Concept of Terrorism and its Implication


Terrorism involves the systematic use of terror as a means of coercion. Terrorism refers  to  the violent acts that are made to create fear or terror among  the civilians.  The acts are carried out by religious groups, political groups on any other group. Terrorism has become a major issue in the society. This is because of the adverse effects caused by terrorism. Terrorism has led to loose of life and destruction of property. For example,  the September 11 attack caused more damage to United States citizens,  economy and has led to increase in death rates.

The  terrorism attack led to slow economic  growth in the country as  the government had to spend more money on rebuilding the infrastructure  and other buildings. The attack affected first responders negatively. It affected them physically, psychologically and cognitive. Terrorism has implications on public safety policing, order, security in the country. It has implications on the rights and freedoms of the citizens and weaponry and technology. This paper analyzes the concept of terrorism, its implications and impact.

Discussion concept of terrorism, its implication and impact

The definition of terrorism has become a major issue. People define terrorism differently. Some think terrorism involves violent behaviors that are acted against the civilians (Spencer, 2006). Lack  of clear definition for terrorism has made it difficulty for countries to  prevent  terrorism. It has undermined the international efforts to prevent effects of terrorism. This has in turn led to increase in deaths and destruction of property. Most people have carried out research to determine the causes of terrorism. The researchers argue that understanding the causes of terrorism will help develop the right measures to prevent terrorism. The researchers have identified various factors that motivate terrorists to carry out terrorists attacks. For instance, terrorists  are  motivated  by  social and  political injustices  to  commit terrorist  activities. Social and political injustices are common in many countries (Spencer, 2006).

The social injustices have resulted from unequal distribution of resources in the countries. Most people live below the poverty line due to lack of resources. This has resulted to acts of revenge as people want to get enough resources. For instance, the social  injustices in Iraq and Afghanistan led to terrorists attacks in the country  and other countries. The resources in these countries have not been distributed equally. This has made it difficulty for the various groups to live in harmony (Transnational terrorism and the rule of law, 2008).

Most terrorists do not  only experience poverty  and  inequality, but  they come from  middle class families and  poor environments. The terrorists face social injustices when they grow up. In addition,  the terrorists  always have stress and depression as they try to cope up  with their stressful life. Researchers claim that terrorists join terrorists groups like Al-queda because of boredom and to have a better life. Terrorists like other criminals are influenced  by the surrounding environment and drugs to commit crime. For example, some of the terrorists  are influenced  by drugs like heroin and the environment to join terrorist attacks.

People living  in  terrorist environment are more likely to be involved in terrorism activities than those who live in better places (Kisangani, Nafziger & Wayne, 2007). This is because they acquire criminal behaviors from the environment. The experience of social injustices has motivated the groups to commit social revolutionary terrorism. The great difference in income distribution in the country   has led to development of   social revolutionary political violence. It has also led to development of ideological terrorism (Spencer, 2006).

In addition,   political injustices in the countries have led to increase in terrorists activities. Research has shown that there is a close correlation between terrorism and democracy. Lack of democracy has led to high rate of terrorist activities in the country. Democratic nations have less opposition from terrorists. This is because the countries   recognized the rights of every citizen in the country. On the other hand countries that   have no strong democracy are more prone to terrorist activities (Kisangani, Nafziger & Wayne, 2007).

This is because the states do not have   power to control their territories. This makes it easy for terrorists to establish  training facilities and base in the country. Most people use terrorist’s activities to pursue their rights. Majority of the people using violence are denied their democratic rights and other rights. Most  people  in  the  society  believe that violence is  the best  method to bring changeand acquire their rights. This forces terrorists to use terrorist’s activities to achieve their goals. There are various terrorists  attacks that  resulted from  social  and  political  injustices. For  instance,  the Zionists bombed  the  British in 1930 so as to create a Jewish state. Also, the Irish  Republican army  bombed  the  English   target in 1980s to get back  their land. They believed that their land was being colonized by the British. Political terrorism is carried out with a major goal or objective. For example, political terrorism is carried out with political goals or social goals (Martin, 2010).

