Definition Essay: Terrorism

Tags: Israeli–Palestinian conflict, Hamas, Palestinian political violence

Terrorism is currently a major challenge that confronts the world. Terrorism is a frightening and horrifying event; It has the ability to take away your sense of security and leave us feeling vulnerable, causing the individuals and nations unease. This decade has witnessed some of the most notorious terrorist acts. In recent memory many can easily recall the attacks of 9/11, The day two 767 Boeing jets took down the world-trade centers. Despite, world-wide agreement that 9/11 was an act of terrorism, there remains much dispute on the specifics of what defines terrorism. The definitions provided in one dictionary differ in another. Lets take into example Merriam-Webster's definition, which states that terrorism is “the systematic use of terror as a means of coercion.”¹ The problem with this definition is its simplicity. It can applied to almost anything and sometimes things that traditionally wouldn't be considered terrorism. For example, an elementary school kid ‘systematically’ bullies a kid daily in-order to ‘coerce’ him into giving lunch money. Is this an act of terrorism? Should you agree on charging this child with terrorism? the answer clearly ought to be no. However, Terrorism is more accurately defined as act(s) of violence by an organization directed towards civilians, rather than against the military done to achieve an objective. As a our nation continues to fight the “war of terror[ism]”, It’s important to as quickly as possibly clarify this term so correct measures can be taken in identifying the who’s and what’s of terrorism. To begin terrorism is never a solo-enterprise, It requires the efforts of more than one individual to plan and carry-out those plans. In all internationally recognized plots of terrorism, there seems to always be more than one perpetrator. It’s very important to note this because for an attack to be categorized as an act of terrorism it must originate from a group rather than an individual for very good reasons. First,...
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