definition was carefully made to distinguish between terrorism and other
kinds of violence. The act of terrorism is defined and very independent
of the cause that motivates it. People employ terrorist violence in the
name of many causes. The tendency to label as terrorism any violent act
of which we do not approve is wrong. Terrorism is a specific kind of violence.
There are many different variations of the definition of terrorism.
Today, there is no universally
accepted definition of terrorism. Countries define the term according to
their own beliefs and to support their own national interests. International
bodies, when they craft a definition, do so in the interests of their member
states. Academics striving to define terrorism are also subject to their
own political points of view. Click
Here for Many More Definitions
are different types of terrorism throughout the world, but the U.S classifys
these groups into three basic catagories. These are, International Terrorist
Groups,Transnational Terrorist Groups, and Domestic Terrorist Groups. We
are now breaking these groups into just two. State sponsered and non-state
these groups there is obviously different motivations for terrorism.
One must always remember that a group that one views or labels as a terrorist
organization may also be veiwed by others as freedom fighters. It has been
stated that almost all idealogically inspired terrorist are extremist of
one type or another and believe that any means is justifed to carry out
thier idealogical objective.
of these different motivations are political or religious and sometimes
both, others are those such as eco-terrorism. There are three basic sub-motivations.
These are the Rational Motivation, Psychological Motivation and Cultural
There are many reasons that
inspire terrorists. As a student of terrorism myself I classify them into
three separate categories: cultural, psychological, and rational. A terrorists
ideas and values will be shaped by combinations of these.
A rational person , i.e., . (terrorist) thinks through his goals and options,
making the most cost effective or benefit analysis. Think like a terrorist
in this manner. It is the same rational analysis similar to a business
owner or that of a military commander, considering all available courses
motivation for a terrorist arises from the individual terrorist's personal
dissatisfaction with his own life, government, or accomplishments. A terrorist
who is psychologically motivated will always project their own antisocial
behaviors and values (motivations) onto anyone they can influence, creating
a polarized "US Vs. THEM." Their predictable rationalization is: everyone
outside their own group is EVIL. These type of terrorists always NEED a
group to belong to, similar to a gang psychology. The terrorist defines
their social status or (ego) by the psychology behind group acceptance.
It is widely known that cultures shape values and motivate people to actions.
It is my experience to accept the fact that there is and intense effect
of culture on behavior. I feel that life in general and each individual
life in particular is a cultural characteristic that has a tremendous impact
on terrorism, especially when in certain societies where people identify
themselves in terms of group members.
In such cases regarded as
a tribe, clan, or family, there is an undeniable willingness to self-sacrifice
seldom seen elsewhere. This is why it is so very easy for a terrorists
willingness and be especially eager to give their lives for their (CAUSE,
BELIEF OR ORGANIZATION). Remember your life in the eyes of this terrorist
is EVIL, within the confines of the terrorist's value system, and you can
and will be destroyed with NO REMORSE.
The way terrorist organize themselves
all over the world is to function in the specific environments where they
are able to carry out the acts of terrorism. Here are some general organization
principles to become aware of and how a terrorist thinks. Above all else
the most important thing to a terrorist is SECURITY. Why? Because they
always operate in a HOSTILE environment.
It does not matter if the terrorist
is in Europe, Japan, or the United States, wherever they are it is a hostile
environment. Their safety and security is best served in what is called
a "CELLULAR STRUCTURE." This is most important because then not one of
them can identify more terrorists except the ones in their cell of operation.
It is like a safety net to them. It is important for me to explain at this
point that terrorist groups that are not supported by a specific government
always create what I call a support structure of SYMPATHIZERS, or many
people who may have been coerced into supporting or helping them for various
This system of support can be either
ACTIVE OR PASSIVE. By that I mean intelligence collection, recruiting,
monetary support, logistics, dissemination of propaganda, or worse, a young
child strapped with explosives and sent to a specific target for destruction.
Yes, I know this is horrid, but it is a reality in terrorism as is the
using of women and children as human shields for covert operations. It
is a fact in the life of terrorism.
What qualities a terrorist
leader looks for while selecting his followers for an operation? It is
difficult to give a categorical answer to this question, but there are
certain qualities which one can discern in most terrorists who form part
of the hard core of terrorist organisations, as distinguished from the
peripheral elements, who play mostly a supportive role:
First, they believe
passionately in the justness of their cause. This is the most important
quality, since this is also the most important motivating factor of all
Second, the killer
instinct; a readiness to kill, not in anger, not in the heat of the moment,
not during a fight or a battle, but in cold blood, without any qualms of
conscience or feelings of pity or remorse.
Third, an ability
to act a loner, if circumstances so warrant, though in their private lives
they may not be loners. Members of conventional armies and insurgent and
guerrilla organisations train, live and move together and normally operate
in groups, though there may be circumstances when individual members may
have to operate alone. On the contrary, in the case of terrorist organisations,
they may train and occasionally live together, but, more often than not,
their members operate as loners, unless they are engaged in operations
such as the hijacking of an aircraft or kidnapping .
About 60 per cent of the
terrorist incidents reported every year are operations in which the terrorists
operate as loners -- assassinations, sniper firing, throwing of hand grenades,
planting of explosives and so on. To be thus able to operate as a loner
requires even greater physical courage and determination than operating
in groups. It requires even greater dedication and loyalty than while operating
Fourth, a very high
degree of physical courage because a terrorist risks not only death, but
even worse than death, physical torture if he is caught.
1996 Fmr.President Bill Clinton declared" We will never surrender to terror.
America will never abide terrorist. Whereever they come from, wherever
they go,we will go after them. We will not rest till they all come to justice.
In July of that year several steps were taken to battle terrorism including
meetings at the G-7 summit,with Peru,Japan, Eqypt and the Phillipines.
In addition to the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty act
of 1996.>Bill Clinton
response involves far more than instant retaliation and isolated strikes.
Americans should not expect one battle, but a lengthy campaign, unlike
any other we have ever seen. It may include dramatic strikes, visible on
TV, and covert operations, secret even in success. We will starve terrorists
of funding, turn them one against another, drive them from place to place,
until there is no refuge or no rest. And we will pursue nations that provide
aid or safe haven to terrorism. Every nation, in every region, now has
a decision to make. Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists.
September 11th 2001, we are now faced with new challenges. The U.S Govenment
has taken a completely different posture towards terrorsim because we have
been victims of International terrorist. Not only abroad, but now on our
own soil. Unfotunatley, it has taken a unspeakable act for the rest of
our government organizations to realize the capabilities of International
terrorist organizations and their supporters.
& Security Professionals
personal note from the editor.
J.R's Global Security Resource
does not advocate Espionage, Terrorism (foreign or domestic) and Intelligence
Collection directed towards the United States Government, or the Private
Sector. This site has been published as a learning
& information resource for Security
Professionals whos goal is to educate themselves on the subjects
and threats that are posed to Americans our allies and our businesses.
IF YOU HAVE ANY INFORMATION
CONCERNING TERRORIST ACTIVITY, OR HAVE SEEN OR HEARD ANYTHING SUSPICIOUS
IN REGARDS TO POSSIBLE TERRORIST ACTIVITY IN THE U.S OR ABROAD, PLEASE
CONTACT YOUR LOCAL FBI OFFICE OR THE NEAREST
U.S. EMBASSY OR CONSULATE.
Course: Intelligence in Combatting Terrorism
Think Like A Terrorist To Survive Terrorist Times by Nancy J. Gray
Rights Foundation America Responds to Terrorism What Is Terrorism?