Most  countries  have  found  it  difficulty to control  political  terrorism  because   they  do not  understand  the  main  objective of the  terrorism. Researchers  claim that   understanding  the   goals  of   political  terrorism  will  help  eliminate   terrorism  in  many  countries. Most terrorists carry out political terrorism to bring   political change. In this  case,  the   terrorist   target  people  who  hinder  them  from  bringing   change  in  the country. The terrorists opt to use violence to bring change because of various reasons. First, the terrorists are denied the chance to expresses their views using formal channels. This makes it difficulty for them to get the right help. Second,  the   terrorists view  terrorism  as the most effective method   to  shake  the   status  quos  in   the   country and also  prevent emergence of  a  state affairs. Additionally  the   terrorists  believe  that terrorism is the best  method to attack the government as it prevents  them from  ruling. Most  people  have used the historical injustices  and  grievances to justify  their   terrorism  acts. This has led to   terrorism as the   groups fight for their rights (Martin, 2010).

Inequality of power has led to terrorism. This happens when international and local powers have more powers than the opposition groups in the country. The later decides to use violence to get military and   political control. Terrorism gives an opportunity of   getting high political impact. Hence, political   injustices have led to increase in terrorist activities (Transnational terrorism and the rule of law, 2008).

Apart from political and social injustices, religious   factors have also led to terrorism. People   argue that   religion does not contribute to terrorist activities, but, some  religions  encourage   terrorist  activities  as  a  means  of  getting  want  they  want. For instance, some Muslim groups encourage terrorism as it is not against their teachings. The groups target people who are against their religious practices. Takfiri is a group of Muslims who practice takfir. The word Takfir is derived from Kafir meaning impure (Griset &Mahan, 2003).

The concept refers to groups   that are considered   excommunicated from Muslims practices. The  groups  do not  benefit  from  the   protection  of  the Muslim  laws  and  they  are  condemned  to  death. Takfiris  encourage  violence   as  the  legitimate  method   to  achieve   their  religious  and  political  goals. Most   people have associated   Takfiris with violence   and terrorism in   many countries. The  Takfiris   believe   in  Islam  and   the   teaching   and  they do not  encourage  an  actions  or  statements   that  deviate  their  teaching. The Takfiris have other believes (Griset &Mahan, 2003).

For  example,  they consider  any  political  authority  that  does  not  abide by  the Islam  teaching  as  illegitimate. Hence, the   group considers violence against   such nations as legal. In addition, the Takfiris believe in murder. They  assume   that  one  should  murder  so  as  to  go  to  heaven. The   difference in opinion among religious groups has led to increase in violence and   terrorism. The  Islam  have  remained   committed  to  terrorists  acts  as  they  views  them  illegal (Martin, 2010).

Moreover, rapid modernization and urbanization in areas experiencing high economic growth has led to high rates of terrorists activities. Rapid   modernization and urbanization has   led to development of ideological terrorism. For  instance, countries   that   have   experienced   high economic   growth   and  urbanization  due  to  sudden wealth  are  more likely  to  experience terrorist activities  than  those who  have no sudden wealth. This is because the countries change their traditional norms and social patterns to embrace change. This results to terrorist activities as the society does not have strong culture (Transnational terrorism and the rule of law, 2008).

Corrupt governments have also led to terrorism as they lead to emergence of opposition. This  in turn   forces  people  to  use   terrorist   activities   to  replace  the  current  government  with  a legitimate   government. Corruption and poor governance have caused terrorism in many countries (Griset &Mahan, 2003). For  example, corruption  and  poor  governance  have  led  to  increase  in   terrorism  in Iraq  and Afghanistan. Further, discrimination has also led to ethno-nationalist terrorism. People  discriminated  because  of  their  religious  or   ethnic  backgrounds   are  more  likely  to  involve  themselves in  ethno-nationalist  terrorism. Minority  groups  are  always  deprived   their   right  to  get  equal  economic  and  social  opportunities  with  other  groups. In addition, the groups are denied their rights like using their cultural language and practicing their religion. Ethnic nationalism is more likely to justify terrorist attacks than an inclusive society (Martin, 2010).

