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Can one fight against terrorism?

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Terrorism constitutes a relatively recent aspect of the human history. The term appeared for the first time in the dictionary of the French Academy in 1798 to indicate a form of government born out of the French revolution. In December 1800, Bonaparte escaped a bomb attack perpetrated by the royalists. This gesture is often indicated as the first modern terrorist act. This was followed by many incidents of terrorism such as the attack against the François-Ferdinand in June 1914 in Sarajevo, which precipitated Europe in the First World War, or more recently, the attacks on September 11, 2001.

As a major phenomenon of the contemporary international relations, terrorism remains, however, difficult to define because of the various forms which it can take, of the emotion which it causes and the political implications and morals of the qualification of terrorist. The United States has launched a massive anti-terrorism drive after the September 11 attacks. One can, however to present terrorism as a non-conventional armed conflict, a series of violent acts, that is planned and mediated and has a target of military objectives or otherwise.

It attempts to create a climate of fear and insecurity and influence the decision makers with an aim of modifying the decision-making processes (to yield, negotiate, pay, release, repress) and of satisfying objectives (political, economic, and criminal). Under these conditions, can one fight against terrorism? It is however advisable to understand that September 11, 2001 marks the advent of a radical terrorism that upset the existing strategic visions and pushed the US to impose an anti-terrorist policy.

Historically, terrorism was an unconventional method of control as part of a skewed balance of power used by a State or a non-state organization to meet specific goals (release of prisoners, independence of a territory) with the end predation economic or political demands.

The attacks of September 11 have shown the emergence of a subversive action within the meaning of the word. Indeed, by their act, suicide bombers have expressed no political demands precise and concrete, thus precluding any negotiation, but a desire to destabilize radically and permanently, by fear, the target company.

Tags: terrorism, war against terrorism

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