can also be defined as the use of force against civilian and government in power to bring social change.
USA department of defense and the FBI, define terrorism as the unlawful use of force or violence against persons or property to intimidate and coerce governments. The main goals of terrorism is to inculcate fear and gain recognition, popularity, as a way of protest to oppression in the society.
According to U.S.A department of defense, terrorism includes the use of biological, chemical and nuclear devices as the act of assassination. It means the killing of Osama Bin Laden is also an act of terrorism in itself.
Terrorism as per its definition is not a new phenomenon to humanity. The used of chemical weapon during the World War II. Can this also be described as an act of terrorism? It can not qualify the act terrorism because it state against state. This where one can now differentiate between terrorism and war.
No one is able to define well terrorism unless he or she has felt it. The marvel calculus and justification for these actions differs widely if you compared to terrorism of enemies in the Nazi in Germany.
If one listens to people discussing terrorism these days, the perception is that terrorism is a new phenomenon to humanity.
Differentiating war that is just and unjust is very hard. Supporters of terrorists describe terrorism as an act of a freedom fighter while others term it as crime against humanity. One man freedom fighter is another man terrorist in world we live in.
Early 1980’s, the U.S.A described Osama Bin Laden and the members of Al-Qaida as freedom fighters. Politicians like Dick Chaney considered Nelson Mandela as a terrorist. It is simple and logical to understand this. My friends are someone enemies who also has a friend.
The United Nation definition of terrorism states that ‘all war crimes will be considered acts of terrorism. No American was taken to International Criminal Court for bombing Hiroshima and Nagasaki and for wars against Iraq or Vietnam. This is impunity of International Standard.
The first act of terrorism was in 1785 the supremacy of terror was instituted by the French Government. The use of terrorists showed anti-government activities.
It was also recorded first in 1866 referring to Ireland and in 1883 referring to Russia.
Terrorism has lived throughout the history of human being. Humans have one away or another terrorized their neighbors to generate fear and compel changes in the society.
In the Imperial age of China the time T’ai Kung the first and great Chinese general and progenitor of strategic thought described terrorism as the ‘spreading of civil offensiveness’ to sow dissension demoralize the populace and incapacitate the government.
The act of terrorism has lived for the last 100years from anarchist assassinations to hijackings and to suicide bombing.
Since 1968 the time when United States government began recording statistics of act of terrorism, more 7000 terrorist bombings have occurred world wide. US currently listed 30 foreign terrorist organizations.
The most renowned acts of terrorism includes the September 11, USA embassies in Africa the USS Cole in Yemen all allegedly sponsored by Osama Bin Laden.
The most fames attacks in the modern terrorism attacks era were attacks on individuals’ political leaders includes the assassination of French Prime Minister Sadi Carno, killing of Spanish of Prime Minister Antonio Canoas , assassination Empress Elizabeth of Australia, Italy’s king Umberto 1 and the assassination of the Arch Duke Ferdinand on June 28, 1914 that sparked the First World War.
Anarchist mail bombs in the U.S started the palmer Raids in 1920.It is one of violations of civil liberties in US history.
In the post war period, Acts of terrorism includes the Munich Olympic Massacre in 1772.Plane and airport shooting in 1970’s to 1980’s. Attack on the world trade centre in 1993 and Federal building bombing in Oklahoma City.
It is wrong to associate a terrorist with a certain religion. It is wise someone point out characteristics of a terrorist than pointing fingers to religious groupings.
A terrorist is a person who is a member of a group who uses or advocates violence or threats pursuit of political aims or social change. This individual fights threats and violence right in a struggle to fight himself free from oppression.
I f we take e example of Arab uprising a young man committed suicide by bathing himself in a paraffin and setting himself ablaze in protest to unfair treatment by his government official . The young man graduated from university but remained jobless for long.
He decided to start a hawking business. Government official confiscated his goods for not having a license to trade. At home his family expects to come with some food for his family. He decides to take his life than shame going home without food for the family. The government is to blame for the action.
African governments have for long given a lame excuse for lack of jobs in the government placement and can not even provide good environment for small traders to do business. It is up to government to provide jobs to the youth of a nation to avoid youth being recruited to terrorist organization.
The western worlds have been blamed for interfering with right and freedom of worship. This has led to regrouping of youth to fight for freedom worship. African nations saw independence because of ever mounting acts of terrorism to colonialists. In the 1961-1990 the National African Congress waged act of terror against the apartheid government of South Africa. They won freedom. Every South African, whites or blacks were treated for the first time equally as human.
It is main characteristics is ‘people-struggle’ that earns them title terrorist or freedom fighters. If everyone has all what he/she needs in life, then the world will be a peaceful place to live in.