The failure  to  incorporate  emerging  social  groups  and  classes  into  the   state  activities  has  given  rise  to  terrorism. Some illegal  groups   and  social  classes  are   not  included  in  the  nations  activities  like  political  activities. This   allows them to oppose the   political   system. The  groups  are   excluded  because  they   hold  views   that  are not  inline   with  the   basic  values  in  the country. The groups excluded from the political system   tend to be frustrated. The groups search for alternative ways to express their views and bring change. To some of the groups, terrorism is the best method to do so (Kisangani, Nafziger & Wayne, 2007).

Apart from the root causes of terrorism, there are trigger causes of terrorism. There are various trigger causes of terrorism. First, the  existence  of  constant  grievances  among  the  excluded   groups  like  minority   groups   can  trigger  violence. The minority  groups are more  likely  to  engage  in violence and   terrorism  so  as  to  express  their views. Second, the   lack of   opportunity to participate in political   activities also triggers terrorisms (Griset &Mahan, 2003).

The  groups  excluded  from  participating  in  political  activities  will  use   terrorism  to   achieve  their   political  goals. Third, the proactive   events that call for   revenge   trigger   terrorism in the country. For instance, disputed   elections and excessive use of force can lead to terrorism. Understanding the root causes and trigger causes for   terrorism will help develop effective counterterrorism measures. Most  countries  have not been  able  to  control  terrorism  activities  because  they   are  not  aware  of  the  root  causes  and   trigger  causes of terrorism. This has hindered   prevention of terrorism in the country (Kisangani, Nafziger & Wayne, 2007).

Implication of terrorism

Terrorism has   negative and   positive implication on the country and its people. First, terrorism affects   economic growth in the country. Most terrorist attacks cause destruction on property. This  forces  the  government  to  use  a lot  of  finances  in  building  the  infrastructure. though  the  united  states  was  experiencing  slow  economic  growth before the  September 11  attack, the  attack worsened  the  economic  growth in the country. Terrorism has   implication on training of military officers. Military training is mainly focused in fulfilling three objectives. The  military training is  focused on  the  security, defense  and  other  operations   in  the country  that are  aimed at  eliminating  insecurity (Bellany, 2007).

The   training is meant to make the military force become operationally capable. The military  officers should be  able to  accomplish  the  mission  stated  successfully  and  at  the  right  time. The training of military personnel  is directed  on the  main capabilities  of the armed personnel. This is mostly in areas of security and defense. Once a  basic  combat  capability   is  achieved, then the  officers  are  provided  with  additional  mission  that is   related  to the  training. The mission helps them acquire new skills needed to perform their main missions (Bellany, 2007).

The  training  of  military  officers  has   changed  greatly  for  the last  ten  years as  the training helps the officers  prevent  terrorism. The  training  has  incorporated  courses  that  offer  police  officers  with  adequate  skills  to  help  them  prevent   terrorism  activities  effectively. Before, the  training  helped  the  armed  forces  acquire  skills  to maintain  security  in  the  country, but  the  armed  officers  are   supposed  to  acquire skills  to prevent  terrorism. The   officers  are  supposed  to develop  counter  terrorism  measures  to  prevent   terrorism in  the  country (Pastor, 2009).

Further, the   terrorism  has  implication  on  the  security and  order .Most  countries   have  strengthen  security  policies  to  prevent   terrorist  attacks  in  the  country .For  example, countries  have  developed  counter  terrorism measures like  racial  profiling  to  prevent   terrorism  activities. An example, of counter terrorism measures is racial profiling. In addition, the countries have strengthened their  security in the airport and along the borders. This is to enhance  security in the country. Terrorist use different routes to access the target country. For example, terrorists use borders and   airport to enter the country. Most people living and entering the country are scrutinized  to identify the terrorist (Pastor, 2009).

