"Ethics and the “War on Terrorism”

Topics: Terrorism, Crime, Federal Bureau of Investigation Pages: 3 (874 words) Published: December 2, 2010
"Ethics and the “War on Terrorism”

1.The definition of terrorism is problematic. How does this affect our view of terrorism? a.There exist a number of “official” and legal definitions as well as those suggested by researchers and commenter’s. Some explanations of the meaning of terrorism focus only on terrorism cared out by individuals and groups and ignore state terrorism altogether, others emphasize the political objective of terrorist acts, and still other frame terrorist acts of criminal events and downplay the political motivations. One clearly understood factor amongst all of these approaches is that terrorism is a method or means of achieving by objective.

2.Which is the better approach—to treat terrorism as a criminal activity or to fight terrorists as if they were enemies in a war? Explain. a.Terrorist are motivated by political objectives, and while criminals employ violence (often similar to that of terrorists like kidnapping, murder, arson) to achieve their ends, their motivation is quite different from that of terrorist, because of criminals commonly act solely to secure a material gain. b.The U.S. administration has indicated that the War on Terrorism will continue until terrorism is ultimately defeated. Given that the War on Terrorism is neither a metaphorical as like those concerning crime, poverty, and drugs, nor a conventional war, it generates a set of moral questions about how it should be conducted.

3.Does the Patriot Act give the executive branch of government too much power in pursuing terrorism? What effect does the exercise of that power have on civil rights in the United States? a.The Patriot Act of 2001, sought to enhance national security through what had previously been regarded as generic crime control measures. It introduce more than 1,000 provisions concerning surveillance on financial transactions and border control, as well as new criminal offenses and penalties against terrorism. The acted is targeted...
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