If there is a real free society then no need for some people to form rebels to employ terror acts to reclaim freedom.
A social, political and historical injustice is the number one cause of terrorist acts to right wrong in the society. If citizens are evicted of their land, rights, freedom of worship and right to own property then violence and threats becomes appropriate to usher in-change.
Violence and threats is believed to be the only solution to fight back justice in cases where courts in the country are not trusted to handle disputes. This is what happened in Kenya in 2007 general election, politicians who are lawmakers who some are lawyers by profession did not trust at all judicial system of the country can handle the election. Their followers ended in street solve disputes by use of crude weapon.
Government institution like judiciary is sometimes not trusted because they are believed to be tools to suppress the oppressed or it is for the rich.
The acts of violence are chosen after long deliberation and failure of courts to solve disputes, and then streets violence becomes the only remaining option.
It is hard to accept the truth about the causes of terrorism.
It sounds theoretical. Every Terrorist group has a reason why they acted in the way of violence.
For example, Zionist bombed British targets in the 1930s; the main aim was to be allowed to create a Jewish state.
The Irish Republican Army bombed English targets 1980s pointing out their land being colonized by Imperialists in 1960-1970s.
Front for the liberation of Palestine felt that attacks on Israel as justifiable response to usurpation of Palestine’s land.
In 1990s Osama Bin Laden’s protesting against U.S.A troops stationed in Saudi Arabia Holy City of Mecca. What led him and colleague to employ terror acts to protect Islamic and traditions.
People choose terrorist acts are some times persuaded or lured by cash dish out to blaze violence on as an effective way to win back justice and get employed at the same time. There is nothing wrong fighting for your right as well as earning.
Gary Becker a professor at the University of Chicago, Business school, argues that there is a ‘connection between wealth and terrorism. Though poverty does not directly cause terrorism but still unfairly distributed economic development give group chance to recruited youth to terrorism.
Studies show that there is no direct transition from poverty to terrorism but youth from developing world who are unemployed are most lured to be recruited and those who support and fund terrorism are well educated and with fat earning. We can say they fight for fun but at least in one way or another they feel oppressed.
Most youth lured to be recruited to terrorist organization are promised money to their family and themselves and volunteer martyrdom for good life hereafter. It is more complex when even sons of billionaires perform martyrdom operation. For them, their mission is to earn paradise by acting human bombs.
Many scholars from Muslim world do not support these claim instead they put clear boundary between Jihad and act of terror. Misconception of terrorism being associated with religion becomes crystal clear. Inequality in distribution of resources throughout the world is another cause of terrorism.
The act of human is not religious but it is an Arab skill of fighting. It is hope of every parent that their children grow in a safe society, get quality education and lead a quality life.
Working way out of poverty is desperation in itself. Among available option is get recruited to terror groups, sale and abuse drugs and other prohibitive acts to find oneself out of deep seas of poverty.
The gap between the dirty poor and super rich is ever widening and no sign of narrowing soon especially now everywhere in the world recession is in every donors tongue.
Terrorist are believed to be funded by Islamic charitable organizations, extortion of money, prostitution rings, video pirating and drug trafficking.
It is also believed that terrorist have connection with Russian Mafia drug cartel and international criminal organization.
According to Washington though oil holds it far from holding Saudi Arabia responsible in funding Terrorism blame Arab nation and sympathizers for financing terror acts.
Fund raising is also done in a different name like to help the orphans or refugees. In eastern Africa, Al shabab member s succeed to fund their organization by exporting charcoal to Arabia and ransom from cargo ships in the Indian Ocean.
It is hard to stop money flowing to terrorists groups despite effort by many governments.
Terrorist organization has powerful actors working within governments. This has aided much funding of terror group around the world.
These groups have business operating without knowledge of the government in the name of individuals trusted to register business in their own name.
From the historical perspectives 1918-1945, account the act of terror during Nazi period progressed from Anti Jewish acts, from Anti- Jewish acts to persecution, from persecution to terrorist and from terrorism to genocide.
These acts has been the results of failure of revolution the lust for revenge on the impoverished .The changing lower middle class leads to a bloodshed and brutality.
Terrorism is a known concept in Africa. During the struggle for independence, the Africans who returned from fighting in the two world wars from 1918-1945 found acts of terrorism as a better weapon for the weak to fight their then masters or vice versa.
In the Northern and West Africa regions have been intensely impacted by nationalist and religious conflicts. This was attended by destructive acts of terrorism.