In addition, terrorism has a great implication for   law enforcement agencies. Most countries   have not established laws to govern terrorism activities in the country. This has made it difficulty for the countries to prevent   terrorism   attacks. The increase in   terrorist’s attacks   has   forced   governments to improve the policing in law enforcement agencies to prevent terrorism. Different countrified have adopted different   strategies and laws to prevent terrorism. For  instance,  United  States   government   has  adopted  racial  profiling  as  a  means  of   preventing  terrorist attacks. Racial,  profiling  allows  the  country  to identify  terrorist   in  the  air port  and   the  borders. Though  racial  profiling  has  a lot  of  disadvantages  to  the  citizens, the  method  has   helped  reduced   terrorist  activities  in  the  country. Additionally, terrorism has also affected how agencies in the country work. For  example, the  laws  enforcement  agencies   are  supposed  to  work  hand  in  hand  with  airport   and  other  institutions  in  the  country   to  prevent  terrorism (Pastor, 2009).

Terrorism  has  implication  on  the  rights  and  freedoms  of many  citizens  in  the  country like citizens in countries linked  with terrorist activities. For  example,  the  United  States   government  associated  the  September 11  attack  with   Muslims  from  Arab  countries. The  country  in  turn  enforced   measures  to  improve  security  in  the  country. The  country adopted  the   racial  profiling  to  help  identify   Muslims  from  the  Arab  countries. This group was not allowed to enter the country. Racial  profiling  affects various  rights  accorded  to  the  citizens  in  the  country. For  example,  racial  profiling  affects   the  religious  rights   of  certain  groups  in  the  country as  the  groups  fear  worshiping. This is mostly among the groups associated with terrorist activities like Muslims. It also affects the freedom of movement of the citizens. Most  citizens  from  terrorist  countries  are  not  allowed  to  enter  or  leave   different  countries  like  United States. The   increase  in terrorists  activities  might  lead  to more   harm  to  the  citizens  and   foreigners  than  harm. This is because the   groups will be affected economically and socially (Murray, 2005).

Also, the   terrorism activities   have positive implications on the   weaponry and   technology. Terrorists use biological weapons and weapons of mass destructions. The  rise  in  terrorist  activities  have  led  to  increase  in  use  of biological  weapons  and  weapons  of  mass  destructions (Bellany, 2007). Most  countries  like Iraq  have  adopted   current  technological  advances  to  develop  biological  weapons  and  other  weapons. This has  helped improve technological   advanced in the country. On  the  other  hand, increase in  terrorists  acts  has  led  to   negative  effects  on  the society and  environment. The  biological  weapons  and  other  weapons  used  cause  environmental  degradation  and   death  of  citizens  in  the  country. Researchers  argue  that   the  increased  in  terrorists  attacks  in  the  world   will  lead  to  more  weapons  being  developed  to meet  the  demand. This will  in  turn  lead  to more   technological  advances  as  countries  will  adopt  there  latest  technology (Bellany, 2007).

Terrorism will   have   implications on the policing model (Pastor, 2009). The   country  will  have  to  change  the  current  policies  in  the  country  to  accommodate  news  policies that  can  help  prevent  terrorism. The terrorism activities have affected community policing and public safety policing and law enforcement agency policing as stated above. The  community  policing  is  aimed  at  developing  measures  to  control   terrorism  threats and  their  effects. The  law  enforcement  agencies   will  together with  the  community  to   develop  policies  to  prevent  terrorism  threats (Matthew, Hickman, Brian &Reaves, 2001).

The community policing will have to accommodate new policies that can prevent terrorism effectively. Consequently, the  public  safety  policing  will  change .The  law  enforcement  agencies  and  other  agencies will  have  to  identity  the  terrorism  threats. Then develop new policies that prevent their threats. The public  safety  policing  should  be able   to  provide  proactive  response  to  terrorist  activities  in  the  country. It should enable citizens to detect   terrorist activities, prepare for terrific activities and overcome them (Murray, 2005).

Terrorism has negative effects on   first responders. Terrorism like  other  disasters   has  physical,  psychological  and  cognitive  impact  on  the   first  responders. First responders play an important role in helping terrorist’s victims and casualties. The first responders are supposed to   have enough training so as to be able to carry out their activities effectively (Matthew, Hickman, Brian &Reaves, 2001). The first  responders  will needed more  training   so  as  to be able  to  handle  terrorist  activities. Most  first responders suffer physical damage during terrorist attacks. This makes it difficulty for the   first responders to  perform their duties. Also, the   first responders  suffer  psychological  after the terrorist attackers. The first  responders  experience  depression  and street due to  loose of loved ones  and  also  their  worker  mates. The  territories activities may affect the cognitive  functioning of  first responders. For example, it can affect cognitive functions like memory due to injury or stress (Murray, 2005).


