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Defining Terror Essay

829 words - 4 pages

After the 9/11 attacks the word terrorism became etched in the worlds vocabulary. The word Terrorism immediately brings up images of bombings and hooded figures making demands on a home video. But when organizations tasked with defending against the treat of terrorism, begin to shape their operations, it also shape tire definition.
The gathering and analysis of intelligence is the driving force in the Central Intelligence agency (CIA). So much so that it’s right in the name. So when the CIA begins working on the definition of terrorism, it uses that mission as a driving facture. The CIA describes terrorism as “premeditated, politically motivated violence perpetrated against noncombatant ...view middle of the document...

d.). The State Department uses its definition to achieve political adjectives. Anti-terrorism measures are only effective with public support and access to areas where those types of organizations operate (Laqueur, 2004). Using its Description, the State Department is able to apply political pressure and garner political support for actions against organizations that fall under that classification. Although other countries may not agree upon that definition, it is reasonable enough to provide political leverage when dealing with nations that harbor terrorist originations. That label allows the State Department to pass sections or other punitive measures. Unfortunately, some of those organizations manage to make it to American soil.
Unlike the CIA and Stated Department, the FBI’s focus is on American Territory. The FBI is not an international organization like the CIA or State department, it is a law enforcement agency and its definition of terrorism reflects that. Because of legal implications involved in the American legal system, unlike the CIA and State Department’s definition, the FBI’s needs to be narrower in order to withstand the scrutiny of the US courts . The FBI states that terrorism is an action that Involves “violent acts or acts dangerous to human life that violate federal or state law” (Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), n.d. para 2). The act also must “Appear to be intended (i) to intimidate or coerce a civilian population; (ii) to influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion; or (iii) to affect the conduct of a government by mass destruction, assassination, or...

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