Terrorism is a planned illegal act for religious or ideological interests involving serious violence against people or property. The main motives for the terrorists groups are religion, political ideology and nationalism; these are the main factors of the terrorist groups. The terrorist groups I will be analyzing are Al Qaeda, IRA, and PLO. I will examine about how their past events have shaped the way they are today and what I think the main motives are and how there are other factors for these groups.
One of the factors that contributed towards the motives of terrorism is religion which was one of the reasons for the formation of Al Qaeda. The terrorist group Al Qaeda was motivated by the factor religion as Al Qaeda wanted the religion Islam to be stricter- this could be seen as their own brand of Islam. The American influence in the Middle East, for example in Saudi Arabia, led to some people in the Middle East wanting to westernize which entailed the religion becoming less strict. Al Qaeda’s political ideology is to have a perfect country which is ruled by their specific religion which will be anti-western. Al Qaeda wanted American influence to be removed from the Middle East which is supported by “Repel America’s aggression against them and overcome them.” The different views of both Al Qaeda’s way of living and America caused the upcoming terrorist acts of 9/11 and the 7/7; I believe this was due to USA’s large involvement with westernization in countries like Turkey which were Islamic. America’s opposing views caused Al Qaeda to want to take action against them especially after their interference in Afghanistan when Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait and threatened Saudi because they saw their pro-westernization as an insult to their religion. Evidence to show this is a statement by Al Qaeda Osama Bin Laden ‘the ruling to kill the Americans and their allies-civilians and military- is an individual duty for every Muslim’ this could be one of the factors behind the huge political threat against the USA in the 9/11 bombings. However, when using Bin Laden’s speech it is important to remember that this view is because trying to persuade people to join Al Qaeda therefore it is not completely reliable.
A lot of the speeches made by the leaders of Al Qaeda, for example Abdullah Azzam, contain religious language: ‘Allah’ their Islamic god and ‘Jihad’ meaning holy war. The significance of religion for this terrorist organization states that they would do anything for their beliefs- a statement by Osama Bin Laden reiterates this extreme faith “fight them until there is no turmoil or oppression, and there prevail justice and faith in Allah” suggesting that Muslims die for their religion. Al Qaeda’s motives of religion link in with another motive of political ideology, because it connected with the way they wanted their government to be run as Abdullah Azzam believed that the Muslim government was not strict enough! This shows how central to their beliefs religion is. Personally I believe that religion was the most important motive for Al Qaeda as all of their aims such as to destroy the American influence in all Muslim nations’ links to religion as they wanted to stop westernization and prevent the Islamic religion becoming less strict. Furthermore, Al Qaeda is against Communism because they believe Muslim countries should be run by a religious secular one- this political ideology is written in Azzam’s bitter attack against communism called The Red Cancer.
The PLO’s motives were not connected to religion like Al Qaeda’s, they were not trying to convert people into the Islamic religion or change a religion however there was conflict between Muslims and Jews with different religious beliefs. The PLO were fighting against the Jewish people because they believed that the Jews had taken over the Palestinian homeland which was in Israel. This then lead to the...