The context of terrorist’s network has long lived in the horn of Africa. The Sudan, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Djibouti and Somalia. It is also established itself in the East Africa coast, that is Kenya and Tanzania.
The history tell us that in 1973 the America, US deputy chief of mission, George Curists Moore and Belgian diplomats Guy EID were assassinated by the Palestinian terrorist group Black September in Khartoum Sudan. It was beginning of modern extremism acts of terrorist in Africa.
In 1995, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak was attacked by a group calling themselves Gamaat Al-islam ugya an Egyptian terrorist group in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa.
Modern terror act spread to Kenya and Tanzania in 1998.
Al-Qaida bombarded the U.S.A Embassies in Dar Es Salam and Nairobi. The former president Daniel Moi flashed Islamic charity organization within Kenya. Many became jobless which might cause young Kenya lured to be recruited to terrorist group.
The perception was it was war against Islam by the Kenya government in support of the U.S.A. The government on the other hand has a responsibility to provide security to the Kenyan its citizens.
There were three scenarios circum -located terrorist acts in Kenya. The US government saw Islamic charity organization as breeding extremist in Kenya. These charity organizations see it has obliged to help the poor Kenyan. Thirdly Kenya must suffer for listening to western governments’ .From this scenario Terrorism organizational won sympathy supports from the faithful and poor a like. None of these had good reason attached to the other.
Many people in the world go on searching for the causes of these thousands of terror acts around the world but they do not get right always. For example when religious organizations both Christian and Islamic organizations employ their own personnel to distribute aid to the intended masses, but when the Western government give aids ends in the hands of corrupt government officials.
The gap between the poor and the rich continue widening. What is sometimes leads to people to end on street cry for their right.
Another typical example of internal terrorism in Africa is the genocide in Rwanda in 1994.Hundreds of thousands of innocent Tutsi was massacred, raped and their life ended by the fellow country men.
It was an ethnic conflict that was characterized by tribal cleanse. It used massive terror to haphazard savagery towards nationals.
Freedom fighters have one time been called terrorists by opposing group or governments. Many governments are committed to using everything at their disposal to fight terrorism from intelligence to military and criminal justice is provided is to be effective in both incapacitating terrorists and collecting valuable information about terrorist grouping and plans to hit next.
What worries most about the act terrorism is good number of arrested terrorist’s are from developed world and well educated. Some terrorist incarcerated in US federal prison facilities are sons of well to do individual in the society.
In Africa we associate terrorism with lack of employment and abject poverty but in Europe!
To combat terrorism is hard unless world government work out together to know the exact cause and address it permanently.
Western world correct long time ago social injustices and the world do not expect act of terror by citizen to claim whichever is right but one may ask what are these well to do involved in terror act.
It is difficult now to eliminate terrorism, unless their demands are met. Waging war is expensive but being honest and providing justice to everyone is cheaper.
The killing of Osama Bin Laden is not the end of terrorism. Stopping terrorism is sealing the loop holes within our society that leads some to rebel and swear to kill others. If Israel –Palestinians has never rested terrorism has a potential threat than even nuclear wars. In the whole human history terrorism has lived from stone age up to today and there is no hope of it ending soon.
To stop terrorism everyone person has to understand what is terrorism, because terrorism will not stop if we continue war on terror blindly.
Terrorism is willful obliteration of possessions and people by person not act on behalf of an established government to redress injustices attributed to an established government.
All cases of willful ruin property of and people are not terrorism. It is important to put in mind the characteristics of terrorism.
The act of damage is performed by a people or a group of people not acting on behalf of recognized government.
Destruction is performed to redress a real social change in society. This act is directly aimed at an established government. Destruction without the three characteristics above is not an act of terrorism but war.
Terrorist targets officers and shopping center not because they want to kill innocent people but to hurt enemy target. Terrorist aim is to inflict damage upon the enemy.
Wars organized by government can stop because the plan and decision way by leader. The leaders have control over their troops. They can stop them any time.
Terrorist leader do not start or stop their war because wars are not as result of decisions by leaders. The results are engineered by feeling of people united by creed, nationality or similarity of Injustices that generate hatred towards the oppressors in desire to liberate themselves from oppressors.
To redress the injustice sooner or later the group is more determined to come together to fight for the common cause.
Terrorist leaders just emerge to lead fight. Terror war can only be stopped if they win or feeling of injustice disappears. So to stop wars against terrorist is to redress the injustices they claim because there is no sign of them winning these wars. Government will get on fighting and the Innocents continue suffering.
Killing terrorist leaders will not help because they are easily replaceable. Imprisoning or killing terrorist leader escalates the feeling of injustices and hatred and therefore worsen further and increases desire for revenge.