Terrorism Homeland Security Term Paper

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Terrorism/Homeland Security

Terrorism / Homeland security

Terrorism is a global phenomenon that needs urgent research to address its effects on people. Scholars on terrorism argue that terrorism is a disputed term. These scholars contend that those individuals referred to as terrorists may be guerrilla fighters, resistant fighters, freedom fighters or militants. They further state that terrorism is a tactic employed to pass out propaganda of deeds thus causing psychological and social impacts on individuals. In addition, people in these places feel the direct effects of the violent act of the terrorists group. Experts dispute whether the start of terrorism is in the first century. There is a view that it started in the 11th century during the time of Sicarrii Zealots. Others are of the opinion that Al-Hashshashin's time was the time when terrorism began (Howard, 2002).

Terrorism in Middle East

Terrorism organizations in the Middle East are mostly religious based. In this form of terrorism, political leaders achieve their agenda in the name of religion. Tactics such as hijackings, kidnapping, and suicide attacks are prevalent in the Middle East. There has been growth of Islam associated terrorism organization in the Arab world, and others have sprung up all over the world. Terrorism organizations now use the internet in recruiting, communicating and transferring funds within their organization. Al Qaida is one of the best examples of a terrorist group in the Middle East. The influence of the group became necessary during a war to repatriate parts of Afghanistan from soviet forces. With the help of various countries, the Al-Qaida group under the leadership of Osama bin Laden drove the invading forces (Bruce, 2007). After the War, the group disintegrated, only to join forces and become a lethal terrorist organization. Islamic terrorism is now prevalent in almost any part of the world. There are active Terrorism organizations in Africa, Europe, and Asia who proclaim the Islamic faith.

Al-Qaeda is a global militant group with its origin in a province in Pakistan. The organization was founded by Osama bin Laden in the years 1988-1989. The organization comprise of stateless militants and foreign fighters. The group's founders are Muslims who practice strict Sharia law. Al-Qaeda carries many attacks on non-Muslims and other targets they consider "kafir." The organization encourages its followers to practice jihad "holy war" (Bruce, 2007). Al-Qaeda has targeted military and civilian areas including the 2002 Bali bombings the September 11 attacks and the 1998 U.S. embassy attack. The United States of America reacted by instituting a War on Terror. The War on terror resulted to the death of Osama bin Laden the leader of Al-Qaeda. The death of its leader weakened the organization to some degree, but the group has not stopped attacking (Zachary, 2003).

Suicide attacks, simultaneous bombing at locations are the methods the group uses to terrorize. Al-Qaeda consists of members who ascribe their loyalty to the notions of Osama, while others have only undergone training in Afghanistan, but are not loyal to Osama bin Laden. The Ideology of Al-Qaeda is that Muslim states, should break away from foreign influences and belief they can create a global Islamic state. The group opposes man-made laws and wants to interchange them for strict Sharia law. Al-Qaeda is responsible for violence among Muslims. The leadership structure of the organization consisted a commander which Osama bin Laden held until his assassination (Bruce, 2007). Senior members advised bin laden. Western officials' allege that shura council consisted of 20-30 people.

It has a military committee which train operatives acquire weapons and plan attacks. The second committee is the money or business committee, which operates a banking system that helps fund activities of the organization. This committee assist pay its members and oversee profit driven businesses. There is the law committee that oversees all aspects of law (Scott, 2002). The other committee is the publicity and media committee; the committee produces newspapers and other forms of media. The organization has a media publication where it produces and supplies its audio and video materials.

The number of operatives who have undergone military training under the Al-Qaeda is unknown. Documents recovered in the raid on Osama compound show that there are thousand Al-Qaeda commanders over 40 countries, and the group has 200-300 active commanders. The group's sources of finance range, but some of the funds were personal contributions from Osama bin Laden. With the growth of the economy, the sources of finances for the organization have dramatically increased (Bruce, 2007). The sources by the year 2001 could have been from the Islamic Jihad or Heroine trade. The group has undertaken strategic attacks over the years but the most recent attack was on the Westgate mall in Kenya. This attack was the plan of Al-Shabab a branch of Al-Qaeda. During the attack, the militants held hostages for four day killing over 60 people. The organization has its branches in Africa such as Boko Haram and Alshabab and has other cells all over the world (Scott, 2002).

Terrorism organization in Europe

In comparison to terrorism organization in the Middle East, terrorist organizations do exist in Europe. The form of these organizations "left-wing" terrorism, directed at overthrowing capitalist countries and replacing it with the socialist societies. In Left wing form of terrorism, terrorists view the government as Authoritative, corrupt and exploitative. The ideology borrowed from other communist and Marxist thoughts. Modern Marxist terrorism began during the period of political unrest of 1968. In the region of west Europe, groups include Red Army and Red Brigades (Zachary, 2003).

The Red Army was a left wing terrorism organization in West Germany. The organization was formed in the year 1970; the organization is an urban guerrilla team. The group engaged the fascist state in resistance. This resistance made the German government name RAF a terrorist organization. The Army existed from the year 1070 to 1998 committing many operations. In the year 1977, the group led to a national crisis. It was liable for 34 deaths, which include secondary targets. Its revolutionary cells were responsible for bomb attacks, and arson attacks. The origin of the red Army follows student arrests in West German during the period of World War II War (Jenkins, 1986).

Funds for terrorism organization come from the drug trade, and funds from arms trade. The other Sources of funds for this organization are money laundering and smuggling of weapons. The current state of Europe faces terrorism challenges. States have terrorist organizations within their nation or cells of other organizations. Council of Europe an organization that came into operation in the year 1970s, their operations emerged again in the year 2001. The revival of the organization came because of attacks in the United States of America. It is an organization committed to fulfilling the UN security agenda. It provides assistance to member countries in counter terrorism activities. The council of Europe has provided measures of handling terrorism crimes. It aims at increasing the capacity of member countries to counter terrorism and provide compensation to victims of Terrorism. The organization undertakes its task by strengthening policies and laws relating to terrorism, addresses the causes of terrorism and in safeguarding fundamental rights. Europe also organizes conferences, and to fight modern terrorism the organization apply modern methods of investigation, telephone and internet communication, undercover operations and electronic surveillance (Jenkins, 1986).

The organization argues that techniques used to fight terrorism, must abide by fundamental human rights. The rules of law need addressing in response to the rights of suspects, third persons and victims of terror. These laws vary from country to country. The council consist the Arab league, and the UN security counter committee. The conferences discussions relate to international legal frameworks while at the same time addressing emerging issues relating to terrorism. Since the year 2005, the council recommends for special investigation strategies. The UN,…[continue]

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