Terrorism has become a major concern in the society. This is because of the   negative effects caused by terrorism. Most people have carried out  research to explain the causes of terrorism. But the  research has not been effective. This is because of   lack of enough information on the causes of terrorism. Also, the researchers have not had enough resources to use. This has hindered the efforts to prevent terrorism. There are various root causes and   triggers cause of   terrorism. The main causes of terrorism are political and social injustice. Most terrorists have faced social injustices. For example, the terrorists have faced   poverty and unequal distribution of   resources. The  gap between  the  rich  and  the  poor   has  widened   greatly   for  the  last  three  decades. This has resulted to unequal distribution of income. Hence, this has caused violence in the country. Political injustices   like   exclusion of certain groups and   poor governance have also led   to   violence.

Most  groups  excluded  from  the  political  systems  use terrorism  as  a  means  to  achieve  their  political  goals. Corrupt governments   have also forced   minority groups to use violence to eliminate them. Religious factors have also led to   violence. Most religions in the country encourage violence. For example, the Takfiris encourage violence as a means of attaining their political and religious goals. Also, the groups encourage murder as it is inline with their teaching. The  religious  beliefs have  led  to  exclusion of  some  groups   and using  violence  to  revenge. Other  factors  that  have  led  to  violence  are   drug  abuse and  poor  environment. Terrorists  like  other  criminals  in  the  poor environment  to  carry out  terrorist  attacks. Apart from the root causes, there are trigger causes. There are various factors that trigger violence. For  example,  proactive  events  like  excessive  use  of excessive force causes   some  groups to  use  revenge  to achieve  their goals. Also, exclusion of some groups from participating   in the political groups leads to violence.

Understanding the root causes and triggers of terrorism will help prevent   terrorism. It will help countries develop effective counter terrorism measures. Terrorism  has  various  implication  on  the   weaponry, technology,  policing  model  and   rights  and  freedom. Terrorism  has   led  to  technological  advances   as  many countries  develop  biological  weapons  and  mass  destruction weapons. The countries have adopted the current technology to develop the weapons. Also, it has led to establishment of different types of weapon used in the country. It  has also  led  to  improvement  in  order  maintaining and  security in  the  country Terrorism  has  affected  the  rights  and  freedom of  most citizens. For example it has   affected freedom of worship and   movement. It has led to changes in policing model.


Bellany, I.(2007).Terrorism and weapons of mass destruction: responding to the challenge. Routledge
Kisangani, E.; Nafziger, E. Wayne (2007). “The Political Economy Of State Terror” (PDF). Defence and Peace Economics 18 (5): 405–414. doi:10.1080/10242690701455433. Retrieved 2008-04-02
Martin, G. (2010).Essentials of Terrorism: Concepts and Controversies. SAGE
Griset, P, L., &Mahan, S. (2003).Terrorism in perspective. SAGE
Matthew,J., Hickman., Brian A.,&Reaves. (2001). Community Policing in Local Police Departments, 1997 and 1999,. Bureau of Justice Statistics Special Report (Washington, DC: Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice, 2001).
Murray,J.(2005).Policing terrorism. A  threat  to community  policing or a  just a  shift  in priorities?. Police practice and research,  Vol 6,Issue no.4 September 2005, page 347 -361.
Pastor, J.F. (2009).Terrorism and Public Safety Policing: Implications for the Obama Presidency. CRC Press
Spencer,A.(2006).Questioning   the concept of  New terrorism. Peace conflict and development, Issue 8, January 2006.Retrieved  from
Transnational terrorism and the rule of law.(2008).The concept of terrorism. Analysis of the rise, decline, trends and risk. Retrieved from on 13/10/2010.
(Visited 52 times, 1 visits today)