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Political violence in flux: Changes in today’s world

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  1. Introduction.
    1. Terrorism and the fundamentally changed nature of international relations.
    2. The increase in the use of terrorism.
  2. The use of targeted killings by the United States and Israel against Islamic extremists.
    1. The history of the norm.
    2. The rise and fall of centralized state authority.
    3. The Roman Empire and the central authority figure it represented.
    4. The rhetoric regarding the viability of the use of targeted killings.
  3. This belief of assassination as an illegitimate means to achieving political ends.
    1. The United States and the CIA.
    2. The ambiguity of the wording in the Executive Order.
    3. The Persian Crisis.
    4. The acceptance that al-Qaeda operatives should be captured and brought to trial.
  4. The USS Cole bombing and the 9/11 attack.
  5. The state of Israel and the use of targeted killing as a political method.
    1. The kidnapping and subsequent murders of 11 Israeli athletes during the Munich Olympic Games.
    2. The second intifada.
    3. Government opinion regarding the targeted killings.
  6. conclusion.

Terrorism has fundamentally changed the nature of international relations as a whole. With the emergence of small, non government organizations (or NGOs) that have the capability to inflict massive amounts of damage to life and property, states as a whole now face a strong challenge to their internal security that was never seen as such a grave threat before. As a response to this challenge, the United States has instituted a policy of targeted killing against suspects that were believed to be instrumental in the terrorist attacks on the U.S.S. Cole and the World Trade Center. These sorts of attacks have been condemned by military pundits, peace organizations, and many scholars as ?assassinations? or ?extra-judicial executions?, and not at all permissible under common norms and treaties governing international war. However, the increase in the use of terrorism has changed the way that states in the international system view the legality of targeted killings. Since the 1600s, the use of targeted killings and assassinations was considered reproachable and not a viable option to practice state politics. This norm has changed, especially in more recent years. The use of targeted killings by the United States and Israel against Islamic extremists has, while not completely destroying it, removed much of the taboo surrounding the use of targeted killings to protect the security and sovereignty of their respective states.

[...] The state of Israel has a much larger history in respect to the use of targeted killing as a political method of stopping enemies. As a brief history, in the 1950s and 1960s, targeted killings were mostly aimed at Egypt and the military dictatorial regime under Gamal Abdel Nasser, and were somewhat limited. The use of targeted killings, however, increased vastly after the end of the Six Day Arab-Israeli War in 1967. Now, targets were among the Palestinians who were committing terrorist attacks against Israel, who were initiating such attacks due to Israeli occupation of certain Palestinian territories. [...]

[...] The world has changed immensely in the previous century; non-state actors play an increasingly important, and often dangerous, role in international security. September marks the date when the world system changed into a much less predictable place. Hopefully, the normative change in using targeted killing will reap the benefit of deterring these terroristic threats to international security; if not, the world should hope that the problem is not merely exacerbated. Works Cited David, Steven R. "Fatal Choices: Israel's Policy of Targeted Killing." Mideast Security and Policy Studies (2002): 3-4. [...]

[...] Foreign Policy in the War on Terror. Diss. School of Advanced Military Studies Ft. Levensworth, KS: School of Advanced Military Studies Thomas, Ward. The Ethics of Destruction : Norms and Force in International Relations. New York: Cornell UP Thomas, Ward. The Ethics of Destruction : Norms and Force in International Relations. New York: Cornell UP Ibid Ibid Ford, Franklin L. Political Murder : From Tyrannicide to Terrorism. New York: Harvard UP Ibid Ibid Thomas, Ward. The Ethics of Destruction : Norms and Force in International Relations. [